Dubai SME unveils comprehensive package to support entrepreneurs and startups

• Measures aimed to ensure business continuity and stimulate SME development during the COVID-19 emergency

• Package includes postponement of rents, easier access to financing and remote advice and training on navigating challenges

Dubai SME, the agency of Dubai Economy mandated to develop the small and medium enterprise (SME) sector, has rolled out a series of initiatives to support startups and entrepreneurs in Dubai in view of the challenges posed by COVID-19.

The support measures, being implemented in line with the directives of the leadership to ensure business continuity & sustainability, range from postponement of rent payment and easier access to SME financing, to remote assistance on successfully navigating operational challenges

His Excellency Abdul Baset Al Janahi, CEO of Dubai SME, said: “The challenges communities and businesses worldwide are facing since COVID-19 underline the role and significance of SMEs in creating new economic opportunities, and in building resilient and sustainable enterprise.Dubai SME is exploring all avenues to ensure that SMEs in Dubai remain resilient and turn the present challenges into an opportunity to pursue further innovations and growth.”

Al Janahi added that the support package seeks to address the major concerns of startups and entrepreneurs in the exceptional circumstances prevailing. “Dubai has conveyed a strong commitment to working closely with businesses, and Dubai SME is delighted to take this collaborative spirit to startups and entrepreneurs in the emirate.Energising SMEs through timely assistance will complement the entrepreneurial ecosystem in Dubai, and the emirate’s vision to be the global hub of entrepreneurship.”

Hamdan Innovation Incubator ( Hi2)

As part of the support package, the Hamdan Innovation Incubator (Hi2) in Dubai SME has sought to reassure entrepreneurs and innovators by postponing collection of rents for three months.

Beneficiaries of Hi2 can take advantage of the postponement and focus on developing their project without worrying about finances. Additionally, a fee reduction of up to 20% is also offered on the Private Office package of Hi2.The entrepreneurial projects being incubated at Hi2 will continue to receive development support and advisory remotely through audio-visual systems during the COVID-19 emergency.

Hi2 currently has 75 projects, all of which will continue to enjoy unhindered access to the project management, risk management and crisis management advisory and follow-up services during this period.

The Mohammed Bin Rashid Fund for SME (The Fund)

The Mohammed Bin Rashid Fund for SME (The Fund), the financial arm of Dubai SME, has also announced a comprehensive support package, including loans to support business continuity of projects benefitting from The Fund as well as a three-month grace period for loan repayments and easier access to financing for more SMEs. The Fund will offer zero-interest financing to Dubai SME members struggling to meet obligations relating to operational expenses, such as salaries and rents, in addition to online financial consultancy for entrepreneurial projects.

Dubai Entrepreneurship Academy (DEA)

Dubai Entrepreneurship Academy (DEA), the educational arm of Dubai SME, is providing remote educational lectures using the latest technologies to help entrepreneurs manage their projects in light of the current challenges. The Academy has already addressed 1,194 entrepreneurs in 18 sessions. In addition, Dubai SME is providing development advisory sessions remotely for Start-ups, which has totalled to 101 sessions.

News Source : https://twitter.com/Dubai_DED/status/1267858214240112645

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