Abu Dhabi's Hub71 and HPE join forces to support start-ups
Hub71, Abu Dhabi's global technology ecosystem, and IT conglomerate Hewlett Packard Enterprise have signed a preliminary agreement to collaborate on a series of programmes aimed at supporting start-ups in the emirate and to help them leverage new-age technologies that could accelerate their development.
The collaboration will enable an ecosystem with real market demand, processes and technologies, including artificial intelligence and high-performance computing.
Start-ups will gain direct access to HPE’s experts and will be mentored by them. They will also develop and test prototypes using the HPE Digital Life Garage.
The agreement was signed by Badr Al Olama, acting chief executive of Hub71, and Ahmad Alkhallafi, managing director of HPE UAE, at the recent Global Manufacturing and Industrialisation Summit in Dubai.
"Partnering with HPE will enable Hub71 start-ups to incorporate domain expertise to deliver cutting-edge solutions to the market," Mr Al Olama said.
"Importantly, founders can collaborate with HPE through our programmes and Community Centre of Excellence that will provide founders with the expert knowledge and access necessary to innovate and increase their commercial viability.”
Abu Dhabi has launched several programmes to boost its start-up ecosystem and is now home to a growing community that can count on the availability of investment, commercial activities and incentives from both the public and private sectors.
Last month, Hub71 said it more than doubled its number of start-ups in the past 18 months amid the pandemic, with companies based out of the zone reporting a two-fold increase in venture capital funding and an average revenue increase of 35 per cent after joining.
Funding to Mena start-ups rose 64 per cent to $1.2 billion in the first half of 2021, with food and beverage, FinTech and e-commerce companies attracting record investment, Magnitt data revealed.
Earlier this month, the UAE unveiled the Entrepreneurial Nation initiative, the goal of which is to make the Emirates home to 20 unicorns – a term referring to start-ups valued at more than $1bn – by 2031, as well as to attract and expand small and medium enterprises.
Last month, HPE said it was developing Atmosphere, a supercomputer to help the UAE’s National Centre for Meteorology predict weather patterns more accurately and improve cloud-seeding missions. It has the capability to process data up to 600 per cent faster than the current prediction software used by the centre.
HPE will participate in the next edition of The Outliers, Hub71’s annual partner challenge programme that is designed to address industry challenges. Successful start-ups will be shortlisted and benefit from Hub71’s incentives dedicated to easing their growth phase.
HPE will also collaborate with Hub71 to support early-stage founders from the Abu Dhabi zone's venture builder programme. The company will provide them with insights on market needs and demands to align their business strategies and product growth management.
“We are proud to partner with Hub71 to nurture tech start-ups in the UAE and look forward to participating in their latest programme to address industry challenges – a goal that is perfectly aligned with our purpose to advance the way people live and work," Mr Alkhallafi said.
Hub71, a flagship initiative of the Dh50bn ($13.61bn) Ghadan 21 economic stimulus programme, aims to introduce new technologies to Abu Dhabi in a bid to build globally-enduring technology companies.
"Founders can collaborate with HPE through our programmes and Community Centre of Excellence that will provide founders with the expert knowledge and access necessary to innovate and increase their commercial viability" - Badr Al Olama, acting chief executive of Hub71