Encouraging Growth: Dubai Launches AED500 Million Fund for SMEs Eyeing International Markets
Mokshita P.
What's the Deal

Encouraging Growth: Dubai Launches AED500 Million Fund for SMEs Eyeing International Markets

Emirates NBD announces eligibility criteria for SMEs to join the AED500 million initiative spearheaded by HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed, aimed at propelling Dubai-founded businesses globally.

Emirates NBD has disclosed the eligibility criteria for SMEs aiming to partake in the inaugural phase of the 'Dubai International Growth Initiative.' Launched under the visionary directive of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai, the initiative, introduced in January, seeks to expedite the global expansion endeavours of Dubai-founded SMEs.

Aligned with the objectives outlined in the Dubai Economic Agenda D33, which aims to double the emirate's GDP, the 'Dubai International Growth Initiative' is geared towards Dubai's standing as a preeminent global business hub. Recognising the important role played by the private sector in the emirate's economic growth, the initiative focuses on key sectors integral to Dubai's economic landscape.

The first phase of the initiative is currently open exclusively to Dubai-founded SMEs operating in sectors such as F&B, FMCG, retail, e-commerce, services, and manufacturing. Subsequent phases are slated to include additional sectors.

Emirates NBD, as a key partner, will provide support by facilitating financing of up to AED15 million to eligible businesses for a maximum duration of seven years. The financing cost will be based on the Emirates' Interbank Offered Rate, with no additional margin, allowing SMEs to effectively manage their cashflow during the critical global expansion phase.

A joint steering committee, comprising representatives from the Government of Dubai and Emirates NBD, will oversee the initiative. This committee will play an important role in selecting eligible SMEs, ensuring the smooth implementation of the initiative, and aligning it with the objectives of the emirate.

To be eligible for the initiative, SMEs must meet specific criteria that resonate with the vision of the Government of Dubai. Criteria include being founded and operational in Dubai, operating within the specified sectors, utilising financing for global expansion, managing repayments based on current operations' cashflows, and presenting a comprehensive business plan outlining their strategy for global growth.

The application process involves a thorough review by dedicated specialists and the joint steering committee. Successful applicants will collaborate closely with Emirates NBD to tailor financial solutions that address their unique growth needs.

All Dubai-founded SMEs, regardless of the owner's nationality, are encouraged to take advantage of the 'Dubai International Growth Initiative,' which aims to empower SMEs for international expansion.