Dubai – MENA Herald: As part of its innovation Strategy implementation roadmap, the Dubai Airport Freezone Authority (DAFZA) Business Lab organized today (November 25, 2015) an Accelerated Innovation for Global Growth (AIGG) seminar in collaboration with IBM and Microsoft. The event, which will run until November 26, 2015, is being held parallel to UAE Innovation Week, which aims towards celebrating innovation in the UAE in line with H.H. President Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan’s proclamation of 2015 as the ‘Year of Innovation’ while also supporting the National Innovation Strategy launched by H.H. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai as a critical component to the achievement of UAE Vision 2021.

A big number of DAFZA’s SME clients were invited to participate in the seminar, which is an accelerated Innovation for Global Growth programme, initiated by DAFZA’s D- Lab in collaboration with The Sandbox, Microsoft and IBM. The initiative has the dual role to contribute to the UAE’s national innovation strategy, and aims at expanding the strategic, operational and innovative capacity of DAFZA’s SME’s to ensure rapid growth and scale of their commercial potential in the global marketplace. The programme featured skill sessions aimed at increasing productivity, advance leadership skills, enhance creativity and create innovation and growth within the SMEs sector.

Participants of the programme are expected to develop their existing skills further and learn new skills to enhance their abilities to develop new and innovative solutions. During the two-day event, real-life exercises will be given to hone their abilities to develop new and innovative solutions.

The first day of the seminar focused on ‘Innovation for Global Growth’ and covered advanced ideation and innovation techniques used by industry leaders such as Microsoft and IBM. The sessions provided valuable insights on ‘growth hacking’ and productivity techniques to help accelerate corporate growth by using analytic techniques to outsmart the competition. The second day of the event will center on ‘Intelligent Operations’ and discuss how to build and manage operations using the best practices of top global companies by using innovative techniques such as data-driven operations management, and objective and key results (OKR) to manage operations for successful growth. Mentors and experts will be present throughout both days to support participating SMEs.

Amna Lootah, Assistant Director General – Finance and Commercial, DAFZA, said: “Innovation is part of our daily life at DAFZA and is embedded in all our operations. It is through innovation, internally and externally, that we can enhance all our service levels to our customers and position DAFZA in a unique and compelling way in the market. Innovation is becoming a key driver of opportunity, growth and prosperity for economies, fueling increased productivity, enabling enhanced infrastructure, driving entrepreneurship and facilitates economic activity. Lootah added that even the most innovative companies are increasing spending on R&D as landscapes are becoming increasingly competitive. I am confident that our major innovation efforts will give us the competitive edge for many years to come.

After completing the programme, the participants will have the skills and tools needed to identify new solutions to emerging problems in a rapidly changing business environment, and to provide more value to their company and customers. In addition, they will receive a joint certificate from DAFZA, IBM and Microsoft to illustrate their commitment to their continued professional development and excellence.

This programme is one out of multiple ambitious initiatives led by DAFZA focusing on fostering innovation, sustainable community development and entrepreneurial growth.

Amna Lootah expressed her appreciation to IBM, Microsoft and The Sandbox for sharing DAFZA’s vision of excellence through innovation. She also commended the Freezone’ SME’s, and partners from various industries for their participation and commitment to constant innovation.