Dubai – MENA Herald: His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman of Dubai Silicon Oasis Authority (DSOA), today officially inaugurated the Dubai Technology Entrepreneur Centre (DTEC), the largest incubational centre of its kind in the Middle East that is wholly owned by DSOA.

Hosted under the patronage and presence of His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, the official opening ceremony was attended by Dr Mohammed Alzarooni, Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Dubai Silicon Oasis Authority, senior officials from Intel, IBM, Microsoft, SAP, and Thomson Reuters, as well as senior DSOA officials and representatives of various DTEC based start-ups.

Speaking on the occasion, His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, said: “We are proud to open this mega incubational centre and remain confident it will provide an ideal environment for start-ups and tech-enterprises even while enhancing the status of entrepreneurship in the UAE and the wider region. The establishment of DTEC complements other initiatives undertaken by DSOA to support the directives of the government in building a sustainable economy and motivating young talent to adopt innovation, especially in the technology and digital economy sectors. At DSOA, we are keen to facilitate emerging entrepreneurs to transform their promising ideas into reality and support new and creative concepts in order to keep pace with the rapid developments in these dynamic areas.”

Following the opening ceremony, His Highness Sheikh Ahmed toured the DTEC premises and met with senior officials from IBM and Microsoft who briefed His Highness on their role in supporting entrepreneurs and start-up at DTEC. He also visited DTEC based Intel Internet of Things Ignition Lab.

For his part, Dr Mohammed Alzarooni, said: “Thanks to the directives and support of His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Dubai Silicon Oasis has achieved great results in record time as reflected in the early accomplishments of DTEC. Just six months into operations, DTEC has successfully attracted more than 350 start-ups and 500 entrepreneurs from over 59 countries. We seek to further support young talent and entrepreneurs in contributing to the national economy with their ambitious and innovative projects, especially in the technology and digital economy sectors. We believe these projects are a welcome value addition to help achieve the government’s vision of economic diversification.”

Nassir Nauthoa, General Manager at Intel Corporation Gulf Countries, said: “Global market opportunities and solutions around the Internet of Things continue to gain more prominence and larger interest. Similarly, we believe that the growth potential for IoT in the UAE market is immense given the move towards transitioning into a Smart City. We are confident that Intel’s IoT Lab in DTEC will add great value for DTEC based entrepreneurs and start-ups and help them launch their innovative and creative ideas and turn them into real and successful businesses.”

During his tour, His Highness Sheikh Ahmed met several entrepreneurs who have founded businesses at DTEC. In their interactions with His Highness, the entrepreneurs commended Dubai Silicon Oasis for the advanced technological environment provided by the incubational centre, as well as the financial and consultation support, and the mentorship programs offered to start-ups and entrepreneurs.

The establishment of DTEC follows the success of the technology incubation centre Silicon Oasis Founders (SOF) that was launched in April 2012 to support and encourage local entrepreneurs in the IT sector. To date, SOF has supported more than 300 entrepreneurs with their business plans and invested financially in 18 businesses.

A wholly-owned entity of the government of Dubai, DSO operates as a free zone technology park for large enterprises, medium and small companies looking to set up their offices in Dubai.