Khalifa Fund showcases 11 Emirati-initiated projects at first ‘Al Ain Souq’
Following its highly successful ‘Abu Dhabi Souq,’ which was launched five years ago to support the local small and medium enterprises (SMEs), the Khalifa Fund for Enterprise Development (KFED) has recently kicked off the first edition of ‘Al Ain Souq,’ which will run until November 21, 2019. This first edition features the products and services of some KFED-supported projects in Al Ain, while promoting the Fund’s social initiative dubbed as ‘Sougha.’
The event being held at the Hazza bin Zayed Stadium in Al Ain, continues to draw VIPs, entrepreneurs, and visitors across the UAE. According to KFED, the ‘Al Ain Souq’ is an opportunity to promote the projects of Emirati entrepreneurs in Al Ain and provide them with a platform to showcase their offerings and network with their like-minded peers. KFED organized the event to foster active engagement between its members based in the city. It also serves as an ideal venue for the participants to exchange ideas and experiences as well as introduce their respective businesses to participating suppliers, distributors, and stakeholders.
Mouza Al Nasri, Acting Chief Executive Officer of KFED, said: “Over the past 12 years, Khalifa Fund has been tirelessly promoting entrepreneurship in the UAE to help drive the local SME sector. This latest event confirms our unwavering support for innovative projects and creative business ideas by creating new spaces and markets to showcase national SME products and services. Through this initiative, Emiratis can introduce their respective businesses to investors, experts, and stakeholders in various vital sectors within the UAE.”
She emphasized that the ‘Al Ain Souq’ is an ideal and interactive platform to showcase some of the most prominent projects supported by KFED as part of its efforts to encourage young Emiratis to be involved in innovative activities. The Fund assists local entrepreneurs in their bid to turn their creative ideas into a reality and make them a positive contributor to the socio-economic development of both Abu Dhabi and the UAE.
Al Nasri added: “Since KFED’s establishment as a government entity supporting the local economy, it has remained active in its commitment to promote entrepreneurship and empower startups and SMEs in the country. Under our umbrella, we have national enterprises involved in education, medicine, industry, agriculture, trade and other vital sectors. We are committed to continuously providing them the needed support.”
During the event, KFED is also showcasing the products of the ‘Sougha’ establishment, which was founded by the Fund in 2009 to revive the Emirati heritage and enable local artisans to transform their skills into careers. Eleven innovative Emirati-owned projects under KFED’s umbrella are on display at the ‘Al Ain Souq,’ including the ‘Kids Nest Nursery’ by Shamsa Al Memari, which provides an educational, breeding, healthy and recreational environment for children; the ‘Aduba Safety Systems and Fire Protection’ by Ahmed Al Shamsi; the ‘Best Moment Event’, an event planning project by Shamsa Al Aryani especially for private parties and weddings; the ‘Pure Yellow Flowers’ by Meera Al Al Wheibi; and the ‘Mouhrat Al Ain Salon’ by Wadha Al Rashdi.
Meanwhile, the ‘Al Raqi Medical Center,’ that provides medical and dental services and owned by Abdullah Makhashen is also part of the ‘Al Ain Souq.’ Other participants are the ‘Biethaam for Personal Care Products’ by Obaid Al Kaabi, that is specialized in manufacturing personal care products and detergents; and the ‘Arabian Group for Gypsum Industries and Decors’ owned by Saeed Al Aas. Established in 1972 in Al Ain, the Group is one of the leading gypsum industries and decorations companies in the UAE. They are joined by ‘Leberry Textiles and Sewing Equipment’ by Latifa Al Aryani; and ‘Felix & Norton’ for Sweets owned by Swuidan Al Kindi. The ‘Spitar Smart App,’ designed by the Emirati entrepreneur Matar Al Shamsi, is being showcased at the event as well. The app is a first-of-its-kind platform that provides users with comprehensive information about health service providers in the country.
By continuously supporting local entrepreneurs, KFED is highlighting the importance of helping ensure the success of SMEs by facilitating partnerships and access to new markets and extending financial assistance to underpin their sustainability and growth.