Businesses at least 50% owned and managed by an Emirati citizen can apply for funding up to AED420,000.
Dubai’s startups, no stranger to the economic downturn the entire world is experiencing, are facing growth contractions in the medium-to-long term, and compromised cash flows in the immediate impact of COVID-19. Conversely, this has made investors more risk-averse, preferring to pause new ventures in the face of a volatile market.
To restore investor confidence and help support small and medium enterprises (SMEs), Dubai SME - the agency of Dubai Economy mandated to develop the SME sector - has expanded its partnership with the Beehive, UAE’s first regulated peer-to-peer lending platform, connecting SMEs to smart investors.
The partnership has allocated AED 20 million for a new fund specifically targeting the use of FinTech for growth. Before this most recent announcement, financing was only available to SMEs 100% owned and managed by an Emirati citizen. With the expansion of the partnership, Dubai-based SMEs that are at least 50% owned and managed by an Emirati citizen are now eligible for financing of up to AED420,000, which will be backed by a 50% capital guarantee.
Abdul Baset Al Janahi, CEO of Dubai SME, says the scheme is set up in such a way as to empower both business owners and investors. “Investors on Beehive’s platform can invest from as little as AED100 into multiple businesses, and this new agreement will enable low risk investing, as well as the confidence which comes from having a diversified portfolio. It should also help restore investor confidence in SMEs, especially in view of the impact of COVID-19 on their operation.”
“We are delighted to extend this important partnership with Dubai SME,” says Craig Moore, CEO of Beehive, “and to introduce updates which will allow the benefits to be appreciated by more SMEs, especially those who need it at this challenging time.”
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