The 5th edition of the Global Innovation Summit, organised by SPI GreatSands Group in partnership with Dubai SME, the agency of Dubai Economy mandated to develop the small and medium enterprise (SME) sector, was held today at the Jumeirah Beach Hotel, against the backdrop of the growing emphasis on innovation and entrepreneurship across the UAE.
Echoing the message of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President and Prime minister and Ruler of Dubai, to ‘innovate or become irrelevant’ and highlighting the National Innovation Strategy of the UAE, speakers at the summit shed light on the innovation route to business leadership.
The primary objective of the annual summit is to celebrate innovation and focus on most pertinent and disruptive technology and cultural trends that are reshaping corporate strategy and decision making.
“Globally, development strategies are being anchored on the symbiotic relation between entrepreneurship and innovation. The Dubai SME2021 Plan draws on the emphasis given to innovation in Dubai and the UAE in general. Global Innovation Summit is a productive platform for us to showcase our experience and learn from the success of successful entrepreneurs and entrepreneurship promotion strategies world over,” commented Saeed Matar Al Marri, Deputy CEO of Dubai SME.
Shantanu A.P., CEO and Partner, SPI GreatSands, said “We at SPI GreatSands are totally aligned and committed to the vision of UAE to become the most innovative and business friendly country in the world. We understand that running a company is lonely and entrepreneurs must make difficult decisions every day with imperfect information. In our experience the best safety net is the advice and experience of fellow entrepreneurs, that is why we organize these large format summits and bring together thousands of entrepreneurs to share their expertise and experiences.”
Saud Abbasi, Managing Director of Toyota at Al Futtaim, remarked “Our longstanding relationship with Global Innovation Summit is built on shared commitment to support SMEs in the UAE. At Al Futtaim Motors we offer our SME customers comprehensive automotive business solutions, including exclusive account management, vehicle registration support, aftersales packages, leasing facilities, faster enquiry response, dedicated delivery process, Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) approach and fleet management consultancy, reinforcing our position as the Automotive Partner of Choice in the UAE”
Danube Group Chairman and Founder, Rizwan Sajan added “We are glad to be part of the Global Innovation Summit. The summit acknowledges the importance of SME sector which is bedrock of any economy and adds significantly to the growth of the economy. I think this sector has created jobs, growth and income; entrepreneurs are transforming the lives and the communities they live in. We at Danube, recognize the importance of SME sector and support the entrepreneurs with an aim to position our brand as the preferred property developers for entrepreneurs in the region”
According to Nitin Anand, Executive Director and Chair of the Executive Council, Skyline University College: “Global Innovation Summit 2017 is one of the biggest events that we highly support for this is an excellent platform to recognise the SME sector in the UAE. As part of our goals to promote entrepreneurship and innovation amongst our students at Skyline, we have been training young entrepreneurs to become job creators of the future armed with the right leadership strategies, skills, and knowledge. This goal has led to the formation of the Skyline Entrepreneurship and Innovation Centre (SEIC)—a new facility at Skyline where students can showcase their business plans, grow their ideas, and upgrade their entrepreneurial skills. SEIC along with other internal support systems that encourage students to pursue their dreams, events such as the Global Innovation Summit 2017 is a relevant and most befitting place for our students and faculty members to learn from the experts, acquire industry exposures, and most importantly, to get inspired by successful business leaders.
Thus Global Innovation Summit 2017 sought to bring forth every mind that thinks differently and is passionate about changing the world and making it a better place. Furthermore, the event also hosted the ‘Creative Innovation Awards 2017.’ The award is aimed to recognize budding innovators in the UAE, increase awareness about the latest innovations, foster a culture of innovation and create a sense of community. The award categories included sustainability, healthcare, education, public good and business growth. The summit also featured an expo, workshops, panel discussion, as well as keynotes.
Guests and speakers at the summit included Ahmed Aly Shaban and Walid Tarabih from the Prime Minister’s Office-UAE; Paul Smith, Hyperloop One; Sameh R. Helmy, Intel; Jude Chagas Pereira, IYCON; Venkatesh Mahadevan, Dubai Investments, and Darja Isaksson from the Swedish Government Innovation Council.
More than 1000 high profile delegates including entrepreneurs, government dignitaries and senior business executives attended the event, which provided a vibrant platform to gain insights, exchange ideas, learn from industry stakeholders and have access to eminent solution providers.