Home Business Masdar City, Mashreq Bank to progress UAE’s SME and start-up ecosystem

Masdar City, Mashreq Bank to progress UAE’s SME and start-up ecosystem

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ABU DHABI, 10th March, 2022 (WAM) — Masdar City and Mashreq Bank have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to provide financial services to Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) and start-ups based in the City. This will include easy access to NeoBiz, the bank’s first digital banking platform designed specifically for start-ups and SMEs.

The MoU was signed by Abdulla Balalaa, Executive Director of Masdar City, and Vikas Thapar, Executive Vice President, Head of Business Banking & NeoBiz at Mashreq Bank, at an official ceremony this week.

Speaking on the occasion, Balalaa said, “Masdar City is currently home to more than 1,000 companies, including a wide range of innovation-focused SMEs and start-ups. Through this strategic collaboration with Mashreq Bank, companies in Masdar City will have direct access to the bank’s cutting-edge suite of specially designed services to facilitate the upscaling of their operations.

“The City is Abu Dhabi’s only planned and approved R&D cluster. To businesses, we offer a unique ecosystem of education, R&D, and innovation, that allows them to develop and thrive and supports Abu Dhabi’s position as a world-leading business destination. At Masdar City, we are shaping and incubating the sustainable industries of tomorrow, and we look forward to adding Mashreq Bank to our valuable list of partners.”

Thapar stated that the agreement will enable Mashreq Bank to increase customer acquisition while also raising awareness of the bank’s digital platforms.

“Our commitment to fostering the SME ecosystem and efforts to catalyse SME development led to the development of NeoBiz and its suite of specially designed services. Through this partnership, Masdar City-based businesses will reap the benefits of NeoBiz, Mashreq Bank’s first start-up/SME focused digital banking platform, giving them further opportunity to adapt and grow rapidly,” Thapar added.

Via its Free Zone, Masdar City already offers easy access to a range of vital business services and benefits, including registration, government relations, visa processing, 100 percent foreign ownership; 0 percent import tariffs; dual-licensing; a rapid set-up process; reduced tax footprint, highly cost-effective licensing and office space, and a pro-business environment, access to R&D partnerships, and the freedom of repatriation of both capital and profits.

The City is also home to a range of international organisations, including the International Renewable Energy Agency, the UAE Space Agency, the regional headquarters of Siemens Energy, G42 Healthcare, the Advanced Technology Research Council, and the world’s first university dedicated to artificial intelligence, the Mohamed bin Zayed University of Artificial Intelligence.

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