Dubai Startup Hub offers a promising future to startups with its Market Access program

Dubai Startup Hub offers a promising future to startups with its Market Access program
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Dubai Startup Hub offers a promising future to startups with its Market Access program

Other than developing their innovative products and hustling in the startup world to get the attention they deserve, the entrepreneurs of the 21st century have many other things to worry about. Startups, since they are almost always surrounded by other startups, usually forget about the ‘traditional’ corporate world.

Startups have a tendency to disregard partnerships with corporations until they are in a very advanced stage in their lifecycle. But sometimes that might be too late, since a significant number of startups never actually reach that stage.

Moreover, startups whose core offering is business-to-business products or services make the mistake of approaching corporations as clients, to sell their product or service, without considering a long-term partnership.

On the other hand, some early-stage startups do reach out to corporations; however, they are often unable to reach the key people within that organization. Startups have a hard time finding decision makers in corporations, people who are ready to listen and are open to new collaborations, and this reduces their chances of starting strong business relationships.

Moreover, even if startups successfully manage to make deals with established organizations, they are often unable to structure themselves internally to better service their clients.

Dubai Startup Hub’s Market Access program was developed to help startups overcome such obstacles. For instance, to prepare the startups to interact with corporations, growth expert Ayman Itani was commissioned by Dubai Chamber to advise and play a startup operator role with the founders of the startups, to help them have a better structure internally, and to enhance the processes so that they can better service the corporate costumer. “To better cater to corporate needs, startups must be able to translate corporate requirements into actual features and capabilities. And that’s why I’m here for,” says Ayman Itani.

By merging startups with successful corporations, the program aims to create an ecosystem of efficiency and productivity. Dubai Chamber’s role is to raise awareness in UAE’s startup community (and globally) that corporate partnerships are vital for growth. At the same time, it also raises awareness among corporations that collaborating with startups is not that risky and/or advanced as some might fear they would be. Simply put, Market Access gives startups access to corporations to help both parties grow.

When asked how the corporations and government entities benefit, Natalia Sycheva, manager of the Entrepreneurship Strategy department, said that “the goal is to create an ecosystem where all sides benefit. While we are helping startups penetrate the market and develop their first business relationships, the corporations themselves are becoming early adopters of innovative technologies that would eventually help their businesses grow.”

All of this would not have been possible without Dubai Startup Hub’s Market Access program that continues to be Dubai’s and UAE’s hub and source for innovation.

By Ayman Itani