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TCA Abu Dhabi launches platform for Emirati entrepreneurs

Initiative focuses on bolstering Abu Dhabi’s leisure offering by supporting home grown ideas and business start-ups

Rowad Al Seyaha, a new initiative launched by Abu Dhabi Tourism & Culture Authority (TCA Abu Dhabi), is set to launch this month and has been designed to offer Emirati entrepreneurs, both experienced and aspiring, the chance to develop their ideas for potential business start-ups.

A first of its kind in the capital for the leisure market, the competition, which focuses on developing creative leisure business ideas in Abu Dhabi, has gained support from a number of government entities including The Khalifa Fund, Abu Dhabi Municipality, Department of Economic Development and the Environment Agency Abu Dhabi – who will be offering guidance to the winning projects.

The four stage competition starts off with a free one day workshop, taking place on 14 December at the St. Regis Abu Dhabi, which encompasses a Q&A session with senior government officials and group workshops, where participants will be given advice on how to think creatively and develop their business ideas. Judges will shortlist the most outstanding project ideas to progress to the next stage.

Over the following six weeks, the shortlisted participants will have the chance to take part in a complimentary coaching programme where they will develop their project idea in to a tangible product, and submit their final business plans by Monday 25 January 2016. A ans by Monday 25 January 2016, panel of expert judges will review all submitted business plans and the best ideas will be selected to present to the panel as finalists on 2 February, with the winner(s) being announced in the middle of February.

“This initiative has been launched to help our home grown entrepreneurs develop their ideas into successful business ventures to enhance the visitor experience in Abu Dhabi and benefit the emirate. Entrants will receive sound business advice and knowledge from industry experts and have the chance to present their idea before key market players,” said Sultan Al Dhaheri, Acting Executive Director, Tourism, TCA Abu Dhabi.

“We hope people take advantage of this superb opportunity which could lead to their hard work and ideas being turned into reality while improving Abu Dhabi as a tourist destination of distinction.”

“Khalifa Fund works to spread the culture of entrepreneurship and encourage the Emiratis youths to start up their own businesses. The Fund is keen to prepare the appropriate environment for the SMEs growth and development”, said Mouza Obaid Al Naseri the Director of Entrepreneurship Development Department in Khalifa Fund for Enterprise Development.

“The Fund is interested in supporting the unique business ideas in tourism sector, that reflect the tourism and civilized sides of Abu Dhabi”, added Al Naseri.

The only parameters for the competition are the idea needs to be a brand new leisure project concept, should have a global appeal to attract locals as well as tourists, be applicable to one or both of either The Corniche (zone 1) and/or Eastern Mangrove (zone 6), and is only open to UAE nationals.