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5 takeaways from Fast Company Middle East’s Most Innovative Companies 2023 awards night

The prestigious awards night featured a stunning venue, jazz-filled entertainment, an excellent networking opportunity, and notable wins.

5 takeaways from Fast Company Middle East’s Most Innovative Companies 2023 awards night
[Source photo: Pankaj Kirdatt/Fast Company Middle East]

Fast Company Middle East’s Most Innovative Companies 2023, a celebratory night honoring those pushing the boundaries of innovation for a stronger present and future, took place on November 23. The awards night celebrated 42 wins across 23 categories, offering guests more than just recognition. 

Beyond accolades, the event featured an elegant venue, jazz-inspired music, and valuable networking opportunities. The night seamlessly combined celebration and collaboration, creating a memorable experience for all attendees.

The Venue

Set at the Dubai Internet City outdoor Amphitheater, the venue for the Most Innovative Companies oozed glamour with a red carpet entrance and stunning lights. Tables decorated with flower centerpieces and flickering lanterns welcomed guests to a night of sophistication. 

As attendees took to their seats, they were treated to a panoramic view of the stage framed by nature and the refreshing cool breeze, making it a delightful evening. 

The Entertainment

Guests at the ceremony enjoyed a delightful night of jazz-inspired music, courtesy of Zero Funks, a jazz band that set the perfect ambiance. Welcoming attendees on the red carpet, the band created an elegant mood for the evening, fostering a pleasant atmosphere for mingling and networking.

Before the awards ceremony began to celebrate its winners, Amanda Maalouf captivated the audience with a medley of classic English and Arabic songs. Her performance included Sway by Dean Martin, Stand by Me by Ben E. King, La Vie en Rose by Édith Piaf, and Helwa Ya Baladi by Dalida.

During an intermission, Sara Tarabulsi, the half-Irish, half-Palestinian singer, took center stage and immersed the audience with her fusion of jazz, funk, and R&B. Her performance included renditions of Amy Winehouse’s Back to Black, Norah Jones’ Don’t Know Why, and Can’t Take My Eyes Off You by Frankie Valli.

Winners in two categories

A few nominees won in two categories among the night’s honorees. L’Oréal Middle East earned recognition in the Social Good category for blending innovative thinking with environmental responsibility. The beauty company was also honored in the Augmented and Virtual Reality category for its commitment to leveraging technology to enhance consumers’ self-awareness.

Telecommunications and technology giant, e&, secured two awards: one in the Sustainability and Cleantech category for advancing smart and green digital solutions, and another in the Workplace category for empowering the workforce to grow and develop skills.

Another category winner was Pure Harvest Smart Farms, recognized in Sustainability and Cleantech for championing organic food production through sustainable practices. Additionally, they were honored in the Consumer Good category for delivering superior, sustainably-grown produce.


Fast Company Middle East’s Most Innovative Companies brought together guests and companies from around the world, spanning various sectors. The 23 categories provided a platform for attendees to connect and network with organizations from diverse backgrounds, potentially paving the way for a future drawn by innovation and collaboration.

Sustainability and Cleantech category 

This year, the focus in the UAE has centered around sustainability. Industry leaders have actively worked on revolutionizing waste management using AI technology and they are also championing circular economy initiatives, minimizing carbon emissions in organic food production, and exploring methods to decrease water and energy consumption in agriculture.

These visions align with the UAE’s commitment to achieving net-zero emissions by 2050, coinciding with the build-up to COP28 hosted in Dubai’s Expo City. 

In the Sustainability and Cleantech category, the awards ceremony recognized four notable winners making significant strides in this field: BEEAH Group, e&, PepsiCo, and Pure Harvest Smart Farms.

With the wins spanning various categories and focusing on sustainability, the event highlighted its commitment to recognizing and celebrating innovation, shaping a transformative future. 

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