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Dubai launches new initiative to help family businesses thrive

90% of private companies in the UAE are family-owned, according to the UAE Ministry of Economy.

Dubai launches new initiative to help family businesses thrive
[Source photo: Anvita Gupta/Fast Company Middle East]
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Family businesses in the UAE are a vital part of the economy, making up 90% of private companies and employing over 70% of the private sector workforce. In Dubai, family firms contribute 40% of the emirate’s GDP.

Dubai has launched a new program, The Dubai Family Business Management Program, to support these businesses for the long-term success of family businesses, helping them survive generational changes. 

“The program aims to empower the second tier of leaders in family businesses to ensure their continuity, smooth succession of ownership and management, and solidify their global presence,” said Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, First Deputy Ruler of Dubai, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance of the UAE.

“Family businesses are integral to Dubai’s economic success, and by empowering them, we strive to achieve the goals outlined in economic cities globally,” he added.

The initiative is part of the Dubai Centre for Family Businesses, launched earlier this year by Dubai Chambers in partnership with the Mohammed Bin Rashid Centre for Leadership Development. 

The center provides leadership transition, succession planning, and growth education and resources.

Mohammad Ali Rashed Lootah, President and CEO of Dubai Chambers, has described family businesses as “key partners” in Dubai’s plans for comprehensive and sustainable development.

On Tuesday, Lootah said, “This [management] program plays a vital role in preparing second-tier competencies capable of boosting business competitiveness in Dubai, further reinforcing its position as a favored destination for businesses.”

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