Aldar’s PropTech accelerator program ‘Aldar Scale Up’ aims startup growth

By Amirtha P S, Trainee Reporter
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UAE’s Aldar Properties (‘Aldar’) real estate company launches its corporate innovation program, Aldar Scale Up by collaborating with startAD, the Abu Dhabi-based global accelerator at NYU Abu Dhabi and powered by its partner Tamkeen.

The online market access program will offer a gateway for growth opportunities, build strong networks and validate global PropTech startups by employing cutting-edge real estate technology to enter and grow in the UAE market through pilot projects of Aldar as well as other prominent industry players in the region.

The initial edition of the program will be conducted virtually in four months period and at the end, ten startups will get the opportunity to pitch to a selection committee from which up to five from it will be awarded pilot projects with Aldar. 

The selected startups will be given innovative and sustainable solutions in the real estate industry like effective energy management, the development of smart cities and the protection of biodiverse ecosystems. 

Abu Dhabi’s global tech ecosystem Hub71 will also be joining the program’s selection committee. The selected startups will automatically be shortlisted for Hub71’s Incentive Program, which offers more than $400,000 worth of equity-free subsidies including up to 100 percent free housing, health insurance and WeWork x Hub71 office space for up to three years. 

Maan Al Awlaqi
Maan Al Awlaqi
Executive Director
Strategy & Transformation
Aldar Properties

“The MENA region is gaining significant strides in cultivating a startup culture and harnessing homegrown talent, with a record $1 billion invested in startups in 2020. The PropTech sector seems to be finally gaining steam globally and is revolutionizing the landscape. The Aldar Scale Up Programme is a good fit for our innovation lens as it provides a unique platform that connects promising PropTech startups with companies and equips them with the tools to scale their businesses and grow in Abu Dhabi. We look forward to reviewing the submissions for the program and seeing what the applicants have to offer.”

Speaking on the program, Research Professor of Engineering, Vice Provost for Entrepreneurship at NYUAD, and Managing Director of startAD, Ramesh Jagannathan, stated that, “According to the McKinsey Global Institute, to keep pace with global GDP growth, the construction sector has to spend close to $57 trillion by 2030. Interestingly, 40 percent of this spend could be recouped through improved productivity by digitalization and embracing currently available technologies. By fostering Abu Dhabi’s Innovation agenda, startAD and Aldar are excited to usher in the best global PropTech startups that will have the unique opportunity to make a real impact on the future of the global construction sector.”

The Aldar Scale Up Program will also train Aldar business units to create partnerships with global startups and implement innovative and sustainable real estate technologies through pilot projects. The launch of the program will also complement Aldar’s existing innovation initiatives including the Manassah competition, Aldar’s first retail start-up program.

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