HomeBusinessHub71 and e& to launch UAE’s first AI Centre of Excellence

Hub71 and e& to launch UAE’s first AI Centre of Excellence

Officials during the signing ceremony.


Hub71, Abu Dhabi’s global tech ecosystem, and e& enterprise, part of e& (formerly known as Etisalat Group), on Thursday announced the launch of the region’s first AI Centre of Excellence (CoE). The launch highlights the importance of pursuing partnerships and collaborations with businesses, governments, investors, and startups to create a smarter, safer, and more sustainable world through the co-creation of industry-specific and use case-driven AI solutions.

The AI CoE will provide a platform for AI solutions to be built and scaled from Abu Dhabi. The partnership was signed at Hub71’s headquarters in Abu Dhabi by Badr Al-Olama, Acting Chief Executive Officer of Hub71, and Salvador Anglada, Chief Executive Officer of e& enterprise.

Badr Al-Olama, Acting Chief Executive Officer of Hub71, said: “The region’s first AI centre of Excellence at Hub71 will provide a robust ecosystem for innovative technology ideas to grow and scale, and will allow startups to benefit from Hub71’s community, programs and knowledge sharing platforms. AI could unlock $5.5 trillion to $12.6 trillion in value globally by 2030 and offer immense potential in sectors that are of strategic importance to Abu Dhabi’s socio-economic growth. In support of the objectives outlined in the UAE Centennial 2071 strategy that focuses on entrepreneurship, innovation and creativity, we at Hub71 are committed to further developing technologies that act as a catalyst in progressing a dynamic and diversified economy.

“e& enterprise shares our vision to accelerate the digital transformation that is disrupting new ways of addressing challenges. We look forward to this partnership in promoting AI solutions across Abu Dhabi, with the aim of eventually being deployed globally,” added Al-Olama.

Salvador Anglada, Chief Executive Officer, e& enterprise, said: “It is our responsibility to support communities and cities in adapting to a brighter, digital tomorrow. We do that through innovative programs such as FutureNow, which has already yielded several fruitful collaborations, sustainable partnerships, and commercial adoption of innovative solutions.”

“The AI centre of Excellence, supported by our strategic partner DataRobot, will further progress our vision to be the leading digital enabler for our enterprise and government clients as we empower them to become data-driven and highly automated organizations. We look forward to driving the digital transformation conversation by leveraging the expertise of disruptive scale-ups and AI companies while establishing long-term partnerships with major accelerators and technology providers regionally and globally.”

As the UAE’s first dedicated hub to AI, the e& enterprise AI Centre of Excellence will support solidifying Abu Dhabi’s leadership in AI innovation and adoption by creating a robust ecosystem of talent and partners by connecting startups, companies, and investment firms, as well as develop and scale cutting-edge AI solutions. By offering best-in-class resources and expertise, the AI CoE will transform the future of AI, support a thriving innovation ecosystem, foster local talent, and boost the country’s socio-economic growth.

Just recently, e& enterprise entered a strategic three-year alliance with DataRobot, a global AI platform provider to launch the first AI as a Service (AlaaS) offering in the Menap region. This will accelerate the successful adoption of AI in organisations, ensure continuous capability building, deliver robust AIaaS offerings and guarantee value creation by overseeing the implementation of enterprise-wide AI projects.

DataRobot is one of the most widely deployed and proven AI platforms in the market today, delivering over a trillion predictions for leading companies around the world, including a third of the Fortune 50. The DataRobot AI Cloud platform brings together disparate data and users, from expert data scientists to IT operators to business analysts, to enable AI-driven insights at speed and scale.

In addition to such global partnerships in AI, e& enterprise is set to build new ventures and incubate pioneering business models at the AI Centre of Excellence. Scale-ups that participate in its innovation-led programs, such as FutureNow, will also gain fast-track access to participate in Hub71’s value-add programs. In addition, startups will benefit from Hub71’s vibrant community and growing capital ecosystem of VCs with assets under management of $1.72 billion.

Startups can apply to join the AI CoE through Hub71’s flexible menu of incentives and The Outliers, a Hub71 programme that also includes e& enterprise as a partner, designed to solve challenges that corporates and government face by providing innovative solutions ideated by startups.

Hub71 is Abu Dhabi’s global tech ecosystem that enables founders to build globally enduring homegrown tech companies in any sector by providing access to global markets, a capital ecosystem, a global network of partners, and a vibrant community filled with highly skilled talent, governed by forward-thinking regulation.

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