Masdar City recruits AI firms for growing community
AI businesses can now open an office in Abu Dhabi for just $3,300
#UAE #businesslicences - Artificial intelligence companies can now set-up operations in Abu Dhabi's Masdar City for as little as AED 12,000 ($3,288) per year, under a new business package created by Masdar City and Mohamed bin Zayed University of Artificial Intelligence (MBZUAI). Businesses of any size that have a core focus on AI will be able to apply for the package. Meanwhile, students or faculty of MBZUAI who wish to open an AI company within Masdar City Free Zone will receive a 50 percent discount for the first two years of operations.
SO WHAT? - Now one of Abu Dhabi emirate's key free zones, Masdar City has become a desirable location for companies developing AI products. The new business package enables AI businesses to join a thriving community of AI R&D. The area has become a hub for AI research and development, with tenants that include the Advanced Technology Research Council (ATRC), biotechnology company Insilico Medicine, M42 Healthcare, Mohamed bin Zayed University of Artificial Intelligence, the Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), Siemens Energy, Technology Innovation Institute (TII) and the UAE Space Agency. M42, MBZUAI and TII have all released high performing large language models (LLMs) during the past few months.
The packages starting at AED 12,000 include business licencing and office space.
Masdar City Free Zone offers offers 100 percent foreign ownership, 100 percent income tax exemptions, comprehensive set-up support through the One-Stop Shop, and other perks.
The packages were developed by Masdar City, and The Catalyst, Masdar City’s venture arm, which invests in clean tech start-ups, in collaboration with MBZUAI.
MBZUAI is creating an AI talent pipeline that will help to fuel startups, empower corporate data and technology departments, and drive other AI opportunities.
Only AI-focused businesses may apply for the special packages.
Masdar City Free Zone hosts over 1,000 businesses in dozens of sectors, including technology, health care, sustainability, mobility, clean energy, and space.
ZOOM OUT - Over the past five years, Abu Dhabi's AI R&D community has grown rapidly, driven by new initiatives and organisations from business, government and academia. As a result, the emirate is earning a reputation for creating the right environment and providing the right incentives to enable world-class AI research.
Masdar City has become an R&D hub, for a wide variety of high-tech research from advanced materials to energy and aviation. Two of the largest research institutions in the region, Mohamed bin Zayed University of Artificial Intelligence and Technology Innovation Institute are both based in the area and both conduct advanced AI research. The combination of cutting-edge AI model research and research into adjacent fields such as biotechnology and robotics, make Masdar City a promising location for any AI startup or scaleup.
IMO - With two of the key institutions driving Abu Dhabi's best AI R&D in the vicinity, Masdar City could provide an ideal location for AI startups. There are already R&D and innovation programmes in the area for a variety of industry sectors including advanced materials, aviation, biotechnology, energy, renewables, space, plus computational research such as cryptography, cybersecurity, quantum and wireless communications. So, for AI companies that are developing solutions for a vertical industry segment, they could discover collaboration opportunities in both AI development and in various other industry sectors.