By Ed Attwood
IT cluster sustains annual growth, also sees 30% increase in SME and technology take-up.
Last year saw continued growth at Dubai Internet City (DIC), with another 135 new companies setting up shop in the ICT cluster. More than 1,200 firms are now based in the zone.In addition, DIC announced that despite the global economic turmoil, there had also been an expansion of business partners within the cluster, as well as some mergers and acquisitions.
“DIC has once again sustained its annual growth with the addition of over 100 new business partners and we are delighted with our continued success as a major destination that attracts large corporations, SMEs and technology start-ups,” said Malek Al Malek, DIC’s executive director.
Among the larger companies to expand their existing facilities in the cluster were Nokia Siemens Networks, Qualcommn, McAfee and Research in Motion.
Further highlights from 2009 included the arrival to DIC of India’s Tata Communications, Norwegian giant Telenor Global Services, KDDI Singapore and Sophos Middle East, Malek said.
AT&T and Kaspersky Lab also chose the zone as headquarters for their regional operations.
The cluster also saw key acquisitions such as the purchase of DIC-based Maktoob by Yahoo!, as well as CISCO’s buyout of Tandberg.
DIC indicated it had seen strong results from its FirstSteps@DIC Business Center, which is designed to allow SMEs to operate via minimal upfront investment. The cluster announced that figures in this segment were up 30 percent on 2008, with 36 new firms joining.
Has any analysis been undertaken of how many of these new firms are people who established companies in the free zone to be able to stay on in the UAE after losing their jobs???
Any idea on cost and procedure for establishing a one man company office in DIC (for an online business) ?
I lived in Dubai until 2009, and what is said above is truly debatable, while most large organizations like to be in DIC due to not being bothered with local partner obligation to obtain a license, I dotn think the growth really reflect DIC's upward slope, most of the companies are moving from non freezone aread to the freezone, DIC and DMC has greatly showed shortcomming when it comes to generating growth, it is purely a real estate business, for such a small economy, and business mostly dependant to Iran, India and pakistan I wouldn't want to put my eggs in DIC's basket for sure. DIC business mostly are purely sales offices No technology is developed in Dubai Government of Dubai been a great boost to IT industry, giving tons of money to projects, with current debth to AbuDhabio it will seems certainly doomed (9000 drivers been fined just in November to cover police budget afloat , how, they reduced speed limit!!!) I would really doubt any metrics showing growth in Dubai for years