Emirates NBD and Partners Unveil Second Edition of 'National Digital Talent Incubator' Initiative

Emirates NBD and Partners Unveil Second Edition of 'National Digital Talent Incubator' Initiative 

Following the success of the first edition of its bespoke National Digital Talent Incubator (NDTI) programme, Emirates NBD, a leading banking group in the MENAT (Middle East, North Africa and Türkiye) region, has announced the second cohort of the programme, supported by its strategic partner DIFC Innovation Hub, and a network of world-class industry partners including Visa, Microsoft and Dell Technologies. The programme was launched with the objective of nurturing the future generation of UAE global founders and creating opportunities for them to prosper in the UAE, and beyond.

Facilitated by DIFC Innovation Hub, the six-week program will take place at DIFC’s newly established Innovation One building. The upcoming cohort will comprise four FinTech startups led by UAE nationals. Participants will delve into a comprehensive curriculum, gaining insights into venture-building and innovation from experts at Emirates NBD and its partners.

Direct engagement with senior leaders from Emirates NBD and immersive sessions with Visa, Microsoft, and Dell Technologies are among the highlights. Participants will also benefit from mentorship, coaching, and extensive networking opportunities, connecting them with a diverse community of innovators, established corporations, and potential investors.

The UAE FinTech market is projected to reach USD 3.16 billion in 2024, with further growth expected at a CAGR of 12.56% to USD 5.71 billion by 2029, according to Mordor Intelligence. Leveraging this potential, the program seeks to position the UAE as a FinTech hub, driving technological advancement and innovation in banking and finance.

Eman Abdulrazzaq, Group Chief Operating Officer at Emirates NBD, emphasized the bank’s commitment to innovation and fostering partnerships across the ecosystem. She expressed excitement about the outcomes anticipated from the program's second edition, highlighting its role in nurturing entrepreneurial talent within the UAE’s FinTech sector and contributing to the nation's digital economy aspirations.

Mohammad Alblooshi, CEO at DIFC Innovation Hub, reiterated the hub's dedication to empowering local talent within Dubai's thriving FinTech landscape. By providing access to mentorship, funding, and market opportunities, the hub aims to enable aspiring entrepreneurs to realize their potential and contribute to the region's financial services industry.

The program's inaugural cohort, launched in October 2023, included a unique two-day trek to Saudi Arabia for Emirati startup founders. This experience aimed to inspire participants by exposing them to alternative digital ecosystems for startups. Additionally, the program has initiated discussions with Emirates NBD teams, with three proof of values (POVs) currently under discussion in the UAE and KSA.

Applications for the second cohort of the National Digital Talent Incubator program are now open, inviting interested participants to apply here and learn more about the program.

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