Masdar City Free Zone, in collaboration with Mohamed bin Zayed University of Artificial Intelligence (MBZUAI), has launched a specialized licensing package aimed at fostering the growth of artificial intelligence (AI) startups and businesses. This initiative is part of a strategic partnership to accelerate the development of AI in the region.
The tailor-made licensing package, starting at AED 12,000 per year, is designed to accommodate businesses of any size with a focus on AI. As a unique offering, students and faculty from MBZUAI looking to establish an AI company within the Masdar City Free Zone will receive a 50% discount for the initial two years of operation.
The initiative stems from a Memorandum of Understanding signed during Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week, bringing together Masdar City, MBZUAI, and The Catalyst, Masdar City’s venture arm dedicated to investing in clean tech startups.
Amier Al Awadhi, the acting director of Masdar City Free Zone, expressed the zone’s commitment to innovation. He stated, “This new package will help us harness the potential of AI to transform the tech industry through automation, adaptation, and personalization.” Al Awadhi highlighted the collaboration with MBZUAI as a step towards positioning the UAE as a global technology hub.
Sultan Al Hajji, the vice president of public affairs and alumni relations at MBZUAI, emphasized the university’s mission to support Abu Dhabi in becoming an AI startup hub. Al Hajji stated, “Our commitment is to nurture a talent pipeline rich in advanced AI expertise and cultivate a vibrant ecosystem where cutting-edge research fuels startups with the potential to transform industries.”
The Masdar City Free Zone provides an environment conducive to the growth of tech companies, offering benefits such as 100% foreign ownership, 100% income tax exemptions, comprehensive setup support through the One-Stop Shop, and more.
Steve Severance, Masdar City’s director of growth, underlined Masdar City’s role in fostering tech and AI innovation. He highlighted the state-of-the-art facilities, a thriving tech ecosystem, and access to investors and top-tier talent. Severance expressed excitement about the groundbreaking work AI companies in Masdar City are poised to achieve.
Masdar City Free Zone currently hosts over 1,000 businesses across various sectors, including technology, healthcare, sustainability, mobility, clean energy, and space. Key tenants include Siemens Energy, Masdar, International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), Technological Innovation Institute, UAE Space Agency, Insilico Medicine, and G42.
To celebrate COP28, the Masdar City Free Zone is offering a 50% discount on registration, licensing, and leasing fees. For more information, visit masdarcity.ae.