Burj-al-Khalifa-DubaiUnder the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince and Chairman of the Executive Council of Dubai, Dubai SME, has started registering applicants in the Dubai SME100 ranking for 2015.

His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed said: “SMEs today represent 95% of all firms registered in Dubai, 42% of the labour force and 40% of the emirate’s GDP. Therefore, this sector has a critical role in achieving and fostering overall development across diverse economic sectors. SMEs also provide the best opportunities for new business models, employment as well as innovation and when placed within a progressive development ecosystem they can fast evolve into global enterprises”.

His Highness noted that the Emirate of Dubai has become the focus of attention of the business community, and has a global reputation in the field of entrepreneurship. Dubai is an ideal platform for SMEs in various vital sectors such as health, education, information technology, logistics, tourism and hospitality, etc. and the emirate has successfully enabled businesses to reach other markets in the region and around the world.

His Excellency Sami Al Qamzi, Director General, DED, said: “The SME sector forms the central nerve of the economy of the emirate of Dubai due to its flexibility, diversity and sustainability. Hence, the Government of Dubai has launched various initiatives aimed at promoting entrepreneurship and SME development. This commitment to promote entrepreneurship and SMEs is supported and led by our socio-economic stability, openness and visionary leadership.”

“We are pleased to launch the third cycle of SME100. For the top 100 SMEs in 2013, the net combined turnover exceeds AED 4.5 billion, which is an increase of over 100% from the 2011 ranking, and their profit exceeds AED 434 million, 98% higher than in 2011. The top 100 also employ more than 7,000 among them and the productivity per worker exceeds AED 636,000, a 22% increase over 2011,” said Abdul Baset Al Janahi, Chief Executive Officer of Dubai SME.

Dubai-based SMEs meeting the official Dubai SME definition can apply for the SME100 ranking provided they have three years of audited financials. Unlike other rankings, which are based mainly or purely on financial dimensions, the Dubai SME100 ranking places a balanced emphasis on financial and non-financial dimensions that affect enterprise performance and development. The non-financial dimensions cover Innovation, International Orientation, Human Capital Development and Corporate Governance.

One of the key enterprise development strategy employed under the ranking is to create a culture of transparency, corporate governance and best practice sharing. The new capability development programme will involve different layers of the SMEs to cover CEO, CFO, HR and IT Directors as well as Quality Managers. The assessment criteria were revised to include corporate social responsibility (CSR) to highlight how these SMEs are giving back to UAE economy and community.

The Dubai SME100 ranking not only embodies an innovative approach in developing SMEs but also signifies a turning point, which leads this vital sector towards enhanced business capital and a range of growth enablers. The ranking has also reinforced its relevance as a long-term plan to evolve into a local, regional and global role model in SME development.

To register for Dubai SME100 ranking, please log on to Dubaisme100rankings.com. Registration closes on the 5th of April 2015.

Rushika Bhatia Editor

Rushika Bhatia is one of the region’s leading commentators on business and current affairs issues. She is the Editor of SME Advisor magazine - the flagship title of CPI Business. She is passionate about infographics – with special emphasis on data, research and statistics. Rushika has a Bachelor’s Degree from Indiana University, USA and is also CIMA qualified.

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