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The Small and Medium Business (SMB) sector plays a key role in the UAE economy in driving innovation, job creation and disruptive business models. Given the importance of this segment, Etisalat has been working closely with businesses across all sectors to cater to their requirements, ensure a successful digital journey and facilitate business continuity during these unprecedented times.

Etisalat’s ‘Hello Business Pitch’ is one of Etisalat’s strategic initiatives that aims at supporting entrepreneurs and start-up businesses by providing them with an opportunity to pitch their business ideas in front of an expert panel of judges who will be assessing their business model through the strength of their pitch for a chance to win grand prizes that help in growing their business.
  
This platform, in its second year, has received an overwhelming response and is gaining popularity among aspiring entrepreneurs. 

Hundreds of passionate start-up businesses applied since its launch in December 2019. After an intensive and comprehensive assessment of the applications based on the creativity of the business models, demonstrative scalability, and the ability to effectively portray their potential business growth in a clear and concise way, Etisalat shortlisted 52 candidates who progressed to the latter stages of the competition.

The shortlisted businesses were then invited to pitch their business model online. Twenty-five businesses were selected, who then got into a dedicated training session by Dr Petar Stojanov, Partner, Innovation & Future Strategy at Black, on how to perfect their pitch. Two more pitching sessions were conducted and the jury selected the top three winners, who were announced by Etisalat at a live awards ceremony viewed by the business industry around the globe.

Salvador Anglada, Group Chief Business Officer, Etisalat, commented: “Small and medium businesses are a backbone of the UAE economy, accounting for 86 percent of the total private sector workforce and more than 60 percent of the country’s current GDP. This year’s ‘Hello Business Pitch’ has indeed succeeded in attracting high-potential start-ups and harnessing the potential of aspiring entrepreneurs who are bringing innovative ideas to the market. I have witnessed first-hand the thoroughness and the quality of the content of their pitches, and look forward to hearing about their entrepreneurial journey.”

YallaGive won first place for a brilliant pitch and will receive AED150,000. The second place winner Key2enable Assistive Technology will be awarded AED120,000, while  App4Legal placed third in the competition and will walk away with AED80,000 for their respective creative pitches.

Esam Mahmoud, Senior Vice President, SMB, Etisalat, said: “It is my pleasure to congratulate the entrants, shortlisted candidates and winners of this year’s ‘Hello Business Pitch’. This competition showed the strength of the UAE’s future business leaders and their passion for innovation and entrepreneurship. Our initiative is in line with Etisalat’s continuous efforts to support SMBs and start-ups in the UAE and position Etisalat as the preferred business partner of choice for SMBs.”

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