Two Israeli enterprises, crowdfunding platform OurCrowd, and fintech company Liquidity Group, are joining the Abu Dhabi Investment Office (ADIO) Innovation Program.
OurCrowd says that it will significantly expand its Abu Dhabi operations with a new venture capital office and Artificial Intelligence tech hub enabled by ADIO. OurCrowd will expand its team based at Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) to 60 over the next four years, as part of a $60 million investment by the company in the emirate.
OurCrowd and ADIO are collaborating to launch Integrated Data Intelligence Ltd (IDI) to commercialize AI for businesses. IDI will be based at ADGM’s Hub71, and will develop AI solutions that enable businesses to adopt and leverage the advanced technology easily.
OurCrowd Arabia, which opened in the UAE capital in 2021, is also establishing a new VC investment centre in Abu Dhabi to manage deals for its existing platform and cater to emerging markets. The two agreements strengthen the fast-growing ties between the UAE and Israel, which have advanced significantly since the landmark Abraham Accords were signed in 2020.
Jon Medved, founder and CEO of OurCrowd, said, “Following a global search for the most suitable location for IDI and OurCrowd’s new investment center, Abu Dhabi was by far the most fitting destination. The World Economic Forum ranks the UAE first in the world in best e-infrastructure and macroeconomic stability, and the third most-trusted government.”
IDI will be headed by Dr. Hasanat Dewan, who has led innovation and technology transformation in an executive capacity for global financial institutions including E*TRADE Financial Corp., BNY Mellon, Russell Investments Group, Merrill Lynch, Deutsche Bank and Morgan Stanley. OurCrowd Arabia, incorporated in ADGM in 2021 and headed by Dr. Sabah al-Binali, will ramp up its VC operations significantly as it works with stakeholders in Abu Dhabi, the UAE and beyond to invest and support the local VC ecosystem.
The ADIO Innovation Program will also support Liquidity Group’s establishment of an R&D center in Abu Dhabi to develop its proprietary technology-enabled underwriting algorithm and other financial solutions.
Ron Daniel, CEO of Liquidity Group, said, “Beyond the personal excitement of fulfilling the Abraham Accords in real life and growing networks, friendships and partnerships in the UAE, I have always believed that the UAE and ADGM, in particular, are the best places in the world to scale tech companies. Thanks to our partners at ADIO, our new R&D center in ADGM is growing fast and is swiftly being populated with some of the best global brains. We look forward to extending our partnership with ADIO to benefit all UAE tech.”
“Good things are happening”: Abraham Accords two years on
ADIO will support Liquidity Group in initiatives that build Machine Learning capabilities in Abu Dhabi. The company’s R&D center will focus on developing its Machine Learning-enabled LendTech solutions for its underwriting business. It will also build a Centre of Excellence of Enterprise Machine Learning that supports other startups within Abu Dhabi in applying Liquidity Group’s modelling methodologies. Additionally, it will engage with Abu Dhabi-based universities to develop educational training programs and certifications focused on Machine Learning.
Liquidity Group was founded in 2018. It claims to have become the industry’s fastest growing lender to mid-market, late-stage companies by automating the entire debt lending cycle.
Eng. Abdulla Abdul Aziz Al Shamsi, Acting Director General of ADIO, said, “Liquidity Group makes a strong addition to Abu Dhabi’s financial services ecosystem, bringing its robust expertise in Machine Learning to grow the venture financing landscape. With a focus on locally relevant and globally exportable solutions, the technology developed in the emirate will help to support startups in Abu Dhabi and the region. ADIO’s partnership with Liquidity Group also serves to deepen the relationship between the UAE and Israel, as the two markets pursue innovation-driven technologies and activities with far-reaching impact.”
ADIO established an office in Tel Aviv in 2021 to support innovative Israeli companies looking to establish and expand their operations in the UAE capital.
Published by Globes, Israel business news – en.globes.co.il – on November 16, 2022.
© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd., 2022.