Posted on April 22, 2018

As part of its commitment to promote innovative Qatari entrepreneurs and diversify the economy, Qatar Development Bank is launching the “QDB Investment Forum”, which is going to be held on the May 1, 2018, at the Hilton Hotel in Doha.

During the Forum, Qatari Entrepreneurs, both start-ups as well as established ones, will meet with local and international investors, including international VC funds and QDB. The bank will reflect upon its achievements in contributing towards the development of Entrepreneurial Ecosystem in Qatar during the event.

The booming Qatar economy and buoyed investors’ sentiments over the past few years have propelled Qatar Development Bank to offer numerous unique schemes aimed to further the Qatari economy growth momentum. With these efforts, QDB intends to establish itself as the catalyst in the economic development of the country. The bank, through its Investment department, will be signing 4 international funds, to further support the local entrepreneur ecosystem. The one-day event, which is expected to be exceptionally interactive, will include a demo day/pitching session for the entrepreneurs who have raised investments from QDB under the Seed Funding program and the SME Equity Program, as well as interesting discussions around varied entrepreneurial related topics, led by subject matter experts. It will be a great opportunity for you to connect with the other entrepreneurs as well as international and local investors.

On this occasion, Abdul Aziz Bin Nasser Al Khalifa, Chief Executive Officer, Qatar Development Bank, said: “QDB’s overall strategy is to become an investing hub in Qatar, by attracting global venture capital firms to set up their base in Qatar in order to facilitate the exchange of knowledge, service, and expertise for the Qatari SMEs in a fast way and at desirable prices. QDB’s plan is to transform Qatar as the preferred destination for entrepreneurs, mentors, investors, supporters and other important constituents to meet and exchange goods & services, in a fruitful collaborative environment and liquid markets. The purpose is to create a successful entrepreneurial ecosystem, as well as enable Qatari companies of all sizes to become strong and capable of competing globally.”

With a view to extend hands of partnership, QDB will be launching two services, the “Fund of Fund (FoF)”, which is the process of yellow service investing into VC funds with the purpose of getting exposure to great international companies, bring them potentially to Qatar, set up their offices here and ensure that they actively contribute to the entrepreneurial ecosystem, ensure sufficient liquidity and help Qatar start-ups scale up globally. Through this service, the bank’s long-term goal is to create a significantly large and diversified investment portfolio in VC funds so that it can then list the shares of yellow services as fund of funds.

In yet another initiative, through “Access to international capital” service, the bank’s incubated or financed Qatari star companies will get access to present their ideas and concepts to international funds and seek additional follow on investments/financing. Apart from these two major services, QDB also has a set of existing products & services to empower SMEs. For instance, through its Qatar Exchange Venture Market Program (QVEM), QDB aims to support potential SMEs wanting to list their businesses in the Qatar exchange venture market​​. Additionally, the bank offers the SME Equity program to support economic diversification by providing growth capital to Qatari entrepreneurs and deploying investments in innovative small enterprises & high-potential medium enterprises.

Moreover, QDB provides ​ITHMAR (Seed Funding)​, an equity program compliant with the Islamic Sahria. An integrated and comprehensive approach, it offers entrepreneurs with the required funds to establish business in Qatar, thereby building a new generation of Qatari entrepreneurs. All these special offerings and schemes will equip global companies, local stakeholders such as governmental bodies, start-ups, SMEs, investors, university students, etc., to expand their network and grow their portfolio. At QDB, we always work on many crucial initiatives at national and international levels with the aim to achieve a significant impact on the Entrepreneurial Ecosystem. In doing so, we bring influential stakeholders, such as government bodies, VC funds, private and institutional investors, local and international entrepreneurs and companies together under one roof to exchange knowledge, explore new growth opportunities, and get inspirations from international best practices.