Dubai SME 100 Ranking Third Cycle Registration Opens

  • Application for the 2015 ranking now open; Registration closes on 5 April 2015.  
  • Dubai-based SMEs meeting the official Dubai SME definition can apply; Three years of audited financials compulsory

Dubai SME, the agency of the Department of Economic Development (DED) mandated to develop the small and medium enterprise (SME) sector, has started registering applicants in the Dubai SME100 ranking for 2015.

Dubai SME 100 acts as a platform and catalyst to identify promising SMEs – to groom them into bigger, better and sustainable enterprises, eventually graduating them to large globally oriented companies. The initiative aims to celebrate Dubai’s top performing SMEs to encourage continuous enterprise development, investment, and best practices in the SME sector.

The ranking provides SMEs with a firm ground to market their capabilities to regional and global investors while also assisting them in sourcing growth capital. By providing a reliable index of SME performance, the ranking also serves as a base of investable SMEs for a potential secondary listing of SMEs capable of taking the IPO (Initial Public Offering) route.

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.

Al Janahi noted that in the 2013 ranking, SMEs that achieved double-digit revenue growth over the last three years are 81, a 53% growth from the 53 such SMEs in the 2011 list. A 32% increase (from 41 SMEs in 2011 to 54 in 2013) is also seen in terms of companies that achieved more than 20% growth over the last three years. Presently, Dubai SME seeks to provide an appropriate environment and ideal opportunities for the SME100 companies to move to a more inclusive and expansion phase in the field of entrepreneurship.

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 Registration closes on the 5th of April 2015.


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