Dubai's TECOM Group owned in5, an enabling platform for startups and entrepreneurs, has raised more than AED65 million ($17.7 million) in direct investment, during the first six months of 2020.

The platform raised the investments via multiple funding sources such as venture capital funds or angel investors. Forty-one new companies joined the startup incubator in the first 6 months of the year brining to the total number of active startups at in5 to 216, in5 said in a statement.

Small businesses, startups and SMEs have been among the hardest hit sectors by the COVID-19 pandemic, but agile entrepreneurs have successfully identified opportunities to raise capital.

Majed Al Suwaidi, Managing Director of Dubai Media City and an in5 leader, said: “Mentorship and networking opportunities are fundamental to our operations at in5 – and the number of homegrown innovators joining in5 year-on-year coupled with investment growth demonstrates our continued commitment to attract and develop talent in Dubai that can transform the technology, media and design landscapes.”

Bolstering its credentials as a knowledge hub that nurtures and enables talent, in5 concluded 320 advisory and mentorship hours for startups and entrepreneurs working across its world-class technology, media and design ecosystems in H1 this year.

The incubator is supported by a steering committee comprising more than 20 experts representing local and international companies such as Accenture, Microsoft and Chalhoub Group. The committee selects startups and admits them to the incubator, providing various benefits including mentorship.

Launched by Tecom, a unit of investment conglomerate Dubai Holding, in 2013, in5 has so far helped over 347 entrepreneurs raise more than AED465 million in funding.

(Writing by Seban Scaria, editing by Daniel Luiz)

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