Majid Al Futtaim (MAF), the Middle East's largest mall operator, which has 29 shopping malls in its portfolio, has unveiled a new concept store dedicated to start-ups and SMEs in the region.
The company’s Launchpad X, located in City Centre Mirdif, has just opened its doors, MAF announced on Thursday.
It features brands developed by start-ups, as well as entrepreneurs who won in MAF’s accelerator programme, which was launched last year to promote entrepreneurship and support SMEs.
“We are confident that Launchpad X will not only connect the region’s leading start-ups to new opportunities that strengthen their commercial footprint but also a catalyst for innovation and a powerful force for driving the region’s economic development,” said Fuad Mansoor Sharaf, Managing Director of the UAE Shopping Malls at MAF Properties.
Brands featured at the concept store are diverse but they have shown innovation, creativity and growth potential. The store also features products of SMEs from around the region.
Product offerings include home fragrances, fashion and home essentials, loungewear, snacks and ethnic crafts, among others.
Start-ups in the MENA region raised nearly $4 billion across 795 deals last year. Last August, around $101 million was raised, up by 6% month-on-month, but down by 73% compared to the same period last year.
(Writing by Cleofe Maceda; editing by Seban Scaria)