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    Etihad Airways And The Department Of Culture And Tourism - Abu Dhabi partner with Plug And Play ADGM to disrupt the Travel and Hospitality Industry in the Middle East

    ADGM RA 28/02/2019

    Plug and Play, the largest global innovation platform, and Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM), the leading international financial centre based in Abu Dhabi, today announced Etihad Airways, the national airline of the UAE, and the Department of Culture and Tourism - Abu Dhabi as the founding corporate partners for their new Travel and Hospitality accelerator program. 

    The Plug and Play ADGM team, Etihad Airways and the Department of Culture and Tourism - Abu Dhabi will be working together to dictate the focus of the program based on their current use cases and curating a selection of highly rated startups sourced via their global network.

    Plug and Play ADGM will work hand in hand with both partner’s business units to expedite the engagement process and encourage fruitful collaboration. 

    Plug and Play ADGM is also proud to announce that Miral, Abu Dhabi’s creator of destinations, will participate in the accelerator program, allowing them to engage with the selected startups and support the growing entrepreneurial ecosystem across the region. Startups participating in the accelerator program will be able to benefit from ADNEC’s community partnership by attending their regular workshops, private events, and networking sessions. 

    These partners will also be able to leverage Plug and Play’s global ecosystem of over 25 travel and hospitality companies across the globe, from Silicon Valley to Singapore.

    “The travel and hospitality sector is critical to Abu Dhabi’s socio-economic development and we are delighted to form this strategic partnership with Plug and Play ADGM to collectively establish an infrastructure which will enable innovation to flourish in the aviation sector,” said Tony Douglas, Group Chief Executive Officer of Etihad Aviation Group.

    “Establishing Abu Dhabi’s credentials as a world-class destination with universal appeal across all global traveller demographics is our key mandate at DCT Abu Dhabi, and this collaboration with Plug and Play ADGM, in tandem with our local partners, will allows us to forge a framework where innovation can flourish, and the potency and reach of our global messaging can be enhanced,” said H.E Saif Saeed Ghobash, Undersecretary at DCT Abu Dhabi.

    “We are proud that the expansion of our activities into the Travel and Hospitality space will further support Abu Dhabi’s vision in becoming a regional hub for innovation,” said Omeed Mehrinfar, Managing Partner, Middle East at Plug and Play. 

    Plug and Play ADGM kicked off their first Fintech accelerator program in Q3 of 2018, supporting five major financial institutions in achieving their innovation objectives on a global scale, as well as strengthening their competitive advantage within the financial sector.

    Dhaher Bin Dhaher Al Mheiri, CEO of the Registration Authority of ADGM said, “ADGM is excited about the new Plug and Play ADGM’s startup programme for the travel and hospitality sector and looks forward to collaborating with the corporate partners and startups. This new venture dovetails with ADGM’s commitment and ongoing efforts in advancing the UAE and Abu Dhabi’s blueprint to boost the competitiveness and attractiveness of the business environment, particularly, in empowering and supporting startups and innovators from the tourism and key industrial sectors.  

    Leveraging ADGM’s end-to-end Tech startup ecosystem and its Professional Services Support Programme, firms and entrepreneurs have access to a nurturing and conducive environment while focusing on their innovative business solutions to local and international companies. We will continue to introduce and advocate initiatives to bring about sustainable development and growth for our country and the community reinforcing Abu Dhabi’s economic diversification strategy.”

    Plug and Play’s Travel & Hospitality Innovation Platform was founded in 2016 at their Silicon Valley headquarters, focused on discovering, supporting and scaling disruptive technologies that are reshaping the future of travel. The industry’s IT infrastructure is long overdue for disruption, and there is an inherent need to connect industry leaders with innovators across the globe. Plug and Play leverages its global network to source startup technologies that increase revenue and lower costs, improve safety and security, build brand loyalty, and create seamless travel experiences for everyone.

    The program will commence in Q3 of 2019, with the first batch of selected startups residing at ADGM. 

    For more information about the program, please reach out to MENA@pnptc.com.

    About Plug and Play

    Plug and Play is a global innovation platform. Headquartered in Silicon Valley, we have built accelerator programs, corporate innovation services, and an in-house VC to make technological advancement progress faster than ever before. Since inception in 2006, our programs have expanded worldwide to include a presence in over 25 locations globally giving startups the necessary resources to succeed in Silicon Valley and beyond. With over 10,000 startups and 280 official corporate partners, we have created the ultimate startup ecosystem in many industries. We provide active investments with 200 leading Silicon Valley VCs, and host more than 700 networking events per year. Companies in our community have raised over $7 billion in funding, with successful portfolio exits including Danger, Dropbox, Lending Club, and PayPal. For more information, visit www.plugandplaytechcenter.com 

    About Abu Dhabi Global Market

    Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM), an international financial centre (IFC) located in the capital city of the United Arab Emirates, opened for business on 21 October 2015.  Established by a UAE Federal Decree as a broad-based financial centre, ADGM augments Abu Dhabi’s position as a global hub for business and finance and serves as a strategic link between the growing economies of the Middle East, Africa and South Asia and the rest of the world.

    ADGM’s strategy is anchored by Abu Dhabi’s key strengths including private banking, wealth management, asset management and financial innovation. Comprising three independent authorities: ADGM Courts, the Financial Services Regulatory Authority and the Registration Authority, ADGM as an IFC governs Al Maryah Island which is a designated financial free zone. It enables registered financial institutions, companies and entities to operate, innovate and succeed within an international regulatory framework based on Common Law.

    About Etihad Aviation Group

    Etihad Aviation Group, a diversified global aviation and travel company, is considered to be one of the world’s most acclaimed aviation brands. Etihad Airways, the national airline of the UAE and a division of the group, was formed in 2003 and quickly went on to become one of the world’s leading airlines. Etihad Airways flies to over 80 destinations with a fleet of 103 Airbus and Boeing aircraft, and carried 682,100 tonnes of cargo in 2018. In recent years, the organisation has received numerous awards for its superior service and products, cargo offering, loyalty programme, aviation training and Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO) service.

    Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi

    The Department of Culture and Tourism conserves and promotes the heritage and culture of

    Abu Dhabi emirate and leverages them in the development of a world-class, sustainable destination of distinction, which enriches the lives of visitors and residents alike. The organisation manages the emirate’s tourism sector and markets the destination internationally through a wide range of activities aimed at attracting visitors and investment. Its policies, plans and programmes relate to the preservation of heritage and culture, including protecting archaeological and historical sites and to developing museums, including the Louvre Abu Dhabi, Zayed National Museum, Guggenheim Abu Dhabi, and Louvre Abu Dhabi. The Department supports intellectual and artistic activities and cultural events to nurture a rich cultural environment and honour the emirate’s heritage. A key role is to create synergy in the destination’s development through close co-ordination with its wide-ranging stakeholder base.


    <span">Since its inception, ADGM has been awarded the “Financial Centre of the Year (MENA)” for three consecutive years for its initiatives and contributions to the financial and capital markets industry in the region.*</span">

    For more details of ADGM, please visit www.adgm.com or follow us on Twitter: @adglobalmarket and Linkedin: ADGM

    * Source : The Global Investor Middle East and North Africa (MENA) Awards

    Rawand AlQadi
    Tel: +0561779653