Press Release

November 04, 2021

Top 100 SMEs in the region revealed at Gulf Capital SME Awards 2021

Gulf Capital and MEED-GlobalData reveal the 153 finalists for the 10th edition of the Gulf Capital SME Awards, which are dedicated to recognizing the trailblazing small and medium enterprises that are leading the region’s commercial and economic growth past the pandemic into a modern knowledge economy.

SMEs represent over 90 per cent of all companies operating in the region and 99 per cent of private sector companies in Saudi Arabia. Despite the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, SMEs in the region have demonstrated their resilience, commitment to innovation and continue to validate the significant investments regional governments continue to make to support this pivotal economic segment.

The awards recorded over 1,000 registrations on the website by companies in the GCC. The first round of judging revealed 153 finalists across 19 categories, including Gulf Capital Business of the Year, Cigna People and Culture of the Year, FedEx Start-up Business of the Year, Emirati Business of the Year, and Disruption of the Year.

Among the finalists in 2021 are BuzzBee, CASHU, The Hanging House Experiential Agency, DuPod, Pure Harvest Smart Farms, and Distichain.

These finalists will now be judged by a cohort of more than 30 industry experts representing some of the region’s leading private, public, and academic organisations.

Dr Karim El Solh, co-founder and CEO of Gulf Capital, said:” This year marks our 10-year partnership with MEED and a decade of supporting the region’s SME community. This Insights and Awards programme is further testimony of our commitment to offering support and advice to those businesses that share core qualities of innovation, agility, and resilience. Gulf Capital is dedicated to providing growth opportunities to those SMEs that are drivers of our economies. For ten years, Gulf Capital expanded and extended its reach to a larger group of SMEs by continuously transferring knowledge, providing broader support, and offering many networking opportunities. We are devoted to ramping up more support for SMEs and are keen always to give back to the communities we operate in.”

MEED Group Commercial Director Sonia Kerrigan said: “Over the last ten years, in close partnership with our founding partner Gulf Capital, these awards have been an annual celebration and recognition of how SMEs in the UAE and beyond have continued to shape the regional economy. Gulf Capital’s exceptional team has donated its time and expertise to the programme and the SMEs who were part of it. This year’s finalists are a real testament to that remarkable growth and transformation journey, and we are proud to continue our support of this key segment.”

The winners from the 19 categories will be announced at an awards reception on November 24, 2021, in Dubai.

The awards are supported by Founding Partner Gulf Capital, Official Health and Wellbeing Partner, Cigna, Official Logistics Partner, FedEx Express, Endorsing Partners Dubai SME, and Khalifa Fund for Economic Development and Association Partners Dtec, in5, StartAD, and Tie Dubai.