Saudi Arabia:Monshaat supports entrepreneurship with guidance and finance
  • 2024-02-01
  • Entrepreneurship Research Center on G20 Economies
  • Edit
  • The Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) Authority of Saudi Arabia (Monshaat) is a key driver in achieving the private sector growth of the Saudi government's "Vision 2030." Its focus extends beyond fostering entrepreneurship and understanding the needs and challenges of SMEs, providing assistance in financing, management, technology, and other areas through multi-party coordination, aiming for sustainable entrepreneurial development.

    Go global and Innovation: Guiding Startups into Global Markets and Supporting Innovation

    Providing entrepreneurial service platforms and incubation support to facilitate the realization of ideas is the first step in Monshaat's support for entrepreneurship. By establishing cooperative mechanisms with scientific research institutions and universities, Monshaat explores and incubates innovative technologies. It also builds platforms for showcasing innovation achievements through exhibitions and innovation competitions, attracting investment.

    On November 19th, 2023, Monshaat hosted the fifth "National Innovation Competition", offering participants a platform to display their innovative achievements and concepts. During the preparation process, industry experts provide technical, experiential, and financial support, connecting entrepreneurs with investment, training, and financial entities. Winners of the competition will receive a prize of 300,000 riyals funded by the Saudi government.

    On December 4th, 2023, Monshaat held the "Saudi Arabia Entrepreneurshipl Ecosystem Tour" in Finland, similar to the network technology summit previously held in Portugal and the SWITCH exhibition in Singapore. Monshaat led local startups to showcase innovative products and development potential to attract foreign investment.

    According to data from Monshaat, there are currently over 400 incubation institutions in Saudi Arabia, mainly located in universities and some state-owned enterprises' development departments. Currently, the number of business incubators in Saudi Arabia is relatively low, but with economic development and improvements in the entrepreneurial environment, there is significant room for growth in the business incubators in Saudi Arabia.

    Collaboration with Local Governments: Ensuring Timely and Comprehensive Implementation

    As an agency responsible for formulating national policies on innovation and entrepreneurship, Monshaat ensures efficient transmission and high-quality implementation of policies and measures. It also keeps eyes on the demands and development status of SMEs across the country by establishing cooperation with local governments as an important approach.

    On November 20th, 2023, Monshaat signed a memo with MISK City. Announced by the Saudi Crown Prince, MISK City is an emerging smart city designed to create a favorable ecosystem for new SMEs. According to the memorandum and the latest developments in MISK City, efforts are being made to simplify the city's entrepreneurship entry policies, relax requirements for enterprise registration and environmental protection, actively host various investment forums and innovation competitions to provide more opportunities for SMEs to showcase their achievements and attract investment, and strengthen regulation of regional financial and manufacturing markets to avoid pitfalls in the development of emerging cities and ensure the healthy growth of startups.

    Similar agreements have been previously signed with regions such as Medina, Riyadh, and the Northern Borders, empowering local SMEs through cooperation.

    Partnership with Banks: Providing Targeted Financial Support for Startups

    Once enterprises reach a certain level of operational management and product development, what they need most for further expansion is financial support. To this end, Monshaat has partnered with major banks to provide financing assistance to SMEs.

    On September 14th, 2023, the SMEs Authority signed cooperation agreements with major financial institutions such as the Arab National Bank and Albilad Bank. Several banks agreed to simplify the financing loan and credit application processes for SMEs, opening dedicated channels and workgroups to improve efficiency and loan success rates.

    On September 17th, 2023, Monshaat signed cooperation agreements with six financial institutions, including Social Development Bank and Small and Medium Enterprises Bank. These institutions will provide professional financing training courses for SMEs and guide their development. In addition, each bank will offer training courses tailored to specific industries, involving e-commerce, manufacturing, etc., such as the agricultural product marketing training provided by the Riyadh Bank.

    According to the SMEs Development Report for the third quarter released by Monshaat on November 27th, the number of SMEs in Saudi Arabia increased by 3.5% in the third quarter compared to the second quarter, reaching 1.27 million, mainly concentrated in Riyadh and Mecca, with respective increases of 43.3% and 18.3% from the second quarter.

  • Partners

  • Global Health Innovation Center (GHIC)
  • World Intelligent Incubation Network (WIIN)
  • National University of Singapore
  • Canada-China Institute For Business & Development
  • TusPark Research Institute for Innovation
  • Cross-strait Tsinghua Research Institute
  • Tsinghua X-Lab

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