Nordic Innovation Incubator helping Nordic companies grow in the Middle East

The buildings of Masdar City

The buildings of Masdar City

Nordic Innovation has hired Nordoest to operate the Nordic Innovation Incubator in Masdar City, United Arab Emirates (UAE). The purpose of the incubator will be to support Nordic companies entering the Middle East, and provide them with a space to develop their business plans alongside the Masdar Institute.

“The UAE is a natural point of entry to markets in the Middle East. The Nordic Innovation Incubator will provide critical mass and a Nordic brand value to SME’s”, says Roger Bjørgan, managing director of Nordic Innovation.

By operating through the Nordic Innovation Incubator, Nordic businesses will gain access to local networks, receive the guidance needed to navigate their business in the region, as well as the use of a physical workspace.

Project leader of Nordic Innovation, Rasmus Wendt, hopes the incubator can benefit Nordic companies, particularly those in the cleantech field: “It’s a multi-functional office, which offers a soft landing in the UAE through a close collaboration with the Masdar Institute and a strong cluster of Nordic cleantech companies”

With extensive experience in working with Nordic companies – notably as representatives of Innovation Norway in the UAE – Nordoest will operate the Nordic Innovation Incubator. Founding partner of Nordoest, Matteo Chiesa, believes that the synergy is evident; “The agreement builds on what we are already doing for Innovation Norway, so this was a natural step for us at Nordoest. We now have agreements with Innovation Norway, Nordic Innovation and IRENA [The International Renewable Energy Agency]. The Nordics are underrepresented in the Middle East but we have the expertise and network to change that, helping companies navigate the complex market environment and to address the whole region”.

The incubator is well suited with another Nordic Innovation co-funded project – a program with Green Business Norway in the UAE supporting cleantech solutions for waste management from the Nordic countries. Continuing into the summer of 2016, the program will benefit from the facilities of the Nordic Innovation Incubator.

“The Nordic Innovation Incubator is a great example of Nordic cooperation that is concrete and easy to communicate. It’s a project where economies of scale and scope truly meets Nordic added value, which is the foundation of what we do at Nordic Innovation”, says Bárður Örn Gunnarsson, director of communication at Nordic Innovation.



Benedikt Pilscheur and Matteo Chiesa of Nordoest and Rasmus Wendt, Roger Bjørgan and Bardur Örn Gunnarsson from Nordic Innovation outside the Nordic Innovation Incubator in Masdar City

Benedikt Pilscheur and Matteo Chiesa of Nordoest and Rasmus Wendt, Roger Bjørgan and Bardur Örn Gunnarsson from Nordic Innovation outside the Nordic Innovation Incubator in Masdar City

The Icelandic president Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson, Bárður Örn Gunnarsson director of communication at Nordic Innovation and Director of the Free Zone at Masdar City, Mr. Ahmed Baghoum

The Icelandic president Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson, Bárður Örn Gunnarsson director of communication at Nordic Innovation and Director of the Free Zone at Masdar City, Mr. Ahmed Baghoum