The Qatar Financial Centre (QFC) has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Founder Institute (FI), an American business incubator, entrepreneur training and startup launch programme, aimed at propelling the startup business environment in Qatar.
The MoU records the intention of both parties to pursue areas of mutual collaboration, keeping in mind the QFC’s target sectors, which include digital, technology, financial services, and professional business services.
FI startups that are licensed by the QFC can benefit from 100% ownership, a robust legal infrastructure, and a dedicated client affairs team to support their business needs.
Established in 2009, FI is a pre-seed accelerator comprising a global network of entrepreneurs, mentors, investors, and ecosystem leaders, with local chapters in over 200 cities and more than 90 countries.
The MoU was signed by Yousuf Mohamed al-Jaida, chief executive, QFC Authority, and Andrew Crawford, Head of Finance, FI.
"The country actively encourages and supports entrepreneurship and the acceptance of smaller enterprises in keeping with its sustainable development goals. This agreement further strengthens QFC’s commitment to support the national economy and to leverage potential opportunities for growth," al-Jaida said.
Through the exchange of information and business best-practices, this MoU would provide structural support to not only promote and nurture startups but also to help businesses thrive in a dynamic environment, he added.
"The FI helps early-stage entrepreneurs get to traction and funding through a structured process. Together, with this agreement we will be better positioned to support entrepreneurs in Qatar so that they are able to thrive in today's economy," said Crawford.
The QFC is an onshore jurisdiction that allows registered companies to enjoy competitive benefits, such as up to 100% foreign ownership, 100% repatriation of profits, 10% corporate tax on locally sourced profits, and an extensive double taxation avoidance treaty network with over 80 countries, a legal environment based on English common law and the right to trade in any currency.