The 256 Network, a leading invite-only network group bringing together global decision-makers investing in private markets, signed a memorandum of understanding with Abu Dhabi Global Market, the international financial centre of the UAE’s capital Emirate, on the sidelines of Abu Dhabi Finance Week. The week-long event served as a platform for in-depth conversations around the MENA region’s thriving financial sector, industry trends, developments and innovation involving financial markets and global banking.
The signing ceremony was attended by Dhruv Sehra – Founder and CEO of 256 Network, Pankaj Gupta, Co-founder and Co-CEO of Gulf Islamic Investments and Founding Board Member of 256 Network GCC Chapter & Prashanth Prakash, Founding Board Member of 256 Network and Founding Partner of Accel Partners, Rajan Navani (virtually), Founding Board Member of the 256 Network, VC & MD, Jetline Group (JetSynthesys) as well as Rajiv Sehgal, Chief Strategy Officer of ADGM, Dhaher bin Dhaher, CEO of Registration Authority of ADGM, Hamad Al Mazrouei, COO of ADGM and Saeed Al Khoori, Director of Sovereign and Strategic Partnerships of ADGM and other senior members from both entities. Part of the visit was to launch their offices in Abu Dhabi in line with their expansion plans.
As per the MoU, 256 Network and Abu Dhabi Global Markets (ADGM) will jointly collaborate on developing the startup ecosystems of India and UAE and catalyze cross border innovation and collaboration.
The Group also launched their Emerging Fund Manager Fellowship where 256 Network will facilitate access, fund them and help first and second time fund managers from across the world in launching their funds. The program is designed for fund managers working on investment vehicles in venture capital and private equity. They will be able to leverage ADGM’s expertise and access to gain a competitive edge while launching their funds.
During Abu Dhabi Finance Week, 256 Network invited 250 of their global members for a retreat that included different activities, one of which was visiting the Hindu Mandir temple, the first traditional Hindu Temple in the Middle East.
The visit was accompanied by Dr. Sultan Karmostaji, Deputy Director General Education Training Development at Minitry of Interior Abu Dhabi, Founder and Chairman of UAE Angels Capital Investment, and His Holiness Brahmavihari Swami, as well as 256 Founding board members, Pankaj Gupta, and Prashanth Prakash.
Dhruv Sehra, Founder & CEO of 256 Network, said: “The MoU signifies a vital milestone in international cooperation between the two entities. It will facilitate mutual assistance to strengthen the supervision of cross-border operations of financial institutions under their purview. As we cross the threshold into our expansion, we are keen to fortify our footprint in Abu Dhabi, as the group will spare no effort in consolidating the prominence of the UAE’s thriving market and aspiration to continue inviting investors and leveraging its full-scale capacity.”
Rajan Navani, Founding Board Member, 256 Network and VC & MD, Jetline Group, said: “The MoU with ADGM has resulted into the creation of a sizeable international partnership that will help both the organisations groom upcoming fund managers by providing guidance and support like no other- one with synergy and great experience. This is also a significant step towards ensuring greater ease of investing and doing business in the MENA region which is full of untapped potential. I am looking forward to seeing what we can achieve together in the coming future.”
Prashanth Prakash, Founding Board Member, 256 Network and Founding Partner of Accel Partners said: “Both of our regions have had long standing business relationships spanning decades and this expansion marks a new association which will catalyse synergies between both our business and start-up communities. I am excited to see the ensuing innovation and startups that get built as a result of our collaboration. Both our startup communities are amongst the fastest growing in the world and this partnership will not only create more jobs but also generate cultural and financial capital which will compound both our economies in this decade”
Arvind Ramamurthy, Chief of Markets of ADGM said “We are pleased to partner with 256 Network through the signing of this MoU. This step is especially important as we witness the continuous growth and expansion of the financial market in Abu Dhabi and the UAE. Strengthening ties with international industry leaders is at the forefront of our strategy and we are looking forward to working with our partners in India to create more investment opportunities and develop a robust business ecosystem.
Pankaj Gupta, Co-Founder and Co-CEO of Gulf Islamic Investments and Founding Board Member of 256 Network GCC Chapter, said: “We are pleased to continue nurturing this strategic relationship as it aims to bolster financial activities further, facilitate investment flows and encourage business innovation. This agreement paves the way for more joint efforts and initiatives. Together, we can work closely in fostering robust relations and empowering the business communities in the UAE and India.”
We will continue to work with our strategic partners, locally and internationally, to further Abu Dhabi and the UAE’s economic development plans and achieve greater investor trust, accessibility and ease of doing business in Abu Dhabi and beyond.”