d3 supports Lebanon’s designers, startups rebuild their business
Dubai Design District (d3) is extending support to Lebanese design businesses affected by the Beirut blast with a new initiative enabling startups, entrepreneurs, boutique studios and large-scale companies to restart operations and regain a local and regional footprint.
As part of an ongoing commitment to create meaningful change and strengthen the regional design industry, d3, the region’s largest creative community, have offered co-working spaces to Lebanese startups, entrepreneurs, SMEs and larger companies impacted by the explosion in the port of Beirut, which caused billions of dollars in damages.
Held under d3’s Design for Good initiative, which promotes social change, the three-year programme aims to help companies re-establish their presence with an opportunity to network and collaborate with major international companies such as Dior, Burberry, Zaha Hadid Architects and Foster + Partners, as well as leverage d3-hosted events such as Dubai Design Week.
d3’s co-working spaces will ensure SMEs and more established brands have a base to operate from to restart their operations, whilst maintaining a presence in Lebanon and expanding across the region.
Lebanese startups will have the option to join in5 Design, a business incubator in the heart of d3. The enabling platform for entrepreneurs will provide Beirut-based design startups with access to mentorship, networking and investment opportunities, as well as advanced facilitates and infrastructure to ensure they hit the ground running.
Commenting on the initiative, Khadija Al Bastaki, Executive Director of d3, said: “We were shocked and saddened by August’s devastating explosion in Beirut and immediately started working with our partners on a programme to support those affected and create hope. As the region’s largest community of local and international talent, our ecosystem has benefited significantly from the drive, determination and entrepreneurial spirit of regional and international designers including the Lebanese.
“The UAE has already dispatched humanitarian aid to help people impacted by the blast, as well as support the economy and limit the spread of coronavirus. Our initiative is in line with the vision of our leaders to provide assistance to those in need. We hope this programme will let Lebanese designers enjoy the benefits of our community, so they can quickly get back on their feet and get moving again.”
As well as supporting the Lebanese design industry, d3 has also offered a range of measures to its existing business partners to minimise uncertainty, ensure continuity and build resilience amid the global health crisis. These have included flexible payment terms and simplified procedures to strengthen Dubai’s economy and enhance the emirate’s attractiveness to creative talent and businesses.
d3 boasts state-of-the-art, sustainable infrastructure that enables companies to connect in the region’s largest creative ecosystem, which is home to 385 local and international companies, startup incubator in5 Design and the Dubai Institute of Design and Innovation, the region’s only university exclusively dedicated to design and innovation.
The community also has an excellent mix of restaurants, office space, showrooms and shops, with its own open-air basketball and volleyball courts, skate park, gym, rock climbing wall and urban beach.