United Arab Emirates: Monday, April 22 – 2013 at 13:36

Dubai SME, the agency of the Department of Economic Development (DED) mandated to develop the small and medium enterprises (SMEs) sector, and Nexus Insurance Brokers organised a seminar on risk management and insurance advisories to Dubai SME100 companies today.

The seminar, held as part of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) signed between Dubai SME and Nexus in March 2013, aimed to create awareness among SMEs on the need for basic business risk assessment and insurance.

The seminar was held in view of the low insurance penetration among SMEs in the region, which stands at less than two percent, while their counterparts in the US and Europe remain far ahead in leveraging insurance for stability and growth. The Insurance and Risk Management Seminar was held over half a day and a Risk Assessment and Insurance Due Diligence Diagnostic exercise was made available to all Dubai SME100 companies.

Abdul Baset Al Janahi, Chief Executive Officer of Dubai SME, said: “We are delighted that Nexus Insurance Brokers is partnering Dubai SME to offer content and value-adding services to the Dubai SME100 initiative. Nexus is aligned with our vision to empower the SME sector by strengthening capabilities and capacities. SMEs will benefit from our partnership as it will provide them with the awareness and knowledge to make the right decisions. I look forward to greater collaboration with Nexus for the benefit of our SME100 companies and the sector in general.”

Launched under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Executive Council, Dubai SME100 identifies the top-performing SMEs in Dubai to help groom them into bigger and more sustainable enterprises, and support them through their growth into larger, internationally-oriented companies.

Speakers at the seminar explained how lack of insurance and absence of risk assessment expose SMEs to unforeseen threats and downturns. Key areas of review included ‘Asset and Liability Protection,’ ‘Workmen’s Compensation,’ ‘Trade Credit Insurance,’ ‘Employee Benefits,’ ‘Key Man’ and ‘Succession Planning.’

Mahmoud Nodjoumi, Chief Executive Officer of Nexus Insurance Brokers, said: “SMEs are the backbone of business and immensely important to the economic development of the region. We need a powerful and competitive SME community across the UAE in order to maintain the country’s strong economic growth and to create sustainable jobs. In partnership with Dubai SME, Nexus Insurance Brokers is raising awareness of many potential pitfalls faced by SMEs that can be mitigated by insurance. Although these SMEs experience strong growth, they remain ignorant of many aspects of risk and therefore we must do everything we can to ensure that those contributing to the UAE’s economy are equipped to succeed and are insured for all the known risks”.
Participants in the seminar were also encouraged to look at risk assessment and insurance as an investment to protect the wealth and well-being of the business. The Risk Assessment Diagnostic module, developed by Nexus, enables SMEs to derive value from its businesses while simultaneously remaining well protected.”

The seminar and one-on-one service are part of the capability and knowledge development initiative introduced by Dubai SME for the SME100 firms. Each capability development initiative typically has four components: an expert sharing/knowledge building seminar; business self-diagnostic tools; one-on-one audit/due diligence with SMEs; and case studies and experience sharing by SME100 CEOs.

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