Initiative to spur innovation in Oman launched

Energy Monday 16/April/2018 22:15 PM
By: Times News Service
Initiative to spur innovation in Oman launched

Muscat: Omani innovators can now turn their inventions into business ideas in the renewable energy and water management sector, thanks to a new
The California-based start-up GlassPoint Solar officially launched the GlassPoint Innovation Spur in Oman on Monday. The company allotted OMR45,000 for the start-up.
Omani inventors can apply at the website Omani-led teams of up to five are eligible to apply.
The teams that apply are required to have an existing prototype of their invention and be able to dedicate at least 18 months to the programme. After the initial screening, ten teams will be selected to take part in the three-month ‘Spur Workout’ to test the feasibility of their ideas.
Moreover, as many as three innovators will advance to the final stages. Then, they will receive expert advice from mentors and opportunities to meet with potential investors for their projects.
The incubation programme can last anywhere between one to three years. GlassPoint Solar’s senior manager of project development, Badar Al Sariri, said that while mentors and experts can be non-citizens, Omani researchers would be preferred on the teams.
GlassPoint will partner with The Research Council (TRC), Innovation Park Muscat (IPM), Public Authority for Small and Medium-sized Enterprise Development (Riyada) and Sharaka in this initiative.
Sharing expertise
CEO of GlassPoint Solar Steven Moss said that Oman was at the heart of their company’s plans. “The GlassPoint Innovation Spur came into existence to enhance Oman’s role as a global leader in renewable technology. By sharing our entrepreneurial journey and renewable expertise, we aim to drive the culture of innovation and empower local talent to accomplish what we have achieved,” he said.
“The Research Council is keen to provide technical and material support to participating innovators and entrepreneurs, enabling them to develop their projects to enter the market, compete and grow,” said Dr Hilal Al Hinai, Secretary General of The Research Council.
“Riyada aims at equipping Small and Medium Enterprises with the required skill sets and a solid foundation to support them in initiating innovative business ideas, ready to scale-up to well-established business organisations,” said Dr. Ahmed Al Ghassani, Chief Executive Officer, Public Authority for SME Development (Riyada).
“We are excited to offer participants access to highly-qualified business professionals to advise them in implementing a sustainable business growth plan,’ added Dr Abdulbaqi Al Khabouri, Director of Science Park, Innovation Park Muscat.
“We will support them in identifying different financial opportunities, but more importantly help them find smarter and better ways to use capital to drive scale and growth,” said Abdullah Al Jufaili, General Manager, Sharaka.
Engineer Ahmed bin Hassan Al Dheeb, undersecretary of the ministry of commerce and industry, was in attendance during the announcement.
GlassPoint Solar supplies solar energy to the oil and gas industry. The global oil and gas industry consumes an amount of energy equal to 10 per cent of its own production, making it a large market for renewable energy.