QDB 2021: A Year in Achievements

Jan 04, 2022 by BLJ Worldwide

Doha, Qatar - 03 January 2022 – Qatar Development Bank (QDB) has concluded 2021 with numerous feats added to its record of achievements, and the marking of several milestones in its ongoing journey to empower private sector companies and contribute to the development of the SME ecosystem in Qatar across its three access-based pillars to private-enterprise support; access to finance, access to capability, and access to local, regional, and international markets.


In 2021, QDB was able to continue its support for the private sector against the repercussions of the pandemic. In this endeavor, the number of beneficiaries of the National Guarantee Program by the end of 2021 reached approximately 4,300 eligible companies across various sectors that were issued guarantees amounting to QAR 3.6bn, in addition to helping companies thrive in the new economy by harnessing digital and smart solutions, such as its newly launched NUMU digital platform for financing industrial SMEs and the Qatar Virtual Exhibition, which connects exporting Qatari SMEs with importers and buyers from all over the world.

In parallel, financing reached QAR 7.2bn, which was used to support over 800 SMEs, in addition to a boost in export financing by 22% with a cumulative total support of QAR 1.54bn. Moreover, capital deployed in SMEs reached QAR 66mn, marking an 11% growth over the previous year.

On the SME ecosystem development front, QDB achieved a number of remarkable feats including its participation in the 24th St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF), where nine Qatari companies secured potential investment agreements worth QAR 33mn, in addition to achievements at the national level such as the launch of the 7th Qatar Entrepreneurship Conference (ROWAD Qatar), in its second virtual edition, which witnessed wide participation and active engagement nationally and regionally with more than 2,500 participants taking part in 27 workshops delivered by 45 speakers from Qatar and beyond, as well as the organization of the Qatar Entrepreneurship Awards 2021 (ROWAD Awards), where five SMEs were honored for their achievements across various categories.

QDB also held the 4th Investment Forum, in an edition that witnessed the launch of the first digital investment platform of its kind in Qatar as well as the attendance of 350 participants and the organization of more than 30 matchmaking sessions between investors and entrepreneurs from the 10 participating startups, bringing the total potential deals of the forum to QAR 8mn. During the year, QDB also released Qatar’s first report of its kind on the venture investment, along with 14 other reports and studies serving a wide spectrum of SME-focused objectives.

As one of its key pillars of support to the entrepreneurial ecosystem, QDB’s capacity-building efforts translated into a number of achievements in 2021 as the Bank’s advisory and consultation services reached more than 650 SMEs and entrepreneurs, a 38% increase in the number of beneficiaries compared to about 470 in 2020, while training and workshops saw a 6% increase, reaching nearly 300 workshops and courses that served more than 8,000 beneficiaries. Courses included two intensive training programs and a number of sessions that covered the investment sector resulting in the graduation of 25 qualified investors.

Meanwhile, 467 SMEs were incubated and accelerated in 2021, marking a 46% increase over the previous year. Incubatees spanned various sectors and domains across QDB’s various business incubators & accelerators including Qatar Business Incubation Center (QBIC), Qatar FinTech Hub, Scale7 Fashion & Design Incubator, and Qatar SportsTech.

QDB also played a major role in supporting government projects while ensuring their optimal implementation in collaboration with relevant stakeholders and national partners. In 2021, the Bank issued housing loans to more than 35,000 beneficiaries with a total amount of approximately QAR 25.8bn, achieving a growth rate of 2.3% year on year. Moreover, the number of Al Furjan and Al Ezzab markets’ shops increased by 15%.

Export financing and development had their share of achievements as well with the volume of exports by registered Export SMEs exceeding QAR 1bn and marking a 50% growth year on year. As part of promoting and supporting private enterprises, more than 200 Qatari companies participated in 10 international exhibitions and 220 Exporting SMEs took part in 10 matchmaking events with a growth rate of 91% in the number of beneficiaries. In the e-commerce domain, 43 Qatari exporters joined the Alibaba e-platform, in addition to organizing 21 workshops and 99 training sessions that benefited 636 participants.

The total value of contracts concluded in terms of localization of opportunities amounted to approximately QAR 262mn in cooperation with public and private institutions. In this context, the number of participants in local supply chain and procurement training workshops reached 1,000, and the number of local companies that benefited from the lean matchmaking programs reached 21. QDB also launched the “Meet Your Manufacturer” digital platform.

Alongside national and international partners, QDB continues to shape a brighter future for private enterprises in Qatar towards realizing the Qatar National Vision 2030. The Bank is achieving this momentous goal by creating sustainable added value through its three pillars of support and amplifying its efforts in empowering companies to thrive in the new economy and achieve smart digital transformation.