Mubadala, the Dubai Future Foundation and GE launch region’s first Microfactories in the UAE

  • Microfactory to support UAE developments in 3D printing and small batch manufacturing to on-demand global collaboration and crowdsourced problem solving 
  • Memorandum of Understanding to develop facilities witnessed by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai
  • First Additive microfactory with a partner outside the US
 
Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. March 27, 2017: Mubadala Development Company (Mubadala), the Abu Dhabi-based investment and development company, the Dubai Future Foundation and GE Additive (NYSE: GE) are uniting their collective expertise behind the establishment of the first Microfactory in the region, seeking to accelerate revolutionary additive design, customer innovation, digital manufacturing technologies and access to global problem solving within the United Arab Emirates [UAE].
 
Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, today witnessed the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) at the Global Manufacturing and Industrialisation Summit in Abu Dhabi by His Excellency Mohamed Abdullah Al Gergawi, Minister of Cabinet Affairs in the Federal Government of the UAE and Vice Chairman and Managing Director of the Dubai Future Foundation, Khaldoon Khalifa Al Mubarak, Group Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director at Mubadala, and Beth Comstock, Vice Chair, GE. 
 
The Microfactory is expected to play a crucial role in the upscaling of design and manufacturing capabilities in the UAE and the broader region, allowing for the merger of innovative and forward thinking ideas with the ability to use cutting edge additive manufacturing technology in the production of specialized components. 
 
Coupled with the use of open innovation and on-demand crowd-sourcing aimed at solving key regional challenges, this MoU serves an integral role in the lead up to the realization of UAE’s Vision 2021 of diversifying and supporting the advancement of industrialization, localization and manufacturing.
 
The Microfactory is able to bridge the gap to production through small batch manufacturing and would support ecosystem development, customer co-creation and unlocking new growth sectors. 
 
The goal is to build both an Abu Dhabi-based Microfactory focused on serving industrial companies, as well as a Dubai-based Microfactory focused on serving consumer goods and services companies.
 
“As a nation, our remit is a clear one: identify and act upon unique and sustainable partnerships that provide significant advancements across all sectors, in line with Vision 2021,” said H.E. Al Gergawi. “The leadership of the UAE is a firm believer in the exceptional opportunities presented by a proactive and future focused strategy, enabling individuals, companies, sectors and the nation to progress through the use of innovative and collaborative tools and platforms. These Microfactories are a glimpse of what the future represents, combining innovation and educational ecosystems with fast, efficient and sustainable manufacturing capabilities. The possibilities are truly limitless.”
 
Education and capability-building are vital elements behind the success and sustainability of the Microfactory, with heavy emphasis being placed not only on the ground by providing access to engineering and innovation consultants, but also the around-the-clock ability to interact and collaborate with some of the brightest minds in the field through the uniquely incorporated crowdsourcing platform.
 
“Manufacturing across many sectors has contributed to the diversification of our economy, and a number of Mubadala’s portfolio companies have made great strides in using collaboration and innovation to deepen manufacturing expertise,” said Khaldoon Al Mubarak. “This partnership with the Dubai Future Foundation and GE on these innovative micro-factories has the potential to further this expertise and enhance the country's competitive edge.”
 
The ability to continuously originate products will help to burgeon the UAE’s already expanding innovation ecosystem, driving new and unique collaborations aimed at supporting the nation’s drive toward its Vision 2021.
 
“The ability to partner with both Mubadala and the Dubai Future Foundation – two entities which enjoy an amazing track record in advancing emerging technologies and levelling up innovation platforms within the region – is truly exceptional,” said Comstock. “We share a significant history of working toward projects that advance the region, and these Microfactories continues that rich tradition. It will support the growth of entrepreneurs and SMEs in the digital industrial space, building a local ecosystem and community of suppliers across the key industries. GE is thrilled to partner once again in accelerating the use of this game-changing technology.”  
 
Members of GE Additive’s engineering team will also be working closely with companies from the region across several industrial sectors, offering best practices in how to design and manufacture components using the additive process, whilst GE’s Fuse™ team will recruit the expert community and coordinate the collaboration on innovation missions. 
 
“The opportunities in the UAE – and, of course, the broader Middle East markets – are abundant, and it is incumbent upon us, in collaboration with our partners, to work together to advance opportunities for inclusive and sustainable progress,” said Mohammad Ehteshami, Vice President of GE Additive. “The Microfactories are a concrete example of the results that can be achieved when innovation can take transformative and tangible form. We are phenomenally proud and optimistic about what it can deliver against UAE’s Vision 2021 and the country’s economic goals."
 
GE is a leading end user and innovator in the additive manufacturing space, and has invested approximately $1.5 billion in manufacturing and additive technologies at GE’s Global Research Center (GRC), developed additive applications across six GE businesses, created new services applications across the company, and earned 346 patents in powder metals used for the additive process.  
 
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ABOUT GE: 
GE (NYSE: GE) is the world’s Digital Industrial Company, transforming industry with software-defined machines and solutions that are connected, responsive and predictive. GE is organized around a global exchange of knowledge, the "GE Store," through which each business shares and accesses the same technology, markets, structure and intellect. Each invention further fuels innovation and application across our industrial sectors. With people, services, technology and scale, GE delivers better outcomes for customers by speaking the language of industry. 
 
GE Additive is part of GE, a leading digital industrial company transforming industry with software-defined machines and solutions that are connected, responsive and predictive. GE Additive offers a full line of metal additive manufacturing machines, materials and engineering solutions to customers in many industries including aerospace, medical, automotive and luxury goods. Visit GE Additive at www.geadditive.com  
 
In 2016, GE Additive acquired controlling ownership of Concept Laster GmbH of Germany and Arcan AB of Sweden, and is aggressively investing in their capabilities. Concept Laser, a pioneer in the field of metal additive manufacturing, designs and manufactures powder bed-based laser additive manufacturing machines. Arcam invented the electron beam melting machine for metal-based additive manufacturing.
 
GE Global Operation’s GENIUSLINK™ recently launched Fuse, GE’s new manufacturing business model.  Designed to accelerate product and technology development, Fuse marries digital crowdsourcing with prototyping and small batch manufacturing in micro-factories.  By bringing together customers, entrepreneurs, scientists, coders, engineers, students, corporations and more, Fuse delivers greater speed, design options and greater market validation than traditional product development techniques.  Fuse is manufacturing at a digital industrial pace. Visit GE Fuse at https://www.ge.com/about-us/geniuslink
 
About The Global Manufacturing and Industrialisation Summit 
As the world’s first cross-industry forum, the Global Manufacturing and Industrialisation Summit is a global gathering for manufacturing minds. It is a voice and a venue for global manufacturing transformation. More than 1,200 delegates will attend, including world leaders, industry CEOs, policy-makers, specialist researchers and academics. The Global Manufacturing and Industrialisation Summit will deliver (i) a voice for transformational ideas, (ii) a venue for the generation of new networks and cross-industry partnerships, (iii) a showcase for pilot projects arising from cross-industry research, and (iv) a post-event report with recommendations for action to be submitted to global stakeholders. It is planned that the Summit will be held in leading global cities every other year, with the inaugural Global Manufacturing and Industrialisation Summit in Abu Dhabi in March 2017. See www.gmisummit.com. 
 
Global Agenda on the Future of Manufacturing
The conference will focus on the role of manufacturing in reconstructing the global economy and restoring global prosperity. Leaders from the public and private sectors, along with civil society representatives, will gather together to discuss global challenges facing the manufacturing sector. The discussions will focus around six themes: technology and innovation; global value chains; skills, employment and education; sustainability and environment; infrastructure; standards and stakeholder alignment. The participants will form working groups to identify concrete action plans and recommendations that outline potential solutions to global issues, as well as showcase best practices and case studies from across the world. To highlight an example of global issues, the inaugural conference will focus on the issue of economic migration with the aim of establishing a manufacturing platform that will bring together countries facing emigration or immigration challenges, with regional countries that seek to support economic reconstruction.  These countries will work together with manufacturers and the wider United Nations network on restoring global prosperity.
 
The Manufacturing Expo
Capitalising on the huge presence of the global manufacturing community under a single meeting venue, the Manufacturing Exhibition will offer space to corporations looking to showcase their products, services and latest innovations or technologies that can further contribute to promoting global economic development. The Manufacturing Expo consists of four components: an exhibition showcasing the manufacturing capabilities of the host country; international pavilions showcasing the manufacturing capabilities and economic incentives of each participating country; an innovation exhibition that demonstrates the latest fourth industrial revolution technologies; and an event for SMEs to present their products and solutions to potential customers.
 
The Global Value Chain Market:
The Global Value Chain Market (GVCM) is a business matchmaking platform dedicated to increasing regional and international partnerships and opportunities. The platform will provide networking and sourcing opportunities both online and onsite via pre-scheduled meetings with the vision of forging investment opportunities, commercial partnerships, and encouraging technological transfer and knowhow. The platform will enable countries to identify and meet global manufacturers to promote industrial development, and familiarise global manufacturers with targeted industrial activities in various countries. The GVCM will become a source of valuable information for global investments, providing insights on legislation and regulations, sovereign risk, political stability, and physical and logistical infrastructure.
 
Media Contact:

Amr Gamal

External Communications Director

Amr.gamal@ge.com

+971 52 104 5998

 

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