Sharjah Media City (Shams), a Free Zone to be Reckoned With


Sharjah Media City – Shams is taking strides towards becoming a major player in the Free Zone market. The Free Zone has already witnessed an increased demand from aspiring entrepreneurs, with over 250 businesses already incorporated in the first few months of its existence.

To get an insight into where this initiative is headed and to uncover its true potential, we spoke to Shihab Al Hammadi, Director of Sharjah Media City – Shams. Mr. Al Hammadi has had an illustrious career in media, with around 18 years of experience in the sector. Mr. Al Hammadi has worked in diverse fields associated with media, which include publication, video editing, graphic design and web design, among other things. He then continued to work in the management of commercial media which was closely related to radio and television broadcasting. After obtaining his Executive MBA, Mr. Al Hammadi ventured into strategic planning and management of media corporations. We took this opportunity to ask him about his vision for the City.

“Shams is born digital and we are moving towards a completely automated style of functioning. We aim to be seen as a Free Zone that creates a youthful and dynamic community that opens its doors to the ‘new generation’ of entrepreneurs.” He continues to explain that besides digital, the City also is geared to be smart and eco-friendly.

Mr. Shihab Al Hammadi

“The general impression of Free Zones, or any entity that issues trade licenses is that it is a time-consuming process with a lot of paperwork involved. Our aim is to eradicate this viewpoint by making the licensing process quick and hassle-free. We are looking to reduce the time component of the licensing process to such an extent that it sets a new record in the Free Zone industry.”

 When asked about what is next for Shams and its future goals, Mr. Al Hammadi stressed on the partnership and leadership aspect of the initiative, saying: “I believe that with our vision for the city and with our management team under the leadership of our Chairman, Dr Khalid Omar Al Midfa, Dr. Khaled Ahmed (Strategy Senior Director) and Mr. Fagr Kasim Ali (Media Sector Development Director), we will become a dynamic city that adapts to this forever changing global landscape. We seek to incorporate cutting-edge technology and collaborate with the best players in the market that work towards an integrated city where people can live and work in a modern landscape.” He also shared with us plans to set up a virtual business portal that will add value to the Shams community.

We wish Mr. Al Hammadi and his team the best of luck for making this vision a reality.


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