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Startup Spotlight: Hong Kong-Based ViAct Is On A Mission To Create A Safer Work Environment In Risk-Prone Industries While ViAct is now a part of the MBRIF Innovation Accelerator program with a goal to prepare for a Series A funding round, its journey in the UAE began through a participation in the Dubai Centre for Artificial Intelligence's (DCAI) accelerator programs.

By Aalia Mehreen Ahmed

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

You're reading Entrepreneur Middle East, an international franchise of Entrepreneur Media.

Hugo Cheuk and Gary Ng are the co-founders of viAct. Source: ViAct

This article is part of an ongoing series covering startups that have been a part of the Mohammed Bin Rashid Innovation Fund (MBRIF) accelerator program.

The high risks associated with on-site jobs within industries such as construction, oil and gas, and mining are plenty. But the repercussions of such hazards can be avoided, says Gary Ng, co-founder and CEO of automated construction management software platform viAct.

"At viAct, we use scenario-based vision intelligence solutions for risk-prone workplaces including construction, oil and gas, manufacturing, facility management, and mining to build smart cities and nations," Ng says. "With the vision of making a safer and more secure work environment in risk prone industries, viAct has developed and deployed over 100 pre-built artificial intelligence (AI) modules in government, public, and private sectors since its inception in 2016 by transforming vision to practical actions. This aids to reduce the number of accidents, optimize compensation costs and track environmental non-compliances."

With a team of more than 50 members world-wide, this Hong Kong-based startup has now made its way to the UAE as well, and it is entering this new market with a slew of recognitions. "Over the years, viAct's disruptive AI powered solution has been trusted by Google, World Economic Forum, Forbes, and KPMG for its one-of-a-kind video intelligence powered surveillance approach that manages man-made environments through proactive detections and AI-powered solutions facilitating real-time onsite and remote monitoring in a far smarter way than humans can do through manual means!" Ng says. "viAct has a business-to-business (B2B) monthly subscription model, working with international large real estate and construction enterprises, public transportation, and utilities. Users can choose from different types of AI modules from our marketplace, and simply plug-and-play these modules on their project stage as per operational needs."

Related: Startup Spotlight: US-Headquartered MayaMD Is Introducing Pathways To Eradicate Inefficiencies Within The UAE's Digital Healthcare

ViAct enables companies to empower risk-prone jobsites with automated construction management software powered with AI-video analytics. Source: ViAct

But as per Ng, such global validation has been a direct result of some of the unique properties exhibited by the startup's services. "For starters, viAct offers over 95% accurate AI solutions, it is 10 times faster than peers in deployment with the auto-AI pipeline, and it offers a unique algorithm-based edge computing hub," he continues. "We also believe we are the world's first scenario-based AI algorithm, and use AI and internet of things (IoT) with a very high number of data sets- all of which have allowed us to become a leading company in Asia already."

And while the startup is now a part of the MBRIF Innovation Accelerator program with a goal to prepare for a Series A funding round, Ng notes that viAct's journey in the UAE began through a participation in the Dubai Centre for Artificial Intelligence's (DCAI) accelerator programs. In fact, it was that experience that opened doors for viAct to deploy a number of pilot projects within the country. "viAct, with its more than seven years of on-ground experience in developing various AI and vision intelligence-based solutions focused on workplace safety and sustainability, has been selected for pilot projects with four different governmental departments, namely: Dubai Media Council (DMC), Dubai Customs, Dubai Municipality, and Road and Transportation Authority (RTA)," Ng reveals. "These pilot projects range from computer vision applications for DMC and Dubai Customs, to chat-based applications for Dubai Municipality and RTA."

And it is with the belief that Dubai will prove to be a major catalyst in viAct's growth that Ng and his team are looking forward to their future in the UAE. "The adaptability of AI and vigilance about technological advancements are the major benefits of operating in the Emirates," Ng says, "This opens up viAct for global reach in new sectors and markets, as it not just opens up opportunities to work with Dubai's government entities, but also connects entrepreneurs to a network of experts and specialists from across UAE and the globe."

Related: Startup Spotlight: Abu Dhabi-Based MDBX Health Offers A One-Stop-Shop For Effective Chronic Disease Management

Aalia Mehreen Ahmed

Features Editor, Entrepreneur Middle East

Aalia Mehreen Ahmed is the Features Editor at Entrepreneur Middle East.

She is an MBA (Finance) graduate with past experience in the corporate sector, and was also co-founder of CyberSWIFTT- an anti-cyberbullying campaign that ran from 2017-2018 as part of the e7: Daughters of the Emirates program.

Ahmed is particularly keen on writing stories involving people-centric leadership, female-owned startups, and entrepreneurs who've beaten significant odds to realize their goals.

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