The Finance World Magazine| Edition: August 2023

From cutting-edge technology solutions to sustainable initiatives and groundbreaking services, The startups in the UAE exemplify the spirit of innovation and creativity that thrives and has solidified its position as a dynamic force driving the region's economic growth. In view of this, the primary focus of this edition centres on the UAE's Revolutionary Startups. Employing a rigorous selection process, our cover story sheds light on 10 Startups based in the UAE that have demonstrated noteworthy expertise and exceptional performance in this field. Our compilation provides valuable insights into the investment strategies and approaches employed by these firms, while also illuminating the factors that have contributed to their noteworthy accomplishments. Centred on startups, this edition offers valuable perspectives on startups in various aspects of the UAE. It provides insights on certain areas of focus, such as Anticipating the Digital Economy: Top Predictions for 2023, Fintech Startups Reshaping the Business Landscape, The Growth and Dominance of Gaming in the Middle East, How Technology Will Shape the Future of Healthcare, and many more articles that offer critical analysis and insights on current trends and issues in the business and investment domains. Keep yourself up to date with all financial sector news with our current news segments. Each person can find something unique from us. We believe our readers deserve real value from what we have to offer.

From cutting-edge technology solutions to sustainable initiatives and groundbreaking services, The startups in the UAE exemplify the spirit of innovation and creativity that thrives and has solidified its position as a dynamic force driving the region's economic growth. In view of this, the primary focus of this edition centres on the UAE's Revolutionary Startups. Employing a rigorous selection process, our cover story sheds light on 10 Startups based in the UAE that have demonstrated noteworthy expertise and exceptional performance in this field. Our compilation provides valuable insights into the investment strategies and approaches employed by these firms, while also illuminating the factors that have contributed to their noteworthy accomplishments.

Centred on startups, this edition offers valuable perspectives on startups in various aspects of the UAE. It provides insights on certain areas of focus, such as Anticipating the Digital Economy: Top Predictions for 2023, Fintech Startups Reshaping the Business Landscape, The Growth and Dominance of Gaming in the Middle East, How Technology Will Shape the Future of Healthcare, and many more articles that offer critical analysis and insights on current trends and issues in the business and investment domains.

Keep yourself up to date with all financial sector news with our current news segments. Each person can find something unique from us. We believe our readers deserve real value from what we have to offer.


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How Technology Will Shape the Future of Healthcare<br />

How technology is transforming the real estate landscape in <strong>2023</strong><br />

<strong>The</strong> Growth and Dominance of Gaming in the Middle East<br />

<strong>The</strong> Impact of the Developing IT Sector on the UAE Stock Market<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong><br />

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Reaching a visionary goal requires<br />

one percent vision and 99 percent alignment.<br />

From cutting-edge technology solutions to sustainable Editor’s initiatives Note<br />

and groundbreaking services, <strong>The</strong> startups in the UAE exemplify<br />

the spirit of innovation and creativity that thrives and has<br />

solidified its position as a dynamic force driving the region’s<br />

economic growth. In view of this, the primary focus of this edition<br />

centres on the UAE’s Revolutionary Startups. Employing a rigorous<br />

selection process, our cover story sheds light on 10 Startups based in<br />

the UAE that have demonstrated noteworthy expertise and exceptional<br />

performance in this field. Our compilation provides valuable insights<br />

into the investment strategies and approaches employed by these<br />

firms, while also illuminating the factors that have contributed to<br />

their noteworthy accomplishments.<br />

Centred on startups, this edition offers valuable perspectives<br />

on startups in various aspects of the UAE. It provides insights on<br />

certain areas of focus, such as Anticipating the Digital Economy:<br />

Top Predictions for <strong>2023</strong>, Fintech Startups Reshaping the Business<br />

Landscape, <strong>The</strong> Growth and Dominance of Gaming in the Middle East,<br />

How Technology Will Shape the Future of Healthcare, and many more<br />

articles that offer critical analysis and insights on current trends and<br />

issues in the business and investment domains.<br />

Within the news segments, you will find a condensed compendium<br />

of the most notable advancements in the field of finance. We have<br />

meticulously sifted through the latest trends and updates, spanning<br />

an array of pertinent topics such as corporate results, corporate tax,<br />

startups, banking, funding, investment, fintech, digital assets, and<br />

beyond.<br />

We aim to espouse the vision of the UAE’s wise leadership on the<br />

nation’s development path, highlighting the social, economic, and<br />

developmental aspects shaping this dynamic nation. To that end, we<br />

tirelessly curate the latest and most credible finance news for our<br />

readers, aiming to advance financial literacy and contribute to Dubai’s<br />

journey to becoming one of the world’s most pioneering economies.<br />

- Ambrish Agarwal, Editor in Chief<br />

- Ambrish Agarwal, Editor in Chief<br />

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<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 7<br />

September 2022 3

Contents <strong>August</strong><br />

<strong>2023</strong><br />


P10 | Financial experts’<br />

recommended strategies for<br />

effective spending control<br />




P12 | CBUAE Implements<br />

Measures to Alleviate Impact of<br />

Interest Rate Rises on Home Loans<br />

P14 | UAE Banking News<br />


P16 | UAE Forms Ministry of<br />

Investment to Accelerate Foreign<br />

Direct Investment<br />


P18 | Fintech Startups Reshaping<br />

the Business Landscape<br />

P20 | Fintech News<br />

P22 | Fintech Application<br />


P24 | Unleashing Business<br />

Success: Mastering the Art of<br />

Flourishing in Dubai, UAE<br />

P26 | Business News<br />

P30 | Top 10 Disruptive Startups in<br />

UAE Revolutionizing Industries<br />

START-UP<br />

P44 | <strong>The</strong> Top Three Startups<br />

Revolutionizing the Business<br />

Landscape in the UAE<br />

ENERGY<br />

P46 | <strong>The</strong> Future of Renewable<br />

Energy: Exploring Innovative<br />

Solutions and Technologies<br />

P48 | Energy News<br />

P52 | How Technology Will Shape<br />

the Future of Healthcare<br />



P54 | Navigating Corporate<br />

Mergers: Essential Insights for<br />

Company Consolidation<br />

P56 | Mergers & Acquisitions News<br />


P58 | Cryptocurrency Investors<br />

Regain Confidence in <strong>2023</strong>;<br />

Exploring New Trading<br />

Opportunities<br />

8 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>




P60 | How technology is<br />

transforming the real estate<br />

landscape in <strong>2023</strong><br />

P62 | Real Estate News<br />


P70 | <strong>The</strong> Impact of the<br />

Developing IT Sector on the UAE<br />

Stock Market<br />


P72 | Corporate Tax UAE: Things<br />

To Consider Before Determining<br />

Taxable Income<br />

P76 | Corporate Results<br />

EVENT<br />

P86 | Ajman’s Vision: Unlocking<br />

the Potential of Touristry with the<br />

UAE Tourism Strategy 2032<br />


P64 | <strong>The</strong> Growth and Dominance<br />

of Gaming in the Middle East<br />

P66 | Funding & Investment News<br />


P68 | Anticipating the Digital<br />

Economy: Top Predictions for <strong>2023</strong><br />

P78 | 12th IREIS: Unveiling the<br />

<strong>World</strong> of Real Estate Investment in<br />

Abu Dhabi<br />

TRAVEL<br />

P80 | Unforgettable Getaways to<br />

Visit in <strong>August</strong><br />


P82 | Sports as a Social and<br />

Economic Catalyst: <strong>The</strong> Power<br />

of Major Sporting Events in the<br />

MENA Region<br />

P84 | Sports News<br />

P88 | Exploring the Lucrative Art<br />

Investment Landscape in Dubai<br />


P92 | Driving Dubai’s Tourism<br />

Boom: Key Factors Fueling Growth<br />

in the Tourism Industry<br />

P90 | Global News<br />

P94 | Local News<br />

P23 | P29 | P41 | Launch Express<br />

P42 | P50 | Wheels<br />

P28 | P40 | Tech My Money<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 9

Personal <strong>Finance</strong><br />

Financial experts’ recommended strategies<br />

for effective spending control<br />

Effective spending control is a crucial skill for individuals seeking financial<br />

stability and peace of mind. Financial experts have extensively studied and<br />

analyzed various strategies to help individuals manage their spending habits.<br />

<strong>The</strong> repercussions of ineffective spending can perpetuate a cycle of financial<br />

problems that can cloud judgment, leading to impulsive purchases, neglecting<br />

bill payments, or failing to contribute regularly to savings.<br />

10 www.thefinanceworld.com<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

By implementing strategies, Individuals<br />

can take control of their finances and avoid<br />

the pitfalls of impulsive spending.<br />

One of the fundamental strategies<br />

for effective spending control<br />

is creating a detailed budget.<br />

Start by assessing your income<br />

and expenses, and allocate specific<br />

amounts for different categories such<br />

as rent/mortgage, utilities, groceries,<br />

transportation, and discretionary spending.<br />

Regularly track your spending and<br />

make adjustments as necessary to stay<br />

within your budget. Utilize budgeting<br />

apps or spreadsheets to streamline the<br />

process and gain better insights into your<br />

financial habits.<br />

Leaving all forms of electronic payment<br />

at home and carrying only cash can be<br />

a powerful strategy to curb impulsive<br />

spending. Studies suggest that physically<br />

parting with cash feels more tangible<br />

and can help you make more conscious<br />

spending decisions. By using cash, you<br />

become more aware of the value of each<br />

purchase and can easily visualize the<br />

impact on your wallet.<br />

Envelopes or digital envelope systems<br />

are effective tools for managing<br />

specific spending categories. Allocate a<br />

specific amount of cash or create virtual<br />

envelopes within budgeting apps for<br />

categories like entertainment, dining out,<br />

or clothing. Once the envelope is empty,<br />

you know it’s time to stop spending in<br />

that category until the next budgeting<br />

period. This technique promotes mindful<br />

spending and prevents overspending in<br />

discretionary areas.<br />

Delayed gratification is a powerful<br />

psychological technique that can help<br />

control spending impulses. When faced<br />

with a tempting purchase, give yourself<br />

a cooling-off period before making the<br />

final decision. Wait for a predetermined<br />

period, such as 24 hours or a week, to<br />

assess if the purchase aligns with your<br />

financial goals and priorities. Often, the<br />

initial desire diminishes during the waiting<br />

period, resulting in more informed and<br />

thoughtful spending choices.<br />

<strong>The</strong> 30-day rule is an effective strategy<br />

for combating impulse purchases. Whenever<br />

you come across an item you desire but<br />

don’t necessarily need, write it down on<br />

a wishlist and commit to waiting for 30<br />

days before making the purchase. This<br />

waiting period allows you to evaluate<br />

the importance and value of the item in<br />

your life. You may find that many items<br />

lose their appeal over time, saving you<br />

from unnecessary spending.<br />

Mindful spending involves being fully<br />

present and intentional when making<br />

purchasing decisions. Before making a<br />

purchase, ask yourself if the item aligns<br />

with your values, contributes to your<br />

overall well-being, and fits within your<br />

budget. By consciously evaluating your<br />

spending choices, you can prioritize<br />

experiences and purchases that truly<br />

bring you joy and fulfilment.<br />

Automating your savings is a proactive<br />

way to control spending and build<br />

financial security. Set up automatic<br />

transfers from your checking account<br />

to a savings or investment account. By<br />

paying yourself first, you remove the<br />

temptation to spend the money that could<br />

be allocated towards savings. Over time,<br />

this strategy allows you to accumulate<br />

a substantial nest egg and achieve your<br />

long-term financial goals.<br />

If you find yourself struggling to<br />

gain control over your spending habits,<br />

seeking guidance from a financial<br />

professional can provide invaluable<br />

support. A financial advisor can help<br />

assess your current financial situation,<br />

develop a personalized budget, and offer<br />

tailored strategies to curb spending.<br />

<strong>The</strong>ir expertise can guide you toward<br />

making informed financial decisions and<br />

achieving financial well-being.<br />

In conclusion, mastering effective<br />

spending control is essential for individuals<br />

seeking financial stability and peace of<br />

mind. By implementing strategies such<br />

as creating a detailed budget, using cash<br />

for transactions, employing envelope<br />

systems, practicing delayed gratification,<br />

and adopting mindful spending<br />

habits, individuals can take control of<br />

their finances and avoid the pitfalls of<br />

impulsive spending. Automating savings<br />

and seeking guidance from financial<br />

professionals further enhance financial<br />

security and help achieve long-term<br />

goals. With dedication and discipline,<br />

anyone can develop the skills necessary<br />

to manage their spending effectively and<br />

pave the way for a more prosperous<br />

financial future.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 11

UAE Banking<br />

CBUAE Implements Measures to Alleviate<br />

Impact of Interest Rate Rises on Home Loans<br />

For residential real estate loans<br />

with increased debt-burden<br />

ratios, where banks have not<br />

postponed interest payments<br />

until after repayment, banks must<br />

take specific actions. Customers with<br />

a monthly income of AED 40,000 or<br />

more may have deductions from their<br />

salary exceeding the currently set rate<br />

of 50%, up to a maximum of 60%. In<br />

such cases, the financial institution is<br />

responsible for bearing the remaining<br />

uncovered interest resulting from the<br />

increase in interest rates. This exemption<br />

from the remaining interest does<br />

not extend the loan tenor.<br />

For loans with lower debt-burden<br />

ratios, where banks have postponed<br />

the interest incurred due to higher<br />

interest rates, additional measures<br />

are in place. Banks are permitted to<br />

extend the repayment tenor for customers<br />

with a monthly income of less<br />

than AED 40,000 to cover the increase<br />

in interest rates, up to a maximum of<br />

30 years. <strong>The</strong> percentage of deduction<br />

from salary or income remains at 50%,<br />

as currently enforced. Similar to the<br />

higher debt-burden ratio scenario,<br />

banks are responsible for bearing the<br />

remaining uncovered interest resulting<br />

from the interest rate hike.<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE Central Bank maintained<br />

its benchmark borrowing rate in June,<br />

following the US Federal Reserve’s<br />

decision to pause its tightening cycle.<br />

<strong>The</strong> Fed had previously increased<br />

interest rates to combat inflation and<br />

restore price stability. As most central<br />

banks in Gulf Cooperation Council<br />

countries align their policy rates with<br />

the US dollar, the UAE Central Bank<br />

kept its benchmark borrowing rate<br />

at 5.15%.<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE Central Bank’s proactive<br />

approach to mitigating the impact of<br />

rising interest rates on home loans<br />

demonstrates its commitment to supporting<br />

UAE citizens and the real<br />

estate market. By implementing measures<br />

that address both higher and<br />

lower debt-burden ratios, the Central<br />

Bank aims to ease the financial strain<br />

on borrowers while ensuring the<br />

stability of the banking sector. <strong>The</strong>se<br />

measures provide relief to homeowners<br />

and underscore the Central<br />

Bank’s dedication to prudent financial<br />

management and fostering a resilient<br />

economy.<br />

12 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

UAE Banks’ Funding to Commercial and<br />

Industrial Sectors Witnesses 5.6% Increase<br />

According to the latest data<br />

from the Central Bank of<br />

the UAE, national banks<br />

increased their credit balance<br />

for the business and industrial<br />

sectors by AED2.1 billion or 0.3% in<br />

April. <strong>The</strong>se sectors received 90% of<br />

the total accumulated credit balance,<br />

amounting to AED818.9 billion, while<br />

foreign banks accounted for the remaining<br />

10%. <strong>The</strong> data reveals a robust<br />

flow of credit financing from national<br />

banks, underscoring their pivotal role<br />

in driving economic activities within<br />

the country.<br />

<strong>The</strong> Central Bank’s report highlights<br />

the distribution of credit financing<br />

among different emirates. By the end<br />

of April, banks in Abu Dhabi had provided<br />

AED365.6 billion in credit to the<br />

business and industrial sectors. Banks<br />

in Dubai followed closely, with credit<br />

financing amounting to AED351.3<br />

billion. Other emirates collectively<br />

contributed AED102 billion to support<br />

businesses and industries.<br />

<strong>The</strong> majority of credit financing<br />

in the UAE is provided by traditional<br />

banks, accounting for AED675.5<br />

billion or 82.5% of the total credit<br />

balance. Islamic banks, on the other<br />

hand, contributed AED61.8 billion,<br />

representing 17.5% of the total credit<br />

financing. <strong>The</strong> data highlights the ongoing<br />

prominence of traditional banks<br />

in providing financial support to the<br />

commercial and industrial sectors,<br />

while Islamic banks continue to play<br />

a significant role in financing various<br />

economic activities.<br />

<strong>The</strong> significant increase in credit<br />

financing to the business and industrial<br />

sectors reflects the UAE banks’<br />

commitment to supporting economic<br />

growth and fostering a conducive environment<br />

for businesses to thrive. Adequate<br />

funding plays a crucial role in<br />

fueling innovation, entrepreneurship,<br />

and expansion, which ultimately contribute<br />

to job creation and overall<br />

economic prosperity. By providing<br />

substantial credit financing, national<br />

banks are helping businesses and industries<br />

fulfil their potential and drive<br />

the UAE’s economic diversification<br />

agenda.<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE’s national banks have<br />

demonstrated their commitment to<br />

supporting the growth of the commercial<br />

and industrial sectors through<br />

increased credit financing. <strong>The</strong> rise<br />

in credit balance showcases the confidence<br />

of the banking sector in the<br />

country’s economic prospects and its<br />

dedication to facilitating the expansion<br />

and development of businesses. With<br />

traditional banks leading the way in<br />

credit provision, while Islamic banks<br />

also contribute significantly, the UAE’s<br />

banking sector is well-positioned to<br />

sustain the country’s economic momentum<br />

and drive future growth.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 13

UAE Banking News<br />

International Institutions<br />

Predict Strong<br />

H2 <strong>2023</strong> Growth for<br />

UAE Economy<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE’s economy is poised<br />

for strong growth in H2 <strong>2023</strong>,<br />

according to international<br />

institutions and banks such<br />

as the IMF and <strong>World</strong> Bank. Demonstrating<br />

resilience amidst global geopolitical<br />

uncertainties, the UAE’s<br />

innovation-driven economy has a track<br />

record of economic achievements.<br />

<strong>The</strong> IMF projects a 3.6% increase in<br />

the country’s GDP this year, driven by<br />

vigorous domestic activity. Following<br />

a remarkable growth rate of 7.9% in<br />

2022, the IMF’s 2022 Article IV assessment<br />

predicts the UAE’s economy to<br />

maintain its upward trajectory in <strong>2023</strong>,<br />

benefiting from sustained tourism<br />

and increased capital expenditure.<br />

<strong>The</strong> <strong>World</strong> Bank also forecasts a 2.8%<br />

growth in real GDP, with strong growth<br />

expected in the non-oil sector.<br />

UAE Banks Provide $11.06B Financing to Commercial<br />

& Industrial Sectors<br />

<strong>The</strong> Central Bank of the UAE’s<br />

latest statistics show that<br />

credit financing provided by<br />

national banks to the business<br />

and industrial sectors reached AED<br />

737.3B in April <strong>2023</strong>, compared to AED<br />

696.7B in April 2022. In April, national<br />

banks increased their credit balance<br />

for these sectors by AED 2.1B or 0.3<br />

percent, surpassing AED 735.2B in<br />

March. By the end of April, national<br />

banks allocated 90 percent of their<br />

accumulated credit balance, amounting<br />

to AED 818.9B, to the country’s<br />

business and industrial sectors, while<br />

foreign banks provided the remaining<br />

10 percent or AED 81.6B.<br />

Mubadala-Backed UAE Lender Expands its Team<br />

with Former Citi and Natixis Hires<br />

Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank<br />

(ADCB) has hired former<br />

Citigroup and Natixis bankers<br />

to bolster its team amid<br />

increased dealmaking activity in the<br />

Middle East. Backed by Mubadala<br />

Investment Co., the second-largest<br />

lender in Abu Dhabi appointed Sami<br />

Tabbarah, a former Citigroup executive<br />

with over three decades of<br />

experience, as head of investment<br />

banking. ADCB also recruited Ehsun<br />

Zaidi, who spent more than a decade<br />

at Natixis, and Levente Sidlovits,<br />

who joined from Emirates NBD Bank<br />

PJSC. While global investment banks<br />

have downsized, the Middle East has<br />

remained resilient, prompting regional<br />

Spare obtain Saudi Open Banking certification<br />

institutions like ADCB to expand and<br />

compete for a larger market share.<br />

Open Banking provider Spare<br />

has obtained the KSA Open<br />

Banking certification, cementing<br />

its status as a trailblazer<br />

in Saudi Arabia’s Open Banking<br />

ecosystem. <strong>The</strong> certification showcases<br />

Spare’s commitment to regulatory<br />

compliance, innovation, and customer-centric<br />

services. It strengthens the<br />

company’s credibility as a trusted<br />

partner in delivering secure and transparent<br />

Open Banking experiences for<br />

consumers in Saudi Arabia. <strong>The</strong> certification<br />

also allows Spare to test its<br />

unique services within the Regulatory<br />

Sandbox, based on the Open Banking<br />

Framework released by the Saudi<br />

Arabian Monetary Authority (SAMA).<br />

Spare’s CEO, Dalal AlRayes, expressed<br />

enthusiasm for the opportunities this<br />

achievement will bring, aligning with<br />

the Saudi Vision 2030 and their mission<br />

to provide safe and innovative Open<br />

Banking solutions.<br />

14 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

Academy of Learning secures credit line from Riyad Bank<br />

Riyadh-based Academy of Learning<br />

Company has secured a Shariacompliant<br />

credit line of SAR 22M<br />

from Riyad Bank. <strong>The</strong> funding,<br />

obtained on 22 June <strong>2023</strong>, will support<br />

the company’s future expansion plans for<br />

its branches located in Riyadh, Khobar,<br />

and Dammam. <strong>The</strong> credit line is backed<br />

by three types of guarantees, including a<br />

promissory note submitted by Academy<br />

of Learning to Riyad Bank, a mortgage on<br />

a SAR 50M bank deposit, and a solidarity<br />

guarantee from the company’s Chairman.<br />

This follows Riyad Bank’s provision of<br />

a Sharia-compliant facility to Perfect<br />

Presentation for Commercial Services<br />

Company (2P) earlier in <strong>2023</strong>.<br />

Dubai Financial Market<br />

adds 27,000 new<br />

investors in <strong>2023</strong><br />

Dubai Financial Market (DFM)<br />

has witnessed a surge in<br />

investor accounts during<br />

the first half of <strong>2023</strong>, with<br />

brokerage companies adding 26,953<br />

new accounts. <strong>The</strong> market gained<br />

significant momentum following the<br />

announcement of listings for ten<br />

governmental and semi-governmental<br />

companies, including DEWA, TECOM<br />

Group, Union Coop, Salik, and Al<br />

Ansari, among others. Comparing the<br />

first five months of this year to the<br />

same period in 2022, the number of<br />

new investor accounts at DFM grew<br />

by over 48%, reaching a total of 18,204<br />

new accounts. <strong>The</strong> monthly breakdown<br />

reveals a consistent increase, with<br />

January seeing 3,082 accounts, followed<br />

by 3,436 in February, 6,591 in March,<br />

4,246 in April, 5,349 in May, and 4,246<br />

in June, respectively.<br />

ACWA Power Secures $100M RCF Deal from UAEbased<br />

Chinese Bank<br />

Saudi Arabian energy company<br />

ACWA Power has secured a<br />

$100 million revolving credit<br />

facility (RCF) agreement<br />

with China Construction Bank (DIFC<br />

Branch), a state-owned bank based<br />

in Dubai. <strong>The</strong> three-year financing<br />

deal will support ACWA Power’s strategic<br />

plans to enhance its power and<br />

water generation portfolio in the<br />

Middle East, as well as countries<br />

involved in the Belt & Road Initiative<br />

such as Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan.<br />

ACWA Power aims to contribute to<br />

the social and economic development<br />

of the communities it serves. <strong>The</strong> RCF<br />

agreement strengthens ACWA Power’s<br />

liquidity and funding flexibility as it<br />

pursues growth opportunities, while<br />

diversifying its financing sources. <strong>The</strong><br />

collaboration between ACWA Power<br />

and Chinese entities has been ongoing<br />

since 2016, with China Construction<br />

Bank’s involvement in financing notable<br />

projects such as the Hassyan<br />

power plant in the UAE and the Zarqa<br />

gas power plant in Jordan.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 15

UAE Reforms<br />

UAE Forms Ministry of Investment to<br />

Accelerate Foreign Direct Investment<br />

<strong>The</strong> Ministry of Investment<br />

has been entrusted with the<br />

task of supporting the UAE’s<br />

business objectives and promoting<br />

an investment-friendly environment.<br />

By coordinating with relevant<br />

authorities, the ministry will propose<br />

general investment policies and develop<br />

strategies, legislation, plans,<br />

projects, and national programs. This<br />

comprehensive approach aims to stimulate<br />

investment growth and solidify<br />

the UAE’s position as a major player<br />

in the global investment movement.<br />

Mohammed Alsuwaidi, the managing<br />

director and chief executive of ADQ,<br />

an Abu Dhabi-based investment and<br />

holding company, has been appointed<br />

as the Investment Minister, bringing<br />

valuable expertise to further drive<br />

investment initiatives.<br />

<strong>The</strong> establishment of the Ministry of<br />

Investment comes at a time when the<br />

UAE achieved its highest FDI inflow<br />

to date. According to the <strong>World</strong> Investment<br />

Report <strong>2023</strong> by the UNCTAD, the<br />

UAE attracted $23B FDI in 2022, a 10%<br />

increase from the previous year. This<br />

remarkable performance positioned<br />

the UAE as the top destination for FDI<br />

in the Arab world and 16th globally, up<br />

from 22nd place in the previous year.<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE’s success in attracting FDI<br />

can be attributed to various factors,<br />

including comprehensive economic<br />

partnership agreements with several<br />

nations. <strong>The</strong> UAE has signed Cepas<br />

with India, Cambodia, Georgia, Israel,<br />

Indonesia, and Turkey, while actively<br />

pursuing agreements with 26 additional<br />

countries. <strong>The</strong>se agreements<br />

facilitate bilateral investments and<br />

create a conducive environment for<br />

foreign investors. By targeting access<br />

to 90% of global trade, the UAE aims<br />

to solidify its position as a leading<br />

global investment hub within the next<br />

five years.<br />

Looking ahead, the UAE has set<br />

ambitious goals to attract AED550B<br />

($150B) in foreign investment by 2031<br />

and rank among the top 10 countries<br />

globally in terms of FDI attraction. <strong>The</strong><br />

country’s commitment to diversifying<br />

its economy is reflected in various<br />

initiatives, including allowing 100%<br />

foreign ownership of companies and<br />

introducing flexible visa programs. By<br />

continually enhancing the investment<br />

ecosystem and leveraging its strengths,<br />

the UAE aims to surpass previous<br />

achievements and maintain its upward<br />

trajectory in attracting foreign capital<br />

and talent.<br />

16 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

UAE’s Updated Energy Strategies Set to<br />

Create 50,000 Green Jobs by 2030<br />

During a media briefing, top<br />

officials from the Ministry<br />

of Energy and Infrastructure<br />

shared the details of the updated<br />

energy strategies. Al Mazrouei<br />

emphasized the UAE’s dedication to<br />

accelerating the energy transition and<br />

increasing the share of clean energy<br />

in the country’s energy mix. <strong>The</strong> updated<br />

strategy aims to achieve climate<br />

neutrality by 2050, contributing to<br />

a sustainable and environmentally<br />

conscious future.<br />

<strong>The</strong> revised UAE Energy Strategy<br />

2050 sets ambitious targets for emission<br />

reduction and renewable energy<br />

adoption. By 2030, the UAE aims to<br />

achieve a grid emission factor of 0.27<br />

kg CO2/kWh, surpassing the global<br />

average. <strong>The</strong> strategy also aims to<br />

triple the share of renewable energy<br />

in the country’s energy mix by 2030,<br />

reaching a target of 30%. To support<br />

these goals, the UAE plans to invest<br />

between Dh150-200 billion by 2030 to<br />

meet energy demands while promoting<br />

economic growth. <strong>The</strong>se investments<br />

are projected to result in Dh100 billion<br />

in financial savings.<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE’s National Hydrogen Strategy<br />

plays a vital role in reducing emissions<br />

in hard-to-abate sectors such as<br />

heavy industries, land transport, aviation,<br />

and sea freight. <strong>The</strong> strategy sets<br />

a target of reducing emissions by 25%<br />

by 2031 and achieving 100% reduction<br />

by 2050. To accomplish this, the UAE<br />

aims to produce 1.4 million tonnes<br />

of hydrogen per annum (MTPA) by<br />

2031, which will increase to 15 MTPA<br />

by 2050.<br />

<strong>The</strong> strategy includes the establishment<br />

of a hydrogen R&D center and<br />

two hydrogen oases (fueling stations)<br />

by 2030. It outlines ten key steps and<br />

enablers within three stages to achieve<br />

the set targets by 2031. <strong>The</strong> UAE aspires<br />

to become a leading producer<br />

and supplier of low-carbon hydrogen<br />

by 2031, solidifying its position in the<br />

clean energy sector.<br />

Dr Sultan Al Jaber, Minister of Industry<br />

and Advanced Technology and<br />

COP28 President-Designate, highlighted<br />

the UAE’s commitment to<br />

decarbonizing the global economy. By<br />

leveraging its expertise in the energy<br />

sector and becoming an exporter of<br />

hydrogen, the UAE aims to play a<br />

critical role in expediting decarbonization<br />

efforts. <strong>The</strong> world’s hydrogen<br />

production must double by 2030, and<br />

the UAE is prepared to lead by example<br />

as it prepares to host COP28, the<br />

28th UN Climate Change Conference<br />

of the Parties.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 17

Fintech<br />

Fintech Startups Reshaping the Business<br />

Landscape<br />

<strong>The</strong> Fintech industry has witnessed remarkable growth and transformation<br />

in recent years, driven by innovative startups that are revolutionizing the<br />

way businesses and individuals interact with financial services. In particular,<br />

companies like Telr, Optasia, and Hiving Technology are making significant<br />

strides in reshaping the business landscape by offering cutting-edge solutions<br />

tailored to the evolving needs of the market.<br />

Optasia<br />

Optasia is a global fintech<br />

company dedicated to<br />

building financial inclusion<br />

worldwide. By partnering<br />

with mobile network operators<br />

(MNOs), mobile wallet operators, and<br />

financial institutions, Optasia empowers<br />

them to offer credible financial<br />

solutions to end customers and SMEs,<br />

creating new revenue opportunities<br />

and valuable services.<br />

<strong>The</strong> company focuses on addressing<br />

the underbanked population, particularly<br />

in emerging markets where 1.7<br />

billion adults lack proper access to<br />

traditional financial establishments.<br />

Optasia leverages the power of data<br />

and AI technology to enable distribution<br />

partners to provide micro-financing<br />

solutions in regions such as<br />

Africa, the Middle East, Asia, Europe,<br />

and Latin America.<br />

With their B2B2X financial technology<br />

platform, Optasia caters to both end<br />

customers and SMEs, offering a broad<br />

range of financial services. <strong>The</strong>se<br />

include consumer finance solutions,<br />

enterprise finance solutions, credit<br />

scoring, data science as a service, and<br />

platform as a service.<br />

In 2021, Optasia facilitated services<br />

to approximately 88M customers per<br />

month on average, reaching a base of<br />

over 560M subscribers through their<br />

partnerships with MNOs and financial<br />

institutions. <strong>The</strong> company has attracted<br />

investments from prestigious firms<br />

like Waha Capital and Ethos, further<br />

validating its potential.<br />

Optasia’s AI technology platform,<br />

serving approximately 560M customers,<br />

operates as a platform-as-aservice.<br />

It leverages learnings from<br />

previous deployments and client engagements<br />

in the mobile and banking<br />

industry to provide advanced capabilities.<br />

<strong>The</strong> platform aims to optimize<br />

campaigns, minimize infrastructure<br />

costs, and maximize monetization<br />

potential.<br />

<strong>The</strong> company’s proprietary AI-led<br />

data engine allows them to seize<br />

significant growth opportunities. By<br />

combining machine learning, artificial<br />

intelligence, and data science, Optasia’s<br />

technology platform consolidates<br />

various airtime credit and lending<br />

products. It also offers real-time profiling<br />

and credit scoring, configurable<br />

remarketing campaigns, and support<br />

for various credit products, including<br />

installment, non-installment, revolving<br />

credit, and BNPL (Buy Now Pay<br />

Later).<br />

Established in 2012 as Channel VAS,<br />

Optasia currently operates in over 30<br />

countries. In early 2022, the company<br />

rebranded as Optasia to reflect its<br />

Bassim Haidar,<br />

Founder and CEO<br />

expanded capabilities and global aspirations.<br />

<strong>The</strong> new brand signifies their<br />

commitment to expanding into new<br />

markets, introducing new products<br />

and services, and showcasing their<br />

micro-lending services launched in<br />

2019. With a focus on emerging economies,<br />

Optasia continues to evolve<br />

its technology and services to drive<br />

financial inclusion on a global scale.<br />

18 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

Telr<br />

Telr is an award-winning payment<br />

aggregator and provider<br />

that offers a feature-rich<br />

payment gateway solution<br />

for businesses of all sizes. Established<br />

in 2014 and based in Dubai, Telr is<br />

passionate about its payment gateway<br />

and the possibilities it brings to a wide<br />

range of businesses, particularly startups<br />

and SMEs.<br />

One of Telr’s key strengths is its<br />

100% proprietary technology. <strong>The</strong>ir<br />

full-stack payments solution has been<br />

built in-house, making it highly customizable<br />

and allowing customers to<br />

accept payments online and through<br />

various alternative payment channels.<br />

This technology has made Telr<br />

an engine for e-commerce, enabling<br />

payment features across social media,<br />

mobile, and web platforms. As<br />

a result, Telr has attracted a diverse<br />

range of customers, including those in<br />

e-government, consumer goods, food<br />

delivery, and taxi app services.<br />

Telr takes pride in being the first<br />

Hiving Technology<br />

Hiving Technology is an<br />

innovative consulting and<br />

product business operating<br />

in the Middle East, Europe,<br />

and Africa. Headquartered in the UAE<br />

with regional presence in Ireland, the<br />

United Kingdom, and South Africa, Hiving<br />

Technology specializes in designing and<br />

developing the Hive range of wireless<br />

identity products, methods, and endto-end<br />

Identity Management Solutions.<br />

Hive solutions are built on industry<br />

knowledge and cutting-edge technology<br />

deployments. <strong>The</strong> company follows a<br />

global partner model to ensure consistent,<br />

efficient, and cost-effective service<br />

delivery to customers.<br />

<strong>The</strong> company’s core focus is on<br />

addressing the privacy and security<br />

vulnerabilities associated with technology<br />

usage, particularly in the context of<br />

mass digitization. Hiving Technology<br />

embraces the concept of Self-Sovereign<br />

Identity (SSI), which allows individuals<br />

and businesses to own and manage<br />

their personal data securely.<br />

By leveraging Blockchain and<br />

Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT),<br />

Hiving Technology has developed the<br />

world’s first end-to-end Decentralized<br />

company in the MENA region to<br />

achieve PCI DSS Level 1 certification.<br />

By facilitating cashless transactions<br />

and digitizing payment acceptance,<br />

Telr helps customers streamline their<br />

operations and enhance the customer<br />

experience. With Telr’s feature-rich<br />

payment gateway, businesses can easily<br />

accept payments online. <strong>The</strong> gateway<br />

securely connects e-commerce<br />

sites to popular payment networks<br />

such as Visa, MasterCard, American<br />

Express, and more.<br />

It continues to be regarded as one<br />

of the most funded and top fintech<br />

companies in the Middle East. With<br />

a growing presence in the UAE and<br />

Saudi Arabia, Telr aims to expand its<br />

regional footprint across the MENA<br />

region.<br />

Telr’s unique platform allows it to<br />

handle complex or unique payment<br />

methods and integrations, making it<br />

an ideal choice for SMEs, government<br />

bodies, and large corporations. Telr’s<br />

commitment to innovation is evident<br />

Self-Sovereign Identity (DSSI) solution.<br />

This solution enables individuals and<br />

businesses to manage the collection<br />

and sharing of personal data while<br />

maintaining security and privacy. It<br />

also extends to include Internet of<br />

Things (IoT) devices, ensuring the<br />

secure and controlled management<br />

of digital extensions for people and<br />

businesses.<br />

<strong>The</strong> Hive DSSI solution can be<br />

implemented at a national level or<br />

tailored to specific industry requirements,<br />

accommodating expansion into other<br />

verticals over time.<br />

Hive One ID is a patented single<br />

wireless identity product that uniquely<br />

identifies people, animals, and objects.<br />

It can also monitor predefined attributes<br />

associated with the identified entity.<br />

<strong>The</strong> versatility of Hive One ID allows<br />

for various applications, including<br />

Self-Sovereign Identity solutions for<br />

individuals. It covers aspects such<br />

as national identity, security, medical<br />

identity, digital payments and banking,<br />

loyalty programs, access control, online<br />

digital identity, smart city initiatives,<br />

and smart home applications. <strong>The</strong><br />

technology can trigger location-based<br />

-Khalil Alami,<br />

Founder and CEO<br />

through its strategic partnerships.<br />

For instance, it recently announced a<br />

collaboration enabling its merchants<br />

in the UAE to accept JCB Cards for<br />

e-commerce transactions. By leveraging<br />

its proprietary full-stack technology,<br />

Telr aims to enhance its merchants’<br />

competitive position in the local and<br />

international markets.<br />

Gert Botha,<br />

CEO<br />

services and provide a unified approach<br />

to managing technology while ensuring<br />

privacy and security.<br />

Hiving Technology’s innovative<br />

solutions in wireless identity and identity<br />

management contribute to enhancing<br />

privacy, security, and efficiency in<br />

various domains, empowering individuals<br />

and businesses to have control over<br />

their data.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 19

Fintech News<br />

Nymcard Acquires Spotii BNPL Platform, Expands Solutions for Banks and<br />

Financial Institutions<br />

Dubai-based payments infrastructure<br />

provider, NymCard,<br />

has successfully acquired<br />

Spotii, a prominent Buy Now<br />

Pay Later (BNPL) Fintech operating in<br />

key markets such as KSA, UAE, and<br />

Bahrain. This strategic acquisition<br />

allows NymCard to offer its financial<br />

services clients a fully customizable<br />

BNPL product that caters to their specific<br />

requirements and local markets. <strong>The</strong><br />

move represents a significant milestone<br />

in democratizing BNPL services within<br />

the region. Spotii, originally established<br />

as a direct-to-consumer BNPL service,<br />

brings its extensive customer base of<br />

over 1 million registered users and 1,500<br />

merchant partners to the table. By combining<br />

Spotii’s technology, risk engine,<br />

and market expertise with NymCard’s<br />

BaaS and Card Issuing platform, the<br />

acquisition empowers both companies<br />

to deliver a comprehensive suite of<br />

payment and financial solutions.<br />

DIFC to Build Campus Set to Attract Over 500 AI<br />

and Web 3.0 Companies<br />

<strong>The</strong> Minister of <strong>Finance</strong> of the<br />

UAE and President of the<br />

Dubai International Financial<br />

Centre (DIFC), His Highness<br />

Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin<br />

Rashid Al Maktoum, has announced<br />

the establishment of the ‘Dubai AI &<br />

Web 3.0 Campus.’ This groundbreaking<br />

initiative aims to create the largest<br />

cluster of Artificial Intelligence and<br />

tech companies in the MENA region.<br />

<strong>The</strong> campus will initially be located<br />

at the DIFC Innovation One premises,<br />

with plans for future expansion into<br />

a dedicated campus spanning over<br />

100,000 square feet within the next<br />

five years. <strong>The</strong> Dubai AI & Web 3.0<br />

Campus will serve as a hub for innovative<br />

entrepreneurs, disruptors, and<br />

engineers who are passionate about<br />

emerging technologies. It will provide<br />

state-of-the-art physical and digital<br />

infrastructure, including research and<br />

development facilities, accelerator<br />

programs, and collaborative workspaces,<br />

to attract, nurture, and scale<br />

AI companies.<br />

Mastercard and UAE Lifestyle App Collaborate for<br />

GCC Virtual Prepaid Cards<br />

Mastercard has joined forces<br />

with a UAE-based lifestyle<br />

banking app to introduce<br />

virtual prepaid cards across<br />

the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC)<br />

region. <strong>The</strong> partnership aims to offer<br />

customers seamless and secure digital<br />

payment solutions, catering to the<br />

evolving needs of consumers. <strong>The</strong><br />

virtual prepaid cards will be accessible<br />

through the lifestyle banking app, enabling<br />

users to make online purchases,<br />

transact digitally, and manage their<br />

finances conveniently. By leveraging<br />

Mastercard’s robust payment infrastructure<br />

and the app’s user-friendly<br />

interface, this collaboration seeks to<br />

enhance financial inclusion and provide<br />

individuals with greater control over<br />

their financial activities. <strong>The</strong> initiative<br />

reflects the growing demand for innovative<br />

digital banking solutions in the<br />

GCC market.<br />

Dubai’s Orient <strong>Finance</strong><br />

Introduces Demo<br />

Trading Accounts<br />

Dubai-based online financial<br />

trading company, Orient <strong>Finance</strong>,<br />

has unveiled Demo<br />

Trading Accounts aimed at<br />

empowering businesses. <strong>The</strong> newly introduced<br />

demo accounts are available<br />

24/7 and aim to enhance trading capabilities,<br />

facilitate strategy development,<br />

and support businesses in their trading<br />

endeavours. Accessible through mobile<br />

apps and web browsers, the accounts<br />

offer various features tailored to meet<br />

the specific needs of businesses. With a<br />

virtual account value of $25,000, companies<br />

have ample virtual funds to experiment,<br />

improve their trading abilities, and refine<br />

strategies. <strong>The</strong> demo accounts serve as a<br />

risk-free testing ground, allowing firms to<br />

try out new techniques and tactics before<br />

implementing them with real money.<br />

20 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

Bybit granted MVP<br />

licence by Dubai’s<br />

VARA<br />

Bybit FinTech, a subsidiary<br />

of global crypto exchange<br />

Bybit, has been awarded the<br />

Minimum Viable Product<br />

(MVP) Preparatory Licence by Dubai’s<br />

Virtual Assets Regulatory Authority<br />

(VARA). This milestone comes after<br />

Bybit received a Provisional Licence in<br />

March 2022. Although the Preparatory<br />

Licence does not grant Bybit permission<br />

to conduct virtual asset operations in<br />

Dubai, it signifies substantial progress<br />

towards obtaining operational approval<br />

from VARA. Ben Zhou, co-founder and<br />

CEO of Bybit, expressed gratitude to<br />

VARA for granting the licence and<br />

highlighted the significance of Dubai’s<br />

role in advancing financial innovation<br />

and digital assets globally. Bybit views<br />

this licence as a noteworthy accomplishment,<br />

acknowledging their team’s<br />

dedication, compliance commitment,<br />

and hard work.<br />

TECOM Group launches new incubator for sciencebased<br />

start-ups<br />

TECOM Group PJSC has introduced<br />

in5 Science, a new incubator<br />

focused on science-based<br />

startups, in line with the UAE’s<br />

commitment to sustainability and the<br />

Dubai Economic Agenda ‘D33’ aimed<br />

at diversifying the economy and attracting<br />

foreign direct investment. <strong>The</strong><br />

incubator will provide targeted support<br />

to startups in the sector and facilitate<br />

access to investment opportunities. In<br />

order to offer valuable guidance, in5<br />

Science has assembled an advisory<br />

board consisting of industry-leading<br />

executives from Nexus Resilience Group,<br />

Dii Desert Energy, and GMEX Group.<br />

This launch is a significant milestone<br />

for TECOM Group and Dubai’s entrepreneurial<br />

ecosystem, contributing to<br />

job creation, fostering opportunities,<br />

and advancing the UAE’s sustainable<br />

development goals.<br />

ADGM implements its sustainable finance<br />

regulatory framework<br />

Abu Dhabi Global Market<br />

(ADGM) has announced the<br />

immediate implementation<br />

of its sustainable finance<br />

regulatory framework. This move<br />

reinforces ADGM’s position as a leading<br />

sustainable financial hub and a<br />

natural center for sustainable finance<br />

activities. <strong>The</strong> framework includes<br />

rules for sustainability-oriented investment<br />

funds, managed portfolios,<br />

and bonds, as well as requirements<br />

for environmental, social, and governance<br />

(ESG) disclosures by ADGM<br />

companies. <strong>The</strong>se measures will foster<br />

the growth of a sustainable finance<br />

ecosystem and support the UAE’s<br />

transition to net-zero greenhouse gas<br />

emissions. ADGM will also confer a<br />

designation on products and services<br />

that meet its minimum standards,<br />

instilling investor confidence and<br />

directing capital towards the green<br />

transition.<br />

77% of UAE IT Leaders<br />

Confident in Infrastructure<br />

Readiness for AI<br />

Technology<br />

According to the Equinix <strong>2023</strong><br />

Global Tech Trends Survey, over<br />

three-quarters of IT leaders in<br />

the UAE (77%) believe that their<br />

current IT infrastructure is ready to meet<br />

the demands of artificial intelligence (AI)<br />

technology. <strong>The</strong> UAE outperformed other<br />

countries in terms of preparedness for<br />

AI, as only 58% of global IT leaders and<br />

51% of IT leaders in the EMEA region expressed<br />

confidence in their infrastructure’s<br />

readiness for AI. <strong>The</strong> survey focused on<br />

the responses of IT leaders regarding the<br />

integration of AI in their organizations,<br />

following a year of significant advancements<br />

and widespread deployment of AI<br />

in various sectors, including both B2B<br />

and B2C applications.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 21

Fintech Application<br />


About<br />

Founded in 2013, Eureeca embarked<br />

on its journey as a<br />

pioneering global multi-regulated<br />

Equity Crowdfunding<br />

platform. Founded by Sam Quawasmi<br />

and Chris Thomas, the company’s mission<br />

is to democratize and digitize the<br />

financial world, making it accessible<br />

through mobile phones. Beyond Equity<br />

Crowdfunding, Eureeca envisions a<br />

broader range of financial products<br />

and the inclusion of various regions in<br />

its offering. By providing investment<br />

opportunities to average individual<br />

investors alongside High Net Worth<br />

and Institutional investors, Eureeca<br />

aims to democratize financial opportunities<br />

globally.<br />

Review<br />

Eureeca is an investment app that<br />

opens up a world of high-yielding<br />

investment opportunities from various<br />

international markets. With a<br />

user-friendly interface, this app allows<br />

you to explore a steady stream of vetted<br />

equity investment options, all from the<br />

convenience of your laptop or phone.<br />

One of the standout features of<br />

Eureeca is the ability to conduct your<br />

own due diligence at your own pace.<br />

You can thoroughly analyze proposal<br />

documents and even engage with entrepreneurs<br />

and fellow investors to<br />

assess the viability and suitability of a<br />

deal for your investment portfolio. This<br />

hands-on approach empowers you to<br />

make informed investment decisions.<br />

Investing is made easy on Eureeca.<br />

Simply credit your account through<br />

card payment or bank transfer, and<br />

the platform takes care of the rest,<br />

ensuring a seamless process from<br />

investment to the issuance of shares.<br />

Your portfolio dashboard provides real-time<br />

data and reports, allowing you<br />

to stay updated on the performance of<br />

your investments. Eureeca understands<br />

the importance of diversification in investment.<br />

<strong>The</strong> app presents you with a<br />

range of investment opportunities that<br />

align with your interests, enabling you<br />

to build a portfolio that spans different<br />

industries, geographies, and lifecycle<br />

stages. This diversification strategy<br />

helps mitigate risk and maximize potential<br />

returns.<br />

For those seeking capital for their<br />

business, Eureeca offers a unique opportunity<br />

for international expansion.<br />

By raising funds on the platform, entrepreneurs<br />

can tap into a compliant<br />

and efficient source of capital from a<br />

global pool of investors. This allows<br />

them to focus on growing their business<br />

while Eureeca takes care of the<br />

funding process. <strong>The</strong> app provides a<br />

clear outline of the campaign process<br />

for entrepreneurs. From application<br />

to closing, Eureeca guides businesses<br />

through the necessary steps, ensuring<br />

a smooth and transparent journey.<br />

Availability: Google Play Store and<br />

Apple App Store<br />

Website: www.eureeca.com<br />

22 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

<strong>The</strong> Insta360 Go 3 action camera<br />

Insta360 introduces its latest action<br />

camera, the Go 3, which features an<br />

innovative two-piece modular design.<br />

<strong>The</strong> camera itself, which is roughly<br />

the size of a thumb, can be detached from<br />

a rectangular body known as the “Action<br />

Pod,” which includes a built-in viewfinder.<br />

By attaching the Go 3 to a mount or<br />

clothing, users can conveniently monitor<br />

the captured footage directly through the<br />

viewfinder. <strong>The</strong> camera weighs 35g only<br />

and offers a truly hands-free experience<br />

with shots taken in POV 2.7K. <strong>The</strong> brand’s<br />

signature FlowState Stabilization allows<br />

for steady and stable footage as all shakes,<br />

bumps and rolls are removed. Horizontal.<br />

A tiny cam means easy mounting! With<br />

its magnetic design and three included<br />

accessories, GO 3 gives you endless creative<br />

possibilities.. Think pets, helmets,<br />

or a fly on the wall shot!<br />

Thunderbolt 4 Multimedia Pro Dock<br />

Satechi’s newest high-powered<br />

USB-C dock is aimed at creative<br />

professionals. It has 16 different<br />

ports, supports 96-watt passthrough<br />

power and can connect several external<br />

displays. Compatible with both Mac and<br />

Windows PC, this versatile dock offers the<br />

best-in-class Thunderbolt 40Gpbs bandwidth<br />

for connecting up to four external<br />

screens and high-speed peripherals, while<br />

simultaneously delivering 96W of charging<br />

power to the host device – so you have<br />

one less cable to worry about.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 23

Business<br />

Unleashing Business Success: Mastering<br />

the Art of Flourishing in Dubai, UAE<br />

Dubai, the dynamic metropolis of the United Arab Emirates, presents a<br />

highly promising market for ambitious entrepreneurs seeking access to<br />

a vast consumer base of over 1.5 billion worldwide. However, achieving<br />

success in any business venture, whether in Dubai or elsewhere, demands<br />

determination, courage, and unwavering passion. Launching a business<br />

in Dubai opens doors to unparalleled opportunities for recognition and<br />

prosperity. As one of the world’s most profitable business hubs, Dubai<br />

provides a favourable environment for business owners and aspiring<br />

entrepreneurs.<br />

24 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

Crafting a comprehensive<br />

business plan is a pivotal<br />

step towards achieving remarkable<br />

success in the competitive<br />

business landscape. It serves<br />

as a blueprint that distinguishes your<br />

venture from others, highlighting key<br />

opportunities and showcasing your<br />

unique vision. A well-crafted business<br />

plan helps identify your target<br />

audience, enabling you to tailor your<br />

products or services to their specific<br />

needs. By setting measurable goals<br />

and establishing realistic deadlines,<br />

you create a roadmap for progress,<br />

keeping you focused and accountable.<br />

It is important to remember that while<br />

having a solid plan is crucial, remaining<br />

adaptable and embracing change is<br />

equally essential. By continuously evaluating<br />

and adjusting your strategy, you<br />

position yourself for sustained growth<br />

and stay ahead in the ever-evolving<br />

business world. A comprehensive and<br />

thoughtfully designed business plan<br />

sets the foundation for success, empowering<br />

you to navigate challenges<br />

and unlock endless possibilities for<br />

your enterprise.<br />

Networking plays a pivotal role in<br />

establishing your business in Dubai.<br />

Prioritize attending key events and<br />

engaging with others to leverage<br />

word-of-mouth marketing. By being<br />

your own brand ambassador, you can<br />

showcase the value of working with<br />

your company. This approach rapidly<br />

expands your network, connecting you<br />

with prospects who can support your<br />

business. A strong social and business<br />

network can open doors to future<br />

opportunities, mentors, and strategic<br />

partnerships, fueling the growth of<br />

your business in Dubai.<br />

In Dubai’s thriving tourism industry,<br />

recruiting the right talent is crucial for<br />

driving business growth. Surrounding<br />

yourself with intelligent, talented,<br />

and motivated individuals who share<br />

your vision can have a transformative<br />

impact on your company. By<br />

assembling a team of positive and<br />

productive employees, you create<br />

a collaborative culture that fosters<br />

teamwork and innovation. When everyone<br />

feels empowered to contribute<br />

their ideas and skills, it creates a<br />

dynamic environment where success<br />

is celebrated collectively. Selecting<br />

the right talent, including strategic<br />

By planning,<br />

networking,<br />

talent<br />

acquisition,<br />

commitment<br />

to quality,<br />

and strategic<br />

marketing,<br />

entrepreneurs<br />

can unlock the<br />

potential for<br />

recognition,<br />

prosperity,<br />

and longterm<br />

success<br />

in Dubai’s<br />

dynamic<br />

business<br />

landscape.<br />

partners and mentors, propels your<br />

business forward, ensuring you have<br />

the expertise and support necessary to<br />

navigate the competitive landscape of<br />

Dubai’s tourism sector.<br />

In Dubai’s competitive business<br />

landscape, staying ahead of the competition<br />

requires a commitment to<br />

delivering exceptional quality to customers.<br />

This principle holds true<br />

across industries, but it is particularly<br />

relevant in the UAE’s vibrant market.<br />

Young entrepreneurs have ample opportunities<br />

to refine their skills and<br />

establish themselves as providers of<br />

top-notch products or services. By<br />

leveraging expertise and dedicating<br />

time to honing their craft, they can<br />

outshine competitors effectively. As<br />

word-of-mouth recommendations<br />

spread quickly in Dubai, building a<br />

reputation as a reliable and high-quality<br />

company becomes a key driver of<br />

long-term success.<br />

In the digital age, effectively marketing<br />

your business in Dubai requires a<br />

strategic approach. Rather than solely<br />

focusing on promotional content,<br />

create informative and captivating material<br />

that resonates with your target<br />

audience. By sharing valuable insights<br />

and building a loyal following, you<br />

can cultivate a customer base that is<br />

genuinely interested in your products<br />

and services. Utilize diverse digital<br />

channels, including blogs, social media<br />

platforms, emails, and press releases,<br />

to distribute this informative content.<br />

This approach can attract influential<br />

figures with large followings, leading<br />

to increased engagement and a broader<br />

online presence.<br />

In conclusion, launching a successful<br />

startup in Dubai requires<br />

careful planning, networking, talent<br />

acquisition, a commitment to quality,<br />

and strategic marketing. By crafting a<br />

comprehensive business plan, building<br />

a strong network, assembling a talented<br />

team, delivering exceptional quality,<br />

and leveraging digital marketing, entrepreneurs<br />

can unlock the immense<br />

potential for business growth in this<br />

dynamic city. Embrace the opportunities,<br />

stay adaptable, and navigate the<br />

competitive landscape with determination,<br />

and Dubai’s thriving market<br />

will pave the way for recognition,<br />

prosperity, and long-term success.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 25

Business News<br />

UAE approves national energy and hydrogen strategies<br />

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed<br />

bin Rashid Al Maktoum<br />

chaired the UAE Cabinet<br />

meeting at Qasr Al Watan,<br />

Abu Dhabi, with prominent officials<br />

in attendance. Under President Sheikh<br />

Mohamed bin Zayed’s directives, the<br />

Ministry of Investment was established,<br />

with Mohamed Hassan Al Suwaidi<br />

appointed as minister to enhance the<br />

investment vision and competitiveness<br />

in the UAE. <strong>The</strong> Cabinet approved<br />

the updated UAE National Energy<br />

Strategy, aiming to triple renewable<br />

energy contributions and invest AED<br />

150-200B in meeting energy demands.<br />

<strong>The</strong>y also endorsed the National Hydrogen<br />

Strategy to position the UAE as a<br />

producer and exporter of low-emission<br />

hydrogen. Other approvals included the<br />

National Electric Vehicles Policy and<br />

preliminary approval for autonomous<br />

vehicles by WeRide company, reflecting<br />

the country’s commitment to sustainable<br />

energy and future mobility.<br />

Aldar, IHC, Adnec Form<br />

Middle East Property<br />

Powerhouse<br />

Aldar Properties, International<br />

Holding Company (IHC),<br />

and Adnec Group have announced<br />

their decision to<br />

merge their jointly owned property<br />

and facilities management businesses.<br />

<strong>The</strong> merger will be carried out under<br />

the Aldar Estates platform, resulting in<br />

the formation of the largest property<br />

and facilities management company<br />

in the Middle East region. According<br />

to the statement released to the Abu<br />

Dhabi Securities Exchange, Aldar will<br />

maintain a majority stake and retain<br />

control of Aldar Estates, while IHC<br />

and Adnec Group will equally hold<br />

the remaining shareholding. As part<br />

of the agreement, Eltizam Asset Management<br />

Group, jointly owned by IHC<br />

and Adnec Group, will also merge with<br />

Aldar Estates.<br />

IWG Expands Regus Presence in UAE to Meet<br />

Rising Demand for Hybrid Working<br />

IWG, the world’s largest flexible<br />

workspace company, is expanding<br />

its presence in the UAE with the<br />

addition of two new Regus-branded<br />

coworking spaces to meet the growing<br />

demand for hybrid working. <strong>The</strong> new<br />

locations include a center in Jumeirah<br />

Lake Towers, Dubai, and a managed<br />

partnership deal in the Emirate of<br />

Sharjah at Sahara Healthcare City.<br />

Saudi Arabian food technology<br />

start-up, Nomu Group, has successfully<br />

raised $5M in a seed<br />

funding round to support its<br />

expansion into new markets across the<br />

Middle East and North Africa (MENA)<br />

region, as well as invest in technology<br />

advancements. <strong>The</strong> Riyadh-based company<br />

received funding from investors<br />

including DIV Capital, Shurfah, Core<br />

Vision, and Purity for Information<br />

<strong>The</strong>se openings follow the recent<br />

launch of three flexible spaces in Dubai<br />

and Abu Dhabi. IWG’s expansion in<br />

the UAE aligns with its global plan to<br />

add 1,000 new locations in the coming<br />

year. <strong>The</strong> move reflects the increasing<br />

popularity of hybrid work models and<br />

the cost advantages they offer, with<br />

companies saving an average of $11,000<br />

per employee.<br />

Saudi Arabia’s Nomu Group Raises $5M in Seed<br />

Funding for Expansion<br />

Technology, as well as family businesses<br />

such as Altoukhi and Bakr, along with<br />

angel investors. Nomu Group aims to<br />

utilize the capital to expand its business-to-business<br />

services, catering to<br />

hotel, restaurant, and cafe customers.<br />

Additionally, the company plans to<br />

introduce new technology solutions<br />

and broaden its presence in MENA<br />

markets, with a target to establish<br />

operations in 50 cities by 2025.<br />

26 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

Saudi Arabia and UAE Pledge $6B to Bolster Investments in Iraq<br />

Saudi Arabia and the UAE have<br />

jointly committed $6B to support<br />

the expansion of international<br />

trade and investment in Iraq,<br />

according to the Iraqi News Agency.<br />

<strong>The</strong> Federation of Iraqi Chambers of<br />

Commerce has announced the establishment<br />

of business councils for Saudi<br />

Arabia and the UAE within the country.<br />

<strong>The</strong> funds, with each country depositing<br />

$3B, will be utilized to facilitate trade<br />

and investment activities. <strong>The</strong> president<br />

of the Federation, Abdel Razzak<br />

Emirates Group Launches<br />

Massive Recruitment<br />

Drive to Support Expanding<br />

Operations<br />

<strong>The</strong> Emirates Group plans an<br />

extensive global recruitment<br />

drive, spanning 180 roles,<br />

to bolster its workforce in<br />

anticipation of substantial growth.<br />

<strong>The</strong> Dubai-based aviation company,<br />

encompassing Emirates and dnata,<br />

aims to hire cabin crew, pilots, engineers,<br />

IT professionals, and customer<br />

service agents, as stated in a recent<br />

announcement. Leveraging digital<br />

assessments, AI, and advanced recruitment<br />

systems, the group seeks<br />

to efficiently shortlist and select<br />

candidates. Oliver Grohmann, Senior<br />

Vice President of Human Resources,<br />

emphasizes the focus on recruiting<br />

top talent capable of supporting and<br />

driving future expansion. Last year,<br />

the Emirates Group employed over<br />

17,160 individuals, surpassing 102,000<br />

employees, while receiving 2.7 million<br />

global applications for various<br />

positions.<br />

Al-Zouhairy, highlighted Iraq’s strategic<br />

geographical location, which positions<br />

it as a potential major player in global<br />

trade, particularly along the trade routes<br />

connecting Europe and Asia. <strong>The</strong> aim is<br />

to enhance Iraq’s commercial activities<br />

and align them with the evolving global<br />

trade landscape, particularly in terms of<br />

customs procedures for goods entering<br />

and exiting the country. Recently, the<br />

Saudi Export Development Authority<br />

organized a trade mission to Iraq with<br />

the theme “Made in Saudi.”<br />

UAE startups raise funding to expand to Saudi Arabia<br />

Transportr, a UAE-based digital<br />

logistics platform, has concluded<br />

its successful seed funding round<br />

with the participation of Ittihad<br />

Ventures Holding and Industrial Capital<br />

Group. Launched in 2020, Transportr acts<br />

as a digital freight marketplace, connecting<br />

shippers and carriers across industries<br />

for efficient and cost-effective goods<br />

transportation. <strong>The</strong> platform addresses<br />

concerns such as freight rates, manual<br />

UAE Minister of Energy and<br />

Infrastructure, Suhail bin<br />

Mohammed Al Mazrouei, has<br />

highlighted the commitment<br />

of the Organization of the Petroleum<br />

Exporting Countries (OPEC) and its allies<br />

in OPEC+ to maintain stability in the oil<br />

market. <strong>The</strong> aim is to ensure a balance<br />

between global oil supply and demand,<br />

preventing excessive accumulation of<br />

processes, visibility, traceability, and<br />

customer service. <strong>The</strong> funding will drive<br />

Transportr’s growth in the UAE market<br />

and expand into Saudi Arabia, tapping into<br />

the thriving logistics sector. Transportr<br />

aims to be a one-stop digital solution,<br />

managing all supply chain activities<br />

with a focus on environmental, social,<br />

and governance factors, while offering<br />

benefits like cost savings, data analytics,<br />

and artificial intelligence to partners.<br />

UAE Minister: OPEC+ Focused on Oil Market Stability<br />

by Monitoring Variables<br />

oil inventories that could lead to market<br />

instability and speculative activities. Al<br />

Mazrouei mentioned that OPEC’s technical<br />

team constantly monitors various<br />

variables in the global oil markets, providing<br />

recommendations to the ministerial<br />

committee to make informed decisions<br />

that enhance market stability and foster<br />

sustainable growth.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 27

Nothing Phone (2)<br />

<strong>The</strong> Nothing Phone (2) is out now!<br />

<strong>The</strong> phone bears a resemblance<br />

to the distinct Phone (1) with<br />

its transparent rear glass that<br />

features programmable lights. <strong>The</strong> new<br />

phone comes with a larger screen, offers<br />

slightly different color options, introduces<br />

a new glyph light interface, and boasts<br />

improved software.<br />

<strong>The</strong> focus here is on a bigger and<br />

brighter experience. <strong>The</strong> front of the<br />

phone showcases a 6.7-inch OLED screen<br />

with a 120Hz refresh rate, utilizing LTPO<br />

technology to dynamically adjust the rate<br />

and conserve battery life, even going as<br />

low as 1Hz.<br />

Nothing claims that the screen can<br />

reach a peak brightness of 1600 nits, and<br />

the bezel surrounding the flat panel has<br />

been slimmed down slightly to maximize<br />

the display size within the frame.<br />

Here are the full specs of the<br />

Nothing Phone (2):<br />

• Qualcomm Snapdragon 8+ Gen 1<br />

• 8/12GB RAM<br />

• 128/256/512GB storage<br />

• 6.7in 120Hz LTPO OLED display<br />

• Rear camera:<br />

• 50Mp, f/1.8 OIS main camera<br />

• 50Mp, f/2.2 ultrawide camera<br />

• 32Mp, f/2.45 selfie camera<br />

• 4700mAh battery<br />

• 45W wired charging<br />

• 15W wireless charging<br />

• 5W reverse wireless charging<br />

• 5G<br />

• Stereo speakers<br />

• Wi-Fi 6<br />

• Bluetooth 5.3<br />

• NFC<br />

• Glyph Interface LED lights<br />

• IP54<br />

• Gorilla Glass<br />

• Android 13 with Nothing OS 2.0<br />

• 159.2 x 75.8 x 8.3mm<br />

• 201g<br />

28 www.thefinanceworld.com<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

Samsung 83-Inch Class OLED S90C TV<br />

Samsung’s latest offering is an<br />

83-inch class screen 4K TV<br />

that captivates viewers with its<br />

stunning features. It showcases<br />

pure blacks, an infinite contrast ratio,<br />

and vibrant colors, all thanks to the<br />

cutting-edge Samsung Neural Quantum<br />

Processor. This multi-intelligent<br />

processor utilizes 8.3 million self-illuminating<br />

pixels to present content<br />

with remarkable precision, providing<br />

deep blacks and over a billion shades<br />

of realistic color. Notably, the TV<br />

incorporates vivid color palettes that<br />

have been validated by Pantone, the<br />

leading experts in the field, ensuring<br />

that the on-screen images appear as<br />

breathtaking as they do in real life.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 29

Cover Story<br />

Pure Harvest Smart Farms<br />

Sky Kurtz,<br />

Co-Founder and CEO<br />

Innovative tech for affordable,<br />

sustainably grown farm products<br />

Pure Harvest Smart Farms is a pioneering agribusiness<br />

headquartered in the United Arab Emirates,<br />

dedicated to sustainable year-round production of<br />

premium-quality fresh fruits and vegetables. With<br />

a focus on delivering flavorful and locally grown produce,<br />

the company has revolutionized controlled-environment<br />

agriculture (CEA) across the entire value chain.<br />

By leveraging technology design, procurement, construction,<br />

and farm operations, Pure Harvest Smart Farms<br />

has established itself as a leader in CEA. <strong>The</strong> company’s<br />

commitment to innovation extends to marketing and selling<br />

products through its global consumer brand.<br />

One of the key achievements of Pure Harvest Smart<br />

Farms is the development of the Middle East’s first<br />

semi-automated, high-tech hybrid growing system. By<br />

incorporating horticultural best practices, the company<br />

addresses critical regional challenges such as food security,<br />

water conservation, economic diversification, and<br />

sustainability demands.<br />

Pure Harvest Smart Farms has garnered significant support<br />

from global investors, securing over USD 387 million<br />

in capital commitments. Investors from diverse locations<br />

such as California, USA, and Seoul, Korea recognize the<br />

value of the company’s mission and its commitment to<br />

sustainable agriculture.<br />

<strong>The</strong> company’s inventive approach to farming has led<br />

to world-leading yields. Through their state-of-the-art<br />

controlled-environment agriculture technologies, Pure<br />

Harvest Smart Farms successfully cultivates premium<br />

fruits and vegetables in the challenging climates of the<br />

Arab Gulf region. <strong>The</strong>ir focus on sustainable practices<br />

and commitment to affordability has positioned them as<br />

a regional innovator in the field.<br />

With their advanced growing technologies and adherence<br />

to horticultural best practices, Pure Harvest Smart<br />

Farms pioneers year-round production of fresh produce<br />

that is not only of exceptional quality but also affordable.<br />

By prioritizing sustainable agriculture, the company<br />

contributes to environmental preservation while meeting<br />

the increasing demand for locally grown, healthy food.<br />

Pure Harvest Smart Farms aspires to continue its mission<br />

of revolutionizing agriculture and overcoming the challenges<br />

posed by arid climates. Through their dedication to<br />

innovation and commitment to sustainable practices, they<br />

are poised to lead the way in providing premium-quality,<br />

locally-grown fresh produce to consumers.<br />

To sum it up, Pure Harvest Smart Farms is a trailblazing<br />

agribusiness in the UAE, employing cutting-edge technology<br />

and best practices to cultivate sustainable, high-quality<br />

fresh fruits and vegetables. <strong>The</strong>ir achievements, goals,<br />

and commitment to innovation position them as a leading<br />

force in the field of controlled-environment agriculture,<br />

transforming the future of farming in the region and beyond.<br />

30 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

Cover Story<br />

YallaMarket<br />

Leonid Dovbenko,<br />

Stanislav Seleznev,<br />

Founders<br />

Internet Marketplace Platform<br />

YallaMarket, a dynamic UAE startup founded in<br />

2021 and headquartered in Dubai, is transforming<br />

the way people shop for groceries through its<br />

innovative e-commerce platform. <strong>The</strong> company<br />

has swiftly established itself as a game-changer in the<br />

industry, offering unparalleled convenience and speed<br />

to customers.<br />

At the core of YallaMarket’s business model is its commitment<br />

to providing swift and efficient grocery delivery<br />

services. Customers can simply visit the YallaMarket platform,<br />

browse through an extensive selection of products,<br />

and have their groceries delivered right to their doorstep<br />

within an astonishing 15-minute timeframe. Gone are the<br />

days of last-minute shopping trips due to forgotten items;<br />

YallaMarket ensures that customers can access the groceries<br />

they need without any hassle or delay.<br />

Since its inception, YallaMarket has successfully secured<br />

funding through several rounds of investment. Notably,<br />

in February 2022, the company raised an impressive<br />

$2.2 million during a Bridging Round, highlighting the<br />

confidence and support it has garnered from investors.<br />

YallaMarket’s online store boasts an array of products<br />

beyond groceries. From confectioneries to household<br />

essentials and cosmetics, customers can conveniently<br />

find and order a wide range of quality items. <strong>The</strong> company<br />

goes the extra mile to ensure the freshness and condition<br />

of the delivered goods, utilizing sturdy thermal bags to<br />

maintain the optimal temperature of perishable items.<br />

A key differentiator for YallaMarket is its commitment<br />

to providing free delivery to customers. Through a reliable<br />

network of couriers, the company ensures that customers<br />

receive their orders without any additional cost. This customer-centric<br />

approach has garnered praise and loyalty<br />

from a growing customer base.<br />

Moreover, YallaMarket extends its expertise beyond<br />

its e-commerce platform by offering comprehensive<br />

e-commerce fulfilment and warehousing services to<br />

businesses. Companies can benefit from YallaMarket’s<br />

efficient storage, order picking, packaging, and delivery<br />

solutions, streamlining their own e-commerce operations<br />

and enhancing customer satisfaction.<br />

With its rapid growth and dedication to exceptional<br />

service, YallaMarket is making waves in the e-commerce<br />

and grocery delivery landscape of Dubai. <strong>The</strong> company’s<br />

commitment to convenience, speed, and quality has<br />

solidified its position as a go-to platform for individuals<br />

and businesses alike.<br />

As YallaMarket continues to expand its reach and enhance<br />

its offerings, it remains at the forefront of revolutionizing<br />

the grocery shopping experience, creating a future where<br />

efficient and reliable deliveries are just a few clicks away.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 31

Cover Story<br />

InstaVal<br />

Akram El Youssi,<br />

Founder and CEO<br />

Data-Driven Investment Readiness<br />

Platform<br />

InstaVal is a prominent provider of a business valuation<br />

service platform that facilitates equity investments<br />

between investors and startups. <strong>The</strong> company’s<br />

platform adheres to fair market value principles<br />

outlined in the IPEV guidelines while offering affordable<br />

services, instilling confidence in clients to engage with<br />

stakeholders.<br />

With over twenty years of experience in the investment<br />

and finance industry, including roles in forex, equity capital<br />

markets, structured finance, private equity, and investment<br />

banking, Akram, the founder of InstaVal, witnessed a gap<br />

in funding support for entrepreneurs. Recognizing the<br />

need to provide quality advice at cost-effective prices, he<br />

established a boutique advisory firm to address the issue.<br />

However, he soon realized that the existing practice was<br />

neither efficient nor scalable.<br />

Driven by the desire to enable founders to secure funding<br />

at scale, the idea of InstaVal took shape. <strong>The</strong> company<br />

aimed to codify domain knowledge, leverage workflow<br />

automation, and utilize an extensive Rolodex network.<br />

This unique approach would empower entrepreneurs by<br />

providing them with efficient, accessible, and reliable<br />

valuation services.<br />

InstaVal’s key achievements lie in revolutionizing the<br />

investment landscape for startups and scaleups. By streamlining<br />

the valuation process and ensuring compliance with<br />

industry guidelines, the company has facilitated equitable<br />

investment opportunities. <strong>The</strong>ir platform serves as a<br />

data-driven investment readiness tool, promoting equity<br />

investments in emerging ventures.<br />

<strong>The</strong> company’s primary goal is to bridge the gap between<br />

investors and startups, offering an intermediary<br />

platform that facilitates seamless equity transactions.<br />

InstaVal’s commitment to fair market value principles and<br />

affordability ensures that clients can engage confidently<br />

with stakeholders, fostering trust and transparency in the<br />

investment ecosystem.<br />

With a focus on leveraging technology and domain<br />

expertise, InstaVal is driven by the vision of becoming<br />

the go-to platform for business valuation and equity<br />

investment intermediation. By providing founders with<br />

the resources and support needed to secure funding, InstaVal<br />

aims to nurture innovation and propel the growth<br />

of promising ventures.<br />

In essence, InstaVal is a leading business valuation<br />

service platform that connects investors with startups<br />

and scale-ups. With a commitment to fair market value<br />

principles and affordability, the company empowers entrepreneurs<br />

by simplifying the equity investment process.<br />

By leveraging technology and industry expertise, InstaVal<br />

strives to become a trusted and scalable solution, fostering<br />

the growth of the startup ecosystem.<br />

32 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

Cover Story<br />

Colexion<br />

Abhay Aggarwal,<br />

Founder and CEO<br />

Blockchain-based NFT marketplace<br />

to discover, and buy exclusive<br />

digital collectables of megastars<br />

Colexion is a leading platform in the world of<br />

Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs) that focuses on<br />

owning and trading digital collectables of celebrities.<br />

With its innovative platform, Colexion<br />

allows users to collect, buy, sell, and trade NFTs featuring<br />

their favourite superstars from sports, entertainment, art,<br />

and other industries.<br />

As a premium GameFi ecosystem, Colexion aims to<br />

enhance user experience through the utility of Cards. <strong>The</strong><br />

platform’s marketplace brings together celebrities, allowing<br />

them to create more Cards and establish deeper connections<br />

with their fans. As the largest licensed Gaming Marketplace,<br />

Colexion’s suite of Web 3.0 technologies enables creators to<br />

choose and embed licenses while minting NFTs.<br />

One of Colexion’s top achievements is its collaboration<br />

with renowned celebrities and artists to curate a collection<br />

of limited edition, high-quality Cards that are exclusively<br />

available on the platform. With a specialization in Sports,<br />

Entertainment, Music, and Play-to-Earn cricket gaming,<br />

Colexion offers fans a unique opportunity to own exclusive<br />

moments of their favorite celebrities. <strong>The</strong> platform features<br />

Bollywood stars, cricketers, and other industry icons,<br />

showcasing their outstanding recognition and awards in<br />

each section.<br />

In the emerging Web 3.0 space, Colexion fosters trust by<br />

being the biggest licensed marketplace for NFTs. Fans not<br />

only have the opportunity to acquire NFTs of their beloved<br />

characters but can also explore variably scarce editions<br />

and one-of-a-kind offerings. Founded in 2021, Colexion is<br />

built on the Polygon blockchain, utilizing the latest digital<br />

business models to manifest a new generation of games. It<br />

offers gamers the freedom to explore different opportunities,<br />

operate without restrictions, and earn rewards within<br />

the metaverse.<br />

Colexion aims to be a one-stop destination for Web 3.0<br />

gaming. By introducing the concept of using fiat currency<br />

to participate in tournaments and incorporating elements<br />

like Staking, DAO, Token Airdrops, and more, the platform<br />

revolutionizes the fantasy sports infrastructure. Through its<br />

play-to-earn paradigm, Colexion creates real-world value<br />

out of in-game items and digital goods using NFTs, cryptocurrency,<br />

and blockchain technology.<br />

Authenticity and originality are at the core of Colexion’s<br />

offerings. <strong>The</strong> company owns the official rights to the<br />

players and celebrities featured on its digital marketplace.<br />

With secure smart contracts and ownership records on the<br />

Polygon blockchain, Colexion guarantees 100% authenticity<br />

and ensures a transparent and trustworthy experience for<br />

its users.<br />

In summary, Colexion is a pioneering NFT platform that<br />

enables the ownership and trading of digital collectables<br />

featuring celebrities. With its focus on user experience,<br />

Web 3.0 gaming, and authenticity, Colexion has achieved<br />

significant milestones in the industry. <strong>The</strong> company aims to<br />

continue leading the way in the NFT space, providing endless<br />

opportunities for fans, gamers, and digital artists to connect,<br />

earn rewards, and create value within the metaverse.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 33

Cover Story<br />

Lyve<br />

Hassan Hallas,<br />

Founder and CEO<br />

Offers AI & SaaS-enabled last-mile<br />

delivery platform for logistics<br />

Lyve is a dynamic technology company that empowers<br />

businesses to digitize their operations and<br />

excel in their respective industries. With a comprehensive<br />

suite of solutions and synergies, Lyve<br />

offers integrated, all-in-one B2B SaaS solutions that cover<br />

every aspect of the value chain, ensuring a seamless and<br />

cohesive experience from order to payment to delivery.<br />

Headquartered in Abu Dhabi, UAE, and operating in 22<br />

countries, Lyve has established itself as a global leader<br />

in digital technologies across various business verticals.<br />

Whether it’s a small start-up or a large enterprise, Lyve’s<br />

solutions are designed to cater to businesses of all sizes.<br />

One of Lyve’s core strengths lies in its logistics services<br />

platform, which revolutionizes the traditional approach to<br />

logistics. By digitizing the entire customer journey, from<br />

order placement to payment and delivery, the platform<br />

provides customized logistics operations and manages<br />

every aspect of the delivery process, including reverse<br />

logistics for returned goods. With a focus on punctual<br />

deliveries and enhanced customer satisfaction, Lyve empowers<br />

businesses to seamlessly manage their logistics<br />

operations, optimize fleet schedules, track shipments,<br />

and enhance customer acquisition channels.<br />

Lyve’s achievements stem from its commitment to<br />

reimagining logistics as a catalyst for digital transformation<br />

and business innovation. By offering a range of<br />

digital solutions, Lyve enables businesses to streamline<br />

their operations and eliminate concerns about product<br />

delivery. This, in turn, allows companies to focus on their<br />

core operations and achieve greater success.<br />

<strong>The</strong> company’s goals are centred around driving digital<br />

transformation and revolutionizing the business landscape.<br />

Lyve aims to continue expanding its portfolio of digital<br />

technologies, offering innovative solutions that empower<br />

businesses across industries. By leveraging cutting-edge<br />

technology and a customer-centric approach, Lyve strives<br />

to be a leader in digital transformation, helping businesses<br />

thrive in the digital era.<br />

In summary, Lyve is a forward-thinking technology company<br />

that empowers businesses to digitize their operations<br />

and optimize their performance. With an all-encompassing<br />

suite of solutions, Lyve covers every touchpoint in the<br />

value chain, ensuring seamless operations from order to<br />

payment to delivery. Through its logistics services platform<br />

and commitment to digital innovation, Lyve is driving<br />

transformation across industries, helping businesses<br />

unlock their full potential in the digital age.<br />

34 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

Cover Story<br />

<strong>The</strong> Giving Movement<br />

Dominic Nowell-Barnes,<br />

Founder<br />

Retail Apparel and Fashion, Reinventing<br />

Sustainable Athleisure<br />

<strong>The</strong> Giving Movement is a visionary company that<br />

embodies the philosophy of “small acts multiplied<br />

by many can transform the world.” With<br />

the purpose to inspire conscious consumerism<br />

through giving, they have created a global movement<br />

focused on positive change.<br />

One of <strong>The</strong> Giving Movement’s top achievements is<br />

crossing $4 million in donations by January <strong>2023</strong>. This<br />

impressive milestone has allowed them to directly impact<br />

the lives of children through partnerships with Dubai<br />

Cares and Harmony House India. <strong>The</strong>y aim to continue<br />

multiplying their impact and changing more lives in the<br />

future.<br />

<strong>The</strong> company’s philosophy is driven by togetherness,<br />

building a global community of charity-driven purpose<br />

through streetwear that champions sustainability. <strong>The</strong>ir<br />

goal is to transform the world by promoting positive<br />

change and creating a cohesive global community.<br />

<strong>The</strong> Giving Movement is committed to sustainable practices<br />

and reducing their carbon footprint. <strong>The</strong>y strive to<br />

create environmentally responsible products, prioritizing<br />

the protection of the planet.<br />

Transparency and authenticity are core values for <strong>The</strong><br />

Giving Movement. <strong>The</strong>y ensure that their values, ideals,<br />

and actions align, and they prioritize providing information<br />

on their partnered charities, suppliers, and factories<br />

within their supply chain.<br />

Diversity and inclusivity are also essential to <strong>The</strong> Giving<br />

Movement. <strong>The</strong>y value equity, inclusion, and dignity for<br />

all, recognizing the importance of diverse perspectives,<br />

experience, knowledge, and culture.<br />

<strong>The</strong> company’s unique approach involves donating $4 to<br />

charity for every item purchased. This amount is sufficient<br />

to ensure basic needs such as food, shelter, and water for<br />

a child in need for one week.<br />

Through their partnerships with Harmony House and<br />

Dubai Cares, <strong>The</strong> Giving Movement supports organizations<br />

that provide essential services to women, children, and<br />

education initiatives. <strong>The</strong>y prioritize uplifting those living<br />

below the poverty line and breaking the cycle of poverty<br />

through education and social support.<br />

Founder Dominic Nowell-Barnes is driven by a passion<br />

for making a positive change in the fashion industry. With<br />

a focus on sustainability and conscious consumerism,<br />

he launched <strong>The</strong> Giving Movement as a disruptive brand<br />

that creates meaningful apparel. His mission is to alter<br />

the way fashion is consumed and shed light on ethical<br />

and environmentally-friendly practices.<br />

All in all, <strong>The</strong> Giving Movement is a trailblazing company<br />

that leverages conscious consumerism and giving to<br />

inspire positive change. With their focus on sustainability,<br />

authenticity, and transparency, they are making a significant<br />

impact on the lives of others. <strong>The</strong>ir achievements,<br />

goals, and values reflect their commitment to creating a<br />

better world through their unique approach to streetwear<br />

and charitable giving.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 35

Cover Story<br />

GrubTech<br />

Mohamed Al Fayed,<br />

CEO<br />

Provider of end-to-end SaaS<br />

platforms for restaurant sand<br />

cloud kitchens<br />

GrubTech, a leading provider of end-to-end SaaS<br />

platforms, is revolutionizing the way restaurants<br />

and cloud kitchens operate through its comprehensive<br />

suite of solutions. With a focus on digital<br />

transformation, GrubTech empowers businesses to streamline<br />

operations, enhance customer experiences, and maximize<br />

revenue potential.<br />

At the core of GrubTech’s offerings is its robust software<br />

as a service (SaaS) platform designed specifically for caterers,<br />

cloud kitchens, and delivery-centric restaurants. By<br />

seamlessly integrating with third-party food aggregators,<br />

logistics providers, and point of sale solutions, GrubTech<br />

enables businesses to optimize their operations across<br />

various channels.<br />

One of the key features of GrubTech’s platform is its<br />

online ordering system, which provides a unified interface<br />

for managing and processing orders from multiple sources.<br />

Restaurants can efficiently handle menus, track orders, and<br />

ensure smooth operations, all from a single screen. This centralized<br />

approach allows for greater efficiency and reduces<br />

the risk of errors or delays.<br />

In addition to online ordering, GrubTech offers a QR<br />

code-enabled contactless dine-in and payment solution.<br />

With this feature, customers can easily access menus, place<br />

orders, and make payments directly from their smartphones,<br />

providing a safe and convenient dining experience.<br />

Real-time insights and analytics play a vital role in GrubTech’s<br />

platform, providing businesses with valuable data and actionable<br />

insights. Restaurant owners and managers can access<br />

comprehensive reports on sales, operations, and customer<br />

behavior, allowing them to make informed decisions and<br />

optimize their strategies accordingly.<br />

GrubTech’s platform also encompasses advanced marketing<br />

capabilities, empowering businesses to launch and promote<br />

virtual brands, expand revenue streams, and reach a wider<br />

customer base. By leveraging GrubTech’s tools, restaurants<br />

can capitalize on all available channels, including food<br />

delivery apps and their own websites as commission-free<br />

sales channels.<br />

<strong>The</strong> company’s commitment to innovation extends to its<br />

partnerships and global reach. GrubTech’s solutions have<br />

been adopted by fast-growing restaurants in over 19 countries,<br />

earning the trust of industry leaders who recognize the<br />

platform as a valuable growth partner.<br />

With products ranging from online order management to<br />

kitchen display systems, in-house delivery management, and<br />

smart food lockers, GrubTech provides a comprehensive<br />

and seamless ecosystem that addresses the diverse needs<br />

of modern restaurants and cloud kitchens.<br />

In an ever-evolving industry, GrubTech stands out as a<br />

driving force behind the digital transformation of food businesses.<br />

Through its user-friendly and scalable platform, the<br />

company empowers its clients to adapt, thrive, and unlock<br />

their full potential in an increasingly competitive landscape.<br />

Whether it’s enhancing operational efficiency, increasing<br />

revenue per square meter, or launching new virtual brands,<br />

GrubTech is dedicated to helping restaurants and cloud<br />

kitchens achieve success in the digital age.<br />

36 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

Cover Story<br />

Stake<br />

Rami Tabbara,<br />

Co-Founder<br />

FinTech, Real Estate Investment<br />

<strong>The</strong> stake is an innovative digital real estate investment<br />

platform on a mission to empower individuals<br />

worldwide to own and build wealth through real<br />

estate. With a vision of creating a world where real<br />

estate is fully digital, accessible, borderless, and liquid, Stake<br />

aims to revolutionize the industry by eliminating the barriers<br />

that have traditionally made real estate investments highly<br />

inaccessible, illiquid, and complicated.<br />

Recognizing the significant role that real estate plays in<br />

building long-term wealth, Stake understands the challenges<br />

individuals face when venturing into this asset class. <strong>The</strong><br />

cumbersome paperwork, hefty down payment requirements,<br />

and lack of liquidity often discourage potential investors.<br />

Additionally, securing great deals can be time-consuming<br />

and reliant on personal connections.<br />

Stake is purpose-built to address these issues head-on.<br />

Leveraging their extensive network and expertise gained<br />

from over 20+ years leading prominent real estate companies<br />

in Dubai, Stake sources the best properties in their markets.<br />

<strong>The</strong>y break down the entry barrier for investors, allowing<br />

them to start investing with as little as AED 500 (approximately<br />

136 USD).<br />

As a digital real estate investment platform, Stake manages<br />

the entire investment process on behalf of its users. From<br />

property acquisition to exit strategies, Stake takes care<br />

of every aspect, providing investors with a seamless and<br />

hassle-free experience. Monthly rental payments and sales<br />

income are distributed directly to the user’s Stake wallet,<br />

ensuring a steady stream of passive income.<br />

With Stake, building a global real estate portfolio is no<br />

longer an arduous task. Within minutes, investors can access<br />

a diverse range of properties and start generating lifelong<br />

passive income to support the lifestyle they aspire to.<br />

Stake’s team comprises seasoned professionals with decades<br />

of leadership experience across various industries, including<br />

real estate, technology, financial services, consulting, and<br />

the creative sector. <strong>The</strong>ir collective expertise ensures that<br />

Stake remains at the forefront of innovation and delivers<br />

exceptional value to its users.<br />

Furthermore, Stake is committed to responsible investing.<br />

<strong>The</strong> platform has undergone assessment by the Supervisory<br />

Board of Guidance Financial Group, a prominent financial<br />

services firm specializing in Shariah-compliant investments<br />

and financing. Stake has also submitted an application for<br />

an Islamic Window endorsement on its license, intending to<br />

offer Shariah-compliant Islamic Financial Business alongside<br />

its conventional offerings.<br />

Stake invites highly talented individuals to join their team<br />

and help lead their expansion into international markets<br />

and new business lines. By fostering a diverse and skilled<br />

workforce, Stake aims to make global real estate accessible<br />

to everyone and redefine the investment landscape.<br />

Through their vision, dedication, and commitment to<br />

empowering individuals worldwide, Stake is poised to<br />

reshape the way people approach real estate investments,<br />

enabling them to unlock their financial potential and secure<br />

a prosperous future.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 37

Cover Story<br />

Insydo<br />

Tanaz Dizadji,<br />

Founder & CEO<br />

Digital Content Creators<br />

Insydo is a leading content platform on a mission to<br />

inspire people about the Middle East. With a focus<br />

on experiences, places, products, and people, Insydo<br />

creates engaging and informative content that showcases<br />

the richness and diversity of the region. As one of<br />

the top content creators in the Middle East, Insydo has<br />

achieved widespread recognition for its high-quality and<br />

captivating content. <strong>The</strong> company’s goal is to continue<br />

inspiring and informing its audience by providing valuable<br />

insights, recommendations, and stories that celebrate the<br />

unique aspects of the Middle East. Through its content,<br />

Insydo aims to connect people with the best that the<br />

region has to offer, fostering a deeper appreciation and<br />

understanding of the Middle East.<br />

Insydo is a dynamic content platform that is dedicated<br />

to inspiring people about experiences, places, products,<br />

and people in the Middle East. With a clear mission to<br />

create content that captivates and informs, Insydo is at<br />

the forefront of content creation in the region.<br />

As a leading content creator in the Middle East, Insydo<br />

has garnered widespread recognition for its high-quality<br />

and engaging content. <strong>The</strong> company’s team of talented<br />

content creators are passionate about showcasing the<br />

richness and diversity of the Middle East, providing<br />

valuable insights and recommendations to their audience.<br />

Through their compelling digital content, Insydo aims<br />

to inspire and inform people’s everyday lives in the Middle<br />

East. Whether it’s uncovering hidden gems in the region,<br />

exploring the latest products and trends, or celebrating<br />

the achievements of individuals and communities, Insydo’s<br />

content connects people with the best that the Middle<br />

East has to offer.<br />

By highlighting unique experiences, showcasing breathtaking<br />

places, and spotlighting innovative products, Insydo<br />

fosters a deeper appreciation and understanding of the<br />

Middle East. <strong>The</strong>ir content is designed to inspire and<br />

empower individuals to explore, discover, and engage<br />

with the region in meaningful ways.<br />

Insydo’s dedication to creating inspiring and informative<br />

content sets them apart as a trusted source of knowledge<br />

and inspiration for anyone seeking to experience the<br />

best of the Middle East. With their team of passionate<br />

content creators, Insydo continues to elevate the content<br />

landscape in the region, making a positive impact on the<br />

lives of their audience and celebrating the extraordinary<br />

aspects of the Middle East.<br />

38 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

Cover Story<br />

EKar<br />

Vilhelm Hedberg,<br />

Founder & CEO<br />

Car-sharing service<br />

ekar is the pioneering personal mobility company<br />

in the Middle East, transforming the way people<br />

consume transportation. With its innovative ‘Super<br />

App,’ ekar provides users with on-demand access<br />

to a vast network of carshare and subscription leasing<br />

vehicles, along with other mobility options.<br />

<strong>The</strong> company’s vision is to revolutionize transportation<br />

consumption, offering a convenient and seamless<br />

experience for users. To achieve this, ekar has developed<br />

the Mobility OS, a cutting-edge platform that enables car<br />

rental and leasing companies to adopt mobility-as-a-service<br />

(MaaS) models, as well as facilitating peer-to-peer<br />

rentals. With ekar’s technology, booking and traveling in a<br />

car becomes hassle-free, empowering individuals to plan<br />

their journeys on their mobile phones.<br />

Since its establishment in 2016 by Founder Vilhelm<br />

Hedberg, ekar has experienced remarkable growth and<br />

success. Starting as a 15-vehicle pilot program with Etihad<br />

Airways, the company has expanded to become the<br />

largest self-drive mobility provider in the region. More<br />

than 200,000 customers have embraced ekar’s services,<br />

resulting in an impressive 1.3 million trips booked.<br />

ekar’s achievements have been recognized internationally.<br />

In 2019, it was named the highest utilized free-floating<br />

carshare service globally. Frost & Sullivan honored ekar<br />

as the GCC Car Sharing Providers Company of <strong>The</strong> Year<br />

in the same year. Forbes Middle East also recognized<br />

ekar as one of the Top 5 Startups in 2018. Furthermore,<br />

Founder Vilhelm Hedberg was awarded SME Leader of<br />

the Year 2018 by Arabian Business.<br />

With a commitment to innovation and customer satisfaction,<br />

ekar aims to continue reshaping the transportation<br />

landscape in the Middle East. <strong>The</strong> company’s goal is to<br />

enhance mobility options and create a more efficient<br />

and sustainable transportation ecosystem. Through its<br />

Mobility OS, ekar envisions a future where car rental<br />

and leasing companies can seamlessly integrate with the<br />

sharing economy, providing users with a diverse range of<br />

mobility solutions.<br />

ekar’s profile as a personal mobility leader is marked<br />

by its technological advancements, industry recognition,<br />

and dedication to improving transportation experiences.<br />

By leveraging the power of its ‘Super App’ and the Mobility<br />

OS, ekar is driving positive change in how people<br />

access and utilize transportation services throughout the<br />

Middle East.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 39

Sony Alpha 6700 Hybrid Camera<br />

<strong>The</strong> α6700 combines the latest<br />

AI technology with Sony’s<br />

outstanding α-series image<br />

quality in a compact APS-C<br />

camera body. Offering enhanced subject<br />

recognition, the latest technology<br />

for capturing stills and movies, and<br />

E-mount lens compatibility, the lightweight<br />

α6700 is designed for creative<br />

adventures, anytime, anywhere.<br />

Specification<br />

• 26.0MP1 APS-C format Exmor R<br />

back-illuminated CMOS sensor<br />

• BIONZ XR processing power for<br />

exceptional image quality<br />

• Dedicated AI Processor and Real-time<br />

Recognition for accurate<br />

subject tracking<br />

• 4K/60p 6K oversampled 4:2:2 10-bit<br />

recording with Long GOP or All<br />

Intra formats<br />

• High frame rate 4K/120p (100p)<br />

recording17<br />

• 5-axis in-body optical image stabilization<br />

with up to 5-steps4 of<br />

compensation<br />

• Precise anti-shake compensation<br />

at the single-pixel level<br />

• Wide dynamic range and high sensitivity<br />

for diverse shooting scenarios<br />

• Consistently accurate exposure<br />

and color with new AE algorithm<br />

• Selectable RAW file types and JPEG<br />

Light quality setting<br />

• Faster, more precise AF with 759<br />

phase detection AF points11, 93%<br />

coverage<br />

• Smarter AI based Real-time Tracking<br />

40 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

Montblanc MTB 03 In-Ear Headphones<br />

Montblanc is best known for<br />

its luxury pen and high-end<br />

watches, but it’s decided<br />

to get into the wireless<br />

earbud game. <strong>The</strong> MTB 03 is the company’s<br />

first pair of wireless earbuds.<br />

<strong>The</strong>y boast active noise-cancellation,<br />

wireless charging and a glossy finish.<br />

<strong>The</strong> Montblanc MTB 03 In-Ear Headphones<br />

are the brand’s urban interpretation<br />

of the Sound of Comfort. <strong>The</strong>y<br />

guarantee great sound, long-lasting<br />

wearing comfort and effective noise<br />

cancellation wherever you go. <strong>The</strong>ir<br />

sound signature has been created by<br />

internationally renowned acoustics<br />

experts. <strong>The</strong>ir design is not only sleek,<br />

elegant and modern, but also ensures<br />

a comfortable fit for every ear. <strong>The</strong><br />

accompanying lightweight, pocket-sized<br />

charging case keeps these smart luxury<br />

pieces safe and always ready to go.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 41

Wheels<br />

Specifications<br />

Horsepower: 469 hp<br />

Torque: 590 lb-ft<br />

Engine: 0-60 mph in under 4.0 seconds<br />

Battery Capacity: 100 kWh<br />

42 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

Lamborghini Sián FKP 37<br />

<strong>The</strong> Lamborghini Sián FKP 37<br />

stands as a groundbreaking<br />

achievement in the realm of<br />

super sports cars, combining<br />

a V12 engine with hybrid technology<br />

based on supercapacitors. <strong>The</strong> result is<br />

a breathtaking display of engineering<br />

and technological prowess, propelling<br />

the Sián FKP 37 to unparalleled levels<br />

of performance and speed.<br />

<strong>The</strong> name Sián, meaning “lightning”<br />

in the Bolognese dialect, perfectly<br />

encapsulates the essence of this<br />

remarkable vehicle. With a top speed<br />

surpassing 220 mph (350 km/h), the Sián<br />

FKP 37 is a force of nature on the road,<br />

delivering exhilarating acceleration<br />

and a driving experience that leaves<br />

enthusiasts awe-inspired. <strong>The</strong> design of<br />

the Sián FKP 37 pushes the boundaries<br />

of Lamborghini’s iconic DNA to new<br />

heights. Drawing inspiration from the<br />

legendary Countach, this supercar<br />

boasts sharp lines, aerodynamic<br />

elegance, and a silhouette that<br />

is instantly recognizable. Crafted<br />

entirely from carbon fiber, the body<br />

of the Sián FKP 37 leaves a lasting<br />

impression, while the electrochromic<br />

roof and moving surfaces controlled<br />

by smart materials further enhance its<br />

sculpted aesthetics. <strong>The</strong> futuristic Terzo<br />

Millennio-inspired headlights leave a<br />

luminous signature that sets the stage<br />

for the future of Lamborghini design.<br />

At the heart of the Sián FKP 37 lies<br />

its groundbreaking hybrid system,<br />

representing a true technological tour<br />

de force. <strong>The</strong> innovative mild-hybrid<br />

architecture utilizes a lightweight<br />

lithium-ion supercapacitor, which<br />

boasts three times the power-to-weight<br />

ratio compared to a traditional battery.<br />

Operating on a low-voltage 48V system,<br />

this hybrid setup enables peak currents<br />

of up to 600A. <strong>The</strong> electric motor,<br />

powered by this current, delivers engine<br />

torque directly to the rear wheels and<br />

harnesses the energy during braking to<br />

recharge the capacitor. <strong>The</strong> symmetrical<br />

electrical power flow ensures efficiency<br />

during both charge and discharge cycles,<br />

without the risk of overheating.<br />

Beyond its hybrid system, the<br />

Sián FKP 37 introduces autonomous<br />

technology to the automotive world.<br />

<strong>The</strong> car features autonomous vent<br />

flaps located at the back of the engine<br />

hood, actuated by smart materials<br />

that are temperature-sensitive. <strong>The</strong>se<br />

flaps open independently when the<br />

temperature surrounding the exhaust<br />

reaches extreme levels, relying solely on<br />

the thermal distortion of the material,<br />

eliminating the need for electric controls<br />

and sensors.<br />

With a carbon-fiber monocoque,<br />

titanium intake valves, active<br />

aerodynamics, and rear-wheel steering,<br />

the Sián FKP 37 showcases cuttingedge<br />

technology in every aspect of<br />

its design. It represents a remarkable<br />

fusion of power, performance, and<br />

innovation, setting new standards for<br />

the automotive industry.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 43

Start-up<br />

<strong>The</strong> Top Three Startups Revolutionizing<br />

the Business Landscape in the UAE<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE stands out among Arab nations as an attractive destination for<br />

entrepreneurs, especially in the telecommunications and IT sectors. <strong>The</strong><br />

proactive government actively shapes the country’s future by fostering<br />

innovation and technological advancements across industries. This promising<br />

economic landscape has prompted a rise in entrepreneurs establishing their<br />

own companies. Notably, the startup sector in the UAE is thriving, particularly<br />

in technology, retail, lifestyle, environment, and communication services.<br />

Businesses catering to the younger generation, streamlining operations, or<br />

offering innovative lifestyle options are in high demand, bringing new hope<br />

and opportunities for the government, private sector, and society.<br />

Yango Deli Tech<br />

Max Avthukov,<br />

Co-Founder and CEO<br />

UAE is home to start-ups<br />

from varied industries and<br />

businesses. Max Avthukov,<br />

a 32-year young talent, set<br />

up Yango Deli Tech back in 2022. <strong>The</strong><br />

tech start-up aims to offer a diverse<br />

range of tech expertise to all kinds of<br />

retailers and E-commerce businesses<br />

on a global level. <strong>The</strong> basic motive<br />

that Max carries in building this tech<br />

company was to support retailers<br />

to transform from brick-and-mortar<br />

stores to online, E-commerce giants.<br />

Recent market research declared<br />

UAE as the 28th largest market for the<br />

ecommerce industry with projected<br />

revenues exceeding 11 million dollars<br />

in the current year. With the global<br />

e-commerce industry anticipated to<br />

grow over 8% in the coming years,<br />

global e-commerce sales are likely to<br />

exceed 6 trillion if the e-commerce<br />

boom prevails. In 2020, global e-commerce<br />

sales successfully made 4.2<br />

trillion dollars, therefore the market<br />

advancement is clearly evident.<br />

Today, the business world faces<br />

either two challenges, retaining previous<br />

customers or acquiring new ones.<br />

Although digitalisation has made the<br />

world become more connected, competition<br />

is growing simultaneously.<br />

It is why the need to stay ahead of<br />

the curve and beat your rivals from<br />

a similar industry is not as easy as<br />

it sounds. Understanding the latest<br />

e-commerce landscape, getting a good<br />

hold of the market trends and offering<br />

top-class services to your customers<br />

is just a chunk of what you have to do<br />

in totality. Here is when Yango Deli<br />

decided to offer its wide-ranging retail<br />

expertise to startups in UAE to help<br />

them overcome market challenges only<br />

to attract growth and development.<br />

From devising delivery and fulfilment<br />

solutions to functional expertise,<br />

Yango Deli Tech aims to become the<br />

ultimate corporate help an E-commerce,<br />

Q commerce and retail business<br />

can get. Simplifying core business<br />

operations like delivery and fulfilment<br />

to adopting cost-effective solutions,<br />

Yango Deli Tech now carries a proven<br />

record of helping businesses to scale<br />

at a faster rate than expected.<br />

Max’s Yango Deli aims carries a<br />

vision to expand its services and not<br />

limit them to UAE alone. <strong>The</strong> SAAS<br />

company plans on reaching the e-commerce<br />

market in Saudi Arabia, Turkey<br />

and more in the Middle East region.<br />

By <strong>2023</strong>, the young founder sees his<br />

company as a top Ecommerce and<br />

Qcommerce consultant or a SAAS<br />

company by the end of 2030.<br />

44 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

Asette<br />

<strong>The</strong> $35 billion UAE market<br />

is experiencing a revolution<br />

in the off-plan property research<br />

and acquisition process<br />

thanks to Asette’s introduction of<br />

an AI-powered real estate investment<br />

platform. Investors can cut down on<br />

research time and decision-making<br />

time by up to three months by using<br />

this platform. Asette offers a single<br />

tool—an AI-driven platform—that<br />

streamlines the convoluted 30-step<br />

process. It is the first one-stop-shop in<br />

the world for these services because<br />

it connects investors to carefully curated<br />

off-plan property options. Asette<br />

offers individualised searches for offplan<br />

properties and equips investors<br />

with thorough analysis, including<br />

price growth, rental yields, and ROI<br />

calculations.<br />

Asette’s main objective is to make<br />

the purchasing of real estate more<br />

effective, transparent, and inclusive.<br />

<strong>The</strong> platform performs in-depth data<br />

analysis of the off-plan market in the<br />

UAE using cutting-edge machine learning<br />

models. Asette is now able to<br />

provide investors with tailored advice<br />

based on their preferences for real<br />

estate investment and affordability<br />

metrics. With these insightful tips at<br />

their disposal, investors can make<br />

well-informed decisions about purchasing<br />

real estate while significantly<br />

cutting down on the time and effort<br />

needed to locate the ideal off-plan<br />

property.<br />

Leena Vesterinen, CEO of Asette,<br />

said the platform was developed to<br />

streamline the difficult and time-consuming<br />

process of purchasing off-plan<br />

properties in the UAE. Asette gives<br />

investors individualised recommendations<br />

with the highest growth potential<br />

using real estate data and machine<br />

learning. This saves time and effort<br />

while enabling investors to make<br />

well-informed decisions.<br />

Asette promotes flexible payment<br />

Leena Vesterinen,<br />

CEO<br />

options and upholds transparency<br />

throughout the purchasing process<br />

to guarantee a neutral experience.<br />

Investors can be sure they have a<br />

clear understanding of their research,<br />

evaluation, and purchase journey because<br />

every detail and crucial step is<br />

carefully outlined.<br />

Fenix Games<br />

Chris Ko,<br />

Co-Founder & CEO<br />

Fenix Games, a publisher of<br />

Web3 games, has formed a<br />

partnership with Immutable,<br />

a Web3 gaming platform, with<br />

the aim of identifying, supporting, and<br />

launching Web3 games for widespread<br />

adoption. Fenix Games has joined<br />

forces with Immutable to create a collection<br />

of blockchain-powered games<br />

in collaboration with top-tier game<br />

developers. With extensive experience<br />

managing successful franchises such<br />

as Madden Mobile, Need for Speed<br />

Mobile, <strong>The</strong> Sims Mobile, and Plants<br />

vs. Zombies, the Fenix Games team<br />

is well-equipped to develop and scale<br />

licensed and original games that reach<br />

millions of players worldwide.<br />

To seamlessly integrate games into<br />

the Web3 ecosystem, Fenix Games<br />

sought a reliable and secure platform,<br />

ultimately selecting Immutable<br />

due to its proven track record and<br />

robust infrastructure. By leveraging<br />

Immutable’s expertise, Fenix Games<br />

aims to navigate the complexities of<br />

Web3, reduce risks for developers,<br />

and accelerate the overall growth of<br />

the industry.<br />

Andrew Sorokovsky, Vice President<br />

of Global Business Development at Immutable,<br />

expressed excitement about<br />

the partnership, highlighting the founding<br />

team’s experience in triple-A publishing<br />

and Web3 at Mythical Games.<br />

He emphasized the collaborative effort<br />

in building the future of gaming.<br />

In return, Fenix Games will utilize<br />

its deep expertise to bring some of the<br />

best gaming development teams to the<br />

Web3 space. <strong>The</strong> company will curate,<br />

advise, and publish live services within<br />

Immutable’s ecosystem of games.<br />

Rudy Koch, Chief Business Officer<br />

of Fenix Games, praised Immutable<br />

as the benchmark for providing scalable<br />

Web3 solutions for mass market<br />

games. Koch emphasized their joint<br />

efforts to accelerate growth in the<br />

Web3 games sector and offer a clear<br />

path for top-tier game developers<br />

entering the space. <strong>The</strong> partnership<br />

is expected to foster a deep and longterm<br />

collaboration between the two<br />

companies.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 45

Energy<br />

<strong>The</strong> Future of Renewable Energy: Exploring<br />

Innovative Solutions and Technologies<br />

<strong>The</strong> United Arab Emirates (UAE) is leading the way in implementing groundbreaking<br />

renewable energy and energy efficiency programs. With a clear understanding<br />

of the impacts of climate change, the UAE is pursuing alternative<br />

means of producing the power needed to fuel its economy. Through its Net Zero<br />

by 2050 Strategic Initiative and ambitious energy goals, the UAE aims to create<br />

a sustainable future by combining renewable, nuclear, and clean energy sources.<br />

46 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

Despite having significant oil<br />

and gas reserves, the UAE<br />

has taken aggressive action<br />

to diversify its energy mix<br />

and economy. In a strategic partnership,<br />

state-owned companies Abu Dhabi<br />

National Oil Company (ADNOC),<br />

Taqa, and Mubadala have become<br />

shareholders of renewable energy<br />

company Masdar. This partnership<br />

positions Masdar as one of the largest<br />

clean energy companies globally, with<br />

plans to expand its renewable energy<br />

capacity to well over 50GW by 2030.<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE recognizes the importance of<br />

transitioning to low-carbon hydrocarbons<br />

and has deployed industrial-scale<br />

carbon capture technology, making<br />

its hydrocarbons among the least<br />

carbon-intensive in the world.<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE is rapidly expanding its<br />

use of clean energy sources. It operates<br />

three nuclear power reactors and<br />

is home to three of the largest and<br />

lowest-cost solar plants in the world.<br />

<strong>The</strong> country’s commitment to clean<br />

energy is evident through its targets of<br />

achieving 44% clean energy, 38% gas,<br />

12% clean coal, and 6% nuclear energy<br />

in its energy mix by 2050.<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE is also focusing on the<br />

potential of hydrogen as a key fuel<br />

in the energy transition. To enhance<br />

its leadership and competitiveness in<br />

hydrogen markets, the UAE launched<br />

the Hydrogen Leadership Roadmap<br />

and aims to capture 25% of the global<br />

hydrogen fuel market by 2030. <strong>The</strong><br />

country is investing AED 600B in clean<br />

and renewable energy projects over<br />

the next three decades, with the goal<br />

of positioning itself as a global leader<br />

in hydrogen technology.<br />

To drive disruptive technologies and<br />

economic opportunities that accelerate<br />

decarbonization, the UAE hosted the<br />

UAE Climate Tech forum. <strong>The</strong> forum<br />

brought together policymakers, CEOs,<br />

experts, technology leaders, and investors<br />

to address challenges and<br />

opportunities in green hydrogen and<br />

the hydrogen economy. <strong>The</strong> dialogue<br />

emphasized the importance of collaboration,<br />

innovation, and consensus<br />

on low-carbon hydrogen standards<br />

to enable trade and the growth of the<br />

hydrogen economy.<br />

Solar energy plays a vital role in the<br />

UAE’s clean energy strategy. <strong>The</strong> UAE<br />

has implemented large-scale solar projects<br />

such as the Noor Abu Dhabi Solar<br />

Power Plant, the Shams Solar Power<br />

Station, and the Mohammed bin Rashid<br />

Al Maktoum Solar Park. <strong>The</strong>se projects<br />

have contributed significantly to the<br />

country’s clean energy goals and have<br />

positioned the UAE as a global leader<br />

in solar energy production.<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE’s dedication to renewable<br />

energy extends beyond solar power.<br />

<strong>The</strong> country is also investing in other<br />

forms of clean energy, including wind<br />

and hydroelectric power. <strong>The</strong> UAE has<br />

recognized the potential of wind energy<br />

and has plans to develop several<br />

wind farms across the country. <strong>The</strong>se<br />

projects will harness the strong winds<br />

in certain regions and contribute to<br />

the overall clean energy targets. Additionally,<br />

the UAE is constructing its<br />

first hydroelectric power plant in the<br />

Hatta region, utilizing stored water<br />

technology. This innovative project<br />

will use advanced turbines powered<br />

by clean energy to pump water from<br />

the Hatta Dam to an upper dam, generating<br />

electricity when needed and<br />

providing immediate response to<br />

energy demand.<br />

As the UAE prepares to host the<br />

28th Conference of the Parties to<br />

the UN Framework Convention on<br />

Climate Change (COP28), it aims to<br />

showcase its efforts and achievements<br />

in transitioning to renewable energy.<br />

This global platform will provide an<br />

opportunity for the UAE to share its<br />

experiences, exchange knowledge, and<br />

collaborate with international partners<br />

to accelerate the global energy<br />

transition. By leading by example and<br />

actively participating in international<br />

climate discussions, the UAE aims to<br />

inspire other countries and contribute<br />

to the collective effort in addressing<br />

climate change.<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE’s commitment to renewable<br />

energy and innovative technologies<br />

positions it as a global leader in<br />

the transition towards a sustainable<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE’s<br />

dedication<br />

to renewable<br />

energy extends<br />

beyond solar<br />

power. <strong>The</strong><br />

country is also<br />

investing in<br />

other forms of<br />

clean energy,<br />

including<br />

wind and<br />

hydroelectric<br />

power.<br />

future. Through strategic partnerships,<br />

investments, and ambitious goals,<br />

the UAE is diversifying its energy<br />

mix, reducing carbon emissions, and<br />

driving the growth of clean energy<br />

industries. With its focus on hydrogen<br />

and advancements in solar energy, the<br />

UAE is at the forefront of shaping the<br />

future of renewable energy.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 47

Energy News<br />

<strong>World</strong>’s Largest Waste-to-Energy Facility in Dubai Inaugurated by Sheikh<br />

Hamdan<br />

<strong>The</strong> United Arab Emirates<br />

(UAE) has unveiled the world’s<br />

largest and most efficient<br />

waste-to-energy facility in<br />

Warsan, Dubai, marking a significant<br />

step towards sustainable infrastructure.<br />

His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin<br />

Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum,<br />

Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman<br />

of <strong>The</strong> Executive Council of Dubai,<br />

led the inauguration ceremony of the<br />

state-of-the-art facility, which required<br />

a remarkable investment of AED<br />

4B. <strong>The</strong> project showcases Dubai’s<br />

commitment to a greener future and<br />

aligns with the UAE’s broader goals<br />

of diversification and environmental<br />

sustainability. Once fully operational,<br />

the facility is expected to convert 45<br />

percent of the emirate’s municipal waste<br />

into renewable energy, contributing<br />

to Dubai Municipality’s objective of<br />

diverting waste from landfills by 2030.<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE’s investment in cutting-edge<br />

waste-to-energy infrastructure sets an<br />

extraordinary example for sustainable<br />

development globally.<br />

UAE hailed for ‘leading<br />

by example’ with AED<br />

200B renewable energy<br />

push<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE has received praise for<br />

its commitment to translating<br />

promises into concrete actions,<br />

as it unveils plans to triple its<br />

renewable energy output by 2030. His<br />

Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid,<br />

the Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai,<br />

announced an updated national energy<br />

strategy that involves investments of up<br />

to AED 200B to meet the rising energy<br />

demands of a growing population. <strong>The</strong><br />

plans, approved by the UAE Cabinet,<br />

include a new hydrogen strategy, the<br />

establishment of a national network for<br />

electric vehicle charging stations, and<br />

the regulation of the electric vehicle<br />

market. <strong>The</strong>se ambitious targets set a<br />

strong precedent on the path to Cop28<br />

and have garnered recognition from<br />

Francesco La Camera, the director general<br />

of the International Renewable Energy<br />

Agency, for aligning with global energy<br />

transition objectives.<br />

UAE Cabinet Approves Energy and Hydrogen<br />

Strategies, Establishes Ministry of Investment<br />

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed<br />

bin Rashid Al Maktoum,<br />

Vice President, Prime Minister<br />

of the UAE, and Ruler of<br />

Dubai, chaired a UAE Cabinet meeting<br />

at Qasr Al Watan in Abu Dhabi, where<br />

several important decisions were made.<br />

Under the directives of President Sheikh<br />

Mohamed bin Zayed, the establishment<br />

of the Ministry of Investment was<br />

approved, with Mohamed Hassan Al<br />

Suwaidi appointed as the minister. <strong>The</strong><br />

aim is to develop the UAE’s investment<br />

vision, enhance the investment environment,<br />

and boost the competitiveness<br />

of the sector. Additionally, the updated<br />

UAE National Energy Strategy was<br />

approved, with a focus on tripling the<br />

contribution of renewable energy and<br />

investing AED 150 to AED 200 billion<br />

to meet the country’s growing energy<br />

demand.<br />

48 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

France & UAE Join Forces to Drive Clean, Green Energy Transition<br />

French Trade Minister, Olivier<br />

Becht, has reaffirmed the<br />

shared commitment between<br />

France and the UAE to accelerate<br />

the transition to green energy in<br />

response to the challenges posed by<br />

climate change. <strong>The</strong> two nations are<br />

actively collaborating on the development<br />

of low-carbon energy solutions,<br />

including hydrogen and nuclear energy<br />

for peaceful purposes. Minister Becht<br />

expressed confidence in the UAE’s<br />

ability to successfully host COP28 in<br />

Dubai, recognizing the country’s leadership<br />

in addressing climate change.<br />

He emphasized the urgent need to<br />

expedite the energy transition, citing<br />

the increasing frequency of natural<br />

disasters linked to climate change. Minister<br />

Becht also highlighted the strong<br />

and longstanding relationship between<br />

the UAE and France and expressed his<br />

intent to further strengthen economic<br />

cooperation during his upcoming visit<br />

to the UAE.<br />

Suhail Al Mazrouei Unveils Updated UAE Energy<br />

Strategy 2050 and National Hydrogen Strategy<br />

Suhail bin Mohammed Al Mazrouei,<br />

the Minister of Energy<br />

and Infrastructure, has unveiled<br />

the details of the updated UAE<br />

Energy Strategy 2050 and the National<br />

Hydrogen Strategy. <strong>The</strong>se strategies,<br />

approved by the UAE Cabinet, aim to<br />

bolster the country’s efforts in meeting<br />

its climate and net-zero commitments by<br />

2050. Al Mazrouei highlighted that the<br />

strategies align with various national<br />

initiatives, such as the UAE Net Zero<br />

by 2050 Strategic Initiative and the<br />

Circular Economy Policy 2031. With<br />

the Year of Sustainability underway<br />

and the upcoming hosting of COP28,<br />

the UAE aims to lead by example in<br />

adopting sustainable policies and driving<br />

global collective action to combat<br />

climate change.<br />

UAE to triple contribution of renewables to energy<br />

mix over next 7 years<br />

Updated Energy Plan and<br />

Hydrogen Strategy Reinforce<br />

UAE’s Sustainable<br />

Economy Commitment<br />

<strong>The</strong> updated UAE Energy Strategy<br />

2050 and the National Hydrogen<br />

Strategy will reinforce<br />

the Emirates’ commitment<br />

to sustainable economic and social<br />

development, according to Dr. Sultan<br />

Al Jaber, Minister of Industry and<br />

Advanced Technology and COP28<br />

President-designate. <strong>The</strong> initiatives<br />

aim to enhance the UAE’s climate<br />

action efforts, reduce emissions, and<br />

mitigate the impact of climate change.<br />

Dr. Al Jaber highlighted the UAE’s<br />

significant progress in increasing renewable<br />

energy capacity over the past<br />

decade and the ambitious goal to triple<br />

it further to reach 14.2 gigawatts by<br />

2030. Additionally, he emphasized the<br />

UAE’s aspirations to become a leading<br />

producer of low-carbon hydrogen and<br />

contribute to the global decarbonization<br />

of the economy.<br />

Saudi Arabia’s localization efforts<br />

in the biopharmaceutical sector<br />

received a boost through a<br />

partnership between the newly<br />

established Lifera, a biopharmaceutical<br />

firm owned by the Public Investment<br />

Fund, French pharmaceutical company<br />

Sanofi, and Saudi manufacturer Arabio.<br />

<strong>The</strong> collaboration aims to increase<br />

the local production of vaccines within<br />

the Kingdom. A Memorandum of<br />

Understanding was signed to explore<br />

opportunities for cooperation, including<br />

Lifera becoming a contract manufacturer<br />

for Sanofi. This partnership<br />

aligns with Saudi Arabia’s strategy to<br />

localize vaccine production. Arabio,<br />

partially owned by Tamer Group, will<br />

also strengthen the local and regional<br />

distribution of vaccines and pharmaceutical<br />

products, promoting national<br />

resilience and self-sufficiency.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 49

Wheels<br />

<strong>2023</strong> McLaren Artura<br />

McLaren introduces the<br />

Artura, a brand-new<br />

model that incorporates<br />

a hybrid V-6 powertrain<br />

and introduces the MCLA platform<br />

for the esteemed British supercar<br />

manufacturer.<br />

Embracing the future of highperformance<br />

vehicles, McLaren presents<br />

the Artura supercar for <strong>2023</strong>. This<br />

visually stunning masterpiece combines<br />

a newly designed lightweight platform<br />

with a hybrid powertrain. It marks the<br />

first time McLaren incorporates a twinturbo<br />

V-6 engine, and it also features a<br />

battery-electric powertrain, creating a<br />

groundbreaking plug-in hybrid model.<br />

Together, these power sources generate<br />

an impressive combined output of<br />

671 horsepower and 531 pound-feet<br />

of torque. Performance estimates<br />

showcase the Artura’s remarkable<br />

capabilities, including a zero-to-60-mph<br />

acceleration time of 2.6 seconds and<br />

a top speed of 205 mph. <strong>The</strong> Artura<br />

retains McLaren’s signature bodywork,<br />

featuring prominent air vents and<br />

scissor-style doors. Inside, the Artura<br />

provides a more luxurious and spacious<br />

interior compared to the 720S, along<br />

with various convenient features and<br />

driver-assistance technologies.<br />

50 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

Specifications<br />

Horsepower: 671 hp<br />

Torque: 531 lb-ft<br />

Acceleration: 0-60 mph in 2.6 seconds<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 51

Healthcare<br />

How Technology Will Shape the Future<br />

of Healthcare<br />

<strong>The</strong> healthcare industry is often perceived as slow to adopt new technologies,<br />

but in the UAE, a remarkable shift has taken place, with<br />

healthcare providers embracing technological advancements at an<br />

accelerated pace. This remarkable progress can be attributed to the<br />

active involvement of regulators and the implementation of effective<br />

governance strategies. <strong>The</strong> UAE’s healthcare sector embarked on its<br />

digital transformation journey early on, laying a strong foundation for<br />

innovation.<br />

52 www.thefinanceworld.com<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

With its focus on patient-centric care, operational<br />

efficiency, and innovation, the UAE’s healthcare sector<br />

is poised for an exciting future, setting a benchmark for<br />

healthcare delivery worldwide.<br />

Recognizing the potential of<br />

telemedicine, Dubai launched<br />

the groundbreaking RoboDoc<br />

initiative, leveraging advanced<br />

technologies to connect patients with<br />

specialized care without the need for<br />

extensive travel. Teleconsultations<br />

allow hospital patients to seek advice<br />

from doctors and obtain second and<br />

third opinions from specialists located<br />

anywhere in the world. Through this<br />

initiative, patients can receive diagnoses<br />

and have their medications dispensed by<br />

robotic pharmacies, facilitating seamless<br />

and timely access to medical expertise.<br />

With the successful pilot project conducted<br />

at DHA facilities, the stage is set<br />

for the wider adoption of telemedicine<br />

across Dubai’s healthcare landscape.<br />

Another significant stride in the<br />

UAE’s healthcare industry is the integration<br />

of 3D-printing technology<br />

in complex surgical procedures. Under<br />

the ambitious Dubai 3D Printing<br />

Strategy, the emirate aims to position<br />

itself as a global hub for 3D printing<br />

technology in the medical field by 2030.<br />

Recent successful operations, where<br />

surgeons utilized 3D-printed models to<br />

plan intricate surgeries, showcased the<br />

immense potential of this technology.<br />

Surgeons at Dubai Hospital, armed<br />

with accurate 3D models of organs and<br />

tumors, were able to streamline surgical<br />

procedures, reduce operation time, and<br />

ensure optimal patient outcomes. <strong>The</strong><br />

advancements in medical 3D printing<br />

are revolutionizing surgical precision,<br />

transforming the way surgeons approach<br />

complex cases.<br />

Dubai’s healthcare sector has embraced<br />

the concept of robotic pharmacies, with<br />

the first automated dispensary opening<br />

its doors at Rashid Hospital. <strong>The</strong>se futuristic<br />

pharmacies leverage artificial<br />

intelligence and barcode scanning to<br />

efficiently handle prescriptions. With<br />

a staggering storage capacity of 35,000<br />

medicines, robotic pharmacies can<br />

accurately dispense medications at a<br />

rate of 12 prescriptions per minute.<br />

<strong>The</strong> integration of electronic notes<br />

and internationally recognized GS1<br />

barcodes minimizes errors caused by<br />

handwriting, ensuring improved patient<br />

safety and enabling pharmacists to<br />

provide comprehensive counseling<br />

to patients. <strong>The</strong> paperless system implemented<br />

by robotic pharmacies is<br />

enhancing medication management<br />

and revolutionizing pharmaceutical<br />

services in the UAE.<br />

<strong>The</strong> digitization of patient records<br />

marks a significant milestone in the<br />

UAE’s healthcare system. Through<br />

the Salama program, the Dubai Health<br />

Authority (DHA) is spearheading the<br />

transformation of patient records into a<br />

comprehensive, accessible, and secure<br />

electronic format. This digitization<br />

initiative facilitates streamlined communication<br />

between medical staff across<br />

different hospitals and clinics, ensuring<br />

a continuum of care for individual<br />

patients. <strong>The</strong> system’s real-time alerts<br />

and data integration capabilities enable<br />

healthcare providers to proactively<br />

address patient needs, prevent illness,<br />

and enhance disease management.<br />

Additionally, the implementation of<br />

the Network and Analysis Backbone<br />

for Integrated Dubai Health further<br />

strengthens the exchange of patient<br />

data and contributes to effective public<br />

health awareness initiatives.<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE’s healthcare landscape also<br />

witnesses the proliferation of health<br />

apps designed to empower individuals<br />

in managing their health and wellness.<br />

From Tifli, an app guiding expectant<br />

parents through pregnancy milestones,<br />

to Hayati, aiding diabetes patients in<br />

monitoring their condition, these applications<br />

provide valuable resources<br />

and personalized support. Furthermore,<br />

smart fitness initiatives leverage technology<br />

to ensure efficient medical fitness<br />

assessments for individuals applying<br />

for visas, streamlining processes and<br />

enhancing public health safety measures.<br />

<strong>The</strong> continuous focus on cybersecurity<br />

further reinforces the UAE’s commitment<br />

to protecting patient data and<br />

maintaining the highest standards of<br />

data privacy and security.<br />

As the UAE forges ahead in embracing<br />

technological advancements, its healthcare<br />

sector is poised for an exciting<br />

future. <strong>The</strong> successful integration of<br />

telemedicine, 3D modeling, robotic pharmacies,<br />

digitization of patient records,<br />

and health apps exemplify the country’s<br />

commitment to patient-centric care,<br />

operational efficiency, and innovation.<br />

With regulatory involvement, the UAE<br />

is spearheading the transformation of<br />

healthcare delivery, setting a benchmark<br />

for other regions to follow. <strong>The</strong> future<br />

of healthcare in the UAE promises an<br />

ecosystem where advanced technologies<br />

play a pivotal role in enhancing<br />

patient outcomes, improving access to<br />

specialized care, and revolutionizing<br />

healthcare delivery as we know it.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 53

Mergers & Acquisitions<br />

Navigating Corporate Mergers: Essential<br />

Insights for Company Consolidation<br />

Mergers and acquisitions (M&A) often evoke mystery and confusion, with only<br />

partial information available to the public while most of the process remains<br />

behind closed doors. This lack of transparency can leave shareholders uncertain<br />

about what to expect and how share prices will be affected.<br />

Successful mergers can be mutually beneficial, but they come with various<br />

considerations such as cost issues, cultural conflicts, and customer impact. M&A<br />

involving privately held companies involve legal, business, human resources,<br />

intellectual property, and financial complexities. Understanding these dynamics<br />

and common challenges can help companies successfully navigate the sale<br />

process.<br />

54 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

When receiving a merger offer,<br />

it is important to understand<br />

whether this is a merger of<br />

equals or if it is really an<br />

acquisition. Mergers of equals rarely<br />

work. <strong>The</strong> uncertainty created and the<br />

lack of clear lines of authority generally<br />

undermines the effectiveness of both<br />

organizations. Even if the numbers look<br />

good, question yourself if it is a good fit.<br />

By gaining insights into mergers, shareholders<br />

and investors can make informed<br />

decisions and potentially capitalize on<br />

the opportunities presented by corporate<br />

consolidations.<br />

maintain and improve customer loyalty,<br />

market share and brand advocates?<br />

Understanding your leverage points is<br />

a must when it comes to M&A. Comprehend<br />

whether it’s your ability to remain a<br />

standalone business or if there are other<br />

synergistic partners where M&A might<br />

make sense. Having leverage or at least<br />

options allows you to remain poised in<br />

the negotiating process. This should<br />

ultimately allow for the best decision<br />

and outcome for your company.<br />

Mergers and acquisitions (M&A) processes<br />

typically take several months to<br />

parties to access relevant information<br />

promptly. It is also beneficial to have a<br />

draft disclosure schedule prepared in<br />

advance. This is an important component<br />

of the M&A agreement and having it ready<br />

early can save time during negotiations.<br />

To effectively communicate the value<br />

that the selling company brings to the<br />

buyer, management presentations or<br />

PowerPoints should be prepared and<br />

vetted early on. <strong>The</strong> CEO should be<br />

well-prepared to explain the value-add of<br />

the selling company, while the CFO should<br />

be ready to address financial inquiries<br />

Build or buy? Cost, cultural fit, and value<br />

alignment crucial. Customer impact, loyalty,<br />

market share, and brand advocacy priority.<br />

<strong>The</strong> “build or buy” decision for mergers<br />

comes down to cost considerations<br />

and culture. Acquiring is typically much<br />

faster than building, which offers speed<br />

to market, speed to a more effective<br />

product-market fit, and speed to becoming<br />

a growth company. <strong>The</strong> softer side of a<br />

merger is the culture fit. Values must align<br />

to maximize the efficiency of the human<br />

capital between the merging companies.<br />

Another essential thought is how will<br />

this impact your customers. And it’s more<br />

than just a question of “whether” to proceed<br />

or not, but also “how” you should<br />

move forward. What are your priorities to<br />

complete, ranging from 4 to 6 months on<br />

average. However, there are strategies<br />

to expedite the timeline. One approach<br />

is to run a tightly controlled auction<br />

sale process with the assistance of an<br />

investment banker or financial advisor.<br />

This creates a competitive environment,<br />

forcing potential buyers to make decisions<br />

within a shorter timeframe.<br />

To facilitate efficient due diligence,<br />

the selling company should organize all<br />

key documents such as contracts, financial<br />

statements, patents, and corporate<br />

records in an online data room early<br />

in the process. This allows interested<br />

and defend the underlying assumptions<br />

of financial projections.<br />

Appointing an experienced lead negotiator<br />

from the selling company, who can<br />

make quick decisions on behalf of the<br />

company, can help expedite the process<br />

and avoid unnecessary delays. By implementing<br />

these strategies, companies can<br />

streamline the M&A process, increase<br />

efficiency, and potentially shorten the<br />

overall timeline for successful deal<br />

completion.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 55

Merger and Acquisition News<br />

Palms Sports sets the pace for 2H with AED 300M new business acquisition<br />

Palms Sports (ADX: PALMS), a<br />

regional sports management<br />

company and the largest mass<br />

Jiu-Jitsu training provider globally,<br />

has acquired Securiguard Middle<br />

East, a specialized security services<br />

firm. <strong>The</strong> AED 300M acquisition marks<br />

Palms Sports’ strategic expansion into<br />

the comprehensive security solutions<br />

sector, diversifying its business portfolio<br />

and emphasizing its commitment to sustained<br />

growth. <strong>The</strong> manned guard security<br />

industry in the UAE has experienced<br />

consistent growth due to infrastructure<br />

expansion. Securiguard Middle East,<br />

founded in 2001, operates with over<br />

13,000 staff members and a modern fleet<br />

of 150 vehicles. <strong>The</strong> company is known<br />

for providing trusted specialized security<br />

solutions across commercial, government,<br />

and residential sectors.<br />

Aamal Services to<br />

Acquire Maintenance<br />

Management Solutions<br />

Qatar-based Aamal Company has<br />

announced that its subsidiary,<br />

Aamal Services, is set to initiate<br />

negotiations for the acquisition<br />

of Maintenance Management Solutions<br />

(MMS), a fully-owned subsidiary of Al<br />

Faisal Holding. MMS is a prominent local<br />

provider of facilities management services,<br />

offering comprehensive solutions such as<br />

preventive and corrective maintenance,<br />

management of hard and soft services,<br />

engineering services, MEP maintenance,<br />

energy management, HVAC systems, and<br />

landscaping. <strong>The</strong> potential acquisition<br />

aligns with Aamal’s growth strategy of<br />

expanding its existing activities and<br />

venturing into new sectors. <strong>The</strong> inclusion<br />

of MMS in Aamal Services’ portfolio<br />

is expected to generate new revenue<br />

streams and strengthen their position<br />

as a preferred partner in the facilities<br />

management industry.<br />

TAQA set to expand portfolio with acquisition of<br />

SWS Holding<br />

Abu Dhabi National Energy<br />

Company (TAQA) has announced<br />

its definitive agreement<br />

to acquire Sustainable<br />

Water Solutions Holding Company (SWS<br />

Holding). SWS Holding was established<br />

with the objective of providing sustainable<br />

water solutions focused on<br />

resource recovery and water circularity<br />

for industries and communities. <strong>The</strong><br />

company took ownership of Abu Dhabi<br />

Sustainable Water Solutions Company<br />

(ADSWS), formerly known as Abu<br />

Dhabi Sewerage Services Company,<br />

responsible for wastewater collection,<br />

treatment, and reuse in Abu Dhabi. <strong>The</strong><br />

addition of SWS Holding’s specialized<br />

solutions to TAQA’s portfolio will<br />

create a vertically integrated player<br />

with strong capabilities in delivering<br />

high-quality water treatment solutions.<br />

<strong>The</strong> acquisition will enhance TAQA’s<br />

regulated asset value and cash flow<br />

profile, generating synergies and value<br />

for shareholders.<br />

Abu Dhabi’s ADQ Invests in Canadian Investor,<br />

Acquires Minority Stake<br />

Abu Dhabi’s sovereign-wealth<br />

investor, ADQ, and Canada’s<br />

Bank of Montreal (BMO)<br />

have joined forces to acquire<br />

minority equity stakes in Sagard, a global<br />

alternative asset management firm<br />

with $14.5B in assets under management.<br />

Additionally, Canadian insurer<br />

Great-West Lifeco plans to increase<br />

its existing minority stake in Sagard.<br />

<strong>The</strong> investment aims to fuel Sagard’s<br />

growth, including through mergers and<br />

acquisitions, as stated in a joint statement<br />

by the companies. Great-West<br />

Lifeco has been a strategic partner of<br />

Sagard since 2021 and had previously<br />

invested in Sagard products. <strong>The</strong> transaction,<br />

subject to regulatory approvals,<br />

is expected to be completed in the third<br />

quarter of <strong>2023</strong>. While the exact value<br />

of the deals was not disclosed, sources<br />

indicate that they exceed $100M.<br />

56 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

Aldar, IHC, and Adnec Join Forces to Create Property Management Firm<br />

for 135,000 Properties<br />

Aldar, IHC, and Adnec have<br />

announced their collaboration<br />

to establish a formidable<br />

property and facilities<br />

management firm in the region. This<br />

venture involves merging Eltizam Asset<br />

Management Group, jointly owned by<br />

IHC and ADNEC Group, with Aldar<br />

Estates. Aldar will hold a majority stake<br />

and maintain control of Aldar Estates,<br />

while IHC and Adnec Group will share<br />

the remaining ownership equally. This<br />

partnership aims to position Aldar<br />

Estates as a leading national player in<br />

Aster DM Healthcare in<br />

Talks with Fajr Capital<br />

and Others<br />

Aster DM Healthcare has confirmed<br />

ongoing discussions<br />

with Fajr Capital and other<br />

parties regarding a potential<br />

carve-out of its Gulf business. Private<br />

equity firm Fajr Capital is reportedly<br />

in exclusive talks to acquire a majority<br />

stake in Aster’s Gulf business. Aster<br />

stated that the discussions with various<br />

potential counterparties, including<br />

Fajr Capital, are still in progress. No<br />

significant event has been disclosed so<br />

far, and Aster will continue to adhere<br />

to the regulations of the Securities and<br />

Exchange Board of India. Fajr Capital,<br />

based in Dubai, is in the final stages of<br />

due diligence and is expected to close<br />

the deal soon with the involvement of<br />

other investors in a consortium. Aster,<br />

listed in Mumbai, initiated the sales<br />

process last year to separate its Gulf<br />

business, which was deemed undervalued.<br />

<strong>The</strong> company operates numerous<br />

hospitals, clinics, and pharmacies in<br />

India and the United Arab Emirates.<br />

Additionally, Aster is engaged in talks<br />

to sell a 30% stake in its Indian business<br />

for approximately $300M.<br />

property and facilities management, with<br />

potential for future expansion in the<br />

region. <strong>The</strong> merger significantly boosts<br />

Aldar Estates’ portfolio from 77,000<br />

to approximately 135,000 residential<br />

units under management. In the past<br />

year, Aldar Estates has expanded its<br />

services and acquired several companies,<br />

including Basatin Landscaping Services,<br />

Spark Security Services, Mace Macro<br />

Technical Services, Pactive Sustainable<br />

Solutions, and SAGA International Owner<br />

Association Management Services.<br />

Bahrain’s Al Salam Bank acquires majority<br />

stake in Algeria bank<br />

Al Salam Bank has announced<br />

the acquisition of a majority<br />

stake in Al Salam Bank<br />

Algeria (ASBA), increasing<br />

its shareholding from 37.43% to<br />

53.13%. <strong>The</strong> bank purchased shares<br />

from various shareholders, marking<br />

a significant milestone in its growth<br />

strategy and expanding its regional<br />

presence. ASBA, the fastest growing<br />

bank in Algeria, recorded total assets<br />

of $2.2B, a financing book of $1.3B,<br />

and a customer deposit base of $1.8B<br />

in Q1 <strong>2023</strong>. This acquisition aims to<br />

strengthen ASBA’s growth prospects,<br />

enabling it to diversify product offerings,<br />

increase market share, accelerate<br />

its digitalization journey, and capitalize<br />

on opportunities in retail banking, corporate<br />

banking, and trade finance. Al<br />

Salam Bank intends to support ASBA<br />

in its growth journey and leverage new<br />

opportunities in Algeria and the wider<br />

region, building on its successful M&A<br />

track record.<br />

Sharjah’s Merger of R&D Institutions Creates Robust<br />

Research, Technology, and Innovation Hub<br />

Sharjah Research Technology<br />

and Innovation Park (SRTIP)<br />

and Sharjah Oasis for Technology<br />

and Innovation (SOTI)<br />

are merging to create a powerful research,<br />

technology, and innovation<br />

hub in Sharjah, UAE. <strong>The</strong> merger aims<br />

to strengthen the UAE’s knowledge<br />

economy and its reputation as a hub<br />

for entrepreneurship. SRTIP will absorb<br />

SOTI, combining their resources and<br />

expertise to establish an independent<br />

Free Zone Authority (FZA). This advancement<br />

will unlock the vast potential<br />

of Sharjah’s technology and innovation<br />

sector, solidifying the UAE’s position<br />

as a global destination for business and<br />

entrepreneurship. <strong>The</strong> newly formed<br />

FZA will be managed and represented<br />

by an independent Board of Directors<br />

chaired by Sheikha Bodour Al Qasimi,<br />

driving the development of the Sharjah<br />

Research, Technology and Innovation<br />

Park Free Zone Authority.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 57

Cryptocurrency<br />

Cryptocurrency Investors Regain Confidence<br />

in <strong>2023</strong>; Exploring New Trading<br />

Opportunities<br />

<strong>The</strong> United Arab Emirates (UAE) has emerged as a leading player in<br />

the global cryptocurrency industry, attracting significant attention<br />

and investment due to its favourable crypto-friendly regulations. With<br />

blockchain technology experiencing rapid growth, the country has<br />

become a preferred destination for digital currency enthusiasts. Dubai<br />

and Abu Dhabi are engaged in a competitive race for cryptocurrency<br />

dominance, hosting major exchanges like FTX.<br />

58 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

Dubai and the UAE have<br />

positioned themselves as<br />

attractive destinations for<br />

crypto companies due to their<br />

accommodating regulatory authorities<br />

and progressive finance regulations.<br />

<strong>The</strong> MENA region boasts over 8,000<br />

active individuals in the Web3 space,<br />

with prominent players like Crypto.<br />

com, Binance, and <strong>The</strong> Hashgraph<br />

Association thriving in the region. Additionally,<br />

the Dubai metaverse strategy<br />

aims to transform Dubai into one of the<br />

top 10 metaverse economies, creating<br />

thousands of virtual roles by 2030.<br />

One significant advantage of the<br />

UAE for cryptocurrency enthusiasts<br />

is its tax benefits. Moving to Dubai<br />

offers individuals complete exemption<br />

from taxes, including those related to<br />

cryptocurrency operations. Whether it<br />

involves the sale of cryptocurrencies,<br />

high-frequency or algorithmic trading,<br />

mining, or the sale of non-fungible<br />

tokens (NFTs), individuals can enjoy<br />

tax-free status.<br />

Decentralized <strong>Finance</strong> (DeFi) is revolutionizing<br />

the cryptocurrency space.<br />

Built on public blockchain networks,<br />

DeFi applications use smart contracts<br />

to automate financial transactions,<br />

eliminating intermediaries. It offers<br />

benefits such as decentralization, accessibility,<br />

and transparency. However,<br />

risks include its new and untested<br />

nature, security vulnerabilities, and<br />

regulatory uncertainties. Nevertheless,<br />

DeFi’s transformative potential makes it<br />

a significant trend in the crypto world.<br />

DeFi applications operate on public<br />

blockchains like Ethereum, leveraging<br />

smart contracts to automate financial<br />

activities. Users can access these apps<br />

through web browsers or mobile apps,<br />

using crypto wallets for interaction.<br />

Benefits include decentralized control,<br />

global accessibility, and transparent<br />

transactions. However, risks involve<br />

technology immaturity, security vulnerabilities,<br />

and regulatory challenges.<br />

DeFi has emerged as a major trend<br />

in cryptocurrency, enabling automated<br />

financial transactions through smart<br />

contracts on public blockchains. It<br />

offers advantages like decentralized<br />

control, global accessibility, and enhanced<br />

transparency. Yet, risks exist due<br />

to its nascent state, potential security<br />

vulnerabilities, and regulatory uncertainties.<br />

Despite the risks, DeFi holds<br />

transformative potential in reshaping<br />

traditional financial systems.<br />

NFTs (Non-Fungible Tokens) are<br />

unique digital assets representing ownership<br />

of items like artwork and music.<br />

Unlike regular cryptocurrencies, NFTs<br />

cannot be exchanged one-to-one. <strong>The</strong>y<br />

use blockchain and smart contracts<br />

to verify authenticity and ownership.<br />

NFTs have diverse applications. <strong>The</strong>y<br />

enable artists to sell digital art directly,<br />

<strong>The</strong> Dubai<br />

metaverse<br />

strategy aims<br />

to transform<br />

Dubai into<br />

one of the<br />

top 10<br />

metaverse<br />

economies<br />

by 2030.<br />

musicians to sell music to fans, gamers<br />

to trade in-game assets, and collectors<br />

to own rare items like trading cards.<br />

NFTs offer benefits like authenticity<br />

verification, transparency through<br />

blockchain records, and new revenue<br />

streams for creators. However, risks<br />

include price volatility, lack of regulation<br />

leading to scams, and environmental<br />

concerns due to energy-intensive<br />

blockchain operations.<br />

Stablecoins are a type of cryptocurrency<br />

designed to maintain a stable value by<br />

being pegged to traditional assets like<br />

the US dollar or gold. <strong>The</strong>y offer the<br />

advantages of cryptocurrencies, such as<br />

fast and borderless transactions, while<br />

minimizing the volatility associated<br />

with other cryptocurrencies. Some<br />

stablecoins achieve price stability<br />

through reserve backing, where the<br />

stablecoin is backed by a reserve of<br />

fiat currency or other assets, while<br />

others use algorithms or a combination<br />

of methods.<br />

Stablecoins provide several benefits<br />

over traditional cryptocurrencies and<br />

fiat currencies. <strong>The</strong>y offer a stable<br />

store of value, making them suitable<br />

for everyday transactions and as a<br />

reliable store of wealth. Additionally,<br />

stablecoins enable fast and cost-effective<br />

transactions, making them appealing<br />

for cross-border payments. <strong>The</strong> transparency<br />

and security provided by the<br />

underlying blockchain technology ensure<br />

that all transactions are recorded and<br />

tamper-proof.<br />

Popular stablecoins include Tether<br />

(USDT), backed by US dollars, and other<br />

stablecoins like USD Coin (USDC),<br />

TrueUSD (TUSD), and Paxos Standard<br />

(PAX), which also have fiat currency<br />

reserves. Another type of stablecoin is<br />

the algorithmic stablecoin, exemplified<br />

by Dai (DAI), which maintains its stability<br />

through a system of incentives and<br />

penalties on the Ethereum blockchain.<br />

However, stablecoins face challenges<br />

related to regulatory uncertainty and<br />

the risk of asset backing, highlighting<br />

the need for further development<br />

and regulatory clarity in this rapidly<br />

evolving sector.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 59

Real Estate<br />

How technology is transforming the real<br />

estate landscape in <strong>2023</strong><br />

<strong>The</strong> real estate landscape is on the brink of a transformative revolution as<br />

cutting-edge technologies continue to shape its future. In the aftermath<br />

of a tumultuous year for global economies, the real estate market<br />

bore the brunt of the turmoil. However, amidst the slow recovery, a<br />

glimmer of hope emerges as mortgage rates plummet, igniting a surge<br />

in homebuyer activity, while the supply steadily diminishes. As we<br />

venture into <strong>2023</strong> and beyond, let us explore the current and emerging<br />

trends that promise to reshape the real estate industry as we know it.<br />

60 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

<strong>The</strong> real estate landscape is undergoing a<br />

transformative revolution driven by cutting-edge<br />

technologies. As we enter <strong>2023</strong>, several trends<br />

promise to reshape the industry.<br />

<strong>The</strong> future of real estate is set<br />

to be shaped by the growing<br />

influence of artificial intelligence<br />

(AI). AI-driven technologies,<br />

such as Generative AI, have<br />

the capability to revolutionize the industry<br />

by generating precise property<br />

representations, classifying diverse<br />

building types, and providing market<br />

trend-based property descriptions.<br />

Automation of tasks through AI can<br />

also enhance productivity and allow<br />

professionals to focus on value-added<br />

activities. However, it is essential to<br />

address concerns regarding accuracy<br />

and bias, as AI’s performance heavily<br />

relies on the quality and fairness of<br />

the training data to avoid potential discrimination<br />

in the real estate market.<br />

<strong>The</strong> convergence of Proptech and<br />

Crypto VCs is becoming evident as<br />

the real estate market undergoes rapid<br />

digitalization. Real estate ownership,<br />

being an immovable asset, is transitioning<br />

into a digital form through<br />

the utilization of Real <strong>World</strong> Assets<br />

(RWAs) protocols. This transformation<br />

paves the way for Proptech 3.0,<br />

a secure and transparent peer-to-peer<br />

ecosystem backed by the immense<br />

value of global real estate. With the<br />

integration of RWAs, the mortgage<br />

process becomes more accessible,<br />

while smart contracts ensure error-free<br />

transactions. By prioritizing fairness<br />

and preventing monopolization, Proptech<br />

3.0 aims to eradicate fraud and<br />

establish an equitable industry. <strong>The</strong><br />

inclusion of NFTs and fractional ownership<br />

further enhances liquidity and<br />

authentication for RWAs, opening new<br />

possibilities for the real estate market.<br />

As the global carbon market expands<br />

and carbon-focused ventures<br />

like Tesla succeed financially, the real<br />

estate industry is starting to recognize<br />

the importance of sustainability and<br />

decarbonization. Real estate’s significant<br />

carbon emissions, coupled<br />

with the potential for cost savings,<br />

improved indoor air quality, and increased<br />

market value, are driving the<br />

need for decarbonization. Proptech<br />

venture capital firm Fifth Wall, with<br />

its focus on sustainability, highlights<br />

the interconnectedness of automation,<br />

smart-building technology, and decarbonization<br />

in creating more sustainable<br />

assets. By investing in companies<br />

that reduce the carbon footprint of<br />

buildings, the real estate industry is<br />

taking significant steps towards a<br />

more energy-efficient and environmentally<br />

friendly future. Furthermore, the<br />

potential for real estate to contribute<br />

to carbon removal through land use<br />

and nature-based carbon offsets presents<br />

enormous growth opportunities<br />

in the coming years.<br />

ConTech, or construction technology,<br />

is playing a crucial role in addressing<br />

the affordable housing crisis and<br />

transforming the real estate industry.<br />

Advancements in online solutions,<br />

3D printing, robotics, and regtech are<br />

driving cost-efficiency and sustainability<br />

in construction. <strong>The</strong>se technologies<br />

streamline the building process, reduce<br />

labour requirements, and allow<br />

for customization and flexibility in<br />

housing design. Companies like Mighty<br />

Buildings and Plantd are gaining traction<br />

with their cost-competitive and<br />

sustainable building materials.<br />

Additionally, robotics automation<br />

in construction lowers the price of<br />

homes, making them more accessible<br />

to a wider range of buyers. <strong>The</strong> focus<br />

on innovative construction products<br />

and materials has accelerated, indicating<br />

a potential tipping point in the<br />

industry. Regtech solutions, such as<br />

Permitify and PlanGrid, streamline<br />

permitting processes and make it<br />

easier to obtain approvals for new construction<br />

projects. <strong>The</strong> integration of<br />

energy storage solutions, like Our Next<br />

Energy, further enhances the potential<br />

for buildings to become power plants.<br />

As we enter the coming year, the<br />

real estate industry stands at the<br />

threshold of transformative change<br />

driven by technological advancements.<br />

With real estate being a significant asset<br />

and a contributor to environmental<br />

concerns, it is crucial that these trends<br />

find space to flourish and contribute to<br />

society. From generative AI lightening<br />

the workload for market participants<br />

to the digitization of home ownership<br />

through RWAs and Proptech 3.0,<br />

and the rapid evolution of contech<br />

enabling affordable housing, these<br />

trends hold the key to a new era of real<br />

estate. As we anticipate the excitement<br />

of the upcoming year, it is essential<br />

for real estate professionals to embrace<br />

technology and comprehend<br />

its potential for enhancing efficiency,<br />

effectiveness, and overall success.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 61

Real Estate News<br />

Dubai registers property deals worth AED 1.4B<br />

Dubai’s real estate market<br />

continues to thrive, as<br />

evidenced by the latest data<br />

revealing property deals<br />

worth AED 1.4B. <strong>The</strong> transactions<br />

consisted of 495 sales, valued at AED<br />

1.15B, 79 mortgages amounting to<br />

AED 297.58M, and 6 gift deals totaling<br />

AED 7.52M. <strong>The</strong> sales encompassed<br />

467 villas and apartments worth AED<br />

938.02M, along with 28 land plots<br />

valued at AED 208.93M. <strong>The</strong> mortgages<br />

included 62 villas and apartments worth<br />

AED 213.79M and 17 land plots valued<br />

at AED 83.79M. Moreover, a recent<br />

industry report by Unique Properties<br />

highlighted an 80 percent increase in<br />

sales volume in the first half of the year<br />

compared to the same period last year,<br />

with 11,700 transactions recorded in<br />

the previous month alone.<br />

Saudi mortgages grow sharply by 65% to $1.8B<br />

in May: Al Rajhi<br />

Oman real estate sector<br />

records $3.2B of deals<br />

by the end of May<br />

<strong>The</strong> real estate sector in Oman<br />

has experienced significant<br />

growth in <strong>2023</strong>, according to<br />

recent data from the National<br />

Centre for Statistics and Information<br />

(NCSI). <strong>The</strong> total value of deals reached<br />

OR 1.22B ($3.2B) by the end of May, a<br />

substantial increase compared to OR<br />

885.6M ($2.3B) during the same period<br />

in 2022. <strong>The</strong> fees collected for these<br />

transactions also saw a notable rise,<br />

totaling OR 28.9M ($75M), marking a<br />

17.5 percent increase from 2022. Sales<br />

contracts saw a 6.4 percent increase in<br />

traded value, reaching OR468m ($1.2B),<br />

while the number of sales contracts<br />

declined by 4.1 percent. Mortgage<br />

contracts experienced a significant<br />

surge of 70.3 percent in traded value,<br />

amounting to OR 748.4M ($1.94B)<br />

through 10,110 contracts.<br />

Mortgage activity in Saudi<br />

Arabia experienced a significant<br />

growth of 65%,<br />

reaching SR 6.8B($1.8B),<br />

rebounding from April’s SR 4.1B. This<br />

recovery can be attributed to the<br />

resilience of the non-REDF category,<br />

which has been driving the demand<br />

for mortgages, according to Al Rajhi<br />

Capital Research. Furthermore, corporate<br />

loan growth remained robust,<br />

with total credit increasing by nearly<br />

12% year-on-year and 1.4% month-onmonth.<br />

Although demand deposits<br />

62 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong><br />

continued to decline, time deposits saw<br />

a strong inflow. Despite the mounting<br />

funding pressure, banks maintained<br />

solid profitability in May by passing on<br />

the high interest costs to consumers.<br />

Al Rajhi maintained a positive outlook<br />

on corporate banks, anticipating<br />

higher interest rates to persist for an<br />

extended period. Credit growth in May<br />

was strong, growing by 1.4% monthon-month<br />

and 11.8% year-on-year, with<br />

bank lending to the private sector<br />

expanding by 1.3% month-on-month<br />

and 10.3% year-on-year.<br />

Property Finder reports<br />

continued record YOY<br />

growth of Dubai’s real<br />

estate market<br />

Dubai’s property market witnessed<br />

robust growth in June<br />

<strong>2023</strong>, according to Property<br />

Finder. <strong>The</strong> month recorded<br />

10,419 real estate transactions, a 17.78%<br />

increase compared to June 2022. <strong>The</strong><br />

value of these transactions soared<br />

by 34.1%, reaching AED 30.41B, the<br />

highest in a decade. Buyers showed a<br />

preference for apartments, accounting<br />

for 57.5% of purchases, while villas<br />

and townhouses constituted 42.5%.<br />

Two-bedroom apartments were the<br />

most sought-after, representing 34.1% of<br />

searches, closely followed by one-bedroom<br />

units at 33.4%. In the rental<br />

market, 78.5% of tenants searched for<br />

apartments, with furnished properties<br />

being the top choice at 61.8%.

Real estate; A safe longterm<br />

investment in Qatar<br />

Experts in the industry have<br />

emphasized that real estate<br />

remains the best and safest option<br />

for long-term investment<br />

in Qatar. <strong>The</strong> country’s stable economy,<br />

coupled with world-class infrastructure<br />

and facilities, has attracted numerous<br />

investors. Following the successful<br />

hosting of the FIFA 2022 tournament,<br />

Qatar has witnessed a doubling of<br />

visitors in recent months. Jawdat Al<br />

Kateb, General Manager of Coreo Real<br />

Estate, emphasized the importance of<br />

understanding market demand and<br />

choosing the right place and platform<br />

for investment, whether in residential or<br />

commercial properties. With numerous<br />

investments and ongoing real estate<br />

developments in Qatar, investors can<br />

potentially experience significant returns<br />

and value appreciation in the long<br />

run. <strong>The</strong> upcoming events scheduled in<br />

Qatar further contribute to the rising<br />

demand for real estate.<br />

Dubai real estate posts semi-annual sales record<br />

<strong>The</strong> Dubai real estate market<br />

continues to showcase its<br />

robust demand as it sets new<br />

sales records in the first half<br />

of the year. Research conducted by<br />

W Capital analysis reveals that the<br />

emirate witnessed a staggering 61,000<br />

sales deals, amounting to a total value<br />

of AED 179.34B. <strong>The</strong> CEO of W Capital<br />

Real Estate Brokerage, Walid Al<br />

Zarooni, emphasized that the market’s<br />

exceptional performance was driven<br />

by supportive factors and sustained<br />

economic momentum. Comparing the<br />

first six months of <strong>2023</strong> to the previous<br />

year, sales value surged by 57%, while<br />

the number of deals increased by 42%.<br />

Additionally, June <strong>2023</strong> experienced an<br />

all-time high of 10,405 real estate sales<br />

deals worth AED 30.3B, surpassing<br />

previous records. Al Zarooni noted<br />

that Dubai’s legislative environment,<br />

which protects the rights of all stakeholders,<br />

contributes to the market’s<br />

stability and attracts both local and<br />

international investors.<br />

Emaar <strong>The</strong> Economic City Sells $98M Plot to<br />

Saudi Investors<br />

Emaar <strong>The</strong> Economic City has<br />

sold an undeveloped industrial<br />

plot in Saudi Arabia’s<br />

King Abdullah Economic City<br />

(KAEC) to a consortium of investors for<br />

366.77 million Saudi riyals ($97.78M).<br />

<strong>The</strong> buyers include a subsidiary of the<br />

Public Investment Fund, along with Dar<br />

Al Himmah Projects, Zamil Group Real<br />

Estate Company, and Abdullah Ibrahim<br />

Alkhorayef Sons. <strong>The</strong> transaction aims<br />

to establish an industrial logistics hub<br />

within the special economic zone, with<br />

the investors taking responsibility for<br />

developing the secondary infrastructure.<br />

<strong>The</strong> payment will be made over<br />

two years, and the proceeds will be<br />

utilised for infrastructure development,<br />

working capital, and financial<br />

commitments.<br />

Luxe Developers officially unveils $408M waterfront project in Ras Al Khaimah<br />

<strong>The</strong> Luxe Developers, based in<br />

the UAE, has recently unveiled<br />

its latest project, Oceano, a<br />

remarkable waterfront development<br />

situated on Al Marjan Island<br />

in Ras Al Khaimah. With a staggering<br />

investment of AED 1.5B ($408.4M), this<br />

twin-tower complex stands 18 stories<br />

tall and boasts a total of 206 units.<br />

<strong>The</strong>se units include one, two, three, and<br />

four-bedroom apartments, along with<br />

six penthouses and two exclusive sky<br />

villas. Breaking ground just last month,<br />

Oceano will span an impressive built-up<br />

area of 79,000 square metres, offering<br />

residents luxurious and modern living<br />

spaces with breathtaking views of the<br />

surrounding waterfront.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 63

Funding & Investment<br />

<strong>The</strong> Growth and Dominance of Gaming<br />

in the Middle East<br />

<strong>The</strong> Middle East is swiftly positioning itself as a frontrunner in shaping<br />

the future of gaming and esports, backed by unprecedented government<br />

investments and a burgeoning population of gaming enthusiasts. With<br />

Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF) injecting over $3 billion<br />

into the industry in 2022, part of a larger $38 billion commitment,<br />

and notable acquisitions already underway, the region is making a<br />

resounding statement of intent. <strong>The</strong> Middle East boasts a remarkable<br />

gaming penetration rate, with more than 60% of its population being<br />

gaming enthusiasts and a substantial share of gaming mobile app<br />

downloads.<br />

64 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

As the Middle East continues to innovate,<br />

invest, and engage audiences, it will play<br />

a significant role in shaping the future of<br />

the global gaming industry.<br />

Gaming revenues in the MENA<br />

region are projected to nearly<br />

double by 2027, reaching $6<br />

billion, according to the latest<br />

Future of Trade <strong>2023</strong> report by DMCC.<br />

<strong>The</strong> region’s emergence as a hub for<br />

consumers and creators is driven by a<br />

young and digitally adept population,<br />

extensive digital connectivity, and government<br />

support. <strong>The</strong> UAE and Saudi<br />

Arabia lead the region due to high-income<br />

levels, strong digital engagement, and<br />

public investment initiatives. Esports<br />

is a particularly promising segment,<br />

with MENA expected to see 23.3%<br />

revenue growth between 2019 and<br />

2024, supported by the region’s youth,<br />

international broadcasters, sponsors,<br />

and government backing. <strong>The</strong> DMCC<br />

Gaming Centre was launched in partnership<br />

with YaLLa Esports, while<br />

MY.GAMES will establish its regional<br />

headquarters in Abu Dhabi.<br />

Recently, Abu Dhabi established a<br />

specialized hub for games and esports,<br />

offering significant incentives. According<br />

to BCG’s latest gaming report, Over 60<br />

percent of the Middle East population<br />

are avid gamers, leading to one of the<br />

highest proportions of gaming mobile<br />

app downloads in the region (50 percent<br />

compared to the global average of 40<br />

percent). This indicates the region’s<br />

long-standing commitment to the<br />

gaming industry, as evident by Saudi<br />

Arabia’s recent announcement of its<br />

gaming and esports strategy and the<br />

UAE’s creation of two game centres<br />

to attract global companies.<br />

<strong>The</strong> Middle East’s population’s strong<br />

inclination towards gaming is evident<br />

in the significant growth of game<br />

streaming, projected to have a Compound<br />

Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of<br />

24.5%. According to the latest gaming<br />

report by Boston Consulting Group,<br />

this growth trajectory is expected<br />

to attract approximately 200 million<br />

users by 2025. Notably, the region’s<br />

growth rate is three times faster than<br />

that of China, the current leader in the<br />

industry, which has a CAGR of 7.6%.<br />

In the United Arab Emirates (UAE),<br />

the gaming market is thriving, attracting<br />

numerous game developers to<br />

expand their presence in Abu Dhabi.<br />

Consequently, Abu Dhabi is emerging<br />

as an independent hub for gaming and<br />

e-sports within the emirate. Furthermore,<br />

Dubai Internet City has become<br />

the regional headquarters for Tencent<br />

Games, a highly lucrative multimedia<br />

company. <strong>The</strong> UAE is anticipated to<br />

maintain the highest e-sports revenue<br />

per user in the region and one of the<br />

highest globally.<br />

<strong>The</strong> gaming industry is currently<br />

experiencing a notable increase in<br />

consolidation as major publishers,<br />

media companies, and technology firms<br />

acquire studios and related assets on<br />

a global scale.<br />

During the first half of 2022, over<br />

650 mergers and acquisitions (M&A)<br />

or investment deals were announced<br />

or completed, with dominant players<br />

controlling more than 70 percent of<br />

the market. <strong>The</strong>se companies are<br />

pursuing two primary M&A strategies:<br />

consolidating game development and<br />

expanding internal capabilities.<br />

Consolidation efforts aim to achieve<br />

economies of scale, support the growing<br />

costs of development, and enable<br />

experimentation with new intellectual<br />

properties. On the other hand, expanding<br />

internal capabilities allows publishers<br />

to access cutting-edge technologies in<br />

areas such as in-game advertising and<br />

motion tracking. This enhances the<br />

gaming experience and contributes to<br />

increased revenue streams.<br />

As the Middle East establishes itself<br />

as a powerhouse in the gaming domain,<br />

the region’s dedication to innovation,<br />

investment, and engaging audiences<br />

will significantly shape the future of<br />

the global gaming industry.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 65

Funding and Investment News<br />

UAE attracts $23B FDI in<br />

2022, ranks 4th Globally<br />

Saudi’s PIF, UAE’s ADQ among funds with highest<br />

sustainability rankings in <strong>2023</strong><br />

In 2022, the United Arab Emirates<br />

(UAE) celebrated a remarkable<br />

achievement in foreign direct<br />

investment (FDI) inflows, surpassing<br />

all previous records. Despite<br />

a global decline of 12% in FDIs, the<br />

UAE attracted a staggering value of<br />

AED 84B ($23B). His Highness Sheikh<br />

Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum,<br />

Vice-President and Prime Minister of<br />

the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, shared<br />

this news on Twitter, referring to the<br />

UNCTAD’s <strong>World</strong> Investment Report.<br />

<strong>The</strong> report also highlighted the UAE’s<br />

position as the fourth largest recipient<br />

of new project investments worldwide,<br />

following the United States, the United<br />

Kingdom, and India. Sheikh Mohammed<br />

expressed gratitude to the various<br />

regulatory, legislative, and service<br />

agencies that contribute to making the<br />

UAE an exceptional global investment<br />

environment.<br />

PIF and ADQ lead in <strong>2023</strong> GSR<br />

rankings, reporting significant<br />

improvements. Of the funds<br />

assessed in both 2022 and <strong>2023</strong>,<br />

69 recorded higher scores, 94 remained<br />

unchanged, and only 22 declined. PIF<br />

achieved an impressive 32% increase,<br />

promoting sustainable growth through<br />

best practices and transparent reporting.<br />

Its annual report showcases audit<br />

accounts, asset evolution, allocation,<br />

returns, and a “net zero by 2050” commitment.<br />

ADQ demonstrated a 24%<br />

improvement, releasing a detailed<br />

website and inaugural sustainability<br />

report. As the UAE prepares to host<br />

COP28, ADQ aligns national priorities<br />

with SDGs, aiming to set an example.<br />

<strong>The</strong>se Middle Eastern funds exemplify<br />

dedication to sustainability and<br />

responsible investment.<br />

Abu Dhabi’s ADQ<br />

acquires minority stake<br />

in Canadian investor<br />

Abu Dhabi Development Holding<br />

Co. (ADQ), a sovereign-wealth<br />

investor, and Canada’s Bank<br />

of Montreal (BMO) have<br />

announced their intention to acquire<br />

minority equity stakes in Sagard, a<br />

global alternative asset management<br />

firm with $14.5B in assets under management.<br />

This investment aims to support<br />

Sagard’s growth, particularly through<br />

mergers and acquisitions. Additionally,<br />

Canadian insurer Great-West Lifeco<br />

plans to increase its existing minority<br />

stake in Sagard. Great-West Lifeco has<br />

been a strategic partner of Sagard since<br />

2021 and has previously invested in<br />

Sagard’s products. <strong>The</strong> transaction is<br />

expected to be completed in the third<br />

quarter of <strong>2023</strong>, pending regulatory<br />

approvals. Although the exact value of<br />

the transactions has not been disclosed,<br />

sources suggest it exceeds $100M.<br />

Abu Dhabi’s Mubadala invests in CoolIT Systems<br />

alongside KKR<br />

Mubadala Investment Company,<br />

in partnership with<br />

investment funds managed<br />

by KKR, has announced its<br />

investment in the acquisition of CoolIT<br />

Systems, a leading provider of scalable<br />

liquid cooling solutions. CoolIT, based<br />

in Calgary, Canada, operates across<br />

North America, China, and Taiwan,<br />

specializing in reducing operating<br />

costs and carbon emissions in data<br />

centers and digital infrastructure.<br />

<strong>The</strong>ir patented liquid cooling technology<br />

enhances equipment reliability<br />

and longevity while allowing for higher<br />

server density compared to traditional<br />

air-cooling methods. Recognizing the<br />

projected energy consumption of data<br />

centers, which is estimated to reach<br />

8% of global energy usage by 2030,<br />

Mubadala aims to support CoolIT<br />

in scaling its cutting-edge cooling<br />

solutions.<br />

66 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

UAE to set up investment ministry<br />

<strong>The</strong> United Arab Emirates (UAE)<br />

has announced the establishment<br />

of a new federal ministry<br />

of investment to strengthen<br />

its global and domestic investment<br />

strategy in the face of increasing economic<br />

competition from neighbouring<br />

countries. As part of efforts to diversify<br />

their economies and reduce reliance on<br />

hydrocarbons, Gulf states are taking<br />

steps to attract foreign investment and<br />

expand their sources of revenue. <strong>The</strong><br />

UAE recognized as one of the most<br />

advanced in this regard, has already<br />

developed sectors like financial services<br />

and tourism while implementing<br />

important social and business reforms.<br />

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin<br />

Rashid al-Maktoum, Prime minister of<br />

UAE, Ruler of Dubai, revealed the plans<br />

on Twitter and appointed Mohammed<br />

Hassan Al Suwaidi as the investment<br />

minister, with further details yet to<br />

be provided.<br />

UAE President Witnesses Swearing-in of Investment Minister Alsuwaidi<br />

President His Highness Sheikh<br />

Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan<br />

and His Highness Sheikh<br />

Mohammed bin Rashid Al<br />

Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister,<br />

and Ruler of Dubai, attended the<br />

swearing-in ceremony of Mohamed<br />

Hassan Alsuwaidi as the UAE’s Minister<br />

of Investment. <strong>The</strong> event, held at<br />

Qasr Al Shati in Abu Dhabi, was also<br />

graced by the presence of Mansour<br />

bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Vice President,<br />

Deputy Prime Minister, and Minister of<br />

the Presidential Court. His Highness<br />

Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed extended<br />

his congratulations to Alsuwaidi on<br />

his appointment, emphasizing the<br />

significance of investment as a crucial<br />

element of the UAE’s comprehensive<br />

development strategy.<br />

Web3 Climate Infrastructure in GCC Region Requires $8B Investment<br />

According to an industry<br />

expert, the GCC region requires<br />

a capital investment<br />

of approximately $8B to develop<br />

Web3 climate infrastructure.<br />

This investment would focus on initiatives<br />

such as climate asset certification,<br />

waste management marketplaces,<br />

and decentralized funds. <strong>The</strong><br />

purpose is to attract innovators who<br />

can contribute to the development of<br />

the digital asset space and address<br />

the growing instances of climate<br />

change-induced disasters. <strong>The</strong> expert<br />

suggested that Dubai, which is already<br />

leading in formulating climate action<br />

policies, should consider introducing<br />

a Web3 climate sandbox that allows<br />

projects to operate while applying for<br />

a license. Web3 infrastructure plays a<br />

crucial role in democratizing access to<br />

climate assets like renewable energy<br />

credits, carbon credits, and green<br />

bonds, as it enables crowdfunding<br />

from a global pool of investors, responsible<br />

spending of funds, global<br />

collaboration, and transparent measurement<br />

of impact.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 67

Digital Assets<br />

Anticipating the Digital Economy: Top<br />

Predictions for <strong>2023</strong><br />

<strong>The</strong> digital economy has become an integral part of our society, revolutionizing<br />

how we interact with money, governance, and overall societal operations.<br />

As we enter the year <strong>2023</strong>, the landscape of digital assets and blockchain<br />

technology continues to evolve rapidly, presenting both challenges and<br />

opportunities. In this article, we delve into five insightful predictions that<br />

shed light on the anticipated developments within the digital economy for<br />

the year ahead.<br />

68 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

<strong>The</strong> NFT market is poised for transformation in<br />

<strong>2023</strong>, from driving value solely in digital art<br />

and collectables to serving as digital proof of<br />

provenance and authenticity.<br />

This year is poised to witness a<br />

significant surge in the adoption<br />

and utilization of blockchain<br />

technology by established<br />

and emerging companies. <strong>The</strong>se organizations<br />

are turning to blockchain<br />

to address real-world challenges and<br />

infrastructural issues, driving increased<br />

adoption and engagement. <strong>The</strong> current<br />

landscape resembles the early days of<br />

the internet, where scepticism abounded<br />

and ventures often failed. However, just<br />

as internet companies that found the<br />

right product-market fit transformed<br />

industries, blockchain and digital asset<br />

projects have the potential to revolutionize<br />

global systems. As prominent<br />

entities enter the space, developing<br />

blockchain initiatives and solutions,<br />

trust in the technology will be restored,<br />

inspiring confidence worldwide.<br />

A prime example of this trend is<br />

Starbucks’ Odyssey program, which<br />

seamlessly integrates non-fungible<br />

tokens (NFTs) into the company’s<br />

loyalty program. This success story is<br />

expected to pave the way for numerous<br />

brand strategies centred around digital<br />

assets, loyalty programs, and consumer<br />

engagement, leading to a proliferation<br />

of similar innovative initiatives.<br />

<strong>The</strong> digital asset ecosystem in <strong>2023</strong><br />

will undergo a transformative process<br />

similar to natural selection, resulting<br />

in stronger and more resilient companies<br />

thriving while weaker ones<br />

either disappear or undergo significant<br />

restructuring. Current market trends<br />

already demonstrate this Darwinistic<br />

dynamic, as only well-managed and<br />

genuinely intentioned companies<br />

manage to survive. Looking ahead to<br />

<strong>2023</strong>, further adjustments, consolidations,<br />

and transformations within the<br />

digital asset landscape are anticipated.<br />

<strong>The</strong>se necessary changes will foster the<br />

growth and maturation of the industry,<br />

ensuring a better-positioned market<br />

for the long term.<br />

<strong>The</strong> reputation and business practices<br />

of the digital asset industry are being<br />

reshaped by the increasing involvement<br />

of institutional investors. <strong>The</strong>se<br />

investors demand stricter controls,<br />

robust risk management frameworks,<br />

enhanced transparency, and realistic<br />

assessments. Natural selection within<br />

the ecosystem is crucial to meeting these<br />

demands and cultivating a healthier<br />

market environment. By embracing<br />

these changes, the industry can rebuild<br />

trust and establish a solid foundation<br />

for sustainable growth. Ultimately,<br />

the evolutionary dynamics at play in<br />

<strong>2023</strong> will contribute to a stronger and<br />

more resilient digital asset ecosystem,<br />

fostering innovation and propelling<br />

the industry into a promising future.<br />

Contrary to premature declarations<br />

of its demise, the metaverse is on an<br />

inevitable trajectory, with <strong>2023</strong> being a<br />

pivotal year for shaping our perception<br />

of “metaverse experiences.” Practical<br />

applications will emerge in various<br />

sectors such as enterprise, healthcare,<br />

education, and daily life, highlighting<br />

the metaverse’s utility in smaller doses.<br />

Advancements in identity technology<br />

and the rise of augmented and virtual<br />

reality devices, such as Apple’s XR<br />

project, will also gain prominence.<br />

Likewise, the NFT market is poised<br />

for transformation in <strong>2023</strong>, shifting<br />

its focus from driving value solely in<br />

digital art and collectables to serving<br />

as digital proof of provenance and<br />

authenticity. NFTs will find versatility<br />

across multiple industries, expanding<br />

beyond their current domains. From<br />

supply chain and logistics to healthcare,<br />

real estate, and retail, NFTs will play an<br />

increasingly significant and permanent<br />

role in digitizing operations. <strong>The</strong> year<br />

<strong>2023</strong> will witness a widening funnel of<br />

innovative applications leveraging NFTs.<br />

Central Bank digital currencies<br />

(CBDCs) conducted trials and tests<br />

worldwide in 2022, with over 80%<br />

considering their launch. As we enter<br />

<strong>2023</strong>, the momentum towards making<br />

CBDCs a reality is accelerating,<br />

becoming a significant priority. <strong>The</strong><br />

race to establish a global standard<br />

for CBDCs is gaining traction, with<br />

commercial banks displaying growing<br />

interest and forging partnerships with<br />

central banks and software vendors<br />

for successful implementation and<br />

widespread adoption.<br />

In <strong>2023</strong>, the performance of the crypto<br />

market will closely align with global<br />

economic sentiment. If concerns ease,<br />

crypto prices and investments may<br />

rise. Traditional blue-chip funds will<br />

undergo tokenization, making them<br />

more accessible. Major players like<br />

JPMorgan, HSBC, Fidelity, and Goldman<br />

Sachs will enter tokenization, driving<br />

mergers and acquisitions. Investing<br />

in blockchain-focused venture capital<br />

funds presents opportunities due to<br />

reasonable valuations in the ecosystem.<br />

Stability from legislators and regulators<br />

will be crucial for sustained growth in<br />

the sector.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 69

Stock Market<br />

<strong>The</strong> Impact of the Developing IT Sector<br />

on the UAE Stock Market<br />

Technology has revolutionized our world, with over 4 billion active internet<br />

users globally. This has led to faster, more convenient lives and transformed<br />

various industries, including the stock market. With the rise of smartphones<br />

and wider internet access, trading has significantly increased. Embracing<br />

technology is vital for success in stock trading.<br />

Stock markets worldwide are using technology to ensure secure transactions<br />

and monitoring. <strong>The</strong> days of chaotic shouting among brokers are gone.<br />

Trading now provides a smooth experience with efficient research and<br />

purchasing. Technology integration has made the stock market user-friendly,<br />

offering faster trade settlement, increased transparency, enhanced security,<br />

automated surveillance, and more.<br />

70 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

AI-powered tools are transforming stock prediction and<br />

decision-making, improving accuracy and maximizing<br />

returns.<br />

Unlocking the Power of<br />

Online Apps<br />

<strong>The</strong> utilization of online<br />

trading applications has<br />

revolutionized the trading process. <strong>The</strong><br />

days of relying on brokers and dealing<br />

with concerns such as financial losses<br />

and paperwork are long gone. Trading<br />

apps have made the experience seamless<br />

and offer several advantages:<br />

• Hassle-free experience<br />

• Increased convenience and<br />

accessibility<br />

• A better understanding of your<br />

finances<br />

• Elimination of intermediaries<br />

• Trading at your fingertips<br />

• Improved comprehension of stocks<br />

In summary, online trading apps<br />

have transformed the trading landscape<br />

and offer numerous benefits<br />

to traders.<br />

Unleashing the Potential: AI in the<br />

Stock Market<br />

AI has emerged as a transformative<br />

force in the stock market, revolutionizing<br />

the way trading is conducted. According<br />

to recent research, electronic<br />

trades now contribute to around 45<br />

percent of trading revenues. Leading<br />

companies are integrating quantitative<br />

trading with advanced technologies<br />

like big data processing and machine<br />

learning to offer real-time market<br />

insights.<br />

Several AI-powered tools, such as<br />

Auquan, EquBot, Trade Ideas, and<br />

Blackbox Stocks, are available for<br />

stock prediction. <strong>The</strong>se tools utilize<br />

automated algorithms to analyze vast<br />

amounts of data, enabling trades to<br />

be executed at optimal prices while<br />

minimizing risks. This not only improves<br />

accuracy but also maximizes<br />

returns.<br />

Real-Time Monitoring<br />

<strong>The</strong> incorporation of cutting-edge<br />

technology has revolutionized the trading<br />

experience by enabling real-time<br />

monitoring, leading to increased profitability.<br />

Investors and brokers now<br />

have access to precise and reliable<br />

pricing information, eliminating the<br />

potential for human errors in trading.<br />

<strong>The</strong> advancements have made it effortless<br />

to research stock progress and<br />

select the optimal investment options.<br />

Investors can now react promptly<br />

to market changes, thanks to the<br />

swift availability of information. This<br />

seamless integration of technology<br />

has transformed trading into a more<br />

efficient and manageable process.<br />

Utilizing Blockchain for Enhanced<br />

Trading<br />

<strong>The</strong> adoption of Blockchain technology<br />

in stock markets worldwide<br />

is revolutionizing the industry by enabling<br />

faster and more secure transactions.<br />

This technology holds immense<br />

potential for secure trading and risk<br />

monitoring. Prominent regulatory<br />

bodies, including Japan’s Financial<br />

Services Agency, NYSE, Deutsche<br />

Borse, and SEBI, are actively exploring<br />

the integration of Blockchain into<br />

their infrastructure. By leveraging<br />

Blockchain, the stock market is set to<br />

undergo a complete transformation,<br />

offering remarkable benefits such as:<br />

• Mitigating the risk of third-party involvement<br />

through the use of smart<br />

contracts and network regulation.<br />

• Implementing automation to establish<br />

an infrastructure for expedited<br />

trade settlement.<br />

• Providing a robust platform for<br />

implementing security measures<br />

through the tracking and reporting<br />

of illicit activities.<br />

• Offering solutions to post-trade<br />

events by reducing operational<br />

risks and facilitating rapid trade<br />

settlement.<br />

• With its robust security features<br />

and potential for streamlining processes,<br />

Blockchain is poised to reshape<br />

the stock market landscape.<br />

Accessible to the Masses<br />

Recent technological advancements<br />

have significantly reduced inefficiencies,<br />

resulting in lower costs and<br />

reduced entry barriers in the stock<br />

market. This cost reduction has made<br />

stock market participation more accessible<br />

for individuals who were<br />

previously deterred by higher costs.<br />

Moreover, technology has played a<br />

crucial role in speeding up processes<br />

and facilitating quick settlements,<br />

thereby minimizing the commission<br />

fees imposed on customers. As a result,<br />

individuals who were previously<br />

unable to access the stock market<br />

due to financial constraints can now<br />

actively participate.<br />

To sum it up, technology has transformed<br />

various aspects of our world,<br />

greatly enhancing effectiveness and efficiency.<br />

<strong>The</strong> stock market, it has made<br />

trading and investing more feasible,<br />

secure, and efficient for traders and<br />

investors alike. Removing technology<br />

from the stock market would lead to<br />

substantial losses. Thus, technology<br />

has undeniably shaped the stock<br />

market and will continue to shape<br />

its future.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 71

Corporate Tax<br />

Corporate Tax UAE: Things To Consider<br />

Before Determining Taxable Income<br />

<strong>The</strong> United Arab Emirates (UAE) has taken significant steps to enhance<br />

its position as a leading business and investment hub globally. It aims to<br />

maintain its position and attract investors worldwide by pursuing various<br />

policies and initiatives. <strong>The</strong> UAE recently introduced a corporate tax for<br />

businesses that is applicable from the beginning of its annual financial year<br />

on or after 1 June <strong>2023</strong>.<br />

72 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

With the introduction of<br />

Corporate Tax, businesses<br />

must calculate their taxable<br />

income for each Tax Period.<br />

<strong>The</strong> taxable income is derived from the<br />

business’s accounting net profit or loss,<br />

adjusted for specific items as outlined<br />

in the Corporate Tax Law.<br />

Businesses with taxable income below<br />

AED 375,000 will be exempt from<br />

corporate tax (0% tax rate), While businesses<br />

with taxable income exceeding<br />

AED 375,000 will be subject to a 9% tax<br />

rate. And For free Zone Companies 0%<br />

tax on qualifying income and 9% tax on<br />

taxable income that does not meet the<br />

qualifying income criterion.<br />

To comply with UAE Corporate Tax<br />

regulations, entities and businesses<br />

must prepare their financial statements<br />

in adherence to accepted accounting<br />

standards within the country, with<br />

International Financial Reporting<br />

Standards (IFRS) being the widely used<br />

framework. Taxpayers are generally<br />

expected to determine their taxable<br />

income on an accrual basis, although<br />

there is provision for some taxpayers,<br />

such as individual entrepreneurs and<br />

small businesses, to use the cash basis<br />

of accounting, subject to specific<br />

conditions.<br />

<strong>The</strong> taxable income for a tax period<br />

is determined based on the accounting<br />

income for that specific period. If<br />

relevant, adjustments can be applied<br />

to this accounting income to arrive at<br />

the final taxable income amount.<br />

<strong>The</strong> adjustments to the financial<br />

statements will be required to calculate<br />

taxable income:<br />

1. Any unrealized gains or losses:<br />

For calculating the taxable income<br />

for the relevant tax period, a taxable<br />

person i.e, a business prepares<br />

financial statements on an accrual<br />

basis and has to take into account<br />

gains and losses on a realization<br />

basis concerning the following:<br />

• All assets and liabilities are subjected<br />

to impairment accounting<br />

or fair value under the applicable<br />

accounting standards.<br />

• All assets and liabilities that are<br />

held on the capital account at the<br />

end of a Tax Period, While taking<br />

into account any unrealized gain<br />

or loss that arises in connection<br />

with the assets and liabilities held<br />

onto the revenue account at the<br />

end of that Tax Period.<br />

2. Exempt Income: <strong>The</strong> following<br />

income and related expenditure<br />

shall not be taken into account in<br />

determining the Taxable Income:<br />

• Dividends and other profit distributions<br />

received from ​a juridical<br />

person i.e; a company that is<br />

incorporated or managed and<br />

controlled in the UAE,<br />

• Dividends and other profit distributions<br />

received from a participating<br />

interest in a foreign<br />

juridical person i.e: a company,<br />

• Any other income from a participating<br />

interest e.g. capital gains,<br />

• Income of a Foreign Permanent<br />

Establishment where an election<br />

is made to claim the “Foreign<br />

Permanent Establishment” exemption<br />

and<br />

• Income derived by a Non-Resident<br />

Person from operating<br />

aircraft or ships in international<br />

transportation.<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE Corporate Tax Law fully<br />

exempts dividends from UAE entities,<br />

as well as dividends from other<br />

foreign subsidiaries that qualify as<br />

a “Participation”. A Participation is<br />

a juridical person i.e.; a company in<br />

which the UAE shareholder company<br />

owns a 5% or greater ownership interest<br />

or “Participating Interest” for<br />

at least 12 months, and that meets<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 73

Corporate Tax<br />

the conditions of the participation<br />

exemption regime.<br />

3. Reliefs: <strong>The</strong> following are the reliefs<br />

that can be claimed:<br />

• Transfers Within a Qualifying<br />

Group: Companies that are part of<br />

a “Qualifying Group” can transfer<br />

assets and liabilities between<br />

themselves at their net book value.<br />

This means that the transfer can<br />

be carried out tax neutrally which<br />

does not give rise to a gain or<br />

loss for Corporate tax purposes.<br />

A Qualifying Group are members<br />

of juridical persons i.e; a company<br />

which are UAE residents or<br />

non-resident persons that have a<br />

permanent establishment in the<br />

UAE, of which they either owns<br />

75% or more of the other, or a<br />

third party owns 75% or more of<br />

both the entities. Neither member<br />

shall be an Exempt Person or a<br />

Qualifying Free Zone Person.<br />

<strong>The</strong> members shall prepare their<br />

financial statements using the<br />

same standards and also have<br />

the same financial year.<br />

• Business Restructuring Relief:<br />

No gain or loss needs to be taken<br />

into account in determining<br />

Taxable Income in the following<br />

circumstances:<br />

i) A Taxable Person transfers its<br />

entire Business or an independent<br />

part of its Business to another<br />

Person who is a Taxable Person or<br />

will become a Taxable Person as a<br />

result of the transfer in exchange<br />

for shares or other ownership<br />

interests of the Taxable Person<br />

that is the transferee.<br />

ii) One or more Taxable Persons<br />

transfer their entire Business to<br />

another Person who is a Taxable<br />

Person or will become a Taxable<br />

Person as a result of the transfer<br />

in exchange for shares or other<br />

ownership interests of the Taxable<br />

Person that is the transferee, and<br />

the Taxable Person or Taxable<br />

Persons that are the transferor<br />

cease to exist as a result of the<br />

transfer.<br />

4. Deductions<br />

<strong>The</strong> following is the expenditure<br />

which will be deductible to calculate<br />

taxable income:<br />

• Deductible Expenditure: Expenditure<br />

that is incurred wholly and<br />

exclusively for the purposes of<br />

the Taxable Person’s Business<br />

that is not capital in nature shall<br />

be deductible in the tax period<br />

in which it is incurred.<br />

• Interest Expenditure: <strong>The</strong> Corporate<br />

Tax Law provides for certain<br />

restrictions on the deductibility of<br />

interest expenditure to discourage<br />

excessive debt financing, and to<br />

ensure that debt financing used<br />

or arising as a result of certain<br />

specific intra-group transactions<br />

will only be deductible if there<br />

is a valid commercial reason for<br />

obtaining the loan.<br />

i) General Interest Deduction<br />

Limitation Rule: Businesses with<br />

net interest expenditure above a<br />

threshold to be set by the Minister<br />

will be allowed to deduct net<br />

interest expenditure up to 30%<br />

of their earnings before interest,<br />

tax, depreciation and amortisation<br />

(EBITDA), excluding any<br />

exempt income. Any net interest<br />

expenditure which exceeds this<br />

limit may be carried forward and<br />

utilised in the subsequent 10 tax<br />

periods.<br />

Businesses with net interest<br />

expenditure below the threshold<br />

to be set by the Minister will not<br />

be subject to the general interest<br />

deduction limitation rule.<br />

<strong>The</strong> general interest deduction<br />

limitation rule will not apply to<br />

banks and other finance institutions,<br />

insurance providers or<br />

individuals.<br />

ii) Specific Interest Deduction<br />

Limitation Rule: Where a loan is<br />

obtained from a Related Party<br />

and is used to finance income<br />

that is exempt from corporate<br />

tax, the interest on the Related<br />

Party loan will not be deductible<br />

unless the taxpayer can demonstrate<br />

that the main purpose of<br />

obtaining the loan and carrying<br />

out the transaction is not to gain<br />

a corporate tax advantage.<br />

c) Entertainment Expenditure: A<br />

Taxable Person i.e.; a company<br />

shall be allowed to deduct 50% of<br />

any entertainment, amusement,<br />

or recreation expenditure such<br />

74 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

as meals, accommodations or<br />

transportation incurred during<br />

a Tax Period.<br />

d) Non-deductible Expenditure:<br />

• Donations, grants or gifts made<br />

to an entity that is not a Qualifying<br />

Public Benefit Entity,<br />

• Fines and penalties, other than<br />

amounts awarded as compensation<br />

for damages or breach<br />

of contract,<br />

• Bribes or other illicit payments,<br />

• Dividends, profit distributions<br />

or benefits of a similar nature<br />

paid to an owner of the Taxable<br />

Person,<br />

• Amounts are withdrawn from<br />

the Business by a natural person<br />

who is a Taxable Person or a<br />

partner in an Unincorporated<br />

Partnership,<br />

• Corporate Tax imposed on a<br />

Taxable Person,<br />

• Input Value Added Tax incurred<br />

by a Taxable Person that is<br />

recoverable,<br />

• Tax on income imposed on<br />

the Taxable Person outside<br />

the State and<br />

5. Transactions with Related Parties<br />

and Connected Persons: Transfer<br />

pricing rules seek to ensure that<br />

transactions between Related Parties<br />

are carried out on arm’s length terms,<br />

as if the transaction was carried<br />

out between independent parties.<br />

To prevent the manipulation of<br />

taxable income, various articles in<br />

the Corporate Tax Law require that<br />

the consideration of transactions<br />

with Related Parties and Connected<br />

Persons needs to be determined by<br />

reference to their “Market Value”.<br />

Taxpayers are required to apply<br />

one or more of the following methodologies<br />

to determine the arm’s<br />

length values for transfer pricing<br />

purposes:<br />

• <strong>The</strong> comparable uncontrolled<br />

price method<br />

• <strong>The</strong> resale price method<br />

• <strong>The</strong> cost-plus method<br />

• <strong>The</strong> transactional net margin<br />

method<br />

• <strong>The</strong> transactional profit split<br />

method.<br />

Transfer pricing rules apply to<br />

UAE businesses that have transactions<br />

with Related Parties and<br />

Connected Persons, irrespective<br />

of whether the Related Parties or<br />

Connected Persons are located in<br />

the UAE mainland, a Free Zone or<br />

in a foreign jurisdiction.<br />

Generally, Related Parties of an<br />

individual refer to the individual’s<br />

relatives as well as companies in<br />

which the individual, alone or together<br />

with their Related Parties,<br />

has a controlling ownership interest<br />

(typically 50% or more of shares of<br />

the company).<br />

Similarly, Related Parties of<br />

a company refers to any other<br />

companies in which the company,<br />

alone or together with their Related<br />

Parties, has a controlling ownership<br />

interest (typically 50% or more of<br />

shares of the company), or that are<br />

under greater than 50% common<br />

ownership.<br />

Connected Persons are a person<br />

that is connected to a business<br />

that is within the scope of the UAE<br />

corporate tax if they are the owner<br />

of the business or the director or<br />

officer of the business.<br />

6. Tax Loss Relief: Tax Loss arises<br />

when the total deductions a business<br />

can claim are greater than the total<br />

income that is subject to tax for<br />

the relevant Tax Period, resulting<br />

in negative taxable income.<br />

Tax losses can, subject to certain<br />

conditions, be offset against the<br />

taxable income of future periods,<br />

up to a maximum of 75% of the taxable<br />

income in each of those future<br />

periods. Any excess (unused) tax<br />

losses can be carried forward and<br />

used against the taxable income<br />

of future Tax Periods indefinitely.<br />

Tax losses can be carried forward<br />

without limitation provided the<br />

same person or persons continue to<br />

own at least 50% of the entity with<br />

the losses. Where there is a greater<br />

than 50% change in ownership, tax<br />

losses may still be carried forward<br />

provided there is no major change<br />

in the nature or conduct of the<br />

entity’s business.<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE companies must meet<br />

the following conditions to transfer<br />

an amount of tax losses from one<br />

company to another in the same<br />

Tax Period:<br />

• Both companies are UAE resident<br />

juridical persons i.e. companies ;<br />

• Either owns 75% or more of the<br />

other, or a third party owns 75%<br />

or more of both entities and this<br />

ownership existed at the start and<br />

end of the Tax Period in which<br />

the loss was incurred;<br />

• Neither company is an Exempt<br />

Person nor a Qualifying Free Zone<br />

business; and<br />

• <strong>The</strong> financial statements must<br />

be prepared using the same accounting<br />

standards and using the<br />

same financial year.<br />

7. Any incentives or special reliefs<br />

for a Qualifying Business Activity<br />

8. Any income or expenditure that<br />

has not otherwise been taken<br />

into account in determining<br />

the Taxable Income under the<br />

provisions of this Decree-Law as<br />

may be specified in a decision<br />

issued by the Cabinet at the<br />

suggestion of the Minister.<br />

9. Any other adjustments as may<br />

be specified by the Authority.<br />

Businesses operating in the UAE must<br />

now carefully determine their taxable<br />

income based on the accounting net<br />

profit or loss, making adjustments as<br />

defined in the Corporate Tax Law. <strong>The</strong><br />

tax rates, with exemptions for lower<br />

taxable incomes, will play a crucial<br />

role in shaping the business landscape<br />

and encouraging responsible financial<br />

practices.<br />

As businesses navigate these new<br />

regulations, they can benefit from various<br />

reliefs, deductions, and incentives,<br />

as well as opportunities for tax loss<br />

relief, allowing them to strategically<br />

plan their financial positions.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 75

Corporate Results<br />

MedGulf<br />

Q1’23 Net Profit: SAR 37.19M<br />

During the first quarter (Q1) of <strong>2023</strong>,<br />

the Mediterranean and Gulf Insurance<br />

and Reinsurance Company (MedGulf)<br />

achieved net profits before Zakat<br />

amounting to SAR 37.19M. This positive<br />

outcome contrasts with the net losses<br />

before Zakat of SAR 15.95M recorded<br />

in Q1-22. <strong>The</strong> company’s earnings per<br />

share (EPS) for Q1-23 stood at SAR 0.34,<br />

a significant improvement compared to<br />

the loss per share of SAR 0.16 in Q1-22.<br />

Additionally, MedGulf experienced a<br />

30.16% year-on-year increase in gross<br />

written premiums (GWP), reaching SAR<br />

1.60B in the period between January and<br />

March <strong>2023</strong>. However, as of March 31,<br />

<strong>2023</strong>, the company’s accumulated losses<br />

amounted to SAR 422.40M, representing<br />

40.20% of the subscribed capital of SAR<br />

1.05B.<br />

UAE Islamic Bank<br />

Q1’23: AED 650B<br />

According to the UAE central bank, the<br />

gross assets of Sharia-compliant banks<br />

operating in the UAE experienced a<br />

growth of 7.31 percent in the Q1’23,<br />

reaching AED 650B. <strong>The</strong> Central Bank<br />

of the UAE released data indicating<br />

that credit provided by Islamic banks<br />

increased by 2.51 percent during Q1,<br />

amounting to AED 400.2B, compared<br />

to AED 390.4B in March 2022. Islamic<br />

banks also saw a rise in deposits,<br />

reaching AED 453.4B, reflecting a 6.2<br />

percent annual increase. By the end<br />

of March 2022, their total investments<br />

stood at AED 111.5B. In contrast,<br />

conventional banks based in the UAE<br />

reported total assets of AED 3.115T,<br />

a 14.1 percent growth from March<br />

last year.<br />

Borouge<br />

Q1’23 Net Profit: $198M<br />

Borouge, a company listed on the Abu<br />

Dhabi Securities Exchange (ADX),<br />

reported a decline in net profits for<br />

the first quarter of <strong>2023</strong>. <strong>The</strong> profits<br />

attributable to the owners amounted<br />

to $198M, compared to $359M in the<br />

same period of the previous year.<br />

Revenues also dropped, standing at<br />

$1.38B in Q1-23, down from $1.590B.<br />

<strong>The</strong> basic and diluted earnings per<br />

share remained unchanged at $0.01.<br />

However, the CEO, Hazeem Sultan<br />

Al Suwaidi, expressed optimism,<br />

stating that the completion of the<br />

Borouge 2 facility turnaround and<br />

progress in their value enhancement<br />

program would contribute to a strong<br />

performance throughout the year. In<br />

the full-year 2022, Borouge recorded<br />

net profits of $1.39B, lower than the<br />

previous year’s $1.5B.<br />

Qatar Airways<br />

FY 22-23 Net Profit: $1.2B<br />

Qatar Airways Group has reported<br />

a net profit of QR 4.4B ($1.21B) for<br />

the fiscal year 2022/23, showcasing<br />

a robust financial performance. This<br />

achievement coincided with the airline’s<br />

role as the Official Airline Partner of the<br />

FIFA <strong>World</strong> Cup Qatar 2022, which was<br />

hosted in the country. <strong>The</strong> company’s<br />

overall revenue surged to QR 76.3B<br />

($21B), marking a significant 45 percent<br />

increase compared to the previous year.<br />

Passenger revenue experienced an<br />

impressive 100 percent growth, driven<br />

by a 31 percent increase in capacity,<br />

nine percent higher yields, and a load<br />

factor of 80 percent, the highest in<br />

the airline’s history. Qatar Airways<br />

also carried 31.7 million passengers,<br />

a remarkable 71 percent increase over<br />

the previous year.<br />

E&<br />

Q1’23 Net Profit: AED 13B<br />

UAE-based telecoms giant e& recently<br />

released its Q1 <strong>2023</strong> financial results,<br />

revealing impressive performance.<br />

Consolidated revenues reached AED<br />

13B, showcasing a 6.6% growth at<br />

constant exchange rates. <strong>The</strong> company<br />

reported a consolidated net profit of<br />

AED 2.2B, while its earnings before<br />

interest, taxes, depreciation, and<br />

amortization (EBITDA) amounted to<br />

AED 6.2B, resulting in an impressive<br />

EBITDA margin of 48%. In the UAE,<br />

etisalat by e& experienced a notable<br />

increase of 6% in subscribers, with a<br />

total of 13.9 million recorded during this<br />

period. Moreover, the group’s aggregate<br />

subscribers amounted to 164 million,<br />

marking a year-on-year increase of 3%.<br />

e&’s strategic focus on expanding its<br />

digital offerings, launching innovative<br />

solutions, and establishing partnerships<br />

with leading technology companies<br />

has been instrumental in driving its<br />

business growth and positioning itself<br />

as a global technology player.<br />

Aljazira Takaful<br />

Q1’23 Net Profit: SAR 7.90M<br />

During the first quarter of <strong>2023</strong>, Aljazira<br />

Takaful Taawuni Company witnessed<br />

a significant decline in net profits<br />

before Zakat, reaching SAR 7.90M.<br />

This marked a substantial year-onyear<br />

drop of 53.48% from SAR 16.98M<br />

in the same period of the previous<br />

year. However, the firm experienced<br />

an increase in gross written premiums<br />

(GWP) valued at SAR 75.24M, indicating<br />

a growth of 17.41% compared to SAR<br />

64.08M in Q1-22. Earnings per share<br />

(EPS) for January-March <strong>2023</strong> were<br />

SAR 0.13, lower than the SAR 0.30<br />

reported in the corresponding period<br />

of the previous year. Additionally, the<br />

insurance revenue showed a remarkable<br />

YoY hike of 58.23% to SAR 78.93M in<br />

Q1-23 from SAR 49.88M.<br />

76 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

Mashreq<br />

Q1’23 Net Profit: AED 1.6B<br />

Mashreq’s Q1 <strong>2023</strong> financial results<br />

showcase a robust performance,<br />

surpassing AED 200B in total assets.<br />

Operating profits nearly doubled yearon-year<br />

due to strong growth in operating<br />

income, improved efficiencies, and a<br />

healthier risk position. As a challenger<br />

bank, Mashreq actively participated<br />

in the UAE’s innovation ecosystem,<br />

becoming a founding member of<br />

Launchpad, the DIFC’s venture-building<br />

program. <strong>The</strong> bank’s digital strategy<br />

proved effective, leading to increased<br />

customer deposits, a better cost-toincome<br />

ratio, and remarkable net<br />

profit growth. <strong>The</strong>se achievements<br />

were driven by enhanced asset quality,<br />

reduced non-performing loans, and<br />

a favorable non-interest income to<br />

operating income ratio.<br />

Agthia Group<br />

Q1’23 Net Profit: AED 1.18B<br />

Agthia Group PJSC, a leading food and<br />

beverage company in the region, has<br />

announced its first-quarter results for<br />

the three months ending on March 31,<br />

<strong>2023</strong>. <strong>The</strong> group achieved a notable<br />

12.3% year-on-year increase in net revenue,<br />

amounting to AED 1.18B, driven<br />

by a balanced contribution of 6% from<br />

pricing and 6% from volume growth.<br />

Excluding the adverse currency impact<br />

in Egypt, the group’s revenue<br />

growth reached an impressive 22.9%<br />

year-on-year. EBITDA demonstrated<br />

even stronger growth, rising by 18.9%<br />

year-on-year to AED 188M, driven by<br />

strong performance in the Snacking<br />

and Water segments and continued<br />

cost discipline.<br />

Fertiglobe<br />

Q1’23 Net Profit: $694M<br />

Fertiglobe, the strategic partnership<br />

between ADNOC and OCI Global,<br />

reported strong Q1 <strong>2023</strong> results, with<br />

revenue reaching $694M, adjusted<br />

EBITDA at $297M, adjusted net profit<br />

totaling $135M, and free cash flow<br />

amounting to $271M. <strong>The</strong> company<br />

achieved a notable 9% increase in<br />

own-produced sales volumes, attributed<br />

to a disciplined commercial strategy<br />

and centralized distribution capabilities<br />

focusing on demand centers with<br />

attractive netbacks. With a strong<br />

order book for the coming months and<br />

tightening markets in Q2, prices have<br />

improved in some regions. Committed<br />

to shareholder value, Fertiglobe plans<br />

to distribute at least $250M in dividends<br />

for Q1 <strong>2023</strong>.<br />

Salama<br />

Q1’23 Net Profit: AED 8.04M<br />

SALAMA, the largest Sharia’h compliant<br />

Takaful solutions provider listed<br />

as “SALAMA” on the Dubai Financial<br />

Market (DFM), has reported a profit of<br />

AED 8.04M in its Q1 <strong>2023</strong> results. <strong>The</strong><br />

company successfully implemented<br />

the new IFRS 17 standards, enhancing<br />

transparency and comparability in financial<br />

reporting. SALAMA continued<br />

its growth trajectory, achieving a solid<br />

performance with insurance revenue of<br />

AED 265M, an 18% increase compared<br />

to the same period last year. With total<br />

assets of AED 3,556.61M, SALAMA appointed<br />

H.E. Saeed Alhajeri as Chairman<br />

and Walter Jopp as CEO, reinforcing its<br />

growth ambitions and Emiratisation initiatives.<br />

<strong>The</strong> company’s focus remains<br />

on profitability, financial stability, and<br />

delivering exceptional Sharia’h compliant<br />

insurance solutions.<br />

Air Arabia<br />

Q1’23 Net Profit: AED 342M<br />

Air Arabia, a Sharjah-based airline, has<br />

reported impressive results for the first<br />

quarter of <strong>2023</strong>. <strong>The</strong> company achieved a<br />

net profit of AED 342M, representing a 17%<br />

increase compared to the same period in<br />

2022 when it recorded Dhs291m in profits.<br />

Moreover, the airline’s turnover reached<br />

AED 1.42B, marking a significant 27% increase<br />

compared to the first quarter of the<br />

previous year. This signifies a remarkable<br />

59% growth compared to the previous<br />

year’s first quarter. During the first quarter<br />

of <strong>2023</strong>, Air Arabia experienced an<br />

increase in its average seat load factor,<br />

reaching 85%. This metric represents<br />

the percentage of passengers carried<br />

in relation to the available seats, and it<br />

reflects an 8% improvement compared<br />

to the same period in the previous year.<br />

Al Seer Marine<br />

Q1’23 Net Loss: AED 749.68M<br />

Al Seer Marine Supplies and Equipment<br />

Company faced a challenging first half<br />

(Q1) of <strong>2023</strong>, reporting net losses of<br />

AED 749.68M, in contrast to the net<br />

profits of AED 882.97M achieved in<br />

Q1-22. Despite this, the company saw a<br />

remarkable 92.50% year-on-year (YoY)<br />

increase in gross profits, reaching AED<br />

73.77 million in January-June <strong>2023</strong> from<br />

AED 38.33M. Q1-23 revenues grew by<br />

18.90%, amounting to AED 564.34M,<br />

primarily due to the effective operation<br />

of seven vessels since 2022. <strong>The</strong><br />

total assets declined by 19.70% YoY to<br />

AED 9.29B in Q1-23 from AED 11.58B.<br />

In Q2-23, Al Seer Marine achieved net<br />

profits of AED 38.25M, compared to<br />

AED 807.34M in Q2-22.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 77

EVENT<br />

12th IREIS: Unveiling the <strong>World</strong> of Real<br />

Estate Investment in Abu Dhabi<br />

<strong>The</strong> 12th edition of the International Real Estate and Investment Show (IREIS) is all<br />

set to kick off in October, promising high-level events that showcase a plethora of<br />

local and international real estate investment opportunities. As the leading investment<br />

platform in Abu Dhabi, IREIS distinguishes itself by targeting investors and consumers,<br />

making it a unique and valuable event in the region. <strong>The</strong> show will take place at the<br />

Conrad Etihad Towers Abu Dhabi from October 6th to 7th, <strong>2023</strong>.<br />

Organized by Dome Exhibitions,<br />

IREIS <strong>2023</strong> is expected to<br />

attract more than 30 exhibitors<br />

from both regional and<br />

international real estate and investment<br />

domains. Investors, brokers, and developers<br />

from the Middle East, Europe, and<br />

the Asia Pacific will gather to present<br />

their diverse property developments,<br />

accompanied by a wide range of investment<br />

options and opportunities<br />

for consultation and financing.<br />

A key aspect of the IREIS exhibition<br />

is its role as a networking platform<br />

for international participants. This<br />

presents an excellent opportunity for<br />

professionals in the real estate and<br />

investment sectors to establish valuable<br />

connections and explore potential<br />

collaborations with counterparts from<br />

around the world.<br />

Concurrent with the IREIS exhibition,<br />

a series of conferences and events will<br />

take place, focusing on the global real<br />

estate market and various investment<br />

prospects, both globally and within the<br />

UAE. One notable event is the ‘International<br />

Investment Conference <strong>2023</strong>,’<br />

which will feature renowned experts,<br />

academicians, seasoned practitioners,<br />

investors, government representatives,<br />

legal entities, and consultants. <strong>The</strong>y will<br />

share their insights and experiences,<br />

shedding light on modern investment<br />

strategies, relevant laws and regulations,<br />

and the impact of the latest investment<br />

trends at the national and global levels.<br />

<strong>The</strong> conference will also emphasize<br />

the importance of attracting foreign<br />

direct investments (FDIs) through<br />

confidence-building initiatives that<br />

aim to produce concrete outcomes and<br />

encourage higher investment inflows<br />

into the region.<br />

Arun Bose, Director of IREIS from<br />

Dome Exhibitions, expressed enthusiasm<br />

for the upcoming edition, stating<br />

that the event will highlight the UAE’s<br />

steadily growing real estate market<br />

and its significance in major countries<br />

worldwide. With the UAE experiencing<br />

continuous economic growth and<br />

becoming an influential global player,<br />

the timing is ideal for individuals and<br />

businesses to explore the investment<br />

prospects available in the region. IREIS<br />

provides the perfect platform for engaging<br />

with the right people and making<br />

informed investment decisions.<br />

78 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

Travel<br />

Unforgettable Getaways to Visit in<br />

<strong>August</strong><br />

<strong>August</strong> is the month of sunshine, warm temperatures, and the perfect opportunity to embark<br />

on an unforgettable summer holiday. If you’re in search of destinations that promise<br />

breathtaking landscapes and incredible experiences, look no further. In this article, we’ll<br />

take you on a journey to some of the most beautiful locations as we delve into the wonders<br />

of Svalbard, Tallinn, Masai Mara, and Lucerne, to visit this month.<br />

Tallinn, Estonia<br />

Nestled in the heart of Estonia,<br />

Tallinn proudly stands as the<br />

capital city and a captivating<br />

holiday destination. <strong>The</strong><br />

highlight of the city lies within its<br />

remarkably well-preserved Tallinn Old<br />

Town, a captivating UNESCO <strong>World</strong><br />

Heritage site and one of the finest<br />

examples of a Hanseatic town center<br />

worldwide. Tallinn’s picturesque coastline,<br />

adorned with scenic promenades<br />

and sandy beaches, offers a refreshing<br />

escape and stunning views of the iconic<br />

cityscape year-round. Immerse yourself<br />

in the atmospheric charm of Tallinn’s<br />

Old Town, wander through medieval<br />

streets adorned with towering spires,<br />

and discover the treasures of the past,<br />

such as the Rocca-al-Mare Open Air<br />

Museum or the magnificent St. Olav’s<br />

Church spire. Whether you’re a history<br />

enthusiast, a culture lover, or an<br />

adventurer seeking new experiences,<br />

Tallinn beckons with its enchanting<br />

allure and promises a memorable<br />

journey through time and modernity.<br />

Masai Mara, Kenya<br />

A<br />

visit to Masai Mara in Kenya<br />

during the month of <strong>August</strong><br />

promises an extraordinary<br />

wildlife spectacle. This is<br />

the time when the legendary Great<br />

Migration unfolds, captivating travelers<br />

with its awe-inspiring display of<br />

nature’s grandeur. Spread across an<br />

expansive area of 1,510 square kilometres,<br />

the Masai Mara National Reserve<br />

is a breathtaking landscape of gently<br />

rolling African savannah plains. As<br />

the wildebeest migration reaches the<br />

Mara River in the Masai Mara National<br />

Reserve, you’ll witness a truly perilous<br />

chapter of their journey. Here, nearly<br />

1.5 million wildebeest gather, attempting<br />

to navigate the treacherous river<br />

crossings, evading crocodiles lurking<br />

in the water and lions lurking on the<br />

shore. It’s a heart-stopping experience<br />

that will leave you breathless. <strong>The</strong><br />

reserve’s conservation efforts have<br />

created an animal paradise, attracting<br />

tourists from around the world.<br />

80 www.thefinanceworld.com<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

Lucerne, Switzerland<br />

Comporta, Portugal<br />

Located on the west coast of<br />

Portugal, Comporta is a hidden<br />

gem that offers a tranquil<br />

and picturesque escape from<br />

bustling city life. Just an hour’s drive<br />

from Lisbon, this beautiful region<br />

boasts stunning golden-sand beaches,<br />

expansive rice paddies, and lush<br />

fields. Even in the peak summer season,<br />

Comporta remains refreshingly<br />

uncrowded, allowing visitors to fully<br />

unwind and embrace the serenity of<br />

their surroundings.<br />

<strong>The</strong> name “Comporta” itself refers<br />

to a gate or lock that holds back water,<br />

which perfectly aligns with the region’s<br />

extensive network of canals. Comporta<br />

invites you to experience a destination<br />

like no other, where pristine beaches,<br />

lush landscapes, and a distinct ambiance<br />

create an unparalleled escape. It’s a<br />

place that will captivate your senses<br />

and leave you with memories of a truly<br />

unique getaway.<br />

Lucerne, known as the “Heart of<br />

the Country,” is a captivating<br />

blend of ancient charm and<br />

contemporary vibrancy. This<br />

picturesque Swiss city, nestled on<br />

the shores of a stunning lake and surrounded<br />

by majestic mountains, offers<br />

visitors a truly enchanting experience.<br />

<strong>The</strong> iconic Chapel Bridge, Europe’s<br />

oldest covered bridge, takes center<br />

stage, while historic houses adorned<br />

with frescoes line the streets. For<br />

breathtaking views, travelers can take<br />

cableways to the Pilatus, Stanserhorn,<br />

or Rigi mountains, or embark on a<br />

steamship cruise on Lake Lucerne. Exploring<br />

Lucerne allows you to immerse<br />

yourself in its rich history and culture<br />

while savoring the awe-inspiring beauty<br />

of the natural surroundings. Lucerne’s<br />

waterfront areas, situated along the<br />

shores of Lake Lucerne and the River<br />

Reuss, offer serene spots to relax and<br />

enjoy the breathtaking scenery. A visit<br />

to Lucerne promises an unforgettable<br />

Swiss holiday, where history, natural<br />

beauty, and cultural treasures converge<br />

to create an experience that will stay<br />

with you long after you leave.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong><br />

www.thefinanceworld.com 81

Sport as a Business<br />

Sports as a Social and Economic Catalyst:<br />

<strong>The</strong> Power of Major Sporting<br />

Events in the MENA Region<br />

<strong>The</strong> MENA region is emerging as a significant player in the world of<br />

sports, harnessing the power of major sporting events to drive social<br />

and economic development. It is witnessing a transformative shift<br />

in its sports industry. From strategic investments and national sport<br />

strategies to hosting high-profile events, sports in the MENA region<br />

are becoming a catalyst for change and growth.<br />

82 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

<strong>The</strong> success of the Qatar <strong>World</strong> Cup has solidified<br />

the MENA region’s status as a leading destination for<br />

international sports events.<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE recently unveiled its<br />

comprehensive National Sport<br />

Strategy 2031, which aims<br />

to establish guidelines for<br />

funding elite athletes, increase sports<br />

participation, and develop the sports<br />

industry. Under the leadership of Dr.<br />

Ahmad Belhoul Al Falasi, Minister of<br />

Education and Chairman of the General<br />

Authority of Sports, the strategy<br />

focuses on talent supervision, athlete<br />

development, and support for sports<br />

federations and elite athletes. With<br />

the upcoming Paris Olympics in 2024,<br />

the UAE is committed to nurturing its<br />

athletes and achieving global success.<br />

As part of the national sport strategy,<br />

the UAE has launched the Emirates Committee<br />

for Elite and High-Level Sports,<br />

a significant initiative responsible for<br />

supporting and implementing strategic<br />

programs. <strong>The</strong> committee prioritizes<br />

talent development, funding support,<br />

and preparation for elite athletes.<br />

Furthermore, 22 gifted Emirati athletes<br />

have been selected to participate in the<br />

Professional Elite Programme, aimed<br />

at enhancing their chances of success<br />

at the Paris 2024 Olympics.<br />

<strong>The</strong> MENA region recognizes the<br />

economic potential of sports and is<br />

actively leveraging it for development.<br />

Hosting major sporting events like<br />

the FIFA <strong>World</strong> Cup and Expo 2020<br />

Dubai stimulates tourism, trade, and<br />

job creation. <strong>The</strong> success of the Qatar<br />

<strong>World</strong> Cup has solidified the region’s<br />

status as a leading destination for international<br />

sports events. Large-scale<br />

sporting events bring people together,<br />

promote economic growth, and build<br />

infrastructure. <strong>The</strong> UAE, with its strong<br />

economy and visa reforms, is poised<br />

to capitalize on the economic benefits<br />

of the sports industry.<br />

To support its sports ambitions, the<br />

MENA region boasts world-class facilities<br />

and infrastructure. From the Bahrain<br />

International Circuit hosting Formula<br />

1 races to the Hamdan Sports Complex<br />

in Dubai, the region offers top-level<br />

training and competition venues. <strong>The</strong>se<br />

facilities attract international athletes<br />

and teams for warm-weather training<br />

camps, contributing to the growth of<br />

the wellness and healthcare sectors.<br />

<strong>The</strong> region’s commitment to developing<br />

state-of-the-art sports facilities<br />

positions it as a preferred destination<br />

for athletes and sports enthusiasts.<br />

Sports in the MENA region are not<br />

limited to professional competitions.<br />

<strong>The</strong> governments in the region prioritize<br />

mass participation in sports and<br />

encourage grassroots development.<br />

Regulatory bodies and organized events<br />

create opportunities for residents, including<br />

young people, to experience the<br />

physical and mental benefits of sports.<br />

By fostering a competitive climate and<br />

promoting fitness, the MENA region<br />

cultivates a strong sporting culture that<br />

supports the well-being of its citizens.<br />

Beyond the UAE, other Countries<br />

are also actively expanding their involvement<br />

in the world of professional<br />

sports. Notably, Qatar’s ownership of<br />

Paris Saint Germain (PSG) and Saudi<br />

Arabia’s recent purchase of Newcastle<br />

United demonstrate their commitment to<br />

the sports industry. <strong>The</strong>se investments<br />

not only bring international attention<br />

to the region but also enhance the<br />

competitiveness of Gulf-based teams<br />

in global competitions. <strong>The</strong> success of<br />

the Qatar <strong>World</strong> Cup in 2022, with its<br />

record attendance levels and impressive<br />

performances, further solidifies the<br />

MENA region’s position as a premier<br />

destination for major sporting events.<br />

<strong>The</strong> rise of sports in the MENA region<br />

presents exciting opportunities for<br />

entrepreneurship and tourism. With<br />

an increasing number of international<br />

sporting events, there is a growing<br />

demand for services and infrastructure<br />

to support athletes, teams, and spectators.<br />

This includes accommodation,<br />

transportation, dining, and entertainment<br />

options. Entrepreneurs can tap<br />

into this demand by offering tailored<br />

travel packages, event management<br />

services, and sports-related businesses.<br />

<strong>The</strong> influx of tourists and the growth<br />

of the sports sector contribute to job<br />

creation and economic development.<br />

<strong>The</strong> MENA region, spearheaded by<br />

countries like the UAE, is harnessing<br />

the power of major sporting events<br />

to drive social and economic growth.<br />

<strong>The</strong> national sport strategies, transformative<br />

initiatives, and world-class<br />

facilities are paving the way for success<br />

in international competitions. As the<br />

region continues to invest in sports<br />

and host prestigious events, it creates<br />

business opportunities in various sectors,<br />

including tourism, infrastructure<br />

development, and healthcare. <strong>The</strong><br />

MENA region’s commitment to sports<br />

as a catalyst for progress ensures a<br />

promising future for the industry and<br />

the region as a whole.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 83

Sport News<br />

Nahyan bin Zayed Forms Committee for Abu Dhabi 2026 Open Masters<br />

Games<br />

His Highness H.H. Sheikh Nahyan<br />

bin Zayed Al Nahyan,<br />

Chairman of Abu Dhabi Sports<br />

Council (ADSC), has issued<br />

a resolution to establish the Supreme<br />

Organising Committee for the Open<br />

Masters Games Series – Abu Dhabi 2026.<br />

<strong>The</strong> committee will be chaired by H.H.<br />

Sheikh <strong>The</strong>yab bin Mohamed bin Zayed<br />

Al Nahyan. Committee members will<br />

include key representatives from various<br />

government departments and entities.<br />

ADSC has signed an agreement with<br />

the International Federation of Masters<br />

Games to host the Open Masters Games<br />

Series in 2026, marking the first time<br />

the event will take place in the Middle<br />

East. With an expected participation<br />

of 5,000 to 10,000 athletes competing<br />

in 30 sports, the Open Masters Games<br />

Series is set to be one of the largest<br />

sporting events in terms of participants<br />

and events.<br />

Oman secures $8M football grant from FIFA<br />

Oman Football Association<br />

(OFA) plans to allocate nearly<br />

95 percent of the funds<br />

received from FIFA under<br />

the FIFA Forward Programme. <strong>The</strong><br />

programme, which aligns with FIFA<br />

President Gianni Infantino’s Vision<br />

2020-<strong>2023</strong>, aims to promote global<br />

football development. In an exclusive<br />

interview, a FIFA spokesperson disclosed<br />

that the primary investment made by<br />

FIFA and OFA is a technical center and<br />

accommodation infrastructure project.<br />

This project, funded by FIFA Forward<br />

1.0 and 2.0, is nearing completion, with<br />

over 95 percent of the work done.<br />

Furthermore, OFA is set to receive a<br />

total grant of $8 million under FIFA<br />

Forward 3.0, covering the period from<br />

<strong>2023</strong> to 2026. <strong>The</strong> spokesperson also<br />

emphasized that football in Oman would<br />

be eligible for a 29 percent increase<br />

in development funding over the next<br />

four years through FIFA Forward 3.0.<br />

Abu Dhabi Powerboat<br />

Team to Defend Title in<br />

UIM F1H2O Championship<br />

<strong>The</strong> defending champion Abu<br />

Dhabi Powerboat Team is preparing<br />

to compete in the third<br />

round of the UIM F1H2O <strong>World</strong><br />

Championship, aiming to defend its title.<br />

Following the opening two rounds in<br />

Indonesia and China, the championship<br />

now moves to Mâcon, France, where<br />

the picturesque River Saône will host<br />

the event from June 30th to July 2nd.<br />

<strong>The</strong> Abu Dhabi Powerboat Team represents<br />

the UAE alongside the Sharjah<br />

Powerboat Team and the Victory Team.<br />

Team Abu Dhabi’s star driver Thani<br />

Al Qamzi, alongside defending world<br />

champion Shaun Torrente, is focused<br />

on both securing his first individual<br />

drivers’ championship and defending<br />

their world team title.<br />

84 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

Saudi Arabia Considers Major Tennis Investment; Alcaraz, Kyrgios, and ATP<br />

Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment<br />

Fund (PIF) is contemplating a<br />

significant investment in professional<br />

tennis. <strong>The</strong> ATP chief,<br />

Andrea Gaudenzi, disclosed that the<br />

governing body has engaged in “positive<br />

talks” with the sovereign wealth fund,<br />

exploring potential partnership and<br />

sponsorship opportunities. As Saudi<br />

Arabia seeks to diversify its economy<br />

away from oil dependency, it has<br />

been increasingly looking to invest in<br />

sports. While the ATP organizes the<br />

global tennis tour, it does not oversee<br />

the prestigious Grand Slam events<br />

(Wimbledon, US Open, French Open,<br />

and Australian Open). Nonetheless, it<br />

remains the official organizer of the<br />

men’s tennis tour.<br />

UAE’s GMG Signs JD Sports Franchise Agreement<br />

UAE’s retail giant GMG and JD<br />

Sports Fashion have entered<br />

into a franchise agreement,<br />

marking JD Sport’s first franchise<br />

deal. <strong>The</strong> partnership aligns with<br />

JD Sport’s global growth strategy announced<br />

by CEO Régis Schultz. GMG<br />

will pave the way for JD Sports to<br />

enter the Middle East market, opening<br />

approximately 50 stores under the JD<br />

fascia by 2028. <strong>The</strong> focus will be on<br />

locations in the UAE, Saudi Arabia,<br />

Kuwait, and Egypt. This expansion plan<br />

supports JD Sport’s goal of opening<br />

200 to 300 new stores annually over<br />

the next five years. GMG’s extensive<br />

experience in introducing brands to<br />

the Middle East, North Africa, and<br />

Asia markets positions it well for this<br />

strategic collaboration.<br />

UAE announces major sport strategy, eyes<br />

Olympic success<br />

UAE Team Emirates<br />

lead stage 2 of Tour<br />

de France <strong>2023</strong><br />

In Stage 2 of the Tour de France<br />

<strong>2023</strong>, UAE Team Emirates had<br />

another successful day as Adam<br />

Yates maintained the yellow jersey<br />

and Tadej Pogačar secured third<br />

place, elevating himself to second in<br />

the general classification. <strong>The</strong> race<br />

heated up on the challenging climb<br />

of Jaizkibel, where the peloton was<br />

reduced to around 30 riders due to the<br />

strong pace set by UAE Team Emirates,<br />

Jumbo-Visma, and Jayco-Alula.<br />

Tadej Pogačar claimed bonus seconds<br />

at the top of the climb, with Jonas<br />

Vingegaard following closely. Adam<br />

Yates remains the race leader, holding<br />

a 6-second advantage over Pogačar in<br />

second place and Simon Yates from<br />

Jayco-Alula in third. Stage 3 will take<br />

the peloton from Amorebieta-Etxano<br />

to Bayonne in France, covering a distance<br />

of 194 km.<br />

<strong>The</strong> UAE has revealed its<br />

comprehensive national<br />

sport strategy in preparation<br />

for the 2024 Olympics and<br />

beyond. This transformative strategy<br />

aims to focus on sports at both the<br />

national and elite levels, encompassing<br />

investments, societal objectives,<br />

and economic targets. <strong>The</strong> UAE’s<br />

sport strategy includes guidelines<br />

for funding elite athletes, increasing<br />

participation in sports, and fostering<br />

the development of the sports industry<br />

within the country. Dr. Ahmad Belhoul<br />

Al Falasi, Minister of Education and<br />

Chairman of the General Authority<br />

of Sports, provided an overview of<br />

the National Sports Strategy 2031,<br />

which received approval from His<br />

Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin<br />

Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President,<br />

Prime Minister, and Ruler of Dubai.<br />

As part of the strategy, the Emirates<br />

Committee for Elite and High-Level<br />

Sports was established to support and<br />

implement key initiatives.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 85

Tourism<br />

Ajman’s Vision: Unlocking the Potential<br />

of Touristry with the UAE Tourism Strategy<br />

2032<br />

Ajman, a thriving emirate with a population of over half a million people<br />

and a strong manufacturing and industrial sector, is set to benefit from<br />

the UAE’s ambitious tourism strategy. With its rich history, culture,<br />

and growing tourism attractions, Ajman is poised to emerge as a top<br />

leisure and eco-tourism destination. Ajman’s tourism strategy aims to<br />

enhance the contribution of the tourism sector to the GDP, strengthen<br />

the UAE’s position as a global tourism destination and welcome<br />

millions of hotel guests annually by 2031.<br />

86 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

<strong>The</strong> collaboration between the public and private<br />

sectors, along with strong marketing initiatives,<br />

has contributed to the growth of Ajman’s<br />

hospitality sector.<br />

With its unique offerings,<br />

Ajman is actively working<br />

to attract tourists. <strong>The</strong><br />

emirate boasts a range<br />

of tourism establishments, including<br />

hotels and serviced apartments,<br />

that cater to the needs of visitors.<br />

<strong>The</strong> Ajman Department of Tourism<br />

Development (ADTD) has devised a<br />

growth strategy to position Ajman as a<br />

prominent tourist destination. Notable<br />

attractions include Ajman Museum,<br />

Masfout Museum, Al Manama Museum,<br />

and the recently opened Zoya Health<br />

& Wellbeing Resort. Additionally, the<br />

emirate is witnessing the development<br />

of the luxurious Oberoi Family Beachfront<br />

Resort in Al Zorah, adding to its<br />

portfolio of upscale offerings.<br />

To accelerate the development of<br />

tourism infrastructure and facilities,<br />

Ajman has appointed Mahmood Khaleel<br />

Alhashmi as Director-General of Ajman<br />

Tourism. Alhashmi is leading negotiations<br />

with global partners to invest<br />

in the emirate’s tourism industry, securing<br />

agreements and memoranda of<br />

understanding that will shape Ajman’s<br />

tourism landscape in the coming years.<br />

<strong>The</strong> ADTD, under Alhashmi’s leadership,<br />

held a productive meeting with<br />

hotel general managers to review the<br />

tourism sector’s performance in 2022<br />

and discuss strategies and marketing<br />

plans for <strong>2023</strong>. <strong>The</strong> collaboration between<br />

the public and private sectors,<br />

along with strong marketing initiatives,<br />

contributed to a 9% revenue growth, a<br />

26% increase in foreign visitors, and a<br />

14% rise in average room rates in Ajman.<br />

Ajman continues to attract investments<br />

in the hospitality sector, with projects<br />

such as the Zoya Health & Wellbeing<br />

Resort and the reopening of Ajman<br />

Museum and Masfout Museum. <strong>The</strong><br />

government recognizes investors as<br />

key partners in tourism development<br />

and holds regular meetings to coordinate<br />

hospitality matters and support<br />

the growth of hotels and touristic<br />

destinations. Ajman’s commitment to<br />

establishing essential pillars of the<br />

travel and tourism sector is evident<br />

through its cooperation with strategic<br />

partners and active participation in<br />

international forums and exhibitions.<br />

By promoting its unique elements and<br />

engaging in global campaigns, Ajman<br />

aims to position itself as a leading<br />

travel destination in the UAE.<br />

Through the efforts of the Ajman<br />

Department of Tourism Development,<br />

Ajman aims to improve local, regional,<br />

and international tourism by implementing<br />

comprehensive strategies.<br />

<strong>The</strong>se strategies include planning and<br />

executing global tourism promotion<br />

campaigns, participating in conferences<br />

and exhibitions, regulating and<br />

developing the tourism industry, and<br />

enhancing the capacities and services of<br />

tourism facilities and businesses within<br />

the emirate. By setting regulations<br />

and legislations, ensuring appropriate<br />

standards and services for tourists, and<br />

issuing licenses for travel and tourism<br />

agencies, the department plays a crucial<br />

role in maintaining the quality and<br />

efficiency of Ajman’s tourism sector.<br />

Recognizing the vital role of investors<br />

in tourism development, Director<br />

General Alhashmi emphasizes their<br />

importance as key partners. Regular<br />

meetings are held to foster collaboration<br />

and coordination, facilitating the<br />

development of hotels and touristic<br />

destinations. <strong>The</strong>se investments act as<br />

catalysts for tourism growth, attracting<br />

visitors from around the world. Ajman’s<br />

commitment to establishing strong<br />

pillars in the travel and tourism sector<br />

is further demonstrated by its active<br />

engagement with strategic partners and<br />

participation in international forums<br />

and exhibitions associated with trade<br />

and tourism.<br />

As Ajman embraces its potential as<br />

a thriving tourism destination, visitors<br />

can look forward to experiencing the<br />

emirate’s rich heritage, culture, and<br />

natural beauty. With a wide range of<br />

attractions, including museums, resorts,<br />

and natural landscapes, Ajman offers a<br />

diverse and immersive tourism experience.<br />

<strong>The</strong> emirate’s commitment to<br />

growth, investment, and collaboration<br />

ensures that it will continue to be a<br />

compelling choice for tourists seeking<br />

unique and memorable experiences<br />

in the UAE.<br />

Ajman’s vision of amplifying touristry<br />

with the UAE Tourism Strategy 2032<br />

is set to transform the emirate into a<br />

prominent travel destination. With its rich<br />

history, cultural heritage, and growing<br />

tourism infrastructure, Ajman is ready<br />

to welcome an increasing number of<br />

visitors from around the world.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 87

Investing in Art<br />

Exploring the Lucrative Art Investment<br />

Landscape in Dubai<br />

<strong>The</strong> United Arab Emirates is witnessing a burgeoning art industry that<br />

is rapidly gaining momentum. Industry experts estimate the current<br />

value of the art market to be around $20 million to $30 million, reflecting<br />

its nascent stage. <strong>The</strong> burgeoning art scene in Dubai is witnessing a<br />

remarkable growth trajectory, attracting the attention of art enthusiasts<br />

and collectors worldwide. Dubai’s art landscape offers a rich tapestry<br />

of galleries and artists, both local and international, providing ample<br />

opportunities to explore and appreciate diverse artistic expressions.<br />

v<br />

88 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

Recognizing the potential<br />

for a thriving art market, an<br />

increasing number of international<br />

galleries are considering<br />

establishing their presence<br />

in Dubai and Abu Dhabi. This trend is<br />

fueled by the region’s wealth creation<br />

and the expanding international collector<br />

base, underscoring the growing<br />

significance of Dubai as a global hub<br />

for the arts.<br />

In recent years, the art market has<br />

emerged as a captivating investment<br />

opportunity, attracting collectors who<br />

view artworks as valuable additions to<br />

their investment portfolios. Similar to<br />

stocks and bonds, art has the potential<br />

to appreciate in value, particularly if<br />

potentially yielding returns of up<br />

to 80 percent. Instead of personally<br />

acquiring artwork, the fund operates<br />

on behalf of investors, allowing them<br />

to access and display remarkable art<br />

pieces by borrowing them. Additionally,<br />

investors have the flexibility to<br />

exchange artworks when desired,<br />

ensuring a dynamic and ever-changing<br />

collection to adorn their walls. This<br />

alternative approach to art investment<br />

showcases a unique and engaging way<br />

to appreciate and benefit from the art<br />

market.<br />

One notable advantage of art as an<br />

asset is its independence from stock<br />

market fluctuations. Even during periods<br />

of stock market downturns, art<br />

the location of art purchases irrelevant.<br />

In the UAE, specific financing<br />

products tailored for art investments<br />

are currently unavailable. However,<br />

for those who prefer a more cautious<br />

approach, art funds that offer advisory<br />

services can serve as alternative<br />

investment options.<br />

Investing in art can reduce portfolio<br />

volatility as it shows a low correlation<br />

with monetary assets, serving as a<br />

hedge against financial market downturns.<br />

<strong>The</strong> top sectors of the art market<br />

often exhibit little to no correlation<br />

with stock markets. Art’s intrinsic<br />

value and limited supply contribute to<br />

its potential to retain and appreciate<br />

in value over time. Beyond financial<br />

Investing in art can reduce portfolio volatility as it<br />

shows a low correlation with monetary assets, serving<br />

as a hedge against financial market downturns.<br />

an artist garners significant success<br />

in their career. While it’s important to<br />

note that art investment is a long-term<br />

endeavour, typically spanning 10 years<br />

or more, the patience of investors<br />

can yield substantial profits. Many<br />

art investors even include paintings<br />

in their estate planning, considering<br />

them as assets to be passed down to<br />

future generations.<br />

Contrary to popular belief, art investment<br />

goes beyond simply selecting<br />

a piece at a gallery and making<br />

a purchase. High-end art investment<br />

entails a more sophisticated approach.<br />

For instance, the Middle Eastern Fine<br />

Art Fund offers an opportunity for<br />

investors to enter with a minimum<br />

investment of AED 370,000, While<br />

investments can continue to thrive,<br />

providing diversification and risk<br />

mitigation for savvy investors. Ideally,<br />

although not guaranteed, artworks<br />

tend to appreciate value over time,<br />

further enhancing their appeal as an<br />

investment choice.<br />

<strong>The</strong> art market in the UAE, particularly<br />

exemplified by the success<br />

of Art Dubai, the region’s premier<br />

contemporary art fair, showcases a<br />

thriving and growing industry. Despite<br />

the challenges posed by the pandemic,<br />

the resilience of various art initiatives<br />

conducted online underscores the<br />

vitality of this market. Moreover, the<br />

art world is transitioning towards an<br />

online presence, transcending geographical<br />

boundaries and rendering<br />

gains, art investment offers aesthetic<br />

enjoyment, cultural enrichment, and<br />

the opportunity to pass down tangible<br />

assets. Seeking guidance from art advisors<br />

is crucial for navigating the art<br />

market successfully. Incorporating art<br />

into an investment portfolio provides<br />

an intriguing opportunity to diversify<br />

and potentially mitigate risk.<br />

<strong>The</strong> art market offers a dynamic and<br />

creative avenue for investment, with<br />

the potential for long-term financial<br />

growth. <strong>The</strong> thriving art scene in the<br />

UAE, as evidenced by Art Dubai and<br />

the involvement of prestigious galleries,<br />

further solidifies the region’s<br />

position as an emerging hub for art<br />

enthusiasts and investors alike.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 89

Global News<br />

Tesla cuts prices in<br />

Japan for Model 3 & Y<br />

Tesla Inc announced a price<br />

reduction for its Model 3 and<br />

Model Y electric vehicles in<br />

Japan, effective from the beginning<br />

of this month. <strong>The</strong> company<br />

lowered prices by low single-digit percentages<br />

for all variants of the Model<br />

3 and Model Y. <strong>The</strong> price reduction,<br />

which amounted to around 3% for the<br />

Model 3 and 4% for the Model Y, made<br />

the vehicles more affordable in Japan,<br />

especially when combined with various<br />

subsidies. This adjustment comes just<br />

two months after Tesla increased the<br />

prices of the Model 3 and Model Y in<br />

the Japanese market. <strong>The</strong> prices for<br />

the higher-end variants of both models<br />

remain slightly higher, while the prices<br />

of the Model S and Model X were left<br />

unchanged.<br />

Meta to launch Twitterlike<br />

app Threads<br />

Meta Platforms, the parent<br />

company of Instagram, is<br />

set to introduce a microblogging<br />

app called Threads<br />

shortly after Elon Musk, Twitter’s executive<br />

chair, implemented a temporary<br />

limit on the number of posts users can<br />

read on the platform. <strong>The</strong> app, listed<br />

on Apple’s App Store, is expected to<br />

be available for download. Threads<br />

will enable users to follow the same<br />

accounts they do on Instagram and<br />

retain their existing usernames. This<br />

launch follows Twitter’s recent introduction<br />

of several restrictions, such<br />

as the requirement of verification to<br />

access TweetDeck. Musk’s data scraping<br />

initiatives have faced criticism,<br />

creating challenges for new CEO Linda<br />

Yaccarino. Meta has yet to respond to<br />

inquiries regarding a potential launch<br />

on the Google Play Store.<br />

EV maker Rivian delivers 12,640 vehicles in the<br />

second quarter<br />

Rivian Automotive, the electric-vehicle<br />

manufacturer,<br />

announced on Monday that it<br />

had delivered 12,640 vehicles<br />

in the second quarter, representing a<br />

significant 59% increase compared to<br />

the previous quarter. During the same<br />

period, the company produced 13,992<br />

vehicles at its manufacturing facility<br />

located in Normal, Illinois. <strong>The</strong>se<br />

Standard Chartered: High-Quality Government<br />

Bonds Enhance Investor Yields<br />

Standard Chartered has advised<br />

investors to increase<br />

their allocation to high-quality<br />

government bonds while maintaining<br />

a cautious approach to equities,<br />

according to their recent Global Market<br />

Outlook report. <strong>The</strong> bank suggests that<br />

high-quality government bonds offer<br />

an attractive risk/reward profile and<br />

yield in comparison to other assets.<br />

With economic growth projected to<br />

slow, bond prices are expected to rise,<br />

and returns are anticipated to be less<br />

affected by a potential increase in the<br />

Federal Reserve’s peak rate. <strong>The</strong> report<br />

also recommends upgrading equity<br />

to a core allocation, particularly in<br />

impressive figures reflect Rivian’s<br />

continued growth and strong performance<br />

in the electric vehicle market.<br />

As a result of this positive news, the<br />

company’s shares experienced a 4%<br />

rise to $17.3 during premarket trading.<br />

Rivian’s success underscores the<br />

increasing demand for electric vehicles<br />

and highlights its position as a key<br />

player in the industry.<br />

combination with Developed Market<br />

(DM) investment-grade government<br />

bonds. Standard Chartered is overweight<br />

on Asian equities, including<br />

Japan, due to strong stock buybacks,<br />

earnings growth, and favourable economic<br />

conditions.<br />

90 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

Japan’s firms offer biggest pay hikes in 30 years, wage growth broadens<br />

Japanese firms have offered<br />

the largest pay hikes in three<br />

decades, according to Japan’s<br />

largest trade union group, Rengo.<br />

<strong>The</strong> survey conducted by Rengo<br />

revealed an average pay increase<br />

of 3.58%, or 10,560 yen ($73.04) per<br />

month, the highest since 1993. Small<br />

and medium enterprises (SMEs) also<br />

raised wages at a rapid pace, with a<br />

growth rate of 3.23%, the fastest in<br />

three decades. Economists believe<br />

that these pay hikes will help boost<br />

consumer demand and revive the<br />

economy. <strong>The</strong> Bank of Japan is closely<br />

monitoring wage growth as it considers<br />

the timing of unwinding its monetary<br />

stimulus, while Prime Minister Fumio<br />

Kishida aims to address rising living<br />

costs by prioritizing wage increases.<br />

Metro Cebu office take-up remains strong in Q1<br />

Metro Cebu continues to be the<br />

top choice for outsourcing<br />

firms looking to expand in<br />

the Philippines, leading<br />

other provincial locations in office<br />

space take-up during the first quarter of<br />

<strong>2023</strong>, according to a report by Colliers<br />

Philippines. Although vacancies remain<br />

high due to new supply, the report<br />

suggests that expanding outsourcing<br />

companies will occupy more office<br />

spaces in the area. Cebu’s abundant<br />

China growth concerns<br />

weigh on European<br />

shares at open<br />

European shares experienced a<br />

decline on Wednesday due to<br />

concerns over China’s faltering<br />

economic recovery, causing<br />

uncertainty among investors already<br />

grappling with doubts about future<br />

monetary policies by major central<br />

banks. <strong>The</strong> pan-European STOXX 600<br />

index dropped 0.4% by 7:02 GMT. A private-sector<br />

survey revealed that China’s<br />

services activity expanded at its slowest<br />

pace in five months in June, adding to<br />

existing data indicating weakness in the<br />

world’s second-largest economy following<br />

the pandemic. <strong>The</strong> mining sector was<br />

particularly affected, declining by 1.0%,<br />

as worries about weak demand from<br />

China and slowing growth in other major<br />

economies impacted metal prices.<br />

labour pool, infrastructure, and matured<br />

industry make it an attractive option<br />

for shared services and multinational<br />

companies (MNCs). <strong>The</strong> report also<br />

encourages property landlords to<br />

actively pursue major occupants<br />

seeking expansive and sustainable<br />

office spaces. Additionally, existing<br />

occupiers in Metro Manila may consider<br />

Cebu for their business continuity<br />

plans, given its quality office spaces<br />

and skilled workforce.<br />

China’s Xi says focus should be on cooperation,<br />

economic recovery<br />

Chinese President Xi Jinping<br />

emphasized the importance<br />

of pragmatic cooperation and<br />

expediting economic recovery<br />

during his virtual speech at the 23rd<br />

meeting of the Council of Heads of<br />

State of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization<br />

(SCO) Summit. <strong>The</strong> summit,<br />

attended by leaders from SCO member<br />

countries, witnessed President Xi’s<br />

call for closer collaboration and a<br />

focused approach to tackle prevailing<br />

challenges. As the SCO plays a crucial<br />

role in promoting regional stability and<br />

economic development, Xi’s remarks<br />

underscored China’s commitment<br />

to fostering productive partnerships<br />

within the organization. <strong>The</strong> summit<br />

provided a platform to discuss key<br />

regional issues and strengthen ties<br />

among participating nations.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 91

Investing in Tourism<br />

Driving Dubai’s Tourism Boom: Key<br />

Factors Fueling Growth in the Tourism<br />

Industry<br />

<strong>The</strong> tourism industry is undergoing a profound transformation driven by<br />

rapid technological advancements and shifting consumer expectations.<br />

This dynamic landscape presents both challenges and opportunities for<br />

investors seeking to capitalize on the industry’s evolution. Keeping in<br />

mind the digital and technology trends, let’s throw light on investment<br />

opportunities, challenges and insights for the future of the tourism<br />

industry by 2030. By embracing adaptability and staying attuned to<br />

the macro-trends, investors can position themselves for success in the<br />

thriving tourism market of the future.<br />

92 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

Dubai’s thriving population, tax-free trading zones,<br />

culinary diversity, retail sector, educational institutions,<br />

and multicultural environment further enhance its<br />

appeal to international visitors<br />

<strong>The</strong> local tourism authorities<br />

in the UAE have introduced<br />

initiatives to boost the travel<br />

and tourism sector. <strong>The</strong>y are<br />

implementing various tourism plans<br />

and projects to create environmentally<br />

friendly destinations, promote<br />

cultural tourism, organise tourism<br />

events, activities, and festivals, as<br />

well as sustainability projects. His<br />

Excellency Sultan Al Mansoori, Minister<br />

of Economy, said that the tourism<br />

sector is among the priorities on the<br />

UAE Development Agenda, as it is a<br />

central pillar in the economic diversification<br />

and preparation for the post-oil<br />

economy.<br />

One crucial aspect of enhancing<br />

the tourism experience is investing in<br />

the food and beverages sector. Dining<br />

plays a pivotal role in the overall travel<br />

experience, and investing in this sector<br />

ensures that tourists have access<br />

to a diverse range of dining options<br />

that cater to their various tastes and<br />

preferences. <strong>The</strong> UAE’s food and beverage<br />

market is already a frontrunner<br />

in the Middle East, thanks to the consistent<br />

influx of tourists throughout<br />

the year. Shuraa predicts a promising<br />

7% year-on-year increase in the food<br />

industry, showcasing the significant<br />

potential for growth and investment<br />

in this sector.<br />

By prioritising the development of<br />

the food and beverages sector, the<br />

UAE can further elevate its tourism<br />

offerings and solidify its position as a<br />

top global travel destination.<br />

Throughout the years, there has<br />

been a steady evolution in the food industries<br />

in UAE, especially in the food<br />

processing industries. Even during<br />

the Covid-19 pandemic, there was no<br />

shortage of food experienced in Dubai<br />

due to the diverse import strategies<br />

and trade logistics infrastructures<br />

employed by the government. A study<br />

by the Dubai chambers states that UAE<br />

recorded a 6% growth in fresh food<br />

products and a 4% growth in sales of<br />

packaged food products in 2020 itself.<br />

Moreover, the UAE’s food and beverage<br />

market witnessed a remarkable<br />

surge in online sales, with a staggering<br />

year-over-year growth of 255% in<br />

2020, according to the Dubai chamber.<br />

This impressive growth trajectory is<br />

projected to continue, with forecasts<br />

indicating that the market’s online<br />

sales will reach a remarkable $619<br />

million by 2025. <strong>The</strong>se statistics serve<br />

as strong indicators that the UAE is<br />

positioning itself as a frontrunner in<br />

the food trading business, poised for<br />

leadership in the industry.<br />

In line with the UAE’s commitment<br />

to promoting its culinary prowess,<br />

the Dubai food festival was introduced<br />

in 2014. This esteemed event<br />

was initiated by the Dubai Festivals<br />

and Retail Establishment (DFRE),<br />

an agency operating under the Department<br />

of Tourism and Commerce<br />

Marketing (DTCM) in Dubai. <strong>The</strong><br />

festival has since become an integral<br />

part of Dubai’s annual events calendar,<br />

captivating both locals and tourists<br />

with its celebration of diverse flavours,<br />

renowned chefs, and culinary<br />

experiences.<br />

<strong>The</strong> tenth annual DFF took place<br />

this year, beginning on April 21st and<br />

lasting until May 7th. During the 17-day<br />

event, more than 95,000 people visited<br />

Etisalat by e& Beach canteen, which<br />

collaborated with various restaurants<br />

throughout the city to present thoughtfully<br />

crafted dishes at an affordable<br />

price of Dhs10 per plate. <strong>The</strong> 10 Dirham<br />

Dish initiative aims to make the<br />

culinary culture of Dubai more accessible<br />

than ever before.<br />

<strong>The</strong> primary aim of the Dubai Food<br />

Festival is to celebrate and showcase<br />

the diverse culinary offerings of the<br />

city. It was launched to promote Dubai<br />

as a global gastronomic destination,<br />

highlighting its vibrant food scene, rich<br />

culinary heritage, and the presence of<br />

renowned local and international chefs<br />

and restaurants.<br />

<strong>The</strong> Dubai Food Festival has played<br />

a significant role in boosting the city’s<br />

reputation as a culinary hotspot and<br />

has contributed to the growth of its<br />

tourism industry. It has become an<br />

integral part of Dubai’s annual events<br />

calendar, attracting both locals and<br />

tourists who come to experience the<br />

diverse flavours and culinary experiences<br />

the city has to offer.<br />

<strong>The</strong> flourishing food industry in the<br />

UAE has sparked tremendous interest<br />

among global investors, who recognise<br />

the immense business potential<br />

it holds. Dubai, in particular, offers a<br />

wide range of accessible licenses for<br />

various food-related ventures, including<br />

restaurants, food trucks, catering<br />

businesses, and bakeries. This not<br />

only highlights the government’s recognition<br />

of the pivotal role played by<br />

the food and beverage industry in promoting<br />

tourism but also underscores<br />

their understanding of the importance<br />

of facilitating entrepreneurial opportunities<br />

in this sector.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 93

Local News<br />

UAE says additional oil cuts should be enough to balance market<br />

According to United Arab Emirates’<br />

energy minister, Suhail<br />

Al Mazrouei, the additional oil<br />

output and export cuts made by<br />

Saudi Arabia and Russia are expected to<br />

be sufficient in balancing the oil market.<br />

<strong>The</strong> OPEC+ group, which includes the<br />

Organization of the Petroleum Exporting<br />

Countries and Russia, has been implementing<br />

production cuts since November<br />

to combat declining oil prices. Despite<br />

the recent cuts, benchmark Brent futures<br />

traded at a more than 1% decrease at<br />

$75.30 per barrel on Wednesday, still<br />

below the $80-$100 per barrel range<br />

needed by most OPEC nations to balance<br />

their budgets. Mazrouei stated that the<br />

current cuts are enough to evaluate the<br />

market balance, and the UAE will not be<br />

implementing further reductions.<br />

UAE non-oil sector<br />

remained on a strong<br />

footing in June<br />

Non-oil business conditions<br />

in the UAE strengthened in<br />

June, driven by increased<br />

output and a surge in new<br />

orders. <strong>The</strong> seasonally adjusted S&P<br />

Global UAE Purchasing Managers’<br />

Index (PMI) rose to 56.9 in June, indicating<br />

consistent improvement for 31<br />

consecutive survey periods. Andrew<br />

Harker, Economics Director at S&P<br />

Global Market Intelligence, highlighted<br />

the sustained growth in securing new<br />

business, reaching a four-year high.<br />

However, the growth was partly reliant<br />

on offering discounts to customers,<br />

which may not be viable in the long<br />

run due to rising input costs. Despite<br />

this, job opportunities expanded for<br />

the 14th consecutive month, driven<br />

by higher workloads and the recruitment<br />

of additional sales staff. <strong>The</strong><br />

survey suggests that backlogs of work<br />

continued to rise, indicating the need<br />

for further job creation and increased<br />

staffing levels in the future.<br />

ENOC Link Fuels Dubai Airport Fleet<br />

ENOC Link, the digital fuel<br />

supply service by ENOC<br />

Group in the UAE, has started<br />

providing fuel to Dubai<br />

International Airport’s fleet, offering<br />

reliability, safety, and convenience. By<br />

eliminating the need for two weekly<br />

fuel stops, the airport fleet is expected<br />

to reduce vehicle movement by 31,616<br />

kilometres annually, aligning with the<br />

UAE’s sustainability objectives. <strong>The</strong><br />

Dubai Chamber of Digital Economy,<br />

operating under Dubai<br />

Chambers, hosted a workshop<br />

with over 20 government<br />

entities to tackle challenges within the<br />

digital industries. <strong>The</strong> session aimed<br />

to find solutions that foster a thriving<br />

digital ecosystem, creating opportunities<br />

and contributing to a sustainable digital<br />

economy in Dubai and the UAE. Previous<br />

interactive workshops focused on areas<br />

such as Artificial Intelligence, 3D printing,<br />

esports, healthtech, and ecommerce.<br />

<strong>The</strong>se discussions explored challenges<br />

in targeted sectors, seeking to develop<br />

appropriate solutions for improved performance<br />

and enhanced competitiveness.<br />

Mohammad Ali Rashed Lootah, President<br />

and CEO of Dubai Chambers, emphasized<br />

the importance of engaging with<br />

stakeholders to strengthen the national<br />

economy and establish Dubai as a global<br />

digital capital.<br />

collaboration between ENOC Link,<br />

Dubai Airports, and EPPCO Aviation<br />

ensures adherence to the highest<br />

safety standards. ENOC Link drivers<br />

underwent specialized training to<br />

secure the Airport Driving Permit,<br />

allowing them to operate vehicles and<br />

equipment within the airport premises,<br />

contributing positively to the UAE’s<br />

climate change agenda.<br />

Dubai Chamber of Digital Economy Explores Opportunities<br />

and Challenges<br />

94 www.thefinanceworld.com <strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong>

Medcare Royal Hospital to be launched in Al Qusais, Dubai<br />

Aster DM Healthcare, a leading<br />

healthcare provider in the<br />

GCC and India, has unveiled<br />

the upcoming Medcare Royal<br />

Hospital in Al Qusais. Developed by<br />

Dubai Developments, the state-of-theart<br />

medical facility will span 334,736<br />

square feet and feature 126 beds. It<br />

will be the fourth Medcare Hospital<br />

in Dubai and the fifth in the UAE<br />

overall, complementing the existing<br />

Iberdrola, UAE’s Masdar<br />

to develop $1.5B Baltic<br />

wind farm, Expansion<br />

reports<br />

Spanish utility company Iberdrola<br />

has entered into an exclusive<br />

partnership with Abu Dhabi’s<br />

Masdar to develop a 476 MW<br />

offshore wind farm in the Baltic Sea,<br />

according to Expansion newspaper.<br />

<strong>The</strong> Baltic Eagle wind farm, situated<br />

off Germany’s northeastern coast, will<br />

consist of 50 wind turbines and is part<br />

of Iberdrola’s strategy to sell advanced<br />

renewable projects and raise funds for<br />

its 47 billion euro investment plan.<br />

Expansion reports that Masdar, owned<br />

by the United Arab Emirates’ sovereign<br />

wealth fund Mubadala, may acquire<br />

up to a 49% stake in the project. <strong>The</strong><br />

Baltic Eagle wind farm is estimated<br />

to be worth approximately 1.4 billion<br />

euros ($1.52B).<br />

network of 20 Medcare Medical Centres.<br />

<strong>The</strong> agreement between Aster DM<br />

Healthcare and Dubai Developments<br />

was recently signed, with plans for<br />

the hospital to commence operations<br />

by December <strong>2023</strong>. This collaboration<br />

aligns with the UAE’s vision to become<br />

a global healthcare destination, offering<br />

exceptional medical services and<br />

patient experiences.<br />

Abu Dhabi, Ajman, and Dubai ranked among world’s<br />

5 safest cities<br />

According to data released by<br />

Numbeo, Abu Dhabi, Ajman,<br />

and Dubai have been ranked<br />

among the world’s five safest<br />

cities, solidifying the United Arab<br />

Emirates’ reputation as a secure and<br />

stable destination to live and work.<br />

<strong>The</strong> first half of <strong>2023</strong> data revealed<br />

that Abu Dhabi claimed the top spot<br />

as the safest city globally, with Ajman<br />

ranked second and Dubai at fifth place.<br />

Abu Dhabi has consistently held the<br />

leading position since 2022. Doha and<br />

Taipei secured the third and fourth<br />

positions, respectively, while Muscat<br />

ranked eighth, making it the only other<br />

city from the region in the top 10.<br />

<strong>The</strong> Numbeo rankings cover various<br />

aspects such as quality of life, crime,<br />

healthcare, pollution, and traffic.<br />

Dubai Hosts First Assembly for Generative AI to<br />

Explore Advanced Technologies<br />

<strong>The</strong> inaugural Dubai Assembly<br />

for Generative AI is scheduled<br />

for October 11-12, as announced<br />

by the Dubai Media Office. <strong>The</strong><br />

event aims to introduce governments and<br />

societies to the potential of generative<br />

AI tools, showcasing how advanced<br />

technologies can be harnessed to<br />

advance progress and improve quality<br />

of life. Under the guidance of Sheikh<br />

Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid<br />

Al Maktoum, the Crown Prince of<br />

Dubai, the Assembly aims to develop<br />

an inclusive vision for the future of<br />

generative AI, focusing on forthcoming<br />

advancements and promising opportunities<br />

it offers. Dubai’s commitment to<br />

embracing AI is set to lead the way in<br />

tech advancements.<br />

<strong>August</strong> <strong>2023</strong> www.thefinanceworld.com 95


R<br />





futurehospitality.com/ae<br />




Chief Executive Officer<br />

Al Khozama Investments<br />


BAZIN<br />

Group Chairman & CEO<br />

and Luxury & Lifestyle<br />

Division CEO<br />

Accor<br />



Executive Director of<br />

Human Resources<br />

Miral<br />

JS<br />

ANAND<br />

Founder & CEO<br />

Leva Hotels & Resorts<br />

OLIVER<br />

BONKE<br />

CEO & Chairman of the<br />

Board of Management<br />

Deutsche Hospitality<br />

PUNEET<br />


Managing Director & CEO<br />

<strong>The</strong> Indian Hotels Company<br />

Limited (IHCL)<br />

ANDREW<br />


Principal Economist<br />

<strong>The</strong> Economist Group<br />

CHADI<br />

HAUCH<br />

Regional Vice President<br />

Lodging Development ME<br />

Marriott International<br />

GUY<br />


President & CEO<br />

Rotana<br />

KEVIN<br />

JACOBS<br />

Chief Financial Officer<br />

and President, Global<br />

Development<br />

Hilton<br />

RAED<br />

KUHAIL<br />

Executive Director of<br />

Digital & Technology<br />

Miral<br />



President, Europe,<br />

Middle East, Eurasia &<br />

Africa (EMEA)<br />

Wyndham Hotels & Resorts<br />

GILDA<br />


Global CEO<br />

JLL Hotels & Hospitality<br />


SACKUR<br />

Presenter<br />

HARDTalk<br />







25 - 27 SEPT <strong>2023</strong><br />




www.evonith.com<br />

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