Mena FinTech sector poised for explosive growth

Dubai FinTech Summit kicked off on Monday with over 200 exhibitors



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Published: Mon 6 May 2024, 9:02 PM

The global FinTech sector is rapidly growing and is predicted to be valued at $608 billion globally by 2029, according to Mordor Intelligence, a market intelligence and advisory firm.

The Middle East and North Africa (Mena) region’s FinTech start-up and venture capital landscape is booming, with over 800 FinTech start-ups worth $15.5 billion, according to data by

With these in focus, the Dubai FinTech Summit kicked off on Monday. Organised by DIFC, the Summit brings together 8,000 decision-makers, over 300 thought leaders and more than 200 exhibitors to discuss the latest innovations and challenges and showcase cutting-edge technologies.

Dubai FinTech Summit offers a platform for start-ups, investors and industry leaders to connect and capitalise on the growing FinTech market in the region and beyond.

In line with the goal of the Dubai Economic Agenda D33 to establish Dubai as one of the world’s top four global financial hubs by 2033, the Dubai FinTech Summit is designed to encourage cross-border collaboration and innovation, which are pivotal to transforming the global FinTech sector. The event presents a unique opportunity to explore emerging FinTech trends and their potential to drive financial progress in the MEASA region.

The inaugural Dubai FinTech Summit attracted over 5,000 C-suite leaders from over 90 countries including north of 1,000 investors and more than 150 speakers. Over 20 memoranda of understanding were signed with global financial leaders during the Summit.

Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, First Deputy Ruler of Dubai, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance of the UAE, and President of the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), on Monday met with global policymakers and financial industry leaders on the sidelines of the second Dubai FinTech Summit (DFS).

Influential decision makers that Sheikh Maktoum engaged with included Adena T Friedman, Chair and CEO of Nasdaq; Oh Se-Hoon, Mayor of Seoul, South Korea; Nic Dreckman, Group CEO of Julius Baer; and Nik Storonsky, Founder and CEO of Revolut.

Sheikh Maktoum highlighted Dubai’s strategic initiatives to enhance the total volume of its stock markets to AED3 trillion and deepen its capital market ecosystem, making it a key destination for investors from across the world. Collaboration with global players like Nasdaq is vital to Dubai’s strategic efforts to advance investment growth and foster technology innovation in financial services, he added.

He added that Dubai’s long-standing partnership with Nasdaq has supported it in forging new pathways for excellence in the financial sector, and raising its status as a leading international financial centre.

Friedman commended Dubai’s progressive approach and expressed Nasdaq’s interest in exploring opportunities for collaboration in areas such as capital market development, and regulatory innovation.

Sheikh Maktoum expressed Dubai’s commitment to creating a conducive environment for wealth management, investment and financial technology excellence, highlighting the city’s strategic initiatives to attract high-net-worth individuals, family offices and innovative FinTech companies. Dreckmann and Storonsky commended Dubai’s exceptional growth over the last decade as a global financial hub and expressed their companies’ interest in expanding their presence in the region, and leveraging Dubai’s advanced infrastructure and investor-friendly policies to serve their clients effectively.

The meetings were attended by Essa Kazim, Governor of DIFC; Arif Amiri, chief executive officer of DIFC Authority; and Mohammad Alblooshi, CEO of DIFC Innovation Hub.


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