WKND Conversations: Evolving crypto-landscape in the UAE

The recent edition of that took place on August 5 showcased influential voices from the industry, who are making their mark

Follow us on Google News-khaleejtimes

(From left to right) Jean Shahdadpuri, Roshal Mascarenhas, Shivani Kamboj and Nuha Hashem
(From left to right) Jean Shahdadpuri, Roshal Mascarenhas, Shivani Kamboj and Nuha Hashem

By Laraib Anwer

Published: Thu 11 Aug 2022, 6:10 PM

With the evolving financial scene of the UAE, comes opportunities, growth, and new-found journeys for people across the globe. The financial sector is also seeing a new surge of women entering, taking on prominent roles, breaking barriers and challenging traditional norms.

The recent edition of wknd. conversations that took place on August 5 showcased some of these talented women, who are making their mark in the industry and highlighted the opportunities offered in the market for young entrepreneurs out there. The event that took place at Taikun Dubai at Al Habtoor City, in partnership with BlueChip Group Of Companies, was kickstarted with a much-needed sound meditation and healing session by Chandnee Kaurani, a yoga and wellness coach.

Divided into two segments, the first panel consisted of Jean Shahdadpuri, Roshal Mascarenhas, Nuha Hashem and Shivani Kamboj, who spoke about the growing impact and importance of women being in the financial landscape. The second panel consisted of Nitin Bhalla, Nameer Khan, Mo Ali Yusuf, and Shashvat Rajput, who spoke about the diverse array of opportunities the country has to offer. The guest of honour was Mohammad Al Banna, the group CEO and founder of Lead Ventures, accompanied by special guest, model and actress, Amiee Misobbah. Before the panel discussion, Suraj Jumani, the chief operations officer at BlueChip Group of Companies, addressed the audience members to introduce their ongoing projects.

Jean Shahdadpuri, managing director of Nikai, spotlighted why the UAE’s market is so appealing to the younger generation. “The UAE has this really unique and progressive vision that makes it so exciting. The curve of growth and evolution, and the speed at which it is moving, the enabling facilities and attitude by the government agencies, and the ‘yes’ attitude to everything. That’s what gives fuel to innovators and younger people who move at a faster pace,” said Shahdapuri.

(From left to right) Nitin Bhalla, Nameer Khan, Mo Ali Yusuf and Shashvat Rajput
(From left to right) Nitin Bhalla, Nameer Khan, Mo Ali Yusuf and Shashvat Rajput

Roshal Mascarenhas, co-founder and CMO of Kregzo, spoke about the changing climate of women’s inclusion in finance. “Women have now started taking up the route to finance, which is unprecedented considering how throughout history, money has always been in the hands of the male figure, who sits at the head of the table. Now, more and more women with financial power are taking charge. There is so much they can do,” said Mascarenhas.

With financial opportunities comes a greater need for communication and meeting new people and talents wherever you go. Shivani Kamboj, portfolio manager at BlueChip, said: “Meeting people every day and finding new talents is a great learning experience and gives me the opportunity to meet wonderful women.” If there is anything that GenZ is associated with, its living in the age of fast-paced communication and Nuha Hashem, co-founder of Zywa, the first neobank for teenagers in the Middle East and North Africa region, said: “The UAE is a great place to start our venture in the Middle East region because of all the support of entrepreneurs over here.”

The second session began with Nameer Khan, one of the top FinTech influencers in the Middle East and the chairman of MENA FinTech Association. “When you’re coming into the region one of the core things one questions is why they would want to come and start in the UAE and that’s what we do, we highlight the regional opportunities and what the UAE has to offer, to grow and expand in the region,” said Khan.

Suraj Jumani, COO (left), with Ravinder Soni, CEO, BlueChip Group of Companies
Suraj Jumani, COO (left), with Ravinder Soni, CEO, BlueChip Group of Companies

Another FinTech influencer who joined the panel was Mo Ali Yusuf, who is also the regional manager at Checkout.com. “If you order a taxi in Dubai, food, or retail shopping, most of those payments in the UAE are going through checkout.com’s platform, be it your Netflix payments or any such thing,” he added.

Joining the financial market can sometimes be a scary and risky affair, but BlueChip makes sure that people are well trained in the field. “In the Forex industry 99% of clients lose their money, we wanted to train them in a way that they make money in the industry and are well versed and trained in the market,” said Shashvat Rajput.

Nitin Bhalla, founder and CEO of Kregzo, who focuses mainly on crypto, sustainability and social entrepreneurship, spoke about the core concept of Kregzo. “We went into the technology rather than creating a physical space. We have created a single platform that allows anyone to build and venture into a startup idea,” said Bhalla.

Ravinder Soni, CEO, BlueChip Group Of Companies, then thanked all the guests present, followed by a lunch hosted by Taikun Dubai, where all the speakers and guests had the pleasant opportunity of connecting and networking with one another.


More news from