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Fuse Obtains DIFC Licence as it Looks to Capitalise on Growing UAE Digital Remittances Market

Fuse, the cross-border payments firm based in the Middle East, has officially obtained licencing from the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), enabling it to cater to the growing demand for remitting money into the UAE.

The UAE’s digital remittances market is projected to exceed $7.5billion this year, while transaction value is forecasted to grow by a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 3.08 per cent to reach nearly $8.5billion by 2028.

George Davis, co-founder and CEO of Fuse
George Davis, co-founder and CEO of Fuse

Fuse’s DIFC licence is regulated by the Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA). George Davis, co-founder and CEO of Fuse, discussed the importance of this: “Our mission is to make MENA simple and accessible for global businesses, and this fuelled our decision to work with the DFSA as its understanding of both local and international payments is essential in realising our ambition.

“Furthermore, the DFSA’s focus on innovation, as well as its ability to drive regulation that supports global financial institutions and local fintechs, made our choice easy.”

For many firms, obtaining a client money account in the UAE is challenging, with some applicants holding an approval in principle for up to three years before they can operationalise it.

However, Fuse explained that its long-standing banking relationships helped it expedite the process, enabling it to hold client money accounts from an early stage. With its newly acquired licence, Fuse can serve new and existing global corporate customers who are looking to further expand their products and services to the Middle East.

Fuse commits to compliance with DIFC

Davis added: “Since our inception, compliance has been at the heart of our business and our products, as reflected in our decision to hire our chief compliance officer, Kathryn Willis, as a founding team member.

“Kate’s experience in enforcement at the FCA, and later in international compliance for regulated firms such as Facebook and TrueLayer, has proven vital for Fuse. Through a transparent approach, Fuse has developed robust risk and compliance frameworks that make it simple for any regulator to become comfortable with our products.

“With the DFSA focused on encouraging speed and innovation, we achieved approval smoothly and without any delay. The Money Services Business licence enables us to quickly launch products for customers through our Virtual IBANs and Domestic and International payments infrastructure.”

The DIFC enjoyed a record-breaking 20th anniversary last year, with combined revenues amounting to AED1.3billion and reflecting a 23 per cent increase from 2022.

Fuse now hopes to help further solidify the DIFC’s first-place regional rank while simplifying payment processes for global customers in collaboration with the DFSA.

The cross-border payments firm is enabling global businesses to enjoy success in the UAE, driving innovation and facilitating economic growth – helping payment companies, creator economy apps, employers of record (EORs) and platform businesses to make payments in and around the region without needing to focus on local entities, licences, and currencies.

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