Editor's Choice Fintech Insights Middle East & Africa

Welcome to The Fintech Times Middle East and Africa 2024 Report

The Fintech Times has launched its fourth annual report into the fintech landscape in the Middle East and Africa (MEA) region. 

The Middle East and Africa region is a tapestry of diversity, encompassing a rich array of landscapes, cultures, and economies. From the opulence derived from natural resources to the burgeoning tech hubs, MEA represents a convergence of prosperity and potential.

This latest fourth edition builds upon the foundation laid by our previous MEA reports, delving deeper into the transformative fintech landscape of the region and its broader economic opportunities and challenges.

It begins with a broad overview and then delves into specific aspects of the industry, offering a comprehensive view of the fintech ecosystem in the region. Intended as a reference for MEA fintech and economic development, this report aims to be useful for both those unfamiliar with MEA and fintech, as well as experts in either field.

mea report

Writing the report

Richie Santosdiaz, executive economic development advisor – emerging markets and main author of The Fintech Times: Middle East and Africa 2024 Report, comments: “The MEA region offers significant opportunities for fintech, which I have personally observed and which the fourth edition of this report highlights.

“I am particularly proud of this edition because we introduced innovative features such as new images that place fintech in a regional context, particularly within key subsectors, and timelines that emphasise the main fintech hubs in the region.

“This edition extends beyond the Gulf Countries and the ‘Big Four’ in Africa, including Algeria and the Democratic Republic of the Congo in our analysis of significant fintech centres.

“Despite global challenges facing fintech and broader tech sectors, the MEA region remains vibrant, demonstrating this through various metrics – from venture capital investment to the proliferation of fintech companies and the diversification of activities across the region.”


Highlights from the report:
  • The region is home to approximately 3,700 fintech companies. Notably, 40 per cent of these are located in Turkey, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), or Israel.
  • Approximately two-thirds of the fintechs in the region are concentrated in payments, lending, or wealth and investment sectors. This represents significant diversification compared to the past when up to 85 per cent of MENA fintechs were focused solely on payments.
  • The fourth edition of the MEA report introduces substantial changes, including the inclusion of Algeria and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). It also expands on the fintech subsectors and includes timelines for 25 different countries within the MEA region.
  • Mark Dowdall, editor of Seamless Xtra, discusses the rapid technological progress in the Middle East and Africa, focusing on the simplification and efficiency of digital commerce. He highlights the evolution of digital IDs, the rise of real-time payment systems, and the integration of services into ‘super apps’ that offer seamless user experiences. Dowdall also explores the potential of the metaverse and the importance of regulatory frameworks that support innovation while ensuring fair practices, particularly in the areas of sustainable finance and AI implementation.
  • PayTabs, a leading fintech in Saudi Arabia, highlights its payment orchestration platform, designed to enhance the efficiency and flexibility of payment systems in the Middle East’s public sector. Adapting to demands like data localisation, PayTabs addresses challenges such as security and user experience, facilitating over $10billion in annual payment volumes. Its recent integrations, like the SADAD payment method, align with Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030, optimising public sector operations and supporting economic diversification with scalable, custom payment solutions.

Read The Fintech Times’ The Middle East & Africa Report 2024 online

mea report


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