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    Abu Dhabi Global Market admits 3rd Reglab Cohort with more UAE FinTech firms

    ADGM FSRA 11/09/2018

    • 10 firms admitted for Cohort 3 to develop FinTech solutions for SME sector
    • ADGM Reglab has admitted a total of 26 firms out of 69 applications from 20 countries since launch
    • The most active FinTech regulatory sandbox in the region, ADGM Reglab allows participants to live-test their solutions with clients under regulatory supervision

    Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM), the International Financial Centre in Abu Dhabi, is pleased to approve its third batch of Regulatory Laboratory (Reglab) participants comprising 10 local and international FinTech start-ups. The successful participants, which were selected from a pool of 36 applications, will join a pool of 16 firms from the 1st and 2nd cohorts, bringing the total number of firms to 26 in the programme.  The start-up innovators who have been selected represent a mix of local and international markets, including the UAE, Kenya, India, Singapore and the United Kingdom.

    "The positive response we've had from the local and global Fintech start-ups over the last two years of the RegLab programme is extremely encouraging.  We are looking forward to working with the newly admitted start-ups, which offer fascinating propositions such as financing, payments and insurance solutions that can benefit the SME sector.  The quality of the firms that have been selected, primarily from the UAE, has been impressive, and speaks volume of the strength and attractiveness of ADGM as a jurisdiction for FinTechs to establish themselves and expand into the Middle East, Africa and Asia region.  We have to date the second most active Fintech sandbox globally and most successful regulatory sandbox in the region, and will continue to innovate to better serve the needs of the financial services industry and our economy," said Mr Richard Teng, Chief Executive Officer of the Financial Services Regulatory Authority of ADGM.

    Mr Teng added, "Building on the success of the RegLab's first two years, we will be opening up applications for the fourth cohort in Q1 2019."

    A regional first, the ADGM RegLab is a bespoke regulatory framework which provides a controlled environment for FinTech firms to develop and test innovative FinTech solutions. Successful applicants can test their product according to regulatory requirements tailored to contain the specific risks and impact of their particular test. These safeguards will allow FinTech participants to explore and develop innovative solutions in a risk-appropriate and cost-effective environment.  

    The 10 ADGM Reglab participants offer a range wide of innovations. They are:




    Accelerated Drawdowns Fin Islamic (ADFI)


    ADFI is an Islamic Finance focused Fintech start-up and was recently selected as finalist for the Abu Dhabi NYU StartAD Fintech Venture Launchpad. ADFI has developed a technology platform that aims to provide an efficient and fully digitised process for invoice early payment and management between large corporate and their small business suppliers. The platform shall offer multiple features to improve business efficiencies like digitised invoice management, Data Analytics, Strategic MIS,International Trade, Purchase orders,and competitive bidding.



    Bedouin Chain is a digital private financing platform where business-to-business commercial trading partners and institutional lenders conduct commercial and financial settlement and short-term debt capital finance transactions including invoice factoring and working capital finance. The platform will crypto graphically register transactions on a private permission immutable distributed ledger network enabled by digital programmable self-executable smart contracts.



    BitPesa’s mission is to accelerate the growth of businesses in frontier markets by developing innovative treasury management solutions that reduce friction, improve efficiency, and support digital interoperability. Launched in Nairobi, BitPesa now has offices in Lagos, London, Luxembourg, Madrid, and Dakar.



    BlockTrust is building the leading provider of digital trustee and custodial services across crypto currency assets for the Middle East, North Africa, India and South East Asia with an ultra-secure Institutional-grade and multi-geographic digital vault. Headquartered in Abu Dhabi, BlockTrust will provide a highly regulated and financially transparent digital asset partner for financial and non-financial institutions, family offices, sovereign and pension funds as well as qualified individual customers. BlockTrust’s vision is to be the undisputed provider of digital trust for the crypto currency market, blockchain-based securities and security token offerings.



    CreditOn is a Fintech platform that enables lenders to enhance customer acquisition, credit assessment, KYC and loan processing across a range of loan products.Through the application of in-house machine learning and artificial intelligence technologies, it will be testing the enhancements its platform can bring to the UAE lending market.

    Lucid Pay


    Lucid Pay is a block chain-based, smart settlement system for the hospitality industry. The system allows hotel guests to pay for services, activities and amenities at the hotel with the Lucid Pay wristband or digital wallet. The system records information on each transaction on the block chain, reducing the risk of fraud and the time it takes to resolve disputed payments. The solution can be fully integrated with the hotel’s existing payment and point-of-sales systems, and participating venues outside the hotel.



    Xpence provides SMEs with online digitized smart accounting, invoicing and expense management services to allow them to run their businesses better and more efficiently. It also uses a reloadable prepaid card to emulate a bank account, allowing its Clients – particularly unbanked licensed freelancers and SMEs – to carry out money transfers to pay suppliers and partners.

    World Reserve Trust


    World Reserve Trust (WRT) aims to create an ecosystem where public and private sector entities can participate in a DLT-enabled commercial trading platform. The WRT platform would have a proprietary digital currency issued to users of the platform in exchange for fiat currencies. A buyer and seller would therefore make purchases and sales by using digital currency as a medium of exchange.



    XinFin is a Blockchain technology company focused on international trade and finance. It has a scalable, secure, permission and commercial grade Blockchain architecture that can eliminate inefficiencies in global trade and financing and enable institutions to provide real time settlement as well as enabling cross border smart contracts.

    Yalla Compare


    Yallacompare is an online comparison platform that allows consumers to compare and buy insurance policies online in two MENA markets, and apply for bank accounts, credit cards, loans, cars and more. Its footprint extends to nine countries across the MENA region, where it has brought a number of online innovations to the lending and insurance markets. Yallacompare will be testing an insurance comparison tool as well as a credit scoring tool, using in-house technology enhancements developed through the use of APIs and data science.

    This announcement coincides with the FinTech Abu Dhabi Event, under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Hazza bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Vice Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council, on 17 September 2018.  For further details of the ADGM RegLab programme or to apply for consideration in the next cohort, please visit www.fintech.adgm.com or contact fintech@adgm.com.

    About FinTech Abu Dhabi 2018

    Bringing together global and local financial institutions, FinTech start-ups, investors, regulatory agencies and the business community to network,  collaborate  and  exchange  expertise  and knowledge in FinTech developments in Abu Dhabi, the wider MENA region and internationally. For more details of the ADGM’s FinTech Abu Dhabi event, visit www.fintechabudhabi.com to register interest.

    About Abu Dhabi Global Market

    Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM), an international financial centre (IFC) located in the capital city of the United Arab Emirates, opened for business on 21 October 2015.  Established by UAE Federal Decree as a broad-based financial centre, ADGM augments Abu Dhabi's position as a global hub for business and finance and serves as a strategic link between the growing economies of the Middle East, Africa and South Asia and the rest of the world. 

    ADGM's strategy is anchored by Abu Dhabi’s key strengths including private banking, wealth management, asset management and financial innovation. Comprising three independent authorities: ADGM Courts, the Financial Services Regulatory Authority and the Registration Authority, ADGM as IFC governs the Al Maryah Island which is a designated financial free zone. It enables registered financial institutions, companies and entities to operate, innovate and success within an international regulatory framework based on Common Law.   Since its inception, ADGM has been awarded the "Financial Centre of the Year (MENA)" for two consecutive years for its initiatives and contributions to the financial and capital markets industry in the region.* 

    For more details of ADGM, please visit www.adgm.com or follow us on Twitter: @adglobalmarket and Linkedin: ADGM

    * Source: The Global Investor Middle East and North Africa (MENA) Awards