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In Brief

Dubai’s trade-conducive environment has evolved to offer tax-free policies, full repatriation of profits, and low-cost set up and renewal structures that tempt many local and international start-ups.

Several prominent incubators have been set up to support entrepreneurs in the city, such as the Dubai Smart City Accelerator, Dubai Future Accelerators and the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) FinTech Hive. These accelerators help bring together various stakeholders, government entities, technology partners and entrepreneurs.

Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) is one of the world’s most advanced financial centres. It offers one of the region’s most comprehensive FinTech and venture capital environments, including cost-effective licensing solutions, regulation, innovative accelerator programmes, and funding for growth-stage start-ups. At the forefront of innovation, the DIFC Innovation Hub stands as the leading innovation ecosystem in the region.

The Innovation Hub comprises more than 600 innovation and tech firms, including growth-stage tech firms, established innovation companies, digital labs, venture capital firms, regulators, and educational entities.


Major initiatives such as the Dubai Future Accelerators have also put the emirate on the map as a forward-thinking hub for innovation and smart city solutions.


Dubai Chamber of Commerce & Industry operates the Dubai Start-Up Hub. This online IBM Cloud platform supports the emirate’s technology and start-up ecosystem with integrated services and information.

Falcon Associates offers the Dubai 100 Programme, an intensive, cross-disciplinary pre-accelerator programme which develops young talent through industry awareness, entrepreneurship, mentorship and business opportunities.

Beehive is Dubai’s first online marketplace for peer- to-peer finance. It connects creditworthy businesses looking for funding with investors looking to invest in their growth.


Bridg is a smartphone payment platform that uses bluetooth to allow all types of smartphone users pay using their bluetooth enabled device.


Clearly is a digital bank whose customers can manage their money on any device. Clearly pay higher interest rates automatically the more its customers save, show eligible borrowing rates, provide access to investment schemes and robo-advisors, and allow to trade international equities.


Eureeca is a crowdinvesting platform connecting investors to businesses online to raise capital in exchange for equity. Regulated and authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority of the UK.


Monami Tech:
Helps financial institutions to increase efficiency and streamline operations by building modern digital solutions. Includes loan origination systems, cash management solutions, remittance processing systems and digital wallets.

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Market Summary


Dubai operates at the centre of the exporting trade in the Middle East. With the introduction of the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) in 2004, it has allowed Dubai to develop as a global hub for service industries such as IT and finance. About 95% of Dubai’s Gross Domestic Product is not oil-based.


Dubai leads the Emirates in technology entrepreneurship and digital companies.


The Dubai economy has been growing at a rate of about 6.3% since mid-2021, when domestic covid‑19 pandemic restrictions began to be lifted. However, the Dubai economy returned to its pre‑pandemic size only towards the end of the first quarter of 2022.


Major initiatives such as the Dubai Future Accelerators have also put the emirate on the map as a forward-thinking hub for innovation and smart city solutions.


Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) has committed $100 million to investing directly into growth-stage FinTech startups with a dedicated fintech fund.


DIFC contributes to the vision of Dubai Economic Agenda D33 to transform Dubai into one of the world’s top three cities for business and a leading commercial and investment destination. In 2022, DIFC-based fintech and innovation companies attracted more than $615m with 291 new clients. Fintech is boosting economic growth, creating new jobs, attracting foreign investment, and enhancing the city’s overall competitiveness.

Fast facts

Population: 3.33 million out of 9.4 million (UAE)

Language: Arabic (official), English widespread in business
Currency: United Arab Emirates Dirham (AED)
Political System: Federal constitutional monarchy

Legal System: Federal Court System based on civil code principles and on the Islamic Sharia law

IA Partner

Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) is a top ten global financial centre, and the leading financial hub for the Middle East, Africa and South Asia (MEASA), which comprises 72 countries with an approximate population of 3 billion and a nominal GDP of US$ 7.7 trillion. Click the logo to find out more.

FinTech Hub

At DIFC FinTech Hive, we bring together established financial institutions, government entities, technology partners and creative entrepreneurs to help create cutting-edge technologies that meet the changing needs of the region’s financial community. We recognise the increasing importance of FinTech in region and how it is becoming a key pillar in the future of financial services. Click the logo to find out more.

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