Sarwa, the UAE-based online investment platform that is democratizing investing in the region, allows anyone to invest small amounts of money in global markets making investing simple and affordable for all investors in the Middle East.
Thanks to modern technology, lucrative investment opportunities are no longer available only to individuals with traditional access to stock markets. These days, there are many apps that let inexperienced and seasoned investors alike sit on a couch and invest their hard-earned money using nothing but a smartphone, and Sarwa is one of them.
The investment platform launched in February 2018 after raising over $1.3 million from regional and global investors during a pre-Series A. “We’re so excited to close this round with the top VCs regionally and internationally that are backing Sarwa in its growth,” said Mark Chahwan, CEO and co-founder of Sarwa, at the time.
Fast-forward to today, and Sarwa has over 25,000 registered users, who use it to invest in international stock markets through a range of class assets. Sarwa caters to everyone regardless of their net worth: the platform has high net worth individuals, mass affluent as well as small retail investors. The same users will soon be able to trade with global shares without paying any commission on their trades.
What separates Sarwa from other investment platforms that are licensed to operate in UAE, such as Wealthface or Stashaway, is its AI-driven hybrid nature and exceptional customer support. The app platform uses artificial intelligence to recommend a specific investment portfolio based on each investor’s preferences and investment priorities while also providing their client base with access to humans when needed.
“When you start investing with Sarwa, we assess your risk profile and recommend a diversified portfolio that reflects it,” explains Chahwan. “If you are a short-term investor, then your portfolio will inherently be less risky. If you are in a portfolio that has more exposure to stocks, which is considered more growth and more risk, then you are in it for the long-term and the short-term (even if it is a couple of years) won’t have an impact on your long-term strategy.”
In its beta form, access to global stock trading will be provided exclusively to Sarwa Invest customers, but other Sarwa users can enter a waiting list to join when the full product is launched.
Stripe Enters The Middle East With Its UAE Launch
Stripe will initially only be available to UAE businesses, allowing them to accept online payments, make payouts, mitigate fraud, and attract customers from around the world.
Stripe, a provider of online payment processing for internet business, has finally expanded to the Middle East with its official launch in the United Arab Emirates. The Irish-American company also opened an office in Dubai Internet City, allowing it to be closer to its new customer base.
At first, Stripe will only be available to UAE businesses, allowing them to accept online payments, make payouts, mitigate fraud, and attract customers from around the world.
“The UAE is a thriving hub for technology, supported by strong investor appetite, internet-savvy consumers, and an open, innovative ecosystem of business leaders and entrepreneurs,” said Matt Henderson, EMEA Business Lead at Stripe. “Our launch today also means we can now connect our global user base to the Gulf, enabling them to seamlessly expand their operations in the region.”
Stripe’s entry into the Middle East market comes just weeks after its latest round of funding, which has resulted in the company’s value jumping up to $95 billion and making it one of the most valuable fintech companies in the world.
The UAE is the perfect entry point for the online payment processing provider because the total value of digital payment transactions in the gulf country has doubled in the last two years alone, reaching $18.5 billion in 2020. If the UAE remains on the current growth trajectory, its e-commerce sector is expected to add nearly another $10 billion over the next two years.
Another factor that makes the UAE such an ideal expansion point is the fact that accepting online payments in the country has historically been incredibly challenging. Stripe provides a straightforward setup process and developer-friendly APIs, making it easy for companies of all sizes to improve their online presence.
Last year, Stripe launched in the Czech Republic, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, Cyprus, and Malta. The company also expanded into Africa via Nigeria technology startup Paystack. In total, Stripe currently processes hundreds of billions of dollars each year.