Fintech Startup Company Stripe Enters the Middle East Market

By Luigi Wewege Tuesday, April 6, 2021

Fintech startup company Stripe announced today it has officially launched its business services in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). This is the first step to expand into the Middle East, with Stripe planning to open a new office in Dubai Internet City.

Dubai skyline with technology icons.

Plans to Accelerate Payment Digitalization

The startup company aims to help UAE-based companies accept online payments, conduct payouts, reduce fraud activities as well as expand on a global level to reach more business clients worldwide. Moreover, today’s official launch will also make it easier for Stripe customers to bring their business products and services to UAE.

Until now, receiving online payments from the UAE was an arduous process that required a lot of time and business investments from companies, with the majority of providers asking for in-person onboarding. Now, Stripe’s effective solution will provide UAE-based companies with much easier access to the online economy.

“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. Similarly, the pool of tech talent in the Middle East is growing very rapidly,” said Matt Henderson, a business lead for Europe, Middle East, and Africa at the fintech startup.

Some of the most prominent businesses in the UAE, including Illusions Online, Aceplace, ChatFood, and WeKeep, have been trying out solutions developed by the fintech startup company in their beta phase and are now already using Stripe to conduct payments in the region. Gym management platform Glofox is also using Stripe in the UAE and its other markets.

“As an international technology business operating out of the UAE, the ability to leverage Stripe’s global payments infrastructure means we can really accelerate our growth. With Stripe, we have launched our brand new fintech vertical, iOL Pay, a powerful payments platform-as-a-service for our global partners,” said Faisal Memon, a founder and chief executive of enterprise systems provider Illusions Online.

Over the past two years, the total value of online payments in the UAE has more than doubled, with $18.5 billion in business transactions registered last year as ecommerce received a substantial boost amid the pandemic. The ecommerce sector is estimated to continue its growth in the UAE, expected to add a further $10 billion in the following two years.

The fintech startup company has recently raised $600 million in a new funding round, taking its business valuation to $95 billion, more than double it was a year ago. Stripe said it will use the new proceeds to hire 1,000 new employees in Dublin over the next five years.

Primary investors who participated in the new round include Allianz X, Axa, Baillie Gifford, Fidelity Management & Research Company, Sequoia Capital, and Ireland’s National Treasury Management Agency (NTMA).


Stripe announced its official launch in UAE today, with an aim to help companies in the country to accept online payments, make payouts, reduce fraud activities and expand globally. Today’s announcement comes just a few weeks after the fintech startup company raised $600 million at a business valuation of $95 billion.

About the Author

Headshot of Luigi Wewege

Luigi Wewege is the Senior Vice President and Head of Private Banking at Caye International Bank. Outside of the bank, he serves as an instructor at the FinTech School which provides online training courses on the latest technology and innovation developments within the financial services industry. Luigi is also the published author of "The Digital Banking Revolution."

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