Three Arrows Capital, a crypto hedge fund, moves its head office from Singapore to Dubai as the United Arab Emirates opens its doors to crypto firms.
As the UAE continues to market itself as a crypto-friendly destination through the slew of recent crypto licensures, co-founder Su Zhu confirms Three Arrows’ migration to the new crypto hub. “The energy in Dubai’s digital asset industry is electric right now,” said Zhu. “I’m looking forward to meeting more technology startups.”
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While not a startup per se, Binance recently received approvals to operate in Dubai, Bahrain, and the United Arab Emirates. Crypto exchange Kraken recently won a license to serve as a virtual asset trade platform by the Abu Dhabi Global Market’s Registration Authority. Bybit moved its headquarters from Singapore to Dubai just as Crypto.com announced the establishment of a regional nerve center there, while FTX’s regional office for the Middle East will be there.
UAE replacing Singapore as crypto mecca
With most of the 170 crypto companies applying for a license to operate in Singapore denied, Dubai is now positioned to make inroads into business areas previously attracted to Far Eastern financial hubs. Singapore originally opened itself up to cryptocurrency firms in January 2022, but has now banned companies from advertising to the public. The Monetary Authority of Singapore has added crypto firms to an Investor Alert List, a group of entities described as “unregulated persons who, based on information received by MAS, may have been wrongly perceived as being licensed or regulated by the MAS.” In September last year, Binance was placed on the list for allegedly violating the Singaporean Payment Services Act by soliciting business from Singaporean residents.
Singapore wants to be ‘responsible’
The Monetary Authority of Singapore wants to oversee a “responsible” crypto hub that delicately balances the need for regulation with the support of innovation, a balancing act alluded to by MAS managing director Ravi Menon earlier this week while Dubai recently ratified new laws designed to position itself as a prominent jurisdiction when it comes to cryptocurrencies and related concepts like Web3 and the metaverse. “I am very impressed with the vision of Dubai Virtual Assets Regulatory Authority,” says one of the founders of Three Arrows Capital, Kyle Samani. “I expect many leading firms to continue to move to Dubai and contribute to the growing digital asset ecosystem,” he added.
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