The Central Bank of the UAE has granted global payments service provider,, with a retail payment services licence.

This makes the first global payments provider to be granted an acquiring licence in the country.

Securing an acquiring licence allows to unlock its full proposition for merchants in the UAE. This means offering merchant acquiring solutions, payment aggregation services and cross-border fund transfers. Fundamentally, with direct acquiring now has more control over processing outcomes. It says that this can drive best in class payment acceptance performance for its merchants.

UAE e-commerce growth

According to GlobalData, the UAE’s ecommerce market rose from AED29.6bn ($8.1bn) in 2017 to AED77.5bn in 2021 at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 27.2%. This was mainly due to rising internet and smartphone penetration. This is coupled with increasing consumer confidence in online transactions. The figure is anticipated to reach AED174.0bn in 2025 at a CAGR of 22.4% over 2021– 25.

Around 91% of consumers in the UAE now favouring to make their purchases online. already supports some of the country’s brands. These include Shahid, Qlub, Carrefour, The Entertainer, Namshi, Mamo, MakeMyTrip, Cafu and Washmen.

“Our thanks to the Central Bank of the UAE for their approval. The issuance of this licence shows the level of trust, commitment and strength of the relationship we continue to have in serving both domestic and international brands to expand in the UAE. We’re proud of the small part we’ve played to increase the trust in digital payments. This allows businesses in the digital economy to thrive,” said Guillaume Pousaz, CEO and Founder of