DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — Aquanow, a leading digital assets infrastructure provider, announced today that it has received initial approval from Dubai’s Virtual Asset Regulatory Authority (VARA), while it undertakes the in-depth process of applying for a license in accordance with VARA requirements.
Aquanow was granted initial approval by VARA, following a demonstration of its comprehensive operational and compliance process. Full approval to operate will be issued by VARA as soon as Aquanow completes all mandated requirements, which the firm is expected to complete in the near-term.
“At Aquanow, we believe that the UAE is a forward-thinking jurisdiction for digital assets regulation and we view Dubai as a key hub for our international growth efforts,” said Aquanow’s Chief Executive Officer, Phil Sham. “We’re excited to receive the initial approval from VARA and to be moving closer to powering a range of digital asset use cases in the region.”
Aquanow, which is privately-backed, is one of the largest digital asset liquidity providers and is a global leader serving financial services clients in 40 countries around the world. Aquanow is rapidly expanding in the Middle East, and the UAE is an emerging hub of Web 3.0 innovation with more than 500 crypto companies based in the country.
VARA, established in March 2022 under the Dubai Virtual Asset Regulation Law, is the first regulator of its kind to oversee virtual assets and aims to create an advanced legal framework to protect investors, to set international standards for the virtual assets industry and to enable responsible business growth in and from the Emirate.