The Saudi Central Bank (SAMA) has issued licenses to three new companies specializing in finance and electronic payments, during the Global Entrepreneurship Congress sponsored by His Royal Highness Mohammad bin Salman, the Crown Prince, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense.
The conference held from 27 to 30 March 2022 in Riyadh, under the slogan “Reboot, Rethink and Regenerate” is organized by the Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) General Authority (Monsha’at) in cooperation with the Global Entrepreneurship Network (GEN).
SAMA stated that the license was granted to a new financial technology company specializing in electronic payments named Etihad Fintech Company “Mobily Pay”. The newly licensed company can now provide e-wallet payment services in the Kingdom, bringing the total number of payment companies licensed by SAMA to 17, in addition to eight companies granted an “In-principle Approval”.
SAMA also kick-started the licensing of Debt-based Crowdfunding by granting “Lendo”, a closed joint-stock company with a capital of $1.33 million. The license to conduct these kinds of financial activities within the Kingdom comes after a successful trial run through SAMA’s Regulatory Sandbox dedicated to innovative financial products and services within Saudi Arabia.
The Saudi Central Bank also followed up on the licensing of Consumer Microfinance Activities by issuing a license to “FinZey”, a closed joint-stock company with a capital of $5.3 million that specialized in this kind of financial activity.
These initiatives are part of SAMA’s efforts to strengthen the finance and payments-processing services sectors by allowing them to engage in new activities and attract a larger pool of investors and companies, all while adhering to SAMA’s control and supervisory requirements for corporate governance and risk management, as well as showing commitment to consumers and seeking to ensure their protection.
It also aligns with SAMA’s goal of enhancing the Kingdom’s financial stability and supporting its economic development and growth as part of its contribution to the objectives of “Saudi Vision 2030”.