Aquanow granted VASP license by Dubai’s regulatory authority

abdelaziz Fathi

Aquanow, a crypto infrastructure provider based in Vancouver, Canada, has been awarded a Virtual Asset Service Provider (VASP) license by Dubai’s Virtual Assets Regulatory Authority (VARA).

The approval is a step forward for Aquanow, although the license will not be operational immediately. The company must first meet additional conditions and localization requirements specified by VARA before it can start its operations in Dubai, subject to further regulatory checks and approval.

Founded in 2018, Aquanow has established partnerships with a variety of financial institutions worldwide, including banks, brokerages, and payment service providers, to facilitate crypto-based strategies and solutions. The company serves over 300 institutional clients across 50 countries and recently reported a remarkable four-year revenue increase of 1,842.

The VASP license from VARA, which serves as the single custodial entity mandated to license and govern crypto activities in Dubai, is a key milestone for Aquanow’s plans to expand internationally. With this license, Aquanow plans to offer a range of services, such as broker-dealer activities, lending and borrowing, and management and investment services in Dubai.

This license is one of the most inclusive to be issued to a VASP in the region. The expansion into the Middle East represents a strategic step for Aquanow as it aims to tap into the region’s growing interest in cryptocurrencies and cater to the increasing demand for crypto trading platforms.

Against the backdrop of a crashing market and burned investors, Dubai has recently sealed a landmark rulebook that governs how the Emirate will regulate cryptocurrency activities. The Virtual Asset Regulatory Authority (VARA), which serves as the single custodial entity mandated to license and govern crypto activities in Dubai, released guidelines for Virtual Assets Service Providers (VASPs) in February.

The new rules create a legal framework for crypto aimed at protecting investors and designing much-warranted international standards for industry governance. In addition, the VARA now has enforcement powers in Dubai’s special development and free zones with the exception of the Dubai International Financial Centre.

The regulations set out four compulsory rulebooks and activity-specific rulebooks that VASPs must comply with to offer their services. The “Full Market Product Regulations” include guidelines that lay down the rules for compliance, risk management, market conduct, and other requirements.

  • Read this next

    Fintech

    Traxys taps Quantifi for risk management in commodities trading

    “We wanted to take a more sophisticated approach to risk management and have a consolidated view of risk exposures across our global operating model. Quantifi was our preferred choice as it has a track record of success in the commodities markets.”

    Digital Assets

    Startale Labs Secures Funding for Web3 Expansion

    Startale Labs, a leader in Japan’s Web3 development, including Astar Network and Startale Web3 Cloud, has raised an additional $3.5m from UOB Venture Management and Samsung Next. This seed extension round boosts their total seed funding to $7m, following a $3.5m investment from Sony Network Communications in June 2023.

    Retail FX

    XS.com acquires South African broker Ubutyebi Financial Services

    XS.com, the multi-regulated financial services provider, has made a strategic move to expand its presence in Africa by acquiring Ubutyebi Financial Services, a licensed Financial Service Provider (FSP) in South Africa regulated by the Financial Sector Conduct Authority (FSCA).

    Digital Assets

    Hong Kong advances legislation on stablecoins and crypto trading

    Hong Kong is moving forward with legislation to regulate stablecoins and crypto over-the-counter (OTC) trading in the latest effort to develop a legal framework to service the city’s digital-asset industry.

    Digital Assets

    Do Kwon to be extradited to US as South Korea request overturned

    Terraform Labs co-founder Do Kwon is set to be extradited to the United States to face fraud charges related to massive losses suffered by U.S. investors due to its algorithmic stablecoin collapse.

    Retail FX

    Prop firm Instant Funding pauses US accounts, citing ThinkMarkets ban

    Proprietary trading firm Instant Funding has become the latest retail platform to halt onboarding new US clients, citing a recent decision by their partner broker, ThinkMarkets.

    Retail FX

    Funded Trader and Alpha Capital switch to cTrader, Lark Funding to DXTrade

    Proprietary trading firms Lark Funding and Alpha Capital have both announced changes to their operations that mainly affect their business with US clients.

    Fintech

    Top 5 Most Reliable KYC Technology Providers

    The financial sector’s trade evolution has led to the emergence of several financial markets that provide excellent opportunities for wealth creation. However, it has also given rise to many fraudulent organisations that attempt to steal money from traders. KYC providers developed and offered KYC technology to combat criminal activity in the field of trading and investing.

    Crypto Insider

    Introducing the Inaugural CMC Crypto Awards by CoinMarketCap

    CoinMarketCap, a leading source for Crypto data and insights, is excited to introduce the inaugural CMC Crypto Awards. This virtual event, running from February 21st to March 6th, celebrates innovators and leaders who are making significant impacts in the Crypto and Web3 sectors.

    <