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Dubai rendered in the metaverse. Prices of virtual land plots peaked in 2022

The Mena metaverse: moving beyond the hype

Two years ago, the concept of metaverse lands transformed from an interesting subculture into a thriving multi-billion-dollar market, capturing the interest of major investors both regionally in the Middle East and globally.  Metaverse lands, made of pixels and digital images, refer to buildings and plots within a virtual environment, offering spaces for gaming, socialising, business […]

A 'try before you buy' VR metaverse experience can help travellers and businesses

Appeal of virtual travel is instant – but limited

Virtual reality is making it possible for visitors to explore destinations before they travel and see places that would otherwise be inaccessible, but there is much debate over whether it is a replacement for real travel. “The metaverse can allow destinations to offer ‘try before you buy’ virtual experiences,” said Samuel Huber, CEO of UK […]

AI chips Gulf

Race is on for AI chips as nations seek tech supremacy

The Gulf states are expected to invest heavily in powerful semiconductor chips in the years ahead to drive artificial intelligence forward. However, US restrictions on exports of the world’s biggest player in the chips market are a potential stumbling block.  AI technology is critical to developing global influence and expanding high-growth industries, and the high-performance […]

The DIAC metaverse initiative is increasing its international arbitration cases, which can now be staged in its metaverse

Dubai arbitration centre aims high as caseloads surge

Dubai International Arbitration Centre (DIAC) aims to become the top global destination for settling corporate disputes after the revamped institution reported a six-fold rise in the value of cases filed there last year. Before the creation of DIAC in 2004, arbitration in the emirate was conducted mostly through a division of Dubai Chamber of Commerce […]

Hajj Mecca

How tech is transforming Saudi’s Hajj travel industry

Saudi Arabia’s strong digital infrastructure means it is ready to receive “whatever number of pilgrims and Umrah performers”, according to its director general of passports Sulaiman al-Yahya. Two million people are expected to converge on Mecca in the next week to complete the Hajj pilgrimage. By 2030 the kingdom is committed to tripling this number […]

Etihad Aviation Training has nine flight simulators covering popular Airbus and Boeing models

UAE aviation training firm cashes in on pilot demand

A pressing need for airlines to requalify pilots as global air travel recovers has sent business soaring for Etihad Aviation Training, with revenues up 30 percent this year. In addition to training and maintaining aircrews for Etihad Airways, the training business supports 70 other passenger, freight and charter operators, as well as government VIP fleets. […]

Tech layoffs Middle East Video length: 03:47
  • Video

Middle East tech sector’s hire and fire conundrum

The mass layoffs in the global tech sector last year were the highest since the dot-com bubble burst in 2001, but they are not necessarily a reflection of the job market globally or in the Middle East, according to a Dubai-based digital transformation and Web3 expert. “The layoffs only constitute 10 percent of all the […]

Cryptocurrency US UAE

UAE to benefit from US cryptocurrency brain drain

Tightening regulations in the US to bring cryptocurrency and digital assets operators to heel could see talent and investment turn to the UAE. The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has been targeting the cryptocurrency industry, which its chair Gary Gensler referred to as a “Wild West”. At the same time the UAE is welcoming […]

People, Person, Adult

When brands go geek: The business of Comic Con

As the Middle East Film and Comic Con, the largest popular culture festival in the region, takes place this weekend, it is not just cosplay and comic fans who will be in attendance. This year big brands are upping their pop culture marketing in a bid to stay relevant to the region’s growing young geek […]

City, Clothing, Coat

London FX firm launches Dubai ops to seize Mena opportunities

DKK Partners, an emerging markets foreign exchange liquidity provider, has launched operations in Dubai as part of a major expansion into the Middle East. The London-based fintech company has opened an office in Dubai and plans to follow that with three more in the region as it sees the GCC developing into a “financial hub […]

RAK launches free zone for digital and virtual asset firms

The Ras Al Khaimah government has announced plans to launch RAK Digital Assets Oasis, a free zone dedicated to digital and virtual asset companies. The zone will be purpose-built for non-regulated activities in the virtual assets sector, the UAE state-run Wam news agency reported. It will be exclusively dedicated to digital and virtual assets service […]

Furniture, Table, Desk

More senior execs opting to live in Emirates and work globally

Global firms are increasingly looking to hire senior executives based in the UAE to work for them remotely, according to industry experts. Deel, a headhunting company based in San Francisco, found that 89 percent of global roles it handled were for remote workers, with this figure rising to 97 percent in the UAE. The company’s […]

People, Person, Man

Dubai’s DIFC aims to forge new ties with reopened China

The Dubai International Financial Centre has plans to generate a new wave of interest from Chinese financial services companies as the world’s second-largest economy returns to the global stage. China reopened its borders last month, after dropping the strict controls imposed at the start of the pandemic. In 2022, when the zero-Covid restrictions were still […]

'We’re already working on a product paper looking at how to work with crypto and digital assets,' says Srinivasan Sampath, chief technology officer at FAB

First Abu Dhabi Bank to launch crypto services

First Abu Dhabi Bank plans to introduce cryptocurrency and digital asset offerings to its customers. The move is part of a plan by the UAE’s biggest lender to implement Web3 technologies in its services to gain competitive advantage. “We’re already working on a product paper looking at how to work with crypto and digital assets,” […]


Become a master of the metaverse

For a time last year, all anybody seemed to be talking about was the metaverse. Some Gulf businesses said they were already planning for it, while others were trying to work out what the fuss was about. The frequently asked questions included: when will it really arrive? How much does it cost? Who’s on the […]

KPMG launches Saudi metaverse investment fund

KPMG has launched a co-investment fund for metaverse use-cases in Saudi Arabia, as the kingdom ramps up its commercialisation of the new technology.  The consultancy firm will work with Saudi public and private partners on expediting metaverse-based technology for practical use. “We’re optimistic about the future of metaverse and Web3 technologies in the kingdom,” said […]

Saudi's Wa’ed Ventures, which recently invested in Japan's Terra Drone Corporation, is increasing funding for the kingdom's own tech startups

Aramco venture capital arm boosts tech startup funding by $300m

Wa’ed Ventures, the venture capital arm of Saudi Arabian oil giant Aramco, has announced a $300 million increase in funding aimed at boosting the growth of tech startups in the country.  The size of the fund grows to $500 million and will be directed towards local investments in mid and growth-stage startups, especially underserved areas […]

Shoppers at the Galleria mall

Where the mall meets the metaverse

“We’re working on a number of initiatives that start to blur the boundaries between Web3, the metaverse, and how that is implemented in a physical space.” This is not how retail bosses used to talk a few years ago – but the digital habits that shoppers developed during the pandemic are here to stay, so […]

DIFC launches metaverse platform to attract tech innovators

Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) has launched the “DIFC Metaverse Platform” to attract global technology innovators. The new platform is aligned with the Dubai metaverse strategy, which aims to add $4 billion to Dubai’s GDP, DIFC said in a statement.  The strategy aims to create 40,000 virtual jobs by 2030 and attract 1,000 companies specialised […]