- BitOasis – launched in Dubai in 2016 – is the first virtual asset broker-dealer platform to receive VARA’s approval to ‘go live’ under the Minimum Viable Product (MVP) Operational License
- BitOasis is authorised by VARA to provide such broker-dealer services exclusively to qualified retail and institutional investors in and from Dubai
BitOasis, MENA’s leading regional cryptocurrency trading platform has secured an MVP Operational License from Dubai’s Virtual Asset Regulatory Authority, completing the final step in the MVP process, and allowing the company to provide VA broker-dealer services to qualified retail and institutional investors from its Dubai HQ under VARA’s regulatory regime.
The MVP Operational License follows the Provisional Approval issued by VARA to BitOasis in March 2022, within a month from VARA’s formation, under which the company has been permitted to continue to operate its platform from Dubai whilst completing VARA’s rigorous licensing process. BitOasis is the first virtual asset broker-dealer and trading platform to have received an MVP Operational License under VARA’s regulatory framework.
The achievement of this milestone comes as a result of BitOasis’ longstanding commitment to proactive collaboration with regulators and sector stakeholders in the UAE and beyond. In 2021, BitOasis became the first crypto platform in the UAE to be registered with the country’s Financial Intelligence Unit (Go-AML platform), following an extensive risk assessment completed with the UAE’s Executive Office of Anti-Money Laundering and Combatting the Financing of Terrorism.
Founded in Dubai in 2016, BitOasis enables users across the GCC and MENA to buy and sell over 60 tokens with fiat currencies such as AED, SAR, TL, and USD. In 2021 BitOasis became the only VA platform to offer customers the ability to deposit funds to bank accounts in the UAE on a fee-free and near real-time basis.
Moving forward, BitOasis intends to leverage its new license to launch strategic partnerships in Dubai and across the UAE, to provide qualified investors the opportunity to buy, sell and hold virtual assets on the platform, and launch new virtual asset products with a continued focus on driving accessibility, consumer protection and utility across the virtual asset ecosystem.
Commenting on the first VASP being licensed to operate within the MVP Phase, Henson Orser, Chief Executive Office, VARA said, “We are pleased to welcome BitOasis to the MVP Programme phase. The VARA ecosystem aims to strike a balance between value creation, risk mitigation, and enhanced investment opportunities with consumer protection at its core. BitOasis has demonstrated a strong commitment to operating with a firm bias for regulation throughout the licensing process. One of VARA’s founding principles is creating an equal opportunity regime for responsible VASPs and being able to onboard credible home-grown companies, like BitOasis, in addition to leading global platforms, allowing us to bring the shared learnings of our licensees to build the foundation for our global future economy.”
Commenting Ola Doudin, co-founder and CEO of BitOasis noted: “We are extremely proud to receive VARA’s MVP Operational License. Becoming the first virtual asset trading platform in the MVP programme to attain an operating license is an important milestone for us and the Emirate of Dubai. BitOasis was launched in Dubai in 2016 and the city has remained our home and headquarters ever since. We remain committed to operating in accordance with applicable law, regulation and best practices from Dubai and across the region. We are grateful for the robust and consultative approach that VARA has taken since its formation as the world’s first dedicated virtual assets regulator in March 2022.”
Commenting on BitOasis’ regulatory approach, Samir Satchu, Senior Vice-President of Public Policy & Expansion at BitOasis added: “Our commitment and ambition at BitOasis is to serve the GCC and MENA region through a network of regulated platforms and on the ground infrastructure. VARA’s MVP Operational License, as well as our in-principle approval in Bahrain, are important building blocks for that strategy.“
Headquartered in Dubai, BitOasis is the largest and most trusted regional cryptocurrency trading platform in the Middle East and North Africa. Established in 2016, BitOasis is a pioneer of the region’s cryptocurrency ecosystem, serving as the go-to platform for first-time cryptocurrency buyers and professional traders alike. Available in 15 countries across the region, the platform provides investors a safe and secure way to buy, hold and sell 60+ cryptocurrencies. Since its launch, BitOasis has processed more than $5 billion in trading volume and raised more than $35 million dollars in funding from leading regional and global investors, such as Wamda Capital, Jump Capital, Pantera Capital, and Global Founders Capital.
Dubai Virtual Assets Regulatory Authority [VARA] is the world’s first specialised regulator for the Virtual Assets sector. Established in March 2022, following the effect of Law No.4 of 2022, VARA is the competent entity in charge of regulating, supervising, and overseeing VAs and VA Activities in all zones across the Emirate of Dubai, including Special Development Zones and Free Zones but excluding the Dubai International Financial Centre. VARA plays a central role in creating Dubai’s advanced legal framework to protect investors and establish international standards for Virtual Asset industry governance, while supporting the vision for a borderless economy.