Visa announced on Tuesday that it will invest in an innovation centre in Dubai, UAE. Dubai is Visa’s regional headquarters for Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa (CEMEA).
The new centre will provide Visa, its clients, and partners across the region with an innovative space to jointly develop the next generation of payments technology. This initiative will help Dubai achieve its Smart City objectives, while also offering a platform for payments innovation across CEMEA.
The announcement was made at the end of a twoday trip to the region by Visa’s Chief Executive Officer, Charles Scharf, to meet industry representatives and UAE government officials. The commitment to establish innovation centres around the world reflects Visa’s focus on partnering with clients and ecosystem partners to drive innovative and responsible digital innovation in the payments industry.
“Visa is a long term investor in Dubai and the UAE. With this Innovation Centre announcement we are reinforcing the importance of this region to our business,” said Kamran Siddiqi, Group Executive, Visa CEMEA. “We want to create a space where banks, mobile network operators, tech firms and others can come together with Visa and collaborate to create new products and services that accelerate the adoption of electronic payments.”
“Given its highly developed economy, sophisticated financial and services sector, and stateofthe art telecommunications, the UAE provides the enabling environment for new technologies to gain acceptance. And, with its strategic location and status as a business, trade and innovation gateway, the UAE, can serve as a launch pad for new technologies to reach other key markets in CEMEA.”
The UAE also has one of the highest smartphone penetration rates in the world at 78 percent. Because of these conditions, the UAE was selected recently by Visa as one of 16 countries where consumers will soon be able to use VisaCheckout, a quick and easy payment service to pay for goods online, on any device, in just a few clicks.