Dubai International Financial Centre achieves 2024 Strategy targets ahead of schedule with record 3,292 companies registered in first half 2021

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Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), the leading international financial hub in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia (MEASA) region, has delivered continued strong growth in H1 2021, with the result that it has achieved its 2024 Strategy growth targets three years ahead of schedule.

The performance reaffirms DIFC’s global status as a financial and innovation centre of choice. Active registered companies reached 3,292, an increase of 27% year-on-year (H1 2020: 2,584). New companies registered during H1 totaled to 492, up 59% year-on-year (H1 2020: 310).

This growth represents a tripling in size since 2014 when the 2024 Strategy was initiated and reflects DIFC’s significant efforts to build on its market-leading status in MEASA by continually enhancing its operating environment, legal and regulatory frameworks, innovation offering and depth of its ecosystem. Overall, DIFC is now home to 1,025 financial and innovation related companies in total, up 25% on last year (H1 2020: 820).

His Excellency Essa Kazim, Governor of DIFC, said: “DIFC has successfully built a global reputation as the leading financial centre in the MEASA region and the achievement of our 2024 Strategy targets to triple in size three years ahead of schedule is testament to the appeal of our proposition. DIFC will continue to build on our success to date to play a key role in accelerating not only our own growth but also the economic diversification of Dubai.”

DIFC made strong progress in H1 with realising its vision to drive the future of finance and nurture innovation. The recently launched Innovation Hub has already reached full capacity, with over 140 new start-ups and FinTechs joining this market-leading innovation ecosystem during the first six months of this year. These include companies at all stages of development, from early-stage start-ups such as Rentd Technology Ltd, Crayfish Labs Technologies Ltd, PALFusion Technology Holdings and StashAway Management (DIFC) Ltd, growth stage ventures including Ebury and Adyen, unicorns including as SoFi (UAE) Ltd and established big tech players like Amazon and Huawei.

DIFC is also building its offering as part of its overall vision to connect business, arts, culture and lifestyle.