BitOasis, crypto broker has received its first license in the GCC and MENA region from Bahrain. The Category 2 license allows BitOasis to offer crypto asset services from the Central Bank of Bahrain. Prior to BitOasis receiving its license in Bahrain, CoinMENA, RAIN, ARP Digital and Binance had already received licenses.

ARP Digital, CoinMENA and Rain all hold a category 3 license, while only Binance holds a category 4 license. As such BitOasis will be the only category 2 license in Bahrain so far.

As per Bahrain licenses, a Category 1 license is issued to market participants providing investment advisory services, Category 2 licenses for trading in accepted crypto assets as an agent, portfolio management & Crypto-asset custody service as well as offering investment advice. Category 3 licenses are obtained, for trading in accepted crypto assets as an agent, trading in accepted crypto assets as a principal, portfolio management, keeping custody of crypto-asset as well as providing investment advice, while crypto exchanges receive a Category 4 license.

In the meantime, BitOasis current regulatory status in the UAE under VARA is active awaiting full license approval.

As per the press release, the regulatory approval in Bahrain will enable BitOasis to launch its new broker-dealer platform through its local company in the Kingdom, BitOasis Bahrain.

Located in Bahrain Fintech Bay, BitOasis Bahrain will be home to a small team of core employees at its inception, with the company gradually growing its presence in the Kingdom as it works to launch its new platform, expected to go live in the second half of 2024.

BitOasis Bahrain will serve retail, corporate, and institutional clients in Bahrain and the broader MENA region, with an initial focus on its broker-dealer product.

Ola Doudin, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of BitOasis, stated, “With regulation at the forefront of a maturing regional crypto market, we are delighted to have secured this new license from the Central Bank of Bahrain. The Central Bank’s commitment and leadership in regulating our industry allows businesses like BitOasis to launch cutting-edge products in an industry characterized by rapidly and dynamically evolving technology. We are excited to welcome our new team in Bahrain to the business and to start serving new customers very soon.”

Launched in 2016, BitOasis offers over 60 tokens with fiat currencies such as AED, SAR, and USD. Since its inception, the company has processed over USD 6 billion in trading volume and raised more than USD 40 million in funding from leading regional and global investors.

UAE-headquartered digital asset exchange Fasset gained recognition as the best crypto and blockchain company at Best in Business Awards by Inc Arabia. The annual prestigious award aims to celebrate outstanding achievements, innovation, and impactful contributions of GCC-based business platforms across 31 categories.

Inc. Arabia Best in Business Awards highlight businesses with significant contribution to the economic growth and development of the GCC region. It aims to showcase the best practices, leadership, and groundbreaking initiatives that shape the future of business across a number of categories from e-commerce and real estate, to AI and fintech. All nominees go through a rigorous selection process by Inc.’s judging committee made up of decision–makers and thought leaders from across industries.

Co-founded in 2019 by Mohammad Raafi Hossain (CEO) and Daniel Ahmed (COO), both ex-advisors to the UAE’s Prime Minister’s Office where they contributed to the UAE’s vision of technological excellence, Fasset is on a mission to democratize access to innovative financial management tools for the next billion people globally.

Mohammad Raafi Hossain, Co-Founder and CEO, commented: “Fasset’s recognition at the Best in Business Awards is testament to our company’s vision, as well as hard work of the 86 member team across our 3 offices to deliver the best possible product to our users and to empower them with innovative yet transparent and safe investment and money management solutions. We launched in the UAE earlier this year, and I can assure you that we are just getting started. I am excited for Fasset’s future plans across the region and beyond”.

Fasset’s platform allows secure and seamless transactions involving digital and tokenized real-world assets[1]from any location and in the user’s preferred currency. Users can buy and invest in digital and tokenized real-world assets, take part in spot exchange transactions, and transfer funds, all in a blockchain environment. Among available investment options are cryptocurrencies, stablecoins, as well as bundles.

Launched in the UAE in March 2024 after getting a fully operational VASP license from VARA in a rigorous multi-stage approval process, Fasset has been making rapid progress since then.

In April 2024, the company announced its plans to launch in Malaysia after signing a Letter of Intent with MBSB Bank Berhad at the KL20 Summit. The partnership was marked by Malaysian Prime Minister Anwar bin Ibrahim as proof the country is ready for innovative transformation. The company plans to further expand its operations in the region and beyond in the near future, having accumulated a large digital assets licensing portfolio in emerging markets, connecting places like the UAE, Indonesia, Malaysia, Bangladesh, Pakistan and Türkiye.

Bitget Crypto Exchange a global cryptocurrency exchange and Web3 company and Bitget MENA, crypto exchange, successfully launched the Bitget Wallet Token (BWB) on its Launchpad with the MENA region witnessing a 23% increase in BWB daily active users after the launch. Bitget Wallet is a Web3 multi-chain wallets that includes wallet, Swap, NFT Market, DApp Browser, and Launchpad features.

The sale of the BWB token took place between June 1st and June 6th and was listed on Bitget spot market on the 6th as well. Offered was a total supply of 1 billion BWB tokens and a launchpad pool specifically set aside for BGB and USDT holders.

The BWB launchpad achieved remarkable success, with the token price surging from $0.15 to $0.6. (Source

As a leading token launch platform, Bitget Launchpad enables users to participate in fundraising for promising and emerging projects, offering tokens in return.

Bitget wallet launched the Bitget Onchain layer, a blueprint for its future endeavors into Web3 positioning itself as both the on-chain extension and decentralized future of the Bitget ecosystem.

Bitget Wallet token BWB not only serves as the official native token of the Bitget Wallet, but it also plays a role in Bitget Onchain Layer. Powering the Bitget Onchain Layer is a $10 million BWB Ecosystem Fund that seeks to incubate and grow partnered projects building on the Bitget Onchain Layer.

The BWB token also empowers users allowing token holders to participate in decision-making processes. Users can also stake BWB tokens to earn rewards, further enhancing their overall yield.

In the future the token will be used for paying gas fees across multiple chains with the release of the Account Abstraction (AA) wallet.

Holders of BWB token will also gain access to Bitget Wallet’s Launchpad, Launchpool and Airdrop events. In addition, holding BWB will also qualify users for airdrops from projects building on the Bitget Onchain Layer, providing continuous value and benefits for holders of the token.

In early May 2024, Bitget Wallet reported on its 30-day growth which witnessed a 300 % growth in the MENA region. Countries in the MENA region such as Egypt and Saudi Arabia are among the top 15 countries for Bitget wallet downloads globally.

Sam Spiers, Regional Director Bitget MENA, “We are pleased with the success of the launch of BWB token on the Bitget exchange launchpad. The enthusiasm for the token is not surprising. Bitget crypto exchange token BGB is one of the top 5 CEX tokens in terms of market capitalization. The scope of BWB is vast as it will run the Bitget Wallet ecosystem which encompasses 25M users and counting.”

Alvin Kan, CCO of Bitget Wallet adds, “As our ecosystem continues to develop, the BWB token will play increasingly significant roles in empowerment and application within the Budget On Chain Layer, thus broadening its value discovery and recognition as ecosystem construction progresses.”

In March 2023, Bitget invested an additional $30 million into Bitget Wallet (previously known as BitKeep), thereby securing a controlling stake and catalyzing a comprehensive brand upgrade.

Bitget, has adopted a dual token system consisting of CEX token (BGB) and its Bitget Wallet token (BWB) allowing Bitget to extend its foundational ecosystem on-chain and off-chain to develop a solid Web3 future whose complementary roles within the Bitget ecosystem offer unique advantages for all stakeholders.

This improved dual token system also diversifies risk and offers flexibility. Each token can address risks specific to its platform. For instance, BGB can manage exchange-related risks, while BWB can focus on wallet-specific security and functionality. This creates a resilient system where any of the two platforms can always support the ecosystem by acting as a buffer against systemic risks.

As the next bull run approaches, Bitget Wallet (BWB) is being eyed as a potential 100X gem, with market analysts predicting the listing price could range between $0.50 and $1.00.

Crypto Futures have risen in popularity over the years, being considered as one of the most sought out cryptocurrency derivatives offering. In the past weeks, on news that Ethereum Spot approvals from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, might be approved, ETH Futures traded funds hit an all time high, The Ethereum futures ETFs generated $47.75 million in trading volume on May 21st 2024, 40% more than the prior $34.18 million peak set on March 5th 2024. Then the Ethereum ETFs were approved.

According to Bitget MENA, a Web3 cryptocurrency exchange, crypto traders in the region have become savvier, Bitget has witnessed a 52% increase in crypto futures trading from January 2024 until April 2024. Usually crypto trader beginners start with what is called spot trading, it is easier, and quicker. Yet to see that Bitget has witnessed this increase in crypto futures means that MENA crypto traders are gaining expertise.

This comes at the heels of Bitget’s Q1 2024 report where it highlighted more than 100% growth in crypto futures trading volume. Crypto futures trading volume was approximately US$ 1.4 trillion, representing a 146% increase, while Bitget Spot trading volume increased by 113% to over US$ 160 billion.

Bitget Global also witnessed substantial growth in the volume of Bitcoin Future trades on its platform from May 2023 compared to April 2024. In April 2024 the volume of Bitcoin Futures on Bitget crypto exchange reached $437.38 billion out of a total market of $1.9 trillion. In May 2023 this figure stood at $124.54 billion out of a market of $923.29 billion. (Source The Block)

The crypto exchange saw the highest increase in derivatives market share, with a growth of 2.4% in March 2024.

The enthusiasm for crypto futures comes at just the right time, with Bitget, a Web3 and crypto currency exchange, announcing that its 5th edition of the King’s Cup Global Invitational (KCGI) annual trading competition will include a crypto futures competition.

Sam Spiers, Regional Director at Bitget MENA explains, “Bitget MENA and our global operations have continuously offered our clients diverse choices for trading and benefiting from the crypto market. This is reflected in the growth of crypto futures trading in the MENA region and globally. It also showcases the maturity that most crypto traders have gained both in MENA and internationally, given that crypto futures trading is more complex than just spot trading.”

He adds, “We are happy to encourage crypto futures trading further with the launch of Futures trading team competition part of our yearly KCGI competition. The total prize pool of KCGI will reach 5,000,000 USDT.”

Gracy Chen, CEO of Bitget added, “As we embark on the fifth edition of KCGI, we are excited to provide traders with an unparalleled opportunity to test their skills, challenge themselves, and compete for incredible prizes. KCGI represents more than just a trading tournament, it is a celebration of the passion, dedication, and talent of our global trading community.”

Earlier this year, Bitget, announced a record all-time high in trading volumes in the MENA region while witnessing a growth of 500% in trading volumes since it started serving the MENA region in November 2023. Bitget now boasts of 2.5 million users from the MENA region, making up 10% of its total global user base which is 25 million.

In 2023 Bitget announced its expansion into the Middle East region with plans to establish its regional hub in the UAE and hire 60 employees as part of its global scaling strategy. Bitget has already begun exploring license applications to operate in target Middle East markets

According to ZachXBT, an internet sleuth with over 500 hundred thousand followers on Twitter, Bahrain and UAE regulated crypto broker, RAIN, has been likely exploited for $14.8 million. The exploit happened on April 29th and according to ZacHxbt no statement was made by RAIN on the incident.

On the contrary on May 6th RAIN Bahrain tweeted “It was our pleasure to have our General Manager of Bahrain Mohamed Ateeq speak at the Sixth Innovation and Entrepreneurship Forum, organized by the University of Bahrain as part of the Manama week events by the Southern Municipality. It is always a pleasure for us to share Rain’s journey that lay the foundations for the crypto sector in the MENA region.”

According to ZachXBT on TME, “It appears the crypto exchange Rain was likely exploited for $14.8M on April 29, 2024 after their BTC, ETH, SOL, and XRP wallets saw suspicious outflows. Funds were quickly transferred to instant exchanges and swapped for BTC and ETH.”

He added, “As of now Rain has yet to make any statement about the incident.”

He noted that the stolen funds currently sit on these addresses

137.9 BTC

bc1q53aawrkpt5lvk2e30z36unvmhqqdru7q4rprp2 (

1881 ETH

0x197bc094f990261fd6841342901c451858756c28 (

RAIN crypto exchange had received a license both from the Central Bank of Bahrain as well as ADGM in Abu Dhabi. In Bahrain Rain Management W.L.L. is licensed by the Central Bank of Bahrain as a Category 3 Crypto-Asset Services Provider. It received its license back in 2019.

In 2022, RAIN Crypto exchange raised $110 in a Series B funding round. The round was co-led by Paradigm and Kleiner Perkins with participation from multiple parties including Coinbase Ventures, Global Founders Capital, MEVP, Cadenza Ventures, and CMT Digital.

As per RAIN’s website it is backed by MEVP (Middle East Venture Partners), Dubai International Financial Centre, Coinbase, Paradigm, and KleinerPerkins.

In July 2023 RAIN received a fully regulated crypto broker license in UAE through ADGM.

Lara on the Block tried to get in touch with executives from RAIN but without avail. UAE ADGM also has no official statement to make at this time. The Central Bank of Bahrain could not be reached at this time.

Touting itself as “The most trusted cryptocurrency platform” if this turns out to be true it will have negative effects on crypto sentiments in the region. Crypto investors lost $2 billion to hacks and exploits last year and $333 million in Q1 of 2024. 

QCP, an institutional digital assets company, announced in a press release, that they have received In-Principle Approval from the Financial Services Regulatory Authority (FSRA) of Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) to conduct regulated activities. According to the press release, the decision to make a move into this strategic market for the company’s footprint was in anticipation that the Middle East is going to become a dominant global hub for capital flowing into traditional and digital assets.

Founded in 2017 QCP is one of the largest trading desks in the world for digital asset derivatives and a provider of trading solutions and structured strategies. Ernst & Young finds that as of September 2023, the monthly volume of crypto derivatives stands at US$1.33 trillion, which is nearly four times the size of the crypto spot market. With most of the crypto derivative market currently existing outside the US, Abu Dhabi and the UAE have a lot of potential to capture this market segment.

In addition, with notable financial institutions such as Goldman Sachs and Brevan Howard launching in Abu Dhabi last year, Abu Dhabi is rapidly attracting its target segment of clients including family offices, traditional and crypto native macro hedge funds, high net worth individuals, blockchain protocols, VC funds, brokerages and more. QCP also previously announced a partnership with Further Ventures, which is reflective of how the company plans to meet the demand for financial and derivatives digital asset offerings in the market.

Melvin Deng, CEO, QCP said, “The IPA is a significant development for us and advances our goal of embracing greater regulation. We are committed to meeting ADGM’s transparent and high standards of regulatory compliance. Our intention is to be a responsible player that wants to support market confidence. We are proud to be the first Singaporean digital asset market maker and broker-dealer to set up here in the market and hope we can encourage others to venture into this dynamic market. We want to learn from what other players are doing in Abu Dhabi and the region and bring our expertise as a first mover in digital assets to the ecosystem.”

Arvind Ramamurthy, Chief of Market Development at ADGM said, “We congratulate QCP on receiving its IPA from ADGM and welcome them to Abu Dhabi’s thriving international financial centre. With a leading trading desk and digital asset capabilities, we look forward to QCP’s integration into ADGM’s ecosystem, which will streamline regional opportunities. As the digital assets landscape continues to evolve in the Middle East, we anticipate more companies like QCP to recognise the progressive and comprehensive nature of ADGM’s regulatory frameworks, fostering confidence in choosing Abu Dhabi as their regional base.”

QCP will continue to have its main company headquarters in Singapore while leveraging on Abu Dhabi as a base to break new ground and drive innovation. It is well positioned to expand on the back of strong business growth, with a 64 % Y-o-Y increase in Q1 trading volumes. In line with QCP’s long term commitment to the UAE, subject to the regulatory approval for the grant of the FSP, the company plans on making further investments to invest in their presence in the UAE.

UAE and Bahrain regulated CoinMENA crypto broker has added Telegram’s The Open Network (TON) to its platform, allowing users to send USDT via the TON blockchain. According to the announcement CoinMENA becomes the first regional platform to enable USDT withdrawals via the TON network.

TON joins Ethereum’s ERC-20 and TRON’s TRC-20 as the third blockchain available to CoinMENA users for sending USDT.

CoinMENA Co-Founder and Managing Director Dina Sam’an expressed her excitement in a LinkedIn post saying “Users can seamlessly swap their local currencies to USDT at the most competitive market rates and send them to over 900 million Telegram users. I am extremely excited and proud of the team for mobilizing quickly and becoming the first regional platform to enable USDT withdrawals via TON just 10 days after Tether announced launching USDT on TON.”

CoinMENA Co-Founder and CEO Talal Tabbaa added “Stablecoins, particularly USDT, stand out as crypto’s “killer app,” constituting approximately 70% of on-chain transactions and providing access to U.S. dollars for millions worldwide. The rapid adoption of USDT regionally is unsurprising, given its superior and more convenient experience compared to traditional USD wire transfers. Additionally, with many regional currencies pegged to the dollar, using USDT as a medium of exchange mitigates exposure to FX risk. I’m thrilled about this addition and proud that CoinMENA is leading the charge as the first crypto company to offer this in the region”

The announcement adds that this aligns with CoinMENA’s mission to become the simplest and safest way to onboard people onto crypto by providing a reliable onramp to stablecoins, the most popular use case thus far.

CoinMENA has had a string of partnership announcements with formidable players over the past months. The crypto broker recently partnered with Zodia Markets, enhancing liquidity for its platform. It also partnered with Network international to offer secure onramp from Fiat to crypto, and even partnered with Onramp Bitcoin.

GC Exchange GCEX a licensed crypto broker in Dubai UAE announced that its GCEX’s UK entity a crypto broker has submitted its accounts for y/e 31 December 2023, reporting a turnover of £2.30 million equivalent to $2.8 million. This is a decline in volume from £4.46m ($5.58 million) the previous year.

As per the press release, this is largely attributed to the crypto winter and follows an exceptional growth year for GCEX y/e 2022. However, despite the drop in turnover for y/e 2023, the company has steadily increased revenue on a monthly basis since the beginning of 2023, a trend that has continued into the current year.

The UK entity reported a loss before tax of £387,429 but remained committed to its growth objectives, as evidenced by its ongoing development of technology solutions and the distribution of £1.80m during the year to its parent company, GCEX Holding Limited, aimed at supporting the international expansion of the GCEX Group.

Lars Holst, Founder and CEO, GCEX added, “The crypto winter had a huge impact across the industry, and GCEX was no exception. However, in response to the decline in revenue, we have been resilient and adaptive, navigating our costs effectively and diversifying revenue streams such as introducing staking services for institutional and professional clients.

“We don’t run risk and don’t do lending or borrowing and we continue to have significant excess Tier 1 capital in our UK entity. Following a successful Q1 2024, We are now back to profitability and continue to execute on our long-term plans, investing and expanding in our global business.”

Over the last financial year, GCEX Group, with headquarters in London, has broadened its product offering, enhanced its technology and strengthened partnerships with Tier 1, trusted Liquidity Providers as well as digital asset custody solutions. The Group secured two additional regulatory licenses: an investment firm in Denmark regulated by the Danish Financial Supervisory Authority and a Virtual Asset Service Provider (VASP) license in Dubai, UAE regulated by VARA.

GCEX Group enables institutional and professional clients to access deep liquidity in FX and CFDs on digital assets, as well as digital assets spot trading and conversion, and offers a broad range of Forex brokerage and crypto-native technology solutions – XplorDigital.

Binance FZE, the Dubai entity of the biggest global virtual assets services provider and crypto exchange, has received the Virtual Asset Service Provider (VASP) license from Dubai’s Virtual Assets Regulatory Authority (VARA). This license, subsequent to the previous issuance of the Minimum Viable Product (MVP) License in July 2023, marks a significant milestone for Binance.

Binance CEO Richard Teng stated, “As we secure the esteemed full market VASP License, it notably amplifies our unwavering commitment to advancing the financial landscape through compliance and innovation. This achievement embodies our dedication to transparency, regulatory compliance, and responsible growth in the dynamic digital assets domain.

Furthermore, it bears testimony to the innovative spirit of the UAE, as it continues to embrace the transformative economic implications of blockchain technology for its residents.”

The transition from an MVP License to a VASP License allows Binance FZE to extend its product offering and expand its services to the retail market, in addition to qualified and institutional investors. Binance FZE can now offer individual customers a broad portfolio of virtual asset products that includes spot trading, margin trading (for qualified users), and staking products.

Binance FZE General Manager Alex Chehade said, “This is a major milestone that validates our commitment to providing secure, compliant, and top-tier services to our users. It underlines Dubai’s position as a forward-thinking city – acknowledging and embracing the
financial potential that blockchain technology brings.”

Upon initiating operations under the new VASP License, Binance FZE will significantly enhance its current services beyond spot trading and fiat services. This license allows diversifying trading services exclusively for qualified and institutional investors only, where these segments are eligible to engage in margin and derivatives products, including futures and options. Presently, these services are strictly restricted to those that meet the qualified investor criteria.

Binance already has a license in Bahrain. Its license in UAE, follows the licensing of several other crypto exchanges including international players such as OKX, and The competition just got fiercer in the UAE.

This announcement also comes as Binance sets to return to India.

on the eve of Token2049 Dubai, QCP, a global digital asset trading firm and market maker with close to $60b in annual trading volumes
in 2023, and Further Ventures, a leading venture building and investment firm backed by Lunate and Mastercard, jointly announced a strategic partnership aimed at expanding digital asset innovation.

Tapping into the immense growth potential in Abu Dhabi, QCP and Further Ventures are partnering to launch new financial and Derivatives product offerings combining QCP’s considerable experience in digital asset trading and Further Ventures’ licensed broker-dealer and custodial platforms. On the back of this partnership, QCP is expanding to Abu Dhabi with plans to establish a presence in Abu Dhabi Global Markets as its jurisdiction of choice.

As per the press release, more details will be announced at a later stage.

Melvin Deng, CEO, QCP shared that, “Increased institutional adoption in digital assets combined with exponential growth of traditional AUM present a compelling and untapped opportunity for QCP to expand in Abu Dhabi, supported by our partnership with Further Ventures. We greatly value Further Ventures’ deep expertise and passion to develop the ecosystem as we grow our industry leadership in institutional digital assets.”

This collaboration brings together QCP’s market-leading and deep institutional capabilities in digital asset trading with Further Ventures’ investment expertise and extensive portfolio such as Tungsten and Fuze.

This article was updated on April 18th at 12:05 +3GMT