Zero Two, an ADQ sovereign wealth fund  entity, has launched its digital assets business in Abu Dhabi UAE to offer latest generation technologies. Zero Two will build and operate data center and offer digital asset management services as part of ADQ’s digital asset strategy. The name “Zero Two” is derived from the significance of the numerals 0 and 2 in Web3 technology.

Zero Two aims to become a trusted partner to companies seeking to capitalize on the broad innovative scope and transformative potential the technology offers. The company’s services range from developing power infrastructure to sourcing and testing latest generation technologies, to building and operating data centers, and providing digital assets management services.

Zero Two was created to develop, operate and invest in best-in-class technologies accelerating and supporting the digital asset and Web3 ecosystem in the region, which comprises concepts such as decentralization and token-based economics.

Commenting on the start of the company’s operations, Ahmed Al Hameli, Chief Executive Officer at Zero Two, said: “Digital assets hold vast potential that is only beginning to be explored and leveraged. Zero Two enters the market with a robust and broad business model catering to rapidly emerging demand and a demonstrated commitment to meeting the highest standards of security and compliance. We are confident that our offering that utilizes excess power from the local power grid, which is the first of its kind in the UAE and the wider region, will not only meet the needs of our clients but also exceed their expectations with regards to the various benefits that can be derived from deploying distributed ledger technologies.”

This is not the first digital assets entity to be owned by ADQ. ADQ also registered FSI ( FS Innovation) which entered into an agreement with USA based Marathon digital holdings, a digital asset mining entities to establish and operate one or more mining facilities for digital assets. The business entity will be in the field of digital asset/crypto mining. The initial phase will consist of two digital asset mining sites comprising 250 MW (megawatts) in Abu Dhabi UAE. Marathon Holdings will own 20% of the joint company in UAE only. The cost of the project will be $406 million.

In September 2022, Abu Dhabi’s ADQ and Further Ventures, an investment firm back by ADQ launched a $200 million fund focused on Fintech, digital assets and supplychain.  As per the news, entrepreneurs and experienced executives who choose to launch their next venture with Further will have access to product and engineering resources for concept development; seed capital required to take the business to Series A; and reserved capital for following on through multiple rounds of funding beyond capital investment.

In an SEC Filing dated January 27th 2022, USA based Marathon digital Holdings, a digital asset mining entity, announced that it had entered into a shareholder’s agreement with FSI ( FS Innovation), the BTC mining subsidiary of UAE ADQ a sovereign fund,  to form an Abu Dhabi, ( ADGM (Abu Dhabi Global Markets) based company.

As per the filing, the joint UAE ADGM based company will establish and operate one or more mining facilities for digital assets. The business entity will be in the field of digital asset/crypto mining.

The initial phase will consist of two digital asset mining sites comprising 250 MW (megawatts) in Abu Dhabi UAE.

Marathon Holdings will own 20% of the joint company in UAE only. The cost of the project will be $406 million.

This new comes after UAE based Phoenix Technology which embarked on establishing a $2 billion crypto-mining farm in the UAE,  announced in November 2022, that the biggest crypto mining project in the region will be completed in the next six months, Q2 of 2023.  The press release at the time noted, “The project will be finalized within six months, giving the region a taste of technological advancement and development.”

In February 2022 Phoenix had announced it was part of the group of entities developing the UAE crypto mining farm in an interview with well renowned crypto and Blockchain lawyer Irena Heaver.

Crypto mining is an integral part of the development of crypto economies, and the MENA region is opening up to exactly these economies. Already the GCC and MENA region has become an attractive destination for crypto mining. 

During Binance Week 2022, Khalifa AlJaziri, AlShehhi, Commercial Affairs Regulatory Sector Projects advisor at the Ministry of Economy in UAE, claimed that the Dubai World Trade Center Authority (DWTCA) would be legislating the crypto mining sector. He stated, “We are setting the guidelines and rules needed to regulate crypto mining within this crypto framework.

The UAE is not the only country that has shown interest in crypto mining. Oman Investment Authority (OIA) took part in a $350mn equity round in Crusoe Energy Systems. The US firm helps oil and gas producers cut flaring by using stranded natural gas to power cryptocurrency mining. Crusoe systems set up operations in Oman as well.