The former technology advisor to the UAE Prime Minister’s Office has launched the Gulf’s first zero-fee cryptocurrency exchange.
Mohammad Raafi Hossain, CEO of Fasset, a provider of the world’s first comprehensive ecosystem dedicated to merging digital asset innovations with the real economy, has announced plans to launch its second flagship product, the Fasset Exchange (FEX).
Immediately available to both retail and institutional investors within the countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), the FEX will offer zero percent trading fees, compared to a market average of 4-5 percent on other regional exchanges, and sign-up rewards for new users.
Sign-ups for the FEX’s private beta are available now, with the public launch scheduled for later this year and expansion to the rest of the MENASA region over the next two years.
Hossain said: “While the last decade has seen a rise in cryptocurrency usage, persisting complexities — from trading to payments systems — hinder true mass adoption. In addition, the volatility and high-risk nature of digital assets makes the asset class unapproachable for the majority of investors as investors are unable to gauge their value.
“To date, accessing digital assets, whether cryptocurrencies or real asset-backed tokens, in the MENASA region has been an onerous process. The industry lacks competition and, as a result, local exchanges have maintained an opaque, and often expensive, fee structure and operating model, resulting in high barriers to entry and limited choices for investors.
“FEX brings to the GCC the accessibility, variety, and ease of use which increasingly characterises digital asset markets elsewhere in the world. It is our belief that every investor should have a healthy, risk-assessed allocation in digital assets. As such, we look forward to offering investors and asset owners across MENASA convenience and true diversification like they’ve never seen before.”
He said the FEX will serve to provide near-instant access and liquidity for both real asset-backed tokens such as gold-backed tokens or tokenised sustainable infrastructure projects and top cryptocurrencies like BTC, ETH, and USDT.
Hossain added that the exchange will significantly reduce transaction times for real assets as trades on the platform will take seconds.
During private beta testing, users will gain full access to the FEX platform and marketplace. Using targeted customer feedback and user behaviour analysis, the Fasset team will use the beta testing phase to optimise the FEX website, a statement said.
Hossain added: “After the 2017 ICO boom, tokenisation and security token offerings were supposed to legitimise the crypto industry, carrying the promise of bringing the liquidity of the ICO era to real assets.
“However, while stablecoins and security tokens served to ignite conversations within the cryptocurrency sector, neither have succeeded in bringing long-term substantive value to the marketplace. The launch of FEX brings a greater array of stable, high-yielding asset-backed tokens to the field, creating a robust foundation for innovative products in the future.
“With concerted efforts from leaders in the region, including regulators in jurisdictions such as Bahrain and the UAE, to support fintech innovation, we believe that investors in the Gulf have great appetite to explore the cryptocurrency sector further and to foster its long-term and sustainable growth.”
Founded in early 2019, Fasset said its leadership team draws on backgrounds in banking, ethical finance, governmental investing, and sustainable infrastructure, and from institutions including the World Bank, United Nations, Standard Chartered Bank, and the UAE Ministry of Cabinet Affairs.
The company has already amassed more than $4.7 million raised from strategic backers in the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Kuwait, and Singapore.