Halalah secures SAMA’s fintech license

Esam Al-Nahdi Founder and CEO of Halalah
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Updated 24 March 2020

Halalah secures SAMA’s fintech license

The Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority (SAMA) announced last week that Halalah has successfully attained the full e-money institution license (EMI) in Saudi Arabia. The Saudi-based fintech company has been operating in the local market previously under a sandbox trial period license. Halalah managed to “graduate” from the trial period ahead of schedule after complying with all regulatory requirements that focused on the maturity of product, the structure of the company, the agility of its processes and the security of its infrastructure.
“Halalah is not your typical startup, as it has gone through a long journey in a short period of time to reach where it is today,” said Founder and CEO Esam Al-Nahdi. Starting in Saudi Arabia with clear ambitions for the regional fintech market, the company got licensed in UAE in 2017 by the FSRA’s Fintech RegLab in Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM), before coming back to Saudi Arabia to get SAMA’s sandbox approval in the first quarter of 2018, to kick-start its operations in November 2018.
“Throughout 2019, Halalah managed to institutionalize its operating model, and build a robust infrastructure and product engine, as well as striking a few strategic partnerships that will cater to the needs of the new generation of customers and putting the company in the right position to achieve its local, regional and global plans,” added Co-founder and Chief Strategy Officer Maher Loubieh.
With the full license now obtained, “the next milestone in Saudi Arabia is to relaunch Halalah KSA with a new set of financial services and products that will enable customers to manage their finances and do transactions through Halalah,” said Al-Nahdi.


MYNM launches BMW Mini Countryman in Kingdom

Updated 24 September 2020

MYNM launches BMW Mini Countryman in Kingdom

Mohamed Yousuf Naghi Motors Company (MYNM), the official BMW Group importer in Saudi Arabia, has launched the long-awaited and redefined five-door Mini Countryman.

“The new Mini Countryman is instantly recognizable as the biggest and most versatile member of the Mini model family. Characterized by its formidable performance, agility and personality, the model is perfect for motorists who crave individuality,” the company said. 

The spacious model not only has five fully fledged seats, but features a touchless-opening electric tailgate and a fold-out picnic bench, which is compactly stowed away in the car’s luggage compartment.

From the outside, the model boasts a distinctive silhouette with a
reimagined radiator grille that underlines the Countryman’s powerful design. Adorned with the Union Jack pattern, the rear lights emphasize Mini’s history and its rugged yet contemporary new look.

The Countryman’s interior design includes ergonomically optimized controls for ease of access, which both the driver and the front seat passenger can enjoy, alongside LED lighting that adds a stylish ambiance to the cockpit.

Under the hood, the ALL4 all-wheel drive system provides a noticeable boost in terms of traction, driving stability and agility. Adding to the enhanced engines portfolio, the vehicle achieves a balance between driving fun and fuel consumption. In terms of power, the Mini TwinPower Turbo technology is used on both 3- and 4-cylinder petrol engines, which provides a power range between 100 KW/ 136 hp to 225 KW/ 306 hp. Meanwhile, the Mini Cooper Countryman ALL4 also features an 8-speed Steptronic transmission.

Mark Notkin, BMW Group  managing director at MYNM, said: “As one of our most versatile models, the Mini Countryman has always been the ideal car for our most daring buyers. Defined by its supreme mobility, the Mini Countryman can take on any terrain, whether it be city streets or more rugged paths.

“As the presence of the Mini Countryman grows in the region, we are confident that this launch will prove valuable among customers who are looking for adventure-level performance in the compact segment.”