24 December 2005
The Dubai Financial Service Authority (DFSA) today announced that it has licensed Rasmala Investments Ltd as an authorised firm in the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC).
Rasmala Investments, an Investment Banking and Asset Management firm, had recently moved its Holding company from Bermuda to the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) and had applied to the DFSA for authority to operate a regulated subsidiary.
Rasmala Holdings also owns regulated subsidiaries in London (UK) and Amman (Jordan)
Mr. Ali al Shihabi, CEO and Founder of Rasmala Investments said: “Rasmala is very pleased to be licensed by the DFSA. We have always sought regulation as it gives us substantial credibility globally with international financial institutions as well as regionally with local regulators. Rasmala had previously acquired a license from the UK Financial Services Authority (FSA) and was keen to be among the first regional firms to meet the DFSA’s rigorous and globally best practice regulatory standards”.
Mr. al Shihabi explained that after the approval of the DFSA, Rasmala plans to grow significantly its Investment Banking/Corporate Finance business. “Rasmala aims to serve the needs of its clients, whether governmental bodies, banks, corporates or private clients, by offering the highest international professional standards accompanied by our intimate understanding of the local and regional business environment” he added.
Mr. al Shihabi commended the DIFC for its exceptional initiatives to reinforce the region’s banking and financial services capabilities. He said that “It became quickly apparent to us at Rasmala that Dubai, with the establishment of the DIFC, was going to secure its place as the region’s premier financial centre. The DIFC’s financial free zone structure accompanied by a global best practice regulatory regime and an independent legal system that met global business requirements is a unique and extremely attractive domicile for financial institutions to operate from. From our regulatory experience with the UK’s FSA we could easily recognise the value that the DFSA brought to the region”.
Dr Omar Bin Sulaiman, Director General of Dubai International Financial Centre Authority, commented: “It is our primary objective to attract the world’s most respected financial institutions to operate from the DIFC. Our strategic aim is to bring regional investment companies back into the regional fold. We are pleased to welcome Rasmala. The fact that Rasmala chose the DIFC as the ideal domicile for its activities shows vision. Its decision to locate in Dubai illustrates that it recognises the potential of the US $ 1.8 trillion regional market as well as the attractions of the DIFC.”
Rasmala’s track record includes the delisting of Aramex from NASDAQ, and the divestment of major oversees holdings of Arab Banking Corporation in co-operation with Deutsche Bank.