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GCC States, India are Focus of New Net Element, Inc. (NETE) Joint Venture

Net Element, a global technology provider of mobile payments and value-added transactional services, has formed a joint venture with UAE-based industry professionals to sell and deliver Net Element’s payment-as-a-service solutions to all Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states and India.

Organized under the laws of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and operating under the name Net Element, LLC, the JV will be financed solely by the local partners who will own 80% of the new entity. Net Element’s ownership of the remaining 20% equity stake positions the company as the exclusive provider of payment services to the JV, which has exclusive rights to sell Net Element’s services in the territory and market such services under Net Element’s brand.

According to the Global Payments 2020: Transformation and Convergence report by BNY Mellon, the UAE is projected to be the world’s first fully integrated digital payment platform supported by all banks operating in the country. The report also notes India’s rapidly growing mobile payment market, which is now paced with China, where 66% of its population used mobile payments recently to settle a transaction. In France, only 13% of the population was reported to have recently used mobile payments.

ResearchMoz’s The United Arab Emirates (UAE) Cards and Payments Industry report projects that the card payments channel in the UAE grew from 10.3 million in 2009 to 18.2 million in 2013, representing a compounded annual growth rate of 15.31%, and is forecast to reach 28.4 million by 2018.

Net Element has long been aware of the growth trend among e-payment and mobile customers and is affecting its strategy to capitalize on correlating opportunities.

“We’ve been tracking the growth of the GCC payments sector and believe its current critical mass would provide the company with another outlet to scale our services,” Net Element CEO Oleg Firer stated in the news release. “Collaboration with a local partner in the region is a natural extension of our expansion plans into growing emerging markets.”

The company will utilize the expertise of Suresh Menon, a 25-year senior financial services executive with a focus on payment systems, cards and process automation technology, who will serve as general director of UAE-based Net Element, LLC.

Menon is also experienced in various executive leadership roles, including as CEO of a leading UAE-based corporation and as founder of startup Ubiqu Group which focuses on delivering efficiencies in the payments sector; and played an instrumental role in introducing numerous important payment technology solutions to UAE and the GCC States region, including Dubai’s first Automated Fine Payment solution for Dubai Police, UAE’s first cash deposit machine and project design of Wage Protection System in collaboration with Emirates ID Authority for both locals and expatriates.

Menon has also introduced to the region solutions in retail management, government payments, government authority fees, credit bureau services, RTA and DOT Services.

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