This post originally appeared on the JadoPado Blog and has been re-produced here to preserve the JadoPado historical record.

Quick post on some of the changes that I’ve seen recently in the UAE’s payments space:

  • Network International now connects directly to CyberSource without the MiGS gateway sitting in between. This has taken place on the back of the opening of CyberSource’s Middle East office recently. I’m not sure whether it costs any more than going to CyberSource directly, but from what I’ve been told you get the full CyberSource product suite including fraud management tools & payment tokenisation. The only downside that I’ve seen so far is that you deal with NI’s support team without a direct relationship with CyberSource
  • PayPal continues to drive its Middle East efforts forward off the back of their launch in November. The PayPal Middle East team is currently based out of Paris with the expectation to open a Dubai office during H1 2013
  • While there isn’t a firm commitment in place from PayPal, it looks like we may see local bank account withdrawals during H1 2013 followed by support for the UAE Dirham and Saudi Riyal before year end
  • PayPal has increased its debit card withdrawal limit from USD 500 to USD 2500 per day. This still isn’t enough for a business doing significant volumes, but will definitely help startups
  • PayPal still offers US based bank account withdrawal to which they’ve also added a manual withdrawal system. The process isn’t officially documented, however I’ve been told that one or two larger merchants locally are already using it. In a nutshell, if you’re hitting north of USD 50K in monthly revenue with PayPal they can pay you out to a local USD bank account via a manual process every two months. If you’re hitting north of USD 100K, it’s possible to have this take place on a monthly basis. The time periods are essentially internal to PayPal in that their Treasury doesn’t like manual processes and prefers to carry out a given process as less often as possible. I’ve also been told that they may bring the time periods down further as they sign up more large merchants

Fire away in the comments if you have any questions!