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The Ziina team

Ziina announces backing from Y-Combinator

DUBAI, January 19, 2021

Ziina, the UAE’s first social Peer-to-Peer (P2P) payment application, officially announces that it is participating in Y-Combinator (YC)’s Winter 2021 batch. 
 
This makes Ziina the third start-up from the UAE to be recognised by YC, the elite start-up accelerator.
 
Ziina’s YC acceptance coincides with its latest round of seed funding led by OTF Jasoor Ventures (the VC arm of Oman Technology Fund), with participation from Class 5 Global, Long Journey Ventures, Graph Ventures, Jabbar Internet Group, FJ Labs, and Wamda.  
 
Y-Combinator, one of the world’s most successful and selective start-up engines, places 2% of applicants who pass their process through its robust accelerator programme which has propelled businesses such as Airbnb, Stripe, and Dropbox to their current level of success worth a combined $200 billion.
 
Through Y-Combinator, which is also known for its competitive entry system, Ziina has access to a vast network and a range of highly experienced mentors. The fintech will now go through the YC three-month accelerator programme culminating in Demo Day – an opportunity to pitch to many of the world’s most successful investors. 
 
After falling into the less than 2% entry bracket, Ziina is truly set for an ambitious year ahead and is set to disrupt the market and the way individuals transfer money.
 
Ziina’s latest funding round includes some of fintech’s most prolific operators including former Revolut executives, and early employees from Stripe, Brex, Paypal’s Venmo, Deel, and Notion. 
 
This collective makes for a strategic mix of local investors, Silicon Valley expertise, and fintech operators that have scaled massive businesses. 
 
Faisal Toukan, CEO and Co-Founder of Ziina, comments: “The participation with Y-Combinator is a game changer for Ziina and we are thrilled that we have fallen into the very small bracket of companies who are accepted. We’re excited to tap into Y-Combinator’s larger network, including its exceptional talent and investor pools. Furthermore, it also allows us to have access to mentors from top technology companies, which will propel Ziina to an even higher level when it comes to scaling our operations. 
 
“One of our missions at Ziina is linking the best talent and resources of the UAE with those of Silicon Valley. We’ve seen the UAE take a highly proactive approach to supporting the fintech ecosystem and we are thrilled to be a part of it.
 
“Coupled with this, we’ve received an enthusiastic response from VCs and angel investors during our latest funding round and are incredibly grateful for their support. This will contribute to supercharging Ziina’s growth in the year ahead, achieving the goals we’ve set. Through Ziina we want to help redefine the way people in the Middle East think of, interact with and experience financial services. Our company is founded on the belief that everyone should have access to the next generation of financial services.”
 
Founded in 2020 by Faisal Toukan, Sarah Toukan, and Andrew Gold, Ziina is the latest addition to the Middle East’s fintech ecosystem and is capitalising on the region's rapid adoption of fintech friendly regulation. 
 
Ziina offers its users in the UAE simplified P2P payment services, with plans to expand to Saudi Arabia and Jordan by 2022. Its mission is to simplify finance for the Middle East.
 
Ziina is building on its current application to provide an even more seamless way for friends and family to split payments. In 2021, it plans to expand its product offering to include simplified payments for freelancers and small businesses.
 
Ziina’s growing team is led by technology and product experts who are devoted to building a financial product that will delight their users, by using the user-centric methodology pioneered in Silicon Valley. 
 
CEO and Cofounder Faisal is committed to recruiting the best global talent to the UAE, bridging together technology professionals from both San Francisco and the Mena region. Ziina has attracted global and regional talent from Apple, Uber, Careem, Coinbase, Oracle and Stanford University to innovate in the UAE’s P2P payment space.
 
2020 was a year of incredible growth for Ziina as the team connected with customers in the UAE, offering them an easier way to send and receive cash. In 2021, Ziina plans to grow its team, continue to innovate in the UAE’s P2P payment space, and to begin its expansion to new markets. -- Tradearabia News Service
 
 



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