Careem acquires money transfer technology platform Denarii
Dubai, UAE – 1 July 2022: Careem announces the acquisition of the assets of Denarii, a Dubai-based money transfer platform that integrates fintechs and financial institutions with remittance aggregators, banks, exchanges and wallets globally. Some key members of the Denarii team will also be joining Careem.
Founded in 2019 by Jon Santillan and Walfrido Perez, Denarii’s proprietary money transfer technology uses a single API call to enable fintechs like Careem Pay to facilitate quick and affordable international money transfer. Denarii also helps businesses build secure profit centres by automating accounts payable and B2B payments.
Careem Pay will use Denarii’s money transfer technology to connect customers and Captains with remittance services provided by licensed providers. Careem already has a large presence in countries connecting some of the most active remittance corridors in the world, such as the UAE, KSA and Pakistan.
Careem Pay offers a digital wallet that stores real money for customers in the UAE as well as a peer-to-peer (P2P) transfer product that enables customers to send, request and receive money using just a phone number, personal QR code, or personal payment link. Seamless access to international remittance services will round out Careem Pay’s payments offering for customers and Captains to address their everyday financial needs.
Mudassir Sheikha, CEO and Co-founder of Careem, commented: “We’re thrilled to acquire the assets of Denarii, a startup that is transforming the way people move money across the world. Denarii’s innovative API will accelerate our journey to offering simple and affordable international remittance services, adding to the wide variety of services already available offered by Careem Pay.”
Jon Edward Santillan, CEO and Co-founder of Denarii, said: “Careem’s large network of customers, Captains and merchants, and decade of payments processing experience, will enable us to increase the impact of the money transfer technology we built through Denarii. Careem has done more than any startup in the region to simplify and improve lives and we’re excited to join the team to increase economic freedom for millions of people in the region.”
The GCC is home to some of the largest remittance corridors in the world. Remittances to the developing countries of the Middle East and North Africa region grew by 7.6 percent in 2021 to $61 billion while remittances to South Asia grew 6.9 percent to $157 billion in the same year. Digital financial services have an enormous total addressable market – valued at $2.8 trillion across payment use cases, lending, GCC remittances, and financial services products including insurance.
Careem Pay is simplifying payment experiences by making it easier for customers, Captains, and merchants to hold and transfer money, pay bills, and make and accept payments both on and beyond the Super App.
In the UAE, the Careem Super App offers more than a dozen services including ride-hailing, food and grocery delivery, micro-mobility, digital financial services, and partner services including car rental, home cleaning and PCR testing.
Careem is the everyday Super App for the greater Middle East region. A pioneer of the region’s ride-hailing economy, Careem provides a host of daily services that people need to move around, order things, and transfer money in one unified smartphone app. Careem’s mission is to simplify and improve the lives of people and build an awesome organisation that inspires. Established in July 2012, Careem operates in over 100 cities across 12 countries and has created more than one million income-generating opportunities in the region. Careem became a wholly-owned subsidiary of Uber Technologies, Inc. in January 2020.
Denarii enables money transfer using a mobile app, web and API to help consumers, businesses and fintechs to send money across borders cheaper, better, and with no hidden charges. Started in 2019 by Jon Santillan and Walfrido Perez following their graduation from 500 Global’s MISK500 Accelerator program, Denarii is backed by Class5 and Merak Capital. Other investors include Mountain Partners, Foxmont Capital, IMO.VC, and notable angel investors in the region such as Musaab Hakami, Turki AlJeaid, Basem Alsallom, Gaurav Dhar, and Khursan Yalla. Denarii has participated in the Hub71 incentive program, the Mohammed Bin Rashid Innovation Fund, and the Dubai Chamber Accelerator program, and has received an incentive grant from the Abu Dhabi Investment Office.