UAE Exchange is one of the leading money transfer, foreign exchange and payment solutions brands in the world. With its headquarters in the UAE, UAE Exchange has grown from a small money exchange house opened in 1980 to a global remittance and financial services provider present in over 31 countries across 5 continents.

Introduction to UAE Exchange

UAE Exchange was founded by prominent UAE-based businessman Dr. B.R. Shetty in 1980 as a simple money exchange house in Abu Dhabi. Initially, it specialized in currency exchange and remittances primarily for the millions of Asian expatriates living and working in the UAE.

Over the past 40 years, UAE Exchange has expanded aggressively to become an extensive network that allows quick and easy money transfers across geographies. Today, UAE Exchange has over 800 direct offices spanning across the Middle East, Africa, Asia Pacific and Europe. Its largest presence is in the GCC, India and Singapore.

The UAE Exchange brand comprises the following key entities:

  • UAE Exchange LLC – The flagship remittance arm
  • UAE Exchange Financial Services Ltd. – The licensed arm for money changing
  • UAE Exchange Centre LLC – The retail arm with branches across UAE
  • Xpress Money Services Ltd. – The global money transfer brand

In March 2018, UAE Exchange was acquired by Finablr, a global payments platform and foreign exchange operator. Finablr was founded by Dr. B.R. Shetty and is listed on the London Stock Exchange.

UAE Exchange is regulated by central banks in different countries where it operates. In UAE, it is regulated by the Central Bank whereas in other countries like Singapore, UK and USA, it is regulated by the respective financial authorities.

Products and Services Offered

UAE Exchange provides a diverse portfolio of financial services and payment solutions to its retail and corporate customers.

Money Transfer

The core offering of UAE Exchange is international money transfers and remittances. Under its Xpress Money brand, it enables expatriates and migrants to send money to their families and dependents back home safely, quickly and conveniently.

Its global network spanning across 170 countries allows money to be sent or received at any of its agent locations and bank partners. Money can be sent to bank accounts, mobile wallets or cash pick-up locations. Transfers are instant with funds disponible in minutes in many corridors.

Xpress Money offers competitive exchange rates with low fees and charges. Senders can track transfers real-time. Receivers get SMS notifications when money arrives. The maximum send limit is USD 10,000 per transaction.

UAE Exchange leverages the latest technologies like Ripple’s blockchain network for real-time, transparent and cost-efficient cross border transfers.

Foreign Exchange

UAE Exchange offers currency exchange and travel money solutions. Its branches across airports, cities and tourist spots allow people to buy and sell 100+ global currencies at live rates.

Customers can order 40+ currencies online and get home delivery. Competitive rates are offered with zero commissions. Other services include multi-currency travel wallets and cards, buy-back of excess foreign currency and commemorative coins.

Payments Solutions

For businesses and enterprises, UAE Exchange provides customized B2B payment solutions:

  • Mass payments: Salary and vendor payments
  • Supplier payments: Local and cross-border
  • Foreign currency accounts: Multi-currency accounts to manage forex
  • Insurance premium collection: Collection from policyholders
  • Credit card solutions: Merchant acquiring services

These services help organizations manage their payables and receivables efficiently across borders.

Bank Transfers

Through its direct account credit service, UAE Exchange enables money transfers directly to bank accounts in select countries. Funds can be credited to accounts with major banks in India, Philippines, Sri Lanka and Nepal in a secure way.


UAE Exchange has an e-commerce store that sells overseas shopping cards and vouchers that can be gifted to friends and family abroad. Brands like Amazon, Sephora, iTunes, Google Play, Steam, Xbox, PlayStation etc. are offered.

Gift cards to popular local brands in GCC and India are also available.

Digital Services

UAE Exchange has been focusing on its digital transformation in line with changing customer payment habits. It has launched the following apps and online services:

  • UAE Exchange App – Send money, check rates, pay utility bills etc.
  • OMAY Financial App – Create multi-currency wallets, make global transfers etc.
  • MoNeo Virtual Card – Prepaid multi-currency card for overseas spend
  • MassRemit Platform – Bulk payments solution for businesses
  • Foreign Currency Accounts – Manage business forex online

Features like promotional pricing, loyalty program, appointment booking etc. provides an enhanced digital experience. Biometric logins and data encryption ensure safety.

UAE Exchange is also entering the crypto space by enabling digital currency trades on its apps.

Market Segments Targeted

UAE Exchange primarily serves the following customer segments:

Migrants and Expatriates

The workforce in GCC and SE Asia has millions of low and semi-skilled contract laborers from India, Philippines, Nepal, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Sri Lanka etc. UAE Exchange helps them remit money back home through cash or account transfers in a fast and inexpensive way.

Small and Medium Businesses

SMEs involved in export-import trade depend on UAE Exchange for their working capital and cross-border payment needs. Services like foreign currency accounts, blockchain payments, forex cards etc. help them manage international finances.

Retail Customers

Retail customers use UAE Exchange to send money to family and friends abroad for occasions, emergencies, education costs etc. or when purchasing online on international websites. They also exchange currencies during business or leisure trips.


Large business entities utilize UAE Exchange’s payment solutions and bank transfer services for bulk disbursals like payroll, vendor payments etc. across different locations worldwide.

Online Shoppers

People wanting to shop on international websites use UAE Exchange’s prepaid cards, overseas shopping cards and online money transfer facilities to make seamless cross border purchases.

Competitive Advantages

UAE Exchange enjoys certain competitive strengths:

Large Direct Presence

With over 800 owned locations, UAE Exchange has one of the largest footprints among remittance brands. This allows convenient access for customers to conduct transactions and customer support.

Leadership instrategic markets

It has leading market share in high-volume corridors like UAE-India, GCC-India, Singapore-India etc. Its large distribution network drives business in these markets.


Early adoption of digital platforms, blockchain and biometrics has improved efficiency, security and transparency in transactions.

Brand Equity

UAE Exchange is a trusted heritage brand in the Middle East and Asia known for reliable service for over 30 years. Its brand value provides a competitive edge.

Cost Efficiency

By owning most of its locations, UAE Exchange keeps costs low. Scale of operations also leads to cost savings which make its pricing competitive.

Range of Services

UAE Exchange offers remittances, foreign currency exchange, business solutions and other services under one roof for customer convenience.

Regulatory Compliance

By maintaining high governance standards and regulatory compliance globally, UAE Exchange reassures customers, especially migrant workers sending small amounts.

Major Competitors

The global remittance and forex market has many established players and new entrants:

Western Union

The oldest and largest player, Western Union has over half a million agent locations worldwide. UAE Exchange competes with it primarily in the Gulf and SE Asia.


Second largest after Western Union, MoneyGram has 350,000 locations across 200 countries. UAE Exchange sees it as a rival in GCC and Asia.


Specializing in bank deposits and instant money transfers to India, Sri Lanka etc. Transfast offers digital options for transfers.


A new age digital remittance company focused on online transfers using mobile apps and websites. Mainly targets US-India corridor.


A UK-based fintech startup providing online money transfer through its borderless account offering and low fees.


Banks like HSBC, Citibank, SCB also offer remittance services along with other products. Their brand names attract some customers.

Growth Strategies

UAE Exchange aims to grow its business through the following strategic initiatives:

Expanding digital services

Adding new features and functionalities on its mobile apps and web platforms to align with digital payment trends.

New markets and tie-ups

Entering new high-potential markets in Africa, Middle East and Asia through direct presence or agent partnerships.

New products and services

Introducing new offerings in forex, cross-border payments and cryptocurrency trading for retail and business users.

Brand building

Increasing brand awareness and positioning UAE Exchange as a fintech brand through marketing campaigns and promotions.

Increase online presence

Leveraging SEO, social media and digital marketing across geographies to drive traffic and increase online customer acquisitions.

Utilizing emerging technologies

Adopting artificial intelligence, big data analytics, blockchain etc. to enhance process efficiency and improve customer experience.

Mergers and acquisitions

Pursuing strategic acquisitions and partnerships to gain new capabilities, markets, scale and synergies.

Leveraging Finablr synergies

Collaborating with other Finablr group brands like Travelex, Swych, Swift etc. to offer integrated forex and payment solutions.


In summary, UAE Exchange has cemented its position as a leading player in the global remittance and payment solutions space over the past four decades. Its brand heritage, extensive distribution network, technology leverage and diverse portfolio of forex and cross-border payment services makes it well-positioned to capitalize on new opportunities worldwide. As it continues to innovate and expand its digital capabilities, UAE Exchange looks set to maintain its growth trajectory amidst an evolving payments landscape. The company provides a vital source of convenience and savings to millions of expatriate workers and drives financial inclusion in emerging economies.