PayBy — one of UAE’s largest fintech companies, has been acquired by Astra Tech, a UAE-born technology development and investment group. This acquisition follows the company’s recent acquisition of Rizek, a platform for on-demand personal and home services. Currently raising $500 million in investment, the PayBy acquisition signals a major strategic move for Astra towards its ambition of creating an ‘ultra platform’ – a revolutionary, interconnected digital ecosystem that’s expected to address the growing problem of super app fatigue.
Spearheaded by Astra Founder and CEO, serial entrepreneur Abdallah Abu Sheikh, PayBy’s acquisition brings sophisticated proprietary payment technologies and financial services to Astra’s ultra platform to enable a seamless and cashless payment solution for consumers, merchants and businesses. PayBy has grown considerably in the last 2 years with more than 2 million users and thousands of active merchants. As of May 2022, over AED 600 million worth of transactions were carried out.
Commenting on the acquisition Abu Sheikh said, “PayBy has been instrumental in pioneering financial inclusion in the UAE and is considered a key player in the cashless ecosystem. As we integrate PayBy’s technologies, solutions and teams into Astra's ultra platform, our speed and ability to supercharge our services with industry-leading payments and money transfer solutions has accelerated immensely.”
Astra plans to acquire, repurpose, and bring together already established and sector-leading leading platforms to create an ultra platform to revolutionise how people live their lives by helping them save significant time when completing essential everyday tasks, including payments, transfers and transactions. Additionally, Astra’s platform aims to deliver better value to the suppliers and partners of personal and home services by removing the burden of unfavourable commission structures.
Abdallah Abu Sheikh added, “With this acquisition, we’re getting closer than ever to realising our vision and are excited to have the PayBy team join us. The integration of PayBy’s products with Astra’s ultra platform will allow us to synthesise and grow the ecosystem at a breakneck speed. It will also help in delivering a compelling user experience and a sustainable commission structure for our merchants and businesses, something that a lot of super apps of today struggle with.”