FreedomPay to Unleash the Power of Pay at NRF 2023

One of the world’s fastest growing fintech to showcase award-winning global commerce technology platform and industry-leading partner network.

NEW YORK, National Retail Federation, Jan. 15, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — FreedomPay, the global leader in Next Level Commerce™ and the commerce technology platform of choice for global retail, hospitality and payments brands including Marriott, Foot Locker, Shake Shack, Engage People, and Castles Technology, will showcase its innovations and partnership announcements this week at NRF in booth #4250.

The event will mark the launch of FreedomPay’s new call to action, Unleash the Power of Pay. As the commerce landscape evolves with new technologies and changing consumer needs, Unleash the Power of Pay introduces the notion of unleashing the power of payments to drive greater customer loyalty, leverage business intelligence insights, and bring value-added services.

“FreedomPay is excited to make a splash at this year’s NRF and to launch Unleash the Power of Pay. The concept is a testament to our award-winning technology and best-in-class partner network that is enabling billions of transactions in more than 75 countries across the globe,” said Tom Durovsik, Founder & CEO of FreedomPay.

As part of its line-up at NRF, FreedomPay will host a roundtable discussion on Monday, January 16 at 10:30AM at booth #4250 with industry influencers Castles Technology, Charter Communications, and Elo Touch, moderated by Dale Laszig of the Green Sheet. The event, Next Level Commerce™: Unleashing the Power of Pay, will focus on the challenges and opportunities across retail, the trends influencing retail’s future, and strategies for merchants to navigate the changing retail sector. Those who would like to attend virtually are encouraged to register here.

FreedomPay also announces the publication of a new industry white paper The Next Level of Global Payments: Unleash the Power of Pay. The report highlights pivotal opportunities for retailers to elevate customer relationships and increase profit margins internationally, outlining strategies for security, safety, speed, simplicity, and customer satisfaction with service across borders. Download now to read the bespoke report.

FreedomPay’s global footprint continues to grow through the power of its partner network and new integrations to allow merchants to Unleash the Power of Pay for their customers. FreedomPay also announced in the days leading up to NRF 2023 new partnerships that will bring its solutions to more merchants around the world.

Moneris Solutions Corporation (“Moneris”), the largest payment processor in Canada*, will now be able to offer its merchants access to FreedomPay’s commerce technology platform, bringing an enhanced checkout experience to millions of shoppers across Canada.

FreedomPay also announced an integration with Flooid, bringing enhanced innovation, choice, and flexibility to retailers around the globe on the Flooid platform.

To learn more about FreedomPay, visit us at NRF booth #4250 or

About FreedomPay

FreedomPay’s Next Level Commerce™ platform transforms existing payment systems and processes from legacy to leading edge. As the premier choice for many of the largest companies across the globe in retail, hospitality, lodging, gaming, sports and entertainment, foodservice, education, healthcare and financial services, FreedomPay’s technology has been purposely built to deliver rock solid performance in the highly complex environment of global commerce. The company maintains a world-class security environment and was first to earn the coveted validation by the PCI Security Standards Council against Point-to-Point Encryption (P2PE/EMV) standard in North America. FreedomPay’s robust solutions across payments, security, identity, and data analytics are available in-store, online and on-mobile and are supported by rapid API adoption. The award winning FreedomPay Commerce Platform operates on a single, unified technology stack across multiple continents allowing enterprises to deliver an innovative Next Level experience on a global scale.

*Based on total number of transactions processed in Canada

Jennifer Tayebi
Hill+Knowlton Strategies for FreedomPay
+1 734 395 0780

GlobeNewswire Distribution ID 8729731

Ancient royal tomb unearthed in Egypt’s Luxor

Archaeologists have unearthed a royal tomb while working in the Western Valley of the Theban Mountain on Egypt’s Luxor’s West Bank.

“Current examination on the ceramics and fragmentary inscriptional evidence recovered so far [indicates] it is the tomb of several members of the royal family of the Thutmosid period of the 18th Dynasty,” said Mostafa Waziri, Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Antiquities.

The 18th Dynasty lasted from 1550 to 1292 BC and the tomb is located in Valley C, one of the western valleys, just below the Neferure’s cliff-tomb.

Source: Emirates News Agency

Sharjah Padel Tournament’s Football Stars Edition concludes

Italian Francesco Totti and Enrico Annoni snatched the Sharjah Padel Tournament title, the football stars edition which was organised by the Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority (SCTDA) in partnership with Air Arabia today (Saturday) in conjunction with the inaugural Sharjah International Footgolf Tournament.

The duo secured the title after an intense match against Nelson de Jesus Silva (DIDA) and Alessandro Costacurta, who secured second place. Oddo and Brocchi celebrated their third place placement after a thrilling match against Seedorf and Marcolin.

Khalid Jasim Al Midfa, Chairman of the SCTDA, and Ahmed Obaid Al Qaseer, Acting Chief Executive Officer of Shurooq, honoured winners of the tournament which hosted 16 ex-football stars from around the world, held at the Sheraton Sharjah Beach Resort & Spa between January 13-14.

Italian forward Francesco Totti also faced ex-Juventus, Barcelona midfielder, and current Sharjah FC player Miralem Pjanic, in a friendly match to the delight of fans.

Commenting on the tournament, Khalid Jasim Al Midfa, Chairman of the SCTDA, said: “We are excited to have organised this tournament that brought together 16 ex-football stars to compete in Sharjah. As part of the authority’s mission and strategy to introduce the diversity of Sharjah’s destinations, including, heritage, cultural, sports, and our distinctive eco-tourism locations, we have once again placed our emirate on the tourism map through the visiting of these distinguished athletes, who are now considered Sharjah ambassadors.”

He added: “SCTDA is proud to continue strengthening cooperation with our partners in various fields, to advance the outcomes of the public sector, and lay a foundation to further develop the economy, through a series of initiatives that will cement Sharjah’s global status, and support its sustainable development plans and diversifying the economy.

Sixteen ex-football stars took part in the event, including the legendary Brazilian goalkeeper Nelson de Jesus Silva (DIDA), Dutch midfielder Clarence Seedorf, and Italian forward Francesco Totti, who is still the top goal scorer and the most capped player in history for the Italian club of Roma. The footballers also included Diego Fuser, Beppe Signori, Ibrahim Ba, Enrico Annoni, Stefano Eranio, Donadoni, Cristian Zaccardo, Luca Antonini, Massimo Oddo, Cristian Brocchi, Sébastien Frey, Dario Marcolin and Costacurta.

Source: Emirates News Agency

Suqia UAE’s Board of Trustees discuss plans for 2023

The Board of Trustees of the UAE Water Foundation (Suqia UAE), under the umbrella of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives, discussed Suqia’s plans for 2023 in its meeting held recently.

The meeting was chaired by Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, Chairman of the Board of Trustees, and in the presence of the board members, who included Fahad Abdelrahman bin Sultan, Deputy Secretary-General for Development and International Cooperation at Emirates Red Crescent and Vice Chairman of the Board of Trustees at Suqia; Dr. Ahmed Ali Murad, Associate Provost for Research at UAE University; Dr. Arif Sultan Al Hammadi, Executive Vice-President, Khalifa University; Nasser Lootah, Executive Vice President, Generation (Power and Water) at DEWA; Waleed Bin Salman, Executive Vice President, Business Development and Excellence at DEWA; Mohammed Abdulkareem Al Shamsi, Acting Executive Director of Suqia; and Humaid Al Hammadi, Acting Secretary of the Board.

“At Suqia UAE, we consolidate the UAE’s position as one of the world’s largest donors in line with the vision and directives of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, to enhance humanitarian, development, and community work. This also helps achieve the objectives of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives Foundation, as we come under its umbrella. We achieve this by implementing development projects and providing potable water for communities that suffer from water scarcity and pollution, in cooperation with the concerned local and international organisations. The number of beneficiaries from Suqia’s projects exceeds 13.6 million in 37 countries around the world,” Al Tayer said.

The meeting discussed Suqia’s plans for 2023, including volunteering and project inspection visits, as well as external relief campaigns, in coordination with Emirates Red Crescent and the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Charitable and Humanitarian Establishment. Members discussed the media campaign to raise awareness about the importance of providing water to underprivileged communities.

The meeting also discussed Suqia’s preparations for its annual Ramadan campaign in cooperation with Mai Dubai to distribute water bottles, as well as the smart app launched by Suqia, which enables users to learn about its projects and initiatives.

Source: Emirates News Agency

UAE launched 11 environmentally-friendly energy projects worth AED159 billion in 2022: Suhail Al Mazrouei

Suhail bin Mohammed Al Mazrouei, Minister of Energy and Infrastructure, said the UAE has launched 11 environmentally-friendly energy projects worth AED159 billion in 2022.

In an interview with the Emirates News Agency (WAM), Al Mazrouei stated that the UAE’s clean energy production in 2021 totalled 7,035.75 megawatts (MW), underscoring the country’s pioneering efforts in the clean energy sector.

He also highlighted the launch of the UAE Energy Strategy 2050, the first unified energy strategy by the UAE, which aims to integrate the renewable and clean energy mix to achieve a balance between economic needs and climate goals, in addition to reducing dependency on other fuel sources over the next three decades.

He added that the UAE has adopted, in order to ensure the renewable energy sector’s sustainability, the latest innovations that drive the path of sustainable development, noting that the UAE was among the first countries to ratify the Paris Agreement.

He then pointed out that the Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure established the features of the energy sector’s future for the upcoming 50 years, by revising the National Energy Strategy 2050, drafting the National Hydrogen Strategy, and relying on the achievements already accomplished over the past five decades.

Al Mazrouei stressed that clean energy’s contribution to the energy mix in 2021 reached 19.63 percent while the contribution of renewable energy reached 12 percent, and the contribution of peaceful nuclear energy reached 7.55 percent.

The global turmoil in energy supplies has created challenges related to energy security and will, therefore, lead to a focus on using the lowest-priced resources available locally, to meet the country’s energy requirements, with an increase in exports in the non-oil sector from the UAE, he added.

The UAE has considerable potential in the field of solar power, and the low cost of solar power will enhance the country’s energy security and its competitiveness, in addition to playing a key role in achieving carbon neutrality, he noted, affirming that the rise of renewables requires transportation upgrades and investment in storage technologies to reliably meet energy requirements.

With the expected decrease in storage costs and their commercialisation, long-term storage technologies will play a major role in decarbonising the grid in a reliable and affordable way, he further added.

Speaking about the performance of international oil markets in 2023, Al Mazrouei highlighted several related factors that will drive prices in 2023, such as the end China’s zero-COVID policy, the US decision to refill the Strategic Oil Reserve, the sanctions imposed on Russian seaborne oil products, and ongoing global inflation.

He then talked about other factors that may negatively affect prices, including the global recession, China’s decreasing demand for oil, and the resumption of trade between Russia and Europe.

Al Mazrouei stressed that the Barakah Nuclear Power Plant is a leading innovative energy project in the process of energy transition. Once fully operational, its four reactors will offset 22.4 million tonnes of carbon emissions, the main cause of climate change, annually.

The new successes and progress achieved during the process of developing the four Barakah reactors, which is the first multi-station peaceful nuclear energy project in operation in the Arab world, play a key role in reducing the carbon footprint of the UAE’s energy sector, in order to reach climate neutrality by 2050, he added.

He then pointed out that once commercially operational, the third reactor will add another 1,400 MW of carbon-free electricity to the UAE’s electricity grid, which will help achieve the country’s energy security and combat climate change. The successive achievements of the Barakah plant highlight the UAE’s considerable capabilities in drafting and managing major projects.

The UAE is a model of developing mini reactors and a new generation of reactors, and is paving the way for other carbon-free energy sources, including hydrogen, Al Mazrouei affirmed, noting that the country’s hydrogen strategy is based on 10 key pillars and will help it achieve its goal to become one of the top 10 hydrogen producers by 2031.

“Gray hydrogen is currently produced and used in refineries in the range of 0.3 million tonnes per year. However, there are several DEWA/Siemens pilot projects that utilise blue hydrogen-based ammonia exported to Germany and Japan, as there are more than 10 projects underway, with seven being major projects under development while some are undergoing feasibility studies,” he added.

Regarding Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week (ADSW) and its role in supporting the preparations for COP28, Al Mazrouei said that ADSW is supporting the global sustainability efforts and the UAE’s efforts to host COP28.

ADSW is a pioneering platform that underscores the country’s commitment to supporting climate action, and gathers international leaders and sustainability experts, he concluded.

Source: Emirates News Agency

Korea-UAE cooperation will support global energy and smart city markets, says President Yoon Suk Yeol

Korea-UAE cooperation in clean energy will help stabilise global energy market, Yoon Suk Yeol, President of the Republic of Korea, said, adding that both countries together could contribute to global smart market as well.

In statements published by Al Ittihad newspaper, during his current state visit to the UAE, the Korean President detailed on bilateral cooperation in economy, climate action, energy transition, hydrogen and smart farms, in the context of Abu Dhabi Sustainability Week (ASDW), an annual global event for accelerating the world’s sustainable development; and COP 28.

“We will support the success of the UAE’s hosting of COP 28 [the UN Climate Conference to be held in Dubai] at the end of this year and work together in that regard,” he stressed.

He said bilateral talks during his visit focus on four key areas such as nuclear power plants, energy, investment, and defence industry.

Emphasising that infrastructure cooperation in large-scale construction is the driving force behind economic development of Korea and the UAE, President Yoon revealed that “approximately 30 percent of the overseas orders our construction companies received in 2022 were from the Middle East.”

Relations with the UAE and other Gulf countries are crucial for Korea’s energy security with over 50 percent of its oil imports coming from the Gulf, said the President who also detailed about the ongoing talks on Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC).

The Korean President’s statements run as follows:

“I am very pleased that I have finally met with President His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan in person during my visit. I look forward to the two of us building a solid friendship and trust.

My current visit carries a special meaning, in particular because it is the first state visit since the UAE and the Republic of Korea established diplomatic relations in 1980.

Our discussions during the summit focus on how to enhance strategic cooperation in four key areas: nuclear power plants, energy, investment, and defence industry.

Also on the table are ways to elicit forward-looking cooperation across all sectors where our two countries can create synergy, including climate change responses, science and technology, future new industries, and healthcare as well as cultural and people-to-people exchanges. The potential for Korea-UAE cooperation will be substantial, and doors for bilateral cooperation will be left wide open in all available areas.

As I am accompanied by a huge delegation of over 100 Korean business leaders, in addition to key government officials, I am convinced that the scheduled summit will serve as an important opportunity to produce significant results that further advance bilateral relations and to take the relationship between our two countries to a new level.

This year’s COP28 will, for the first time, assess the progress of joint efforts to reach the Paris Agreement Goals by conducting the global stocktake (GST). It will mark a crucial turning point for further strengthening of climate action worldwide.

In particular, the UAE, a leading oil producer, became the first country in the Middle East to declare its carbon neutrality goal and is pursuing a transition to a clean-energy-focused economic and industrial structure. In this regard, it is incredibly symbolic that the UAE is hosting COP28 this year.

The ADSW has been held since 2008 as a venue to gather the wisdom of experts on technology development and international cooperation from around the world for the transition to clean energy. Therefore, the event is expected to be a bridgehead that secures the success of COP28.

Korea and the UAE have maintained a long-standing strategic partnership, and I intend to use my upcoming visit as an opportunity to expand our countries’ friendly cooperation to encompass our efforts to achieve carbon neutrality and strengthen climate action among the world’s nations.

The leap forward in bilateral cooperation that our countries saw with the Barakah Nuclear Power Plant will be expanded to all sectors related to a fair and sustainable clean energy transition, including renewable energy, hydrogen, and carbon capture, utilisation, and storage (CCUS). In doing so, we will jointly enhance the stability of the energy market in both countries and across the globe as well as identify new economic opportunities.

In addition, when the UAE’s experience in constructing and operating Masdar City [one of the world’s most sustainable urban communities] is combined with Korea’s world-class IT, infrastructure building and green technology, our two countries are expected to produce significant achievements in the global smart city market.

Korea and the Gulf nations have experienced many cases of mutually beneficial cooperation centred on energy, construction, and infrastructure.

Korea is one of the world’s top five crude oil importers. With over 50 percent of our imported oil coming from the Gulf, relations with Gulf countries are of enormous importance in terms of our energy security.

Moreover, Korean businesses have made important contributions to the expansion of national infrastructure in the Middle East. Approximately 30 percent of the overseas orders our construction companies received in 2022 were from the Middle East. Infrastructure cooperation, like in large-scale construction, can be seen as the driving force behind our two countries’ economic development.

Recently, Gulf countries have been developing future industries in an active and enterprising manner to prepare for the post-oil era. Given Korea’s world-class technological prowess, the experience and know-how that we accumulated carrying out projects around the Gulf and the common vision we share with Gulf countries, both sides are optimal partners for each other.

Starting with the construction of the Barakah Nuclear Power Plant, the UAE is a key partner in future industries, including space, healthcare and medical services, smart farms, and hydrogen.

Korea and the GCC agreed in 2007 to push for an FTA. The negotiations are currently ongoing with a view to reaching an agreement.

As important partners in terms of economic cooperation, Korea and the GCC have built a long-standing cooperative relationship in such areas as energy and construction. More recently, the scope of our cooperation has expanded to include advanced industries, defence industry, healthcare, agriculture, and culture.

I believe the Korea-GCC FTA, if concluded, will establish a comprehensive legal foundation to support bilateral economic and trade relations, making enormous contributions to not only expanding trade and investment between our two countries but also diversifying the ways in which we cooperate.

Most of all, I hope that the Korea-GCC FTA will become a forward-looking agreement that contributes to our two countries’ joint endeavours of responding to new challenges including climate change, supply chain crises and the digital transition as well as technological and industrial cooperation.

Building upon our existing cooperative relations in nuclear power plant, our two countries have been collaborating across diverse fields including defence industry, agriculture, health and medical services and culture. Looking ahead, we envision to strengthen cooperation notably in space, digital and new industries.

I would like to see this visit help bring economic cooperation between Korea and the UAE to a higher level.

Peace and stability in the Middle East and on the Korean Peninsula are important factors for global peace and prosperity.

The UAE is advancing rapidly under future-oriented leadership and increasing its contribution to regional and international issues. Korea is also pursuing responsible foreign policies commensurate with our changed status under the vision of becoming a global pivotal state.

In this regard, there is great room for Korea and the UAE to expand our cooperation in the region and global community.

The UAE has been actively working as a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council in 2022-23. Korea is also seeking a non-permanent member seat on the UN Security Council in 2024-25, and we will work together more closely on the international stage, including at the United Nations.

Moreover, both sides have considerable room to work together based on a common stance in response to such global challenges as climate change, humanitarian aid and global economic recovery.

We will support the success of the UAE’s hosting of COP 28 at the end of this year and work together in that regard.

Cultural and people-to-people exchanges between Korea and the UAE have provided a solid base for the advancement of Korea-UAE relations. I am pleased that this deepening relationship has helped us close the emotional and cultural distances between our two peoples.

I am especially happy to hear that global K-pop stars are popular with the youth of the UAE, who have joined in the Hallyu wave sweeping across the world and that Emiratis are showing great interest in K-dramas, games, and other content.

Amid the construction boom in the 1970s, the UAE’s Korean community began to form in tandem with construction of the Mussafah Bridge in Abu Dhabi and other infrastructure projects. Today, this harmonious community of professionals from various fields, ranging from scientists, physicians, nurses, and flight attendants to entrepreneurs, contributes to the country’s social and economic growth.

The dedication and exemplary lives of these Koreans have served as the bedrock for mutual trust and respect between Korea and the UAE as well as soil for growing the friendship that exists between our two brotherly countries.

The UAE is home to the only Korean Cultural Centre in the Middle East. The Korean Government will redouble its efforts to ensure that the Centre plays a pivotal role in promoting more cultural exchanges and cooperation as well as people-to-people exchanges.”

Source: Emirates News Agency