Advisory works Full

Certifying ethical products in New Zealand

Shariah Compliant Financing: EFCO

Our goal has always been to certify products that are simple, helpful, and more importantly ethical.

That’s the inspiration behind our first engagement in New Zealand with EFCO Limited. It is the only finance company in the country providing non-interest-based solutions that are also affordable and accessible to individuals and businesses. The asset and debt-based financing products are guided by both ethical rules and principles of Sharia compliance. They have worked hard to capture the niche market of underbanked clients and is now emerging as a mainstream financier with ultra-ethical solutions. We’ve already started to review the credit facility documents, and getting a better understanding of the Consumer Finance Act 2003 of New Zealand while exploring options to construct a Commodity Murabaha process. Making Sharia controls consistent across the products will help the implementation of products more easier, and we hope, even simpler to use.

We hope EFCO’s customers will have the opportunity to experience the new wave of Sharia compliance that is redefining finance in many countries around the world. We couldn’t be more excited to embark on this journey in New Zealand and help supervise products that are not only Sharia compliant but also simple, helpful and ethical.

Thank you for continuing to share this journey with us as we continue to progress towards our goal!

January 12, 2021

Institutional gratitude

Asset Management: Shukr Investments

Promoting a financial system that is fair without the use of usury or interest. Generating double digit annualized returns based on ethical principles. Developing new cycles of charitable growth by giving 50% of performance fees to charity. This is just a few of the big ideas that UAE—based Shukr Investments is aiming to achieve.

Today, we’ve joined forces with Shukr to supervise their flagship strategy, the Shukr Global Equity Fund, which combines Sharia-based investing with ESG principles. Ranked by Bloomberg* in the top 1% of all offshore public equity funds, Shukr attributes its success to being grateful for God’s blessings—which is why the firm donates a significant portion of its fees to charitable causes.

Our objective is to ensure their investments and charitable activities comply with Sharia principles. This includes assembling the scholars for Shukr Investments’ Shariah board, ensuring their public equity investments comply with Sharia principles, overseeing their purification calculations, auditing their activities and approving the charities Shukr donates to.

When creative institutions join socially-conscious Islamic investors, new ideas will be brought to life, and big things will happen!

So, best of luck to Shukr for the years to come!

*as of September 30, 2020

Digitalizing global financial assets

 Permissionless Blockchain: Tezos

This morning, we announced the certification of Tezos, open-source platform for the digitalization of assets. With recession resistant abilities to design smart contracts that allow businesses, fund managers and banks to build Sharia compliant assets – it’s now time to fill you in on what we’ve been working recently, and how we’re tackling the future of decentralized peer-to-peer networks with Sharia compliance.

Enter the Tezos protocol, a blockchain which has the ability to host digital asset class that we hope will move the Islamic industry forward. The protocol’s on-chain governance system, Proof-of-Stake (PoS) consensus algorithm, and ability to facilitate formal verification of smart contracts, makes Tezos an ideal long-term solution for high-value financial applications such as digital securities. We’ve previewed and certified all features related to the protocol so as to ensure the platform is compliant to Sharia principles.

From our earliest days of advisory, our aim has always been to build and support innovative asset classes for everyone, applying unique Sharia insights to help clients tackle big problems. That’s just as relevant in today’s decentralized digital world. We believe by providing platforms like Tezos open-ended Sharia consultation, they can innovate, and reach companies around the world and put the power of Sharia compliance in their hands—no matter what investment objectives they have, where they are based or who they are.

So here’s to the Tezos digital asset class revolution. We can’t wait to see what comes next!

*as of September 11, 2020

Driving the future of employees income management

Fintech: FlexxPay

The future of employee engagement may well lie in managing the financial wellness of employees. The ability to integrate technology with smart income concepts that gives employees a degree of flexibility in receiving their earned salaries and commissions whenever needed will help companies increase productivity, boost retention, and remove workload from human resources teams.

That’s why today, we’re unveiling our latest Sharia advisory engagement—one that gives voice to the pay frequency problem and offers access to income that has already been earned, anytime, instantly. It’s called FlexxPay. With an instant and dynamic income payment platform, this cloud-based solution models around assisting your company’s biggest asset … your employees! To help them attain Sharia compliance we started our review process with the entry point of the SaaS terms and facilities management for both companies and employees. Other factors for certification included banking facility image, advance payment terms, re-imbursement policies, and transfer fees. With an entrepreneurial spirit we now look forward to auditing FlexxPay to ensure the financial security at the heart of this technology remains Sharia compliant.

We hope our engagement with FlexxPay helps capture new income programs focused on uplifting the future of employees!

*as of July 28, 2020

Experience the new era of robo-advisory

Robo-advisory: Wahed Invest

Since the dawn of robo-advisory, only a few thousand people have experienced Sharia compliant low-cost equity investments firsthand. But there have been moments that captured the investor’s imagination and challenged the high fee-bound perspective. Of the many endeavors that made headlines, one of the most prolific firms has been Wahed Invest, with its Head Quarters in New York.

Wahed has been successful in creating a reliable, transparent, and most importantly, accessible retail instrument of all time. The data they collect has deepened understanding of Sharia compliant investment universe—from the edge of Brazil to the border of Australia—and the accessibility provided has brought the startling experience of low-cost equities to Islamic retail investors around the world. Today, on the 5th anniversary of Wahed’s launch, they’ve teamed up with us to manage their Sharia compliance like never before. We’ve been assigned to supervise their client investment agreements, equity universe, ETF’s, Islamic index funds, and virtual advisory terms.

As we enter a new era of low-cost Halal investments —we hope Wahed’s efforts and our Sharia supervisory role demonstrates the remarkable progress robo-advisory is making toward unlocking opportunities for retail investors, and how much farther we can go together.

Now that you’re better informed on how Wahed can help unlock new opportunities, get out there and experience the new dawn of low-cost investments yourself!

*as of January 09, 2020

Trading digital assets in a faster, simpler, and easier way

Digital Assets: CoinMENA

Whether it’s buying digital assets, exchanging fiat classes with cryptos, or trading tokens, the CoinMENA team has been mastering this process to help you buy, sell and hold digital assets in a faster and simpler way.

CoinMENA helps you trade digital assets using local currency through specialized apps and systems. Some functions such as overlay withdrawals, for both fiat and digital currencies, are manually processed for compliance while suspicious activities are halted and flagged to the regulatory body. Today they’ve taken the next step by getting their assets and trading services certified by us in light of Sharia principles. We are thrilled to have studied their systems and trading methodology to help them attain Sharia compliance. For us, the most significant aspect of their platform isn’t just an “expert” system built with hand-crafted rules; instead it uses advance digital techniques to make the brokerage and custodian facility easier for the end-user.

So, whether you’re experimenting, professionally trading, or arbitrating digital tokens, CoinMENA can help make your experience faster, simpler, and easier.

*as of December 31, 2019

Dawn of the New Blockchain Ecosystem

Permissionless Blockchain: Algorand

Algorand is a ground breaking blockchain with the power to settle transactions in a few seconds…one that is publicly available for anyone to audit, use, and build their transactions upon.

Today, they are celebrating our certification of their Dutch auctioning mechanism and consensus algorithm. Our approval will allow entrepreneurs, small businesses and large banks seeking applications that are compliant with Sharia finance guidelines to celebrate the platform together by developing new products across this canvas. But the celebration doesn’t end there. While the platform processes its algorithmic smart-contracts on who owns which digital assets in a faster, cheaper and easier way. What truly sets Algorand apart is its ability to allow individuals to create, build and grow new ecosystems based on ownership records made public by the blockchain. Simply put, you can create your own applications that are compliant with Sharia finance guidelines side-by-side with others from around the world in this permissionless blockchain.

We want to inspire a new generation of individuals and institutions around the world to think and design investment solutions in a manner that is compliant with Sharia finance guidelines to help unlock new business opportunities that did not exist before. We’re excited to be able to extend the celebration and give you a new way to share your ideas.

The best way to experience this canvas is to discover it for yourself.

Hope to see you at Algorand!

*A blockchain is permissionless if anyone is able to join. Algorand is a permissionless blockchain that requires minimal computational power to join. All users who possess Algos, and are online, are automatically eligible to participate in block consensus.  A blockchain is permissioned if joining and participating requires proper authorization.
*as of September 04, 2019

Building the next horizon of P2P asset class

P2P Financing: Raqamyah

The growth of sustainable P2P financing has brought this crowd-funding technology at the core of a financial revolution. Not surprisingly, these platforms have fast become a source of highly attractive long-term revenues. It’s with this in mind that Raqamyah is helping Islamic funders capture this opportunity in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

Here’s what they are planning to do.

They’re securing the financial technology that can help bring funding solutions to SMEs directly from funders. The platform will act as an intermediary providing an online marketplace to the Peer to Peer participants looking for sustainable funding criteria. By managing rich specialized SME assets with large-scale opportunities via its algorithmic based credit assessment and risk profiling techniques, Raqamyah is seeking to help both parties at the end of the capital spectrum create an ambient experience. Progress in all areas of development is accelerating, and we are at a seminal moment of certifying this inspiring platform.

Today, more and more institutions and governments are realizing the value of P2P asset classes. The opportunities are even greater when we harness the powers of Commodity Murabaha to make them available to the broader community of Sharia compliant funders. Imagine what we could do if we work together and use this asset class to expand cost-effective FinTech solutions to SME’s worldwide!

Soon, the spin-off effects will appear on the horizon, and we hope to bring this revolution to more funding’s around the world!

*as of Aug 25, 2019

Shaping the future of Oil Markets

Investment in Oil fields: PermianChain

Tokenizing oil reserves is well positioned for shaping the future of investments. Today, blockchain applications not only allow the transfer of price for physical reserves as digital rights with investment grade value. But the crypto-economic model can also give us a chance to help preserve our world’s undeveloped oil by monetizing its supply.

In an exciting new project certified by us today, we’ve partnered with PermainChain to bring you a Sharia compliant crypto asset-class, the Permian Token — backed by the price of proven oil reserves around the world. Our Sharia advisory work became a means of expression and activism against the “front-end fee” structure which plagues the world of oil investments. We see the ability to directly crowdfund equity solutions for oil exploration & production companies and help them meet working capital requirements using blockchain as a wealth preservation opportunity for Islamic investors. The project is also designed to reduce the broker-fee culture, fraud, error, and otherwise compromised transactions.

Permian Token is a chance to break out from the traditional way of investing in oilfields and redesigning the model for the future – and the U.S. oil market will be its first gateway with plans underway for full-scale global expansion.

We can’t predict the kinds of opportunities such Tokenization projects might showcase few years from now, but we do know the contribution of Permian Token will unlock a wealth of potential for investors in the oil market of the future!

*as of Feb 20, 2019

Scaling up trading opportunities in cryptocurrencies

Cryptocurrency Exchange: Rain

Financial assets big and small, simple and complex, equitable and debt-inducing, have all started out as ideas. With the introduction of assets like cryptocurrencies, businesses are seeking regulated enterprises as a critical step towards customer engagement. Downloading unregulated apps sometimes means sourcing the buy, sell and store of your digital currencies from multiple locations—not all of them trusted. But a digital exchange regulated by a central authority can change the game!

RAIN – the first digital exchange of its kind in GCC – has built a crypto-trading platform that makes it easier for customers to buy, sell and trade Bitcoin along with other digital assets. To win global support for its ownership, security and trust they’ve got themselves regulated by the Central Bank of Bahrain; with further follow-ups to regional jurisdiction compliances. That’s why we’re thrilled to be working with them as their Sharia Advisor. By combining RAIN’s mobility, brokerage and custodian tools with our supervisory assurance, we’re creating one place to trade, save and manage your financial digital assets – in a Sharia compliant way!

Working with RAIN, our goal is to help individuals, enterprises and family offices easily trade on a regulated and Sharia compliant crypto-exchange and streamline the purchase, entitlement and sale of these assets. We hope this collaboration simplifies crypto-management for you and helps unlock additional financial value.

Ready to kick things off? You can jump right over to RAIN’s app and start trading financial assets for yourself.

*as of Jan 30, 2019

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