Press Release

Gender Equality Is Getting a New Sporting Chance

DUBAI // As nations across the globe anticipate this winter’s FIFA World Cup 2022 in Qatar, supporters of women’s national football teams have one eye trained on next summer’s FIFA Women’s World Cup – especially following the enormous success of the UEFA Women’s European Championships earlier this year.

Women sporting stars are proving they are every bit as competitive – not to mention popular – as men and are levelling the playing field for gender diversity.

Sport has long been recognised as having the power to change lives and drive gender equality by teaching teamwork, self-reliance, resilience, and confidence across gender divides. Indeed, UN Women – the United Nations’ entity for gender equality and female empowerment – has launched a ‘Sport for Generation Equality’ initiative In order to accelerate efforts to promote women’s leadership and equality, close the gap in investment in women’s sports and promote equal economic opportunities, and bias-free media representation, while providing equal opportunities in sport and physical education.

Heeding the call is Saxo, the Danish investment firm specialising in online trading and investment, which has been sponsoring an initiative held by Dubai Hurricanes Rugby Club over the 2021 – 2022 season.  They are the title sponsor of the Arabian Gulf’s first Women and Girls Sports Festival, the Saxo Bank 7s. Held over the weekend of October 21-22 at the Dubai 7s Stadium and featuring an exciting mix of netball, rugby, and rounders competitions, the event’s reach will be helped by live streams of ladies and U18s netball matches directly onto the tournament website,

“The Saxo Bank 7s puts us firmly in the forefront in promoting and providing a platform for young women in the sporting arena,” said Damian Hitchen, CEO of Saxo Bank MENA. “It underlines Saxo’s commitment to female empowerment and to supporting female inclusion in traditionally male-dominated career paths, such as banking.”

Aside from aiding the promotion of gender diversity, the growing success of women’s sporting endeavours could alter the very nature of participation, with pundits globally citing better on-field and off-field conduct during this year’s Euros compared to recent men’s competitions. It is an aspect not lost on Saxo.

“We want to help grow participation of women and girls in team sports, thereby inspiring a new generation of sporting stars who will, we believe, improve standards at all levels of the game,” Hitchen added. “Our sponsorship strategy reflects the bank’s focus on emerging markets and our commitment to sport’s core values of respect, integrity, teamwork, and fair play.”

About Saxo Bank Middle East

Founded in 1992, Saxo Bank was one of the first financial institutions to develop an online trading platform that provided private investors with the same tools and market access as professional traders, large institutions, and fund managers. It was also the first Scandinavian bank to establish a presence in the GCC when it launched a regional office in the Dubai International Financial Centre in May 2009. It opened an office in Abu Dhabi in 2014 and quickly saw its MENA region revenues triple.

Headquartered in Copenhagen, Saxo combines an agile fintech mindset with close to 30 years of experience and a track record in global capital markets to deliver a state-of-the-art experience to clients. The Saxo Bank Group holds four banking licenses and is well regulated globally, including by the Central Bank of the UAE. Saxo’s client assets worldwide total more than €75 billion and the company employs more than 2,000 financial and technology professionals in financial centres around the world including London, Singapore, Amsterdam, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Paris, Zurich, Tokyo, as well as Dubai and Abu Dhabi.

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