NMC reveals three-tier system for influencer licences

The UAE’s National Media Council (NMC) has announced a three-tier system for its influencer-licensing law that took effect on June 1. Vamp, a joint venture with Campaign’s parent company, Motivate Media Group, will be the first Official Influencer Agency allowed to cover influencers exclusively registered with the platform.

His Excellency Dr Rashed Khalfan Alnuaimi, Executive Director of Support Services at the National Media Council, who visited the Motivate offices today to meet with the Motivate-Vamp team, said: “It is primarily our intention to carefully regulate digital media and ensure that the best standards are provided which adhere to our established criteria.”

In the UAE, Motivate-Vamp has more than 400 influencers on its platform, all of whom are eligible to operate under the new agency licence.

The NMC had previously announced that all influencers who use their social media channels to promote and/or sell products would need to register for a licence, at a cost of AED 15,000, or risk a fine of AED 5,000.

It then became apparent that influencers would also need to register for a separate trade licence.

Today, though, the NMC has introduced two more tiers, offering influencers a total of three categories of licence.

Category 1 is an Individual Licence, for independent influencers. It will cost AED 15,000 and will require influencers to have a separate trade licence as well.

Category 2 is a Partnership Licence for small groups – typically of friends or family – who come together to set up a company to act as influencers. Again, the company will need to be registered and hold a trade licence. The fee will be AED 15,000.

Category 3 is for Official Influencer Agencies, certified by the NMC such as Motivate-Vamp. The agency will hold a licence which covers all influencers as long as they are exclusively registered with that single company.

“This is a significant step forward and an enlightened policy from the NMC recognising that all influencers do not fall in to the same category,” said Motivate’s managing partner, Ian Fairservice.

“In particular, it distinguishes between macro-influencers, particularly those working alone, and micro-influencers, such as the more than 400 currently aligned with Motivate-Vamp, offering clients an opportunity to tailor and monitor highly bespoke social media campaigns.”

Vamp is an influencer marketing platform formed in Australia in 2015. In March this year it partnered with Motivate Media Group. The venture, which encompasses the Middle East and North Africa region, creates a significant opportunity for Motivate to build on its extensive digital and social media audience.