Tech giants choose Saudi Arabia as their regional base

Saudi Arabia continues its successes, becoming a regional technology hub. Recently, 12 of the world’s tech giants announced their plans to open regional headquarters in Riyadh.

Adviser at the Royal Court and Chairman of the Entertainment Authority Turki Al-Sheikh has revealed that Apple, Google, Microsoft, Amazon, IBM, Oracle, Alibaba, ONEMT, Trend micro, DJI, and Offensive Security chose Saudi Arabia as the home for their regional headquarters.

This comes in line with the vision of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, which brought in several multibillion-dollar projects to put Saudi Arabia on the map for innovation, tech and youth-driven initiatives.

Recently, a Saudi-Chinese joint venture was unveiled, the eWTP Arabia Capital Fund which aims to boost emerging technology companies in Saudi Arabia. It was established with a capital estimated at SAR 1.5 billion.

The joint venture comes in partnership between the Saudi Public Investment Fund and Alibaba-led eWTP, with the support of the Saudi Federation for Cybersecurity, Programming and Drones.

It aims to contribute to the development of a solid economic base for technology-led business in Saudi Arabia.

Riyadh: MENA’s Tech Capital

Alibaba Cloud, a subsidiary of the Technology giant Alibaba Group Holding picked the Saudi capital Riyadh to become its regional training centre. The company will cooperate with local partners in Saudi Arabia and the region to build and develop technical capabilities in line with the Saudi Vision 2030.

This will be done in cooperation with academies, training and innovation centres over the next five years.

Apple Developer Academy has announced a strategic training program for programming across all of Apple’s platforms. Students are taught how to write and manage iOS, macOS, tvOS, and watchOS apps, and are all taught under a curriculum created by Apple.

The academy is established in partnership with the Saudi Federation for Cybersecurity, Programming, and Drones alongside the Tuwaiq Academy and the Princess Nourah Bint Abdulrahaman Unversity.

Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Education, Hamad Al-Sheikh, called Apple’s expansion of the academy into the country a “key centre for training programmers and technology developers.”

One of the academy’s key aims will be women’s empowerment in the technology space and part of Saudi Vision 2030, which aims to diversify the economy beyond reliance on oil.

The chairman of the Saudi Federation for Cybersecurity, Programming, and Drones Faisal Al-Khamisi, says he hopes that the new partnership will create more opportunities for the Saudi workforce, and the local community.

Al-Khamisi noted the most important successes of the era through programming and technical knowledge and announced that the opening of more than 10 giant technology companies, academies or training programs within the Kingdom.

This reflects the growing confidence in Saudi capabilities, its digital economy and its young competencies, which enhances its competitiveness.

Saudi Minister of Communications and Information Technology Engineer Abdullah bin Amer Al-Swaha has also indicated that the Kingdom will launch executive programs specialized in the digital economy, space and innovation.

Haytham Alohali, Vice Minister of Communications and Information Technology said that Saudi Arabia supports all technology projects that will help to build a better future, and achieving the Saudi Vision 2030. 

Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia has also announced that it will host the global “Leap” conference next year, the world’s biggest technological event and the first of its kind in the region. It also announced that it will host the RiseUp Summit in Riyadh, the biggest of its kind in the Middle East and North Africa for entrepreneurs and start-ups.

Moreover, Saudi Arabia revealed the details of the biggest global conference @Hack in the field of cybersecurity will also continue to be announced within the activities of the Riyadh season, in partnership between the General Entertainment Authority and the Saudi Federation for Cybersecurity, Programming and Drones, with Informatech and Black Hat. 

The conference will tackle cyber threats around the world by hosting security experts for information security training while hosting the biggest challenge of its kind in the Middle East and North Africa region.

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