Startup of the Week: SPiN: Cycling one’s way to better health and lifestyle

Updated 03 December 2019

Startup of the Week: SPiN: Cycling one’s way to better health and lifestyle

  • SPiN was established in early 2019 by a 25-year-old Saudi business consultant Manie Al-Khaldi

SPiN is a startup company that offers public services through a rental bicycle shop. It aims to make cycling accessible and available. 

SPiN was established in early 2019 by a 25-year-old Saudi business consultant Manie Al-Khaldi. 

During his studies in San Francisco in 2013, he bought his first US-made hybrid bicycle, and since then his passion for cycling has only grown. 

Upon his return to the Kingdom, Al-Khaldi found likeminded people up for new adventures. “I found a lot of them. However, it was an individual effort, and it needed a form of institutional work.

“The initiative of getting people engaged in such an activity for a better and healthier lifestyle came to my mind, by offering bikes at all times to the community,” he told Arab News 

The Diplomatic Quarter in Riyadh was chosen as SPiN’s prime location, based on two main factors: Safety and population. 

 “Because safety always comes first, we studied multiple locations in the city of Riyadh, such as Hanifa Valley, Riyadh Front, Ammariyah, and the Diplomatic Quarter. We found the latter to be the best in terms of the infrastructure, attractive parks and landscape, fabulous views and, most importantly, relatively low car speeds,” Al-Khaldi said.

SPiN is creating a strategic partnership, as they are still in discussions with governmental entities such as the General Sport Authority (GSA) and General Entertainment Authority.

It is a people-based initiative and has surveyed hundreds of people from different genders and backgrounds regarding bicycles.

 “Our survey includes multiple-choice questions, including the subject’s desired cycling destinations. About 49 percent chose the Diplomatic Quarter as a prime location due to its high security and great safety standards,” Al-Khaldi explained.

 “We believe that the area will be the gateway for living the Saudi dream. We will make it a benchmark for other cities,” he added

SPiN’s objectives are aligned with Saudi Vision 2030 and its pillars. “We are looking forward to being one of the contributors to realizing it. Our objectives at SPiN are to promote a healthier lifestyle, diversify sports, and increase social engagement.”

As well as this, SPiN also aims to build on the twin pillars of economic solvency and national prestige. “We are projected to break even in the first 6 months of our launch. An ambitious nation is the third pillar (of Saudi Vision 2030), and we will contribute to it by hiring a local talented team,” Al-Khaldi said.

Quoting the president of the GSA, Prince Abdul Aziz bin Turki Al-Faisal, he added: “The most practiced sports in the Kingdom are walking, jogging, and cycling. At SPiN, we hope to provide the best service for one of the most practiced sports.”

 SPiN is working to launch its first location before the end of 2019, or by the start of 2020. It launched an Instagram account (@SPiN.sa) as an initial move to engage more with the Kingdom’s cycling community.

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Pilgrims perform last stoning ritual as socially distanced Hajj comes to a close

Updated 03 August 2020

Pilgrims perform last stoning ritual as socially distanced Hajj comes to a close

  • Pilgrims entered the Grand Mosque via designated doors and were required to follow marked paths to keep a safe distance between each other
  • Saudi authorities implemented strict precautions this year to ensure a safe Hajj season amid the coronavirus pandemic

JEDDAH: Pilgrims safely performed the last stoning ritual on Jamarat Bridge in Mina on Sunday before moving back to Makkah’s Grand Mosque to complete their Hajj with the last circumambulation of the Kaaba known as “Farewell Tawaf.”

The ritual is complete when worshippers walk seven times around the Kaaba, marking the end of the Hajj season.

Pilgrims entered the Grand Mosque via designated doors and were required to follow marked paths to keep a safe distance between each other.

Muslim pilgrims, clad in face masks due to the coronavirus pandemic, pray after throwing pebbles as part of Al-A'qabah at the Jamarat Bridge during the Hajj pilgrimage in Mina, near Makkah on Aug. 1, 2020. (AFP)

Meanwhile, the ministry confirmed that there have been no reports of coronavirus infections among pilgrims at the holy sites of Hajj on the fifth day of the pilgrimage.

Deputy Minister of Hajj and Umrah Dr. Abdulfattah bin Sulaiman Mashat said that after the Hajj rituals were over, the pilgrims would undergo a medical examination.

FASTFACT

279K

The total number of coronavirus cases in KSA reached 278,835.

Pilgrims underwent seven days of home isolation before they began their Hajj journey, and will again be under home isolation after Hajj is complete.

Saudi authorities implemented strict precautions this year to ensure a safe Hajj season. “There was a detailed plan for each step pilgrims take; the main focus was how to effectively apply medical precautions and preventive measures,” Mashat said.

“By taking all these preventive measures and great efforts, the Kingdom sends the message that human health is its top priority,” he said.

FASTFACT

240K

The total number of recoveries in the Kingdom reached 240,081

Bashir Fadlallah Al-Faeq, who is from the Central African Republic, expressed his gratitude at being able to participate in this year’s exceptional Hajj season. “I feel safe and confident with the amazing and wonderful preventive measures taken by the authorities to limit the spread of the pandemic.”

A handout picture provided by Saudi Press Agency (SPA), on July 31, 2020, shows Muslim pilgrims throwing pebbles as part of Al-A'qabah (stoning of the devil ritual) at the Jamarat Bridge during the Hajj pilgrimage in Mina, near Makkah on July 31, 2020. (AFP)

The Saudi Public Security confirmed that no one was able to enter the holy sites without permission, noting that more than 2,000 violators who attempted to infiltrate these areas were caught and legal action was taken against them.

Prince Abdul Aziz bin Saud bin Naif, minister of interior and chairman of the Hajj Supreme Committee, held a virtual meeting with the leaders of the security sectors on Sunday. He conveyed the greetings of King Salman and the crown prince to the security men and leaders of the security sectors participating in the Hajj mission this year, on the occasion of Eid Al-Adha.