New Murabba to bring Riyadh’s visionary downtown to life

The MoU to create New Murabba — the world’s largest, modern downtown — was signed by NMDC CEO Michael Dyke and TDF CEO Qusai bin Abdullah Al-Fakhri.
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Updated 03 March 2024
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New Murabba to bring Riyadh’s visionary downtown to life

New Murabba Development Company has signed an MoU with the Tourism Development Fund to spearhead the transformation of Riyadh. The agreement will see the two entities work closely together to create New Murabba: the world’s largest, modern downtown, serving as a model for future urban development and contributing toward Riyadh city’s evolution, in line with Vision 2030.

NMDC’s strategic partnership with TFD aims to fulfill Saudi Arabia’s potential as a leading investment destination — a go-to tourism and hospitality hotspot distinguished by a thriving tech ecosystem, an enabling business environment and a diverse and welcoming society.

The MoU was signed by NMDC CEO Michael Dyke and TDF CEO Qusai bin Abdullah Al-Fakhri. As part of the agreement, TDF will provide direct financing opportunities — in collaboration with its network of partners and contracted investors.

Al-Fakhri said: “We are pleased to have partnered with the New Murabba Development Company to bring this bold undertaking to life, an innovative undertaking that will enhance Riyadh’s status on the global stage as one of the commercial and financial capitals of the world. This is a future-focused partnership that extends our efforts to work in a fully aligned manner with the private sector to create a greater, more prosperous Saudi Arabia.”

He added: “In line with Vision 2030 and the National Tourism Strategy, our agreement with New Murabba Development Company marks the beginning of an exciting new chapter for Riyadh, one that adds to the richness of the Kingdom’s inspiring story of transformation. Together, we aim to create a modern downtown in the Saudi capital that provides even greater access to exceptional living, working and entertainment experiences. Representing the very best of Saudi excellence, we believe New Murabba will attract tourists — as well as investors — to the Kingdom, and improve citizens’ and residents’ quality of life.”

NMDC CEO Dyke said: “New Murabba will be a gateway to the future. We are confident that our partnership with TDF will enable us to play a transformative role in diversifying sources of income for the Saudi economy, aligning seamlessly with the objectives of Vision 2030. Together, we will create groundbreaking opportunities that will elevate the Saudi tourism landscape and drive New Murabba to the forefront of global innovation.”

He added: “Reflecting our commitment to the community and the environment, New Murabba has been designed in accordance with internationally established best practices and sustainability standards, incorporating green spaces, providing an extensive network of walking paths and promoting healthy living. Our goal is to make New Murabba a truly exceptional place to live, work, play, and visit. We will offer convenient access to a wide range of amenities and experiences that will enhance the lives of residents and visitors, fostering a sense of security and well-being. Accessibility is also a top priority for us, with New Murabba being just 20 minutes away from King Khalid International Airport by car. The Mukaab — a new architectural wonder — will, of course, serve as the centerpiece of New Murabba, redefining Riyadh’s skyline from the outside, while presenting a truly jaw-dropping experience within the inside.”

Established in 2022, NMDC is wholly owned by the Public Investment Fund, with its board of directors being chaired by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.


WakeCap and OpenSpace partner to transform Saudi construction

Updated 23 April 2024
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WakeCap and OpenSpace partner to transform Saudi construction

In a landmark move set to transform the construction landscape of Saudi Arabia, WakeCap, a Saudi-based provider of smart solutions for construction project management, and OpenSpace, a US-based leader in reality capture and AI-powered analytics, announced a strategic partnership aimed at making cutting-edge global technology easily accessible to the local market.

WakeCap provides real-time insights into worker activity and equipment usage through its smart hard hat solution. These data are designed to help project owners make informed decisions to enhance site safety, streamline workflows, and optimize project execution.

OpenSpace, an AI construction tech company, helps commercial builders operate more efficiently and with less risk.

This strategic partnership between WakeCap and OpenSpace is set to revolutionize the Saudi construction sector. By providing direct, local access to world-class technologies, it creates a centralized hub for all construction technology needs, enhancing operational efficiency across the board. The partnership between the two solutions further aims to provide more transparency on Saudi construction projects and to enable better decision-making and project management. This collaboration also addresses the challenge of talent scarcity, by allowing for more efficient resource utilization. Remote progress monitoring and tracking capabilities further reduce the need for frequent site visits, fostering smarter work practices that align with the demands of today’s fast-paced construction environment.

Dr. Hassan Albalawi, CEO and co-founder of WakeCap, said: “At WakeCap, we are deeply committed to setting the industry standard for data-powered site visibility, and our partnership with OpenSpace is a testament to this. Together, we are poised to propel the Saudi construction industry into a new era of transformation, marked by greater transparency, efficiency, and reliance on cutting-edge technology. This collaboration is more than a partnership — it’s also a pledge to empower Saudi companies with the necessary tools to thrive in a competitive market. By combining our expertise, we offer local access to global technological advancements, simplifying procurement, and ensuring these innovations are tailored to meet local requirements.”

Sam Badrah, director of sales, Middle East and emerging at OpenSpace, said: “We are excited to officially announce our partnership with WakeCap to help accelerate digital transformation in the construction sector across Saudi Arabia. Together, we can challenge the status quo in the region to help companies build smarter.”


Honor leverages power of AI for next-level smartphone experience

Updated 23 April 2024
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Honor leverages power of AI for next-level smartphone experience

Honor is pioneering the future of smartphone user experience through cutting-edge AI integration into its flagship models. The company’s latest, Magic6 Pro, serves as a testament to Honor’s AI-driven innovation, with various industry-first applications of this revolutionary new technology.

The very concept of how consumers interact with their smartphones is rapidly evolving, with more nuanced and meaningful interactions becoming the norm. Recognizing the transformative power of AI, Honor has taken great strides to integrate this technology into its smartphone ecosystem, delivering a visionary user experience in the global markets, including the Middle East and Africa.

Honor’s vision to revolutionize AI in smartphones is no easy feat, yet the company has already made significant steps in this field, and continues to explore and test new limits with each new product lifecycle. Honor attributes this rapid evolution by adopting a four-layer AI strategy, with each layer designed to maximize the potential of AI in smartphones. Through this strategy, Honor aims to unify different devices under a single AI-powered ecosystem, thus enabling seamless connectivity and resource allocation no matter what device is being used. By reimagining the smartphone operating system with the introduction of MagicOS 8.0, Honor aims to create a more intuitive system that is tailored to individual preferences and use, so that every device experience is unique to its user.

With extraordinary advancements in photography capabilities, display quality, performance, and user experience, the Honor Magic6 Pro again sets a new industry benchmark and delivers an unparalleled flagship smartphone experience.

The Magic6 Pro’s upgraded AI Falcon camera system is now backed by powerful AI algorithms, which help users to capture photographs with intricate details. Compared to the Magic5 Pro, the Magic6 Pro brings with it several new innovations to the AI Motion Sensing algorithm, pioneered by refinements from Honor’s R&D team. While the previous version of this tech relied on only 270,000 images to train for detecting actions such as jumping, walking, and running, the upgraded version uses a dataset of nearly 8 million images across 10 different scenarios, resulting in much smarter AI capabilities.

To help improve user sleep patterns, the phone’s Circadian Night Display leverages AI to adapt to each user’s nighttime usage and adjust color temperature accordingly.

By far the greatest example of AI innovation comes from the Magic6 Pro’s MagicOS 8.0, which harnesses AI in a multitude of unique ways. Magic Portal for example, utilizes AI to understand and comprehend user messages and behaviors, and recommend a system app accordingly. A simple drag of a message from a chat can lead to directions for a nearby coffee shop, or quickly add a future meeting to your calendar. For privacy and security, the AI Privacy Call 3.0 feature helps to minimize sound leakage by leveraging the power of AI and directional sound technology, so that phone calls can be made without worrying about the call being heard by people around you, especially in an elevator or car.

Honor Magic6 Pro is available for purchase in Black and Epi Green for SR3,999 ($1,066). Upon purchase, consumers will get free gifts worth SR2,158 including Honor Watch GS 3, Honor Care+ and more. Consumers can get the Magic6 Pro through the Honor Experience Store, Honor’s online store, Jarir Bookstore, eXtra, stc, Zain, LuLu, Amazon, Noon and other stores.


King’s College Hospital London names CEO for Jeddah facility

Claire Smith, CEO of King’s College Hospital London - Jeddah
Updated 23 April 2024
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King’s College Hospital London names CEO for Jeddah facility

King’s College Hospital London announced the appointment of Claire Smith as the new chief executive of the hospital’s new facility in Jeddah, making her the first female British CEO in Saudi Arabia.

Prior to King’s College Hospital London, Smith served as CEO for HCA Healthcare UK, Joint Ventures, a private company in the UK. However, her journey began as a nurse, and her dedication and devotion to the sector propelled her to climb the ranks.

With more than 30 years of experience, Smith brings a wealth of knowledge in clinical, operational, and administrative areas in addition to her deep passion for serving the community, making her a perfect fit to uphold the hospital’s core values and visionary model of integrated care.

Smith’s mission extends beyond healthcare; she believes in connecting with patients on a human level, ensuring that their feedback shapes the hospital’s services around their actual needs.

When asked about her vision for Jeddah, she said: “Fundamentally, healthcare is always about serving the community in which we operate. It’s wonderful to come to Jeddah and work with so many people from Saudi Arabia and from around the world. The aspiration is to ensure that we serve our community and deliver exceptional healthcare.”

Under Smith’s leadership, King’s Jeddah is poised to introduce the best of international healthcare standards to the region, driven by a commitment to excellence, innovation, and person-centered treatment.


Riyadh to host inaugural SaudiFood Manufacturing show

Updated 22 April 2024
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Riyadh to host inaugural SaudiFood Manufacturing show

The inaugural edition of SaudiFood Manufacturing, the first dedicated F&B manufacturing event in the Kingdom spanning processing, packaging and ingredients, will be the launchpad for the industry to take its place at the heart of Saudi Arabia’s economic transformation. Following the highly successful launch of The Saudi Food Show, the largest food event in the Kingdom, organizers KAOUN International and dmg events, recently unveiled highlights of the much-anticipated SaudiFood Manufacturing event, taking place at Riyadh Front from April 30-May 2, under the patronage of Minister of Industry and Mineral Resources Bandar bin Ibrahim Al-Khorayef.

Underpinning the fast-growing F&B market in Saudi Arabia — currently worth around $60 billion and growing at four percent per year, the Saudi F&B manufacturing industry is on the cusp of a step change in its growth and importance within the nation’s economy.

Trixie LohMirmand, CEO of KAOUN International, said: “The launch of SaudiFood Manufacturing coincides with a pivotal moment in the F&B manufacturing industry, both in Saudi Arabia and globally. To achieve the ambitious goals of Vision 2030, the Saudi government is focusing on diversifying the nation’s industrial base, while enhancing the security and resilience of food systems, encouraging investments in F&B manufacturing to establish the Kingdom as a prominent global F&B hub. Concurrently, rapid technological advancements are revolutionizing the industry by enhancing efficiency, quality, and safety while reducing costs.

“The inaugural edition of SaudiFood Manufacturing will provide participants with valuable insights into these market dynamics, showcasing how leading global players are addressing them and how businesses can effectively leverage these trends.”

One of the key forces driving Saudi Arabia’s industrial transformation, and creating an attractive environment for inward investment and innovation, is the Saudi Authority for Industrial Cities and Technology Zones, known as MODON — the strategic partner for the launch edition.

Ali Alomeir, VP of business development at MODON, said: “After the success of the first edition of The Saudi Food Show last year, the first edition of the SaudiFood Manufacturing Show 2024 also comes with a strategic partnership with MODON, reflecting MODON’s pivotal role in achieving the goals of the National Strategy for Industry, and Saudi Vision 2030, to achieve food security and effectively contribute to diversifying the national economy.”

For professionals in F&B manufacturing, spanning processing, packaging, ingredients, supply chain solutions, and control and automation, the SaudiFood Manufacturing Show offers a strategic platform abundant with opportunities to discover tailored solutions for their businesses.

The SaudiFood Manufacturing exhibition will convene more than 400 global brands from 35 countries for the first time in the Kingdom, including industry powerhouses AMC, Anasia, Apical, Brenntag, Buhler Chemco FSL, CGS, Clextral, Cybernetik Technologies, IFFCO, Kanoo Machinery, Multivac, Novonesis, Senovia and many others.

“Saudi Arabia’s food market is a growing arena full of opportunities for innovation and fruitful collaboration. Al-Azzaz, now being Brenntag BSP Nutrition, is attending the inaugural SaudiFood Manufacturing exhibition in Riyadh with a deep commitment to developing solid relationships. Cementing our dedication to driving innovation and growth within Saudi Arabia’s food sector, we are pleased to announce our investment and upcoming launch of Brenntag’s new Innovation and Application Center, which will open in Riyadh in 2024. This center will serve as a lighthouse of innovation, highlighting Brenntag Specialties’ investment and unwavering belief in how important it is for us to be close to our customers,” said Brenntag Nutrition-EMEA President Frank Haven.

Under the theme “Building the Food Manufacturing Ecosystem of the Future,” more than 50 international experts, thought-leaders, and policymakers are already confirmed to speak at the first Food Forward Summit — many of them for the first time in Saudi Arabia. 

These include: Dr. Flavia Fayet-Moore, space nutritionist and CEO of FOODiQ; Ross Dawson, global leading futurist, entrepreneur and bestselling author; Bugge Holm Hansen, senior futurist and head of innovation and technology, Copenhagen Institute for Futures Studies; George Peppou, founder and CEO of Vow; Richard Dillon, CEO of Ivy Farms Technologies; Luke Tay, founder of Cornucopia FutureScapes; Dr. Ahmed El-Sohemy, professor, University of Toronto and founder and chief science officer, Nutrigenomix Inc.; and many more.


IMC achieves ACGME-I accreditation for internal medicine residency program

Updated 22 April 2024
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IMC achieves ACGME-I accreditation for internal medicine residency program

The International Medical Center has obtained academic accreditation for its internal medicine residency program from the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education International, an internationally recognized body renowned for its commitment to improving the quality of training and maintaining the highest standards in residency training programs for internal medicine. This accreditation underscores IMC’s dedication to providing excellence in medical education and training.

With this accreditation, IMC emerges as the first and only hospital in the Kingdom to achieve such recognition. This milestone establishes IMC as a globally acknowledged and distinguished training hospital for internal medicine residency programs.

“The ACGME-I accreditation serves as a testament to IMC’s unwavering commitment to providing high-quality medical training,” a statement said. “It highlights IMC’s capability to attract highly qualified faculty members and gain recognition from international medical bodies. Furthermore, it opens doors for residents to pursue fellowships in the US to complete subspecialty training.”

The exceptional advantages will undoubtedly motivate resident physicians to select IMC for their training.

It is noteworthy that the International Medical Center had previously obtained ACGME-I institutional accreditation, establishing itself as the first multi-specialty private hospital in Saudi Arabia to achieve this distinction.