Maersk innovates system to deliver freshwater from vessels to ports

Cargo ships undertaking global trade are equipped freshwater generator systems that produce clean drinking water by distilling sea water using heat energy.
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Updated 14 April 2024
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Maersk innovates system to deliver freshwater from vessels to ports

Freshwater scarcity is an increasing problem faced by regions all over the world. Four billion people — almost two thirds of the world’s population — experience severe water scarcity for at least one month each year, and half of the world’s population could be living in areas facing water scarcity by as early as 2025. With this background, a team of three employees of A.P. Moller — Maersk, who are former seafarers, decided to undertake an innovative project that could store and deliver freshwater from vessels to ports.

Cargo ships undertaking global trade are equipped with freshwater generator systems that produce clean drinking water by distilling sea water using heat energy harnessed from their engines. Traditionally, this system has been used to generate water for consumption only onboard the vessels. However, the excess water produced has been overlooked. Through this innovative project, this untapped resource has been capitalized on by optimizing the process and storing the excess water in tank containers before delivering it to ports.

Each vessel can fill two tank containers on an average sea voyage between two ports. With the process optimized and tank containers stored at the right location onboard, two tank containers with a combined capacity of 50,000 liters can be filled with freshwater. Amongst the first pilot runs were the deliveries at the Port of Colombo and Port of Salalah of two tank containers, each filled with 25,000 liters of freshwater.

Keld M. Christensen, chief executive, Port of Salalah, said: “At Port of Salalah, sustainability is one of our top priorities and we are committed to decarbonizing our operations by 2040. We also recognize that sustainability is not only about decarbonizing supply chains but also protecting our environment and its finite resources. The first tank container of freshwater delivered by Maersk from its vessel is an important milestone that has the potential to pave the path for a larger scheme of things.”

He added: “This project opens doors for many more ships moving around the world, which can replicate this system and create an incredibly large supply of freshwater that can be delivered all around the world to address the ever-increasing challenge of water scarcity.”

A pivotal aspect of the project’s success is its rigorous adherence to quality and environmental standards. The water quality, tested by the Ceylon Institute of Scientific and Industrial Research, an official Sri Lankan government laboratory, met all WHO standards, underscoring the project’s commitment to safety and sustainability. Furthermore, a Life Cycle Assessment study conducted by the Danish Technical University has provided valuable insights into the project’s environmental impact, comparing it favorably against traditional tanker truck water delivery methods.

The fresh water generated and delivered through this innovative project can be used in various ways:

• Consumption at port facilities for basic sanitation, cleaning, and maintenance of offices, warehouses, and restrooms.

• Ship repair at yards for tasks like cleaning vessels, tools, and work areas.

• Container washing before storage or reusing.

• Firefighting at port facilities for emergencies.

• Power generation at power plants located in ports for cooling systems or other processes.


KitKat partners with Esports World Cup in Riyadh

Updated 23 June 2024
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KitKat partners with Esports World Cup in Riyadh

Nestlé’s iconic chocolate brand KitKat has partnered with the Esports World Cup Foundation to support the inaugural Esports World Cup this summer in Riyadh. Their collaboration with the world’s largest gaming festival further integrates KitKat into global gaming culture, combining the brand’s catchy “Have a Break” philosophy with the necessary pauses that come with gaming at all levels — Get Ready to Climb, Break, and Dominate!

By supporting the Esports World Cup, KitKat aims to connect with competitive and casual gamers through its legendary ethos. Whether it is a tactical pause on stage to discuss strategy, or simply a moment to reset and come back refreshed to take on what is next, having a break is an essential aspect of the gaming experience. KitKat and EWC view breaks as an integral part of life inside and outside the game, together aspiring to make each moment of enjoyment and rejuvenation for players and maintain a healthy approach to gaming.

“We are excited to partner with an amazing brand like KitKat to bring a fresh energy and connection to the esports community,” said Mohammed Al-Nimer, sales director, Esports World Cup Foundation. “This collaboration will not only enhance the experience of all visitors, but also highlight the importance of having strategic breaks for better performance. I highly encourage all fans attending the Esports World Cup to visit the KitKat booth, have a break and enjoy some delicious KitKat goodies!”

“This partnership enables us to connect with the next generation of gaming enthusiasts, offering them the breaks they need both in-game and in life,” said Robert Helou, CEO of Nestlé KSA. “We believe we will deeply resonate with gamers by integrating our ‘Have a Break’ philosophy into the esports world. This collaboration highlights the importance of taking breaks and prioritizing mental well-being, especially in the high-stress environment of competitive gaming.”

Beginning July 3, the Esports World Cup will transform Riyadh into the epicenter of esports fandom and gaming culture. Located in Boulevard City, fans can watch their favorite athletes and clubs compete across 22 game championships for a share of more than $60 million in life-changing prize money — the largest prize pool in esports history. Across eight weeks, the Esports World Cup will also feature festival activities that include numerous gaming activations, community tournaments, pop culture celebrations, international experiences, and more.


Bahrain Airport Company conducts runway maintenance

Updated 23 June 2024
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Bahrain Airport Company conducts runway maintenance

Bahrain Airport Company, the operator and managing body of Bahrain International Airport, has successfully completed its second regular runway maintenance program, underscoring its continuous commitment to elevating safety measures across the airport operations, in adherence to the highest industry standards.

The runway maintenance program is conducted three times a year in compliance with International Civil Aviation Organization Annex 14, Bahrain Civil Aviation Authority regulation, the Aerodrome Manual, and other ICAO standards and recommended practices. This maintenance program highlights BAC’s dedication to safety, business continuity, and the integration of preventative and corrective measures to avoid any disruption due to infrastructure unavailability.

BAC Chief Executive Mohamed Yousif Al-Binfalah said: “I would like to express my gratitude to our BAC facility management team, whose dedicated round-the-clock support and hard work has led to keeping our airport operations running smoothly and securely. Keeping the runway in optimal condition is crucial for safe and secure daily operations at the airport. At BAC, we are committed to continuously enhancing our safety measures to ensure the airport’s resilience and business continuity.”

The maintenance program is managed by a dedicated Bahraini team, which includes qualified engineers from the Airside and Landside Maintenance team. 

The planning for Airside Ground Lighting infrastructure is executed by a 20-member team of Airfield Ground Lighting technicians, working in four shifts.

BAC executes its runway maintenance program each time over a continuous period of 15 nights. During this period, the runway is closed for a brief span of two hours and 25 minutes to facilitate thorough maintenance works. The primary aim of these activities is to significantly enhance safety standards and provide safe aircraft movement surfaces.

During the runway maintenance program, on average, 114 personnel and 40 vehicles and equipment are deployed for maintenance. The maintenance covers runways, taxiways, and strips, including tasks like rubber removal, asphalt patching, remarking, joint sealing, shoulder repairs, grading, and various lighting and signage maintenance.


New partnership to empower climate tech startups in KSA

Updated 22 June 2024
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New partnership to empower climate tech startups in KSA

Berlin-headquartered Tact Hub, the think-and-do tank under Tact Invest, has announced a strategic partnership with Falak Investment Hub, a full-fledged investment firm that supports technology startups and entrepreneurs in Saudi Arabia and the MENA region.

Falak, renowned for its expertise in nurturing startups and facilitating market entry, will collaborate with Tact Hub to identify and develop high-potential climate tech startups.

Its mission also encompasses uniting environmental, social, and governance principles with Shariah-compliant finance, ensuring its investments adhere to both ethical and religious standards.

Through this partnership with Falak Investment Hub, Tact Hub will leverage Falak’s extensive ecosystem in the MENA region to support early-stage companies aiming to scale globally.

Tact Hub startups will gain access to Falak’s robust network and resources, enabling them to scale effectively within the MENA and beyond. Both organizations will co-host curated investment pitch events, providing startups with unique opportunities to engage with a broad spectrum of investors. 

This partnership with Tact Hub embodies our commitment to nurturing a sustainable future through collaboration and respect for our planet.

Adwa Al-Dakheel, founder and CEO of Falak Investment Hub

Moreover, Tact Hub startups will participate in Falak’s Flagship ClimateTech Program done in collaboration with Roots Ventures, benefiting from comprehensive training, mentorship, and market access initiatives designed to accelerate growth and innovation.

This collaboration will support startups that align with Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030, contributing to the nation’s goals of environmental sustainability and economic diversification. The joint efforts are expected to significantly reduce CO2 emissions, targeting a collective reduction of 1 million tons.

Poonam Balan, managing director of Tact Hub, said: “This partnership with Falak Investment Hub is a significant step toward our goal of driving sustainable innovation. By combining our expertise and resources, we aim to support startups that can make a real impact on global environmental challenges and contribute to the ambitious goals of Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030.”

Adwa Al-Dakheel, founder and CEO of Falak Investment Hub, said: “At Falak, we believe in the transformative power of community, innovation, and entrepreneurship. This partnership with Tact Hub embodies our commitment to nurturing a sustainable future through collaboration and respect for our planet. With that being said, by joining forces, we are not only fostering the growth of pioneering climate tech startups but also empowering a new generation of entrepreneurs to lead with purpose and impact. We are building a resilient and innovative ecosystem that will drive meaningful change for our environment and our communities.”


Servcorp boosts Saudi business landscape with KAFD expansion

Updated 22 June 2024
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Servcorp boosts Saudi business landscape with KAFD expansion

Servcorp, a global provider of premium flexible office solutions, has announced the opening of its new office location in King Abdullah Financial District, Riyadh. This strategic move aligns with KAFD’s vision to enhance Riyadh’s position as a global business and lifestyle destination, offering a sophisticated platform for businesses to connect and grow their operations.

The opening is part of Servcorp’s strategy to extend its regional footprint, offering state-of-the-art office solutions to startups, SMEs, and multinational corporations. The facility features fully equipped private offices, co-working spaces, virtual offices, and meeting rooms, complemented by professional 24/7 IT support and local expertise.

A key driver of Riyadh’s economic ambitions, KAFD is the largest Platinum Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design certified mixed-use business district in the world. Set in the heart of the Saudi capital, KAFD is home to 1.6 million square meters of state-of-the-art office spaces, world-class venues, and iconic luxury residences, designed to transform the way urban communities live, work, and play.

David Godchaux, CEO of Servcorp for the Middle East, Europe and America, said: “We are delighted to open our new location in KAFD, aligning Servcorp’s expansion with Saudi Arabia’s strategic vision in one of the region’s most significant developments.”

Our clients in KAFD will benefit from state-of-the-art technology, and world-class office solutions backed by Servcorp’s global infrastructure.”

“With the number of SMEs in Saudi Arabia growing by an impressive 3.1 percent in Q4 2023 to more than 1.3 million, the total number of SMEs in Riyadh alone reached 571,298 by the end of the year. With this rapid expansion in entrepreneurship and SMEs, and the vast interest in co-working spaces, we are thrilled to welcome Servcorp to KAFD,” said Gautam Sashittal, CEO of the King Abdullah Financial District Development and Management Company. “Servcorp’s innovative workspace solutions are a strategic addition to our district, perfectly aligning with our vision of becoming a full-service business hub. This new partnership not only enhances our ability to support business success but also underscores KAFD’s vital role in driving the Kingdom’s economic diversification and achieving the ambitious goals of Vision 2030.”


Thakher Company employees volunteer to serve pilgrims

Updated 19 June 2024
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Thakher Company employees volunteer to serve pilgrims

Employees of Thakher Development Company, the master developer of the master plan and infrastructure for the Thakher Makkah project, participated in the “And Purify My House” initiative under the patronage of the Mayor of Makkah Musaed bin Abdulaziz Al-Daoud. Additionally, the company organized a campaign to raise health and food safety awareness and distribute umbrellas to pilgrims within the Thakher Makkah project, in partnership with the Municipal Volunteer Department in the Holy Makkah Municipality.

The “And Purify My House” initiative was held over three days, where volunteers prepared and cleaned the holy sites, such as Mount Arafat, Mina and Muzdalifah, for the arrival of the pilgrims. Efforts also involved restoring visual distortions and maintaining public facilities, including painting and other tasks.

These efforts are part of the company’s comprehensive program to promote healthcare during the Hajj season, with a focus on the importance of hygiene and nutrition. The initiative ensures proper facilities are available for pilgrims to guarantee a safe and healthy Hajj experience.

Abdulaziz bin Saleh Al-Aboudi, CEO of Thakher Development Company, said: “At Thakher Company, we emphasize the importance of cooperation and participation in volunteer activities within the Kingdom that aim to foster the values of generosity and social solidarity, and to enhance the esteemed image of the holy capital in the eyes of pilgrims. I would also like to extend my gratitude to everyone who participated in organizing this initiative, and to our employees for their humanitarian and volunteer efforts in serving the pilgrims and strengthening the spirit of cooperation and social responsibility.”

Thakher Makkah is located approximately 1 km from the Grand Mosque and a few kilometers away from the holy sites of Muzdalifah, Mina and Arafat. The project contributes to the Kingdom’s ambitious vision, which aims to host 30 million Umrah performers and six million pilgrims by 2030.

Upon completion, the project, spanning over an area of 320,000 square meters, will include 100 land plots for hospitality, residential and commercial uses. Residential and hotel apartment units will be available in various categories, and the units will also be available for ownership.

Thaker Makkah will be home to some of the biggest names in global hospitality including The Radisson Hotel, Park Inn by Radisson, and Novotel Hotel, which will be the largest in the world in terms of the number of rooms.

The company is also involved in developing the old neighborhoods of Makkah in coordination with the Royal Commission for Makkah City and Holy Sites, in order to provide distinguished services to pilgrims.