The following is a summary of all announcements from the past month regarding investment deals, partnerships, and other commercial news between U.S. and Saudi companies.
Information & Communications Technology
Amazon Sets Up Academy in Saudi Arabia to Support Digital Economy
Amazon, the world’s biggest e-commerce company, has launched a new academy in Saudi Arabia as it seeks to support the kingdom’s human capital program for the digital economy. The academy, which will offer the “largest talent development program of its kind in the Middle East,” aims to train more than 30,000 Saudis, issue 35,000 certificates, and offer 100 internships by 2025.
AST SpaceMobile Signs MOU with Saudi Telecom
AST SpaceMobile has signed a non-binding memorandum of understanding with Saudi telecom and digital service provider Zain KSA. The two companies will collaborate toward providing land, sea, and in-flight communications services using AST’s satellite constellation and Zain’s network.
Clarity AI signs MoU with the Saudi Tadawul Group to Increase Access to Sustainability Assessment, Analysis and Reporting Capabilities for Companies in MENA
Clarity AI, the leading global sustainability tech platform, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Saudi Tadawul Group, the largest stock exchange in the Middle East and North Africa region with a market capitalization nearing $3 trillion, to facilitate the education of companies in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the broader MENA region on relevant sustainability topics.
Meta Announces Metaverse Academy in Partnership with Tuwaiq Academy at LEAP23
Meta has announced the launch of the first metaverse academy in the Middle East and North Africa region, in partnership with Tuwaiq Academy and Simplon, a French digital skills provider, at the second edition of LEAP in Riyadh. The academy will be based in Riyadh and will aim to support the region’s metaverse ecosystem through training programs.
Microsoft Announces Intent to Expand Cloud Regions through Saudi Arabia Datacenter
Microsoft today shared its intention to invest in a new cloud datacenter region in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The announcement is part of the company’s continued efforts to empower public and private organizations around the world with intelligent, trusted, enterprise-grade cloud services to realize their digital transformation ambitions.
Netflix Launches Creative Producer Training Program in Saudi Arabia
Online streaming giant Netflix has launched a creative producer training program in Saudi Arabia in a further boost to the Kingdom’s entertainment industry. Netflix will help upskill 15 professional Saudi television creative producers through this seven-week program.
Rackspace Signs Deal with Saudi Arabia’s Data, AI Government Agency
Cloud-computing and server company Rackspace Technology Inc. said Tuesday that it signed a memorandum of understanding with Saudi Data and AI Authority to collaborate on strategic technology initiatives in support of Vision 2030, a Saudi initiative to reform energy dependence and technological infrastructure.
Saudi Aramco to Build Zoom’s First Global Data Center in Saudi Arabia
Saudi Aramco will be partnering with Zoom Global to build its first global data center in Saudi Arabia as part of the Kingdom’s efforts to support the digital transformation ecosystem, the oil company announced on Monday. Aramco’s new strategic partnership with Zoom is set to explore the joint development of innovative technology solutions for the energy sector and contribute to the digital transformation of various market sectors, such as energy, industry, education, and healthcare, the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported.
Speridian Technologies Expands its Global Presence by Opening a New Office in Saudi Arabia
Speridian Technologies, a global business and technology solutions company headquartered in Albuquerque, today announced the opening of its new office in Saudi Arabia. Speridian Technologies, founded in 2003, is a global business and technology solutions provider that helps companies modernize their businesses through Digital Transformation.
STC and Omnispace Ink MoU on Direct-to-Device Satellite in Saudi Arabia
STC Group and Omnispace, a mobile connectivity provider, have signed a memorandum of understanding to develop space-based 5G mobile communications services. Under the terms of the agreement, STC will use the Omnispace 3GPP-compliant non-terrestrial network, delivering cost-effective global connectivity beyond mobile land-based networks.
Tachyum Enters Kingdom of Saudi Arabia with Watad Energy & Communications Partnership
Tachyum today announced it has entered a memorandum of understanding agreement with Watad Energy & Communications Co. ltd, the leading OT Cybersecurity and AI Company in the KSA and GCC region, to bring Prodigy technology to commercial, industrial and scientific research institutions throughout the KSA and the GCC region. Prodigy will enable high-performance computing, artificial intelligence, edge computing, cloud and hyperscale data centers, and other IT segments and applications that demand cutting-edge performance.
Tonomus Teams with Oracle, Nvidia to Boost AI Capabilities Across NEOM, Saudi Arabia
With the aim of boosting artificial intelligence capabilities across NEOM and Saudi Arabia, Tonomus announced it had teamed up with Oracle and Nvidia at LEAP 23 on Tuesday. The collaboration by Tonomus, a cognitive multinational conglomerate and the first company to be established as a full-fledged subsidiary of NEOM, is designed to accelerate AI-powered innovation for a broad range of use by enterprises and government organizations.
Aerospace and Defense
Bell Geospace, Saudi Geophysical to Enter Agency Deal at MEOS GEO
Bell Geospace, a leading provider of full tensor gravity gradiometry data, and Saudi Geophysical, consultants and geophysical service providers, will announce a new agency relationship officially at MEOS GEO 2023 in Bahrain. The relationship will facilitate future airborne exploration programs in Saudi Arabia, via expedited permits and the provision of a local service from project conception through to data delivery and application.
Boeing Signs Pact to Develop Titanium Value Chains in Saudi Arabia
Saudi industrial conglomerate Tasnee, Ministry of Investment (MISA), and Boeing have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to develop aviation grade titanium alloy value chains in Saudi Arabia. Tasnee produces about 10 percent of the global production of Titanium Sponge, which is used in aviation, nuclear submarines, missiles, and satellite industries.
Collins and SRB Agree to Jointly Develop UAS Solutions in Saudi Arabia
Collins Aerospace has signed a memorandum of understanding with Saudi Arabia-based company SRB Aerial Systems for jointly developing uncrewed aerial systems and robotics. Leveraging Collins’ experience, SRB Aerial Systems will combine its mission systems hardware and software, as well as its radio communication, imaging and sensor manufacturing expertise for the final development of UAS sovereign capabilities in Saudi Arabia.
Oshkosh Defense Extending Footprint in Saudi Arabia with New Partnership
Oshkosh Defense is extending its reach in Saudi Arabia’s defense market with the signing of a new memorandum of understanding today with the Zahid Tractor and Heavy Machinery Company. Oshkosh said the partnership is intended to “offer Saudi Arabia Armed Forces with relevant expertise and resources to support maintenance, repair, and overhaul of current and future tactical wheeled vehicle programs in the Kingdom.”
Transatlantic Middle East District Awards Nearly $300M Contract for Saudi Arabia
The Transatlantic Middle East District awarded a contract for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Defense P-563 Program on Feb. 17, 2023. Among other tasks, this integration effort will include preparation and implementation of a program management plan, program communication, program change management, quality management, cost and scheduling tracking, and design requirements.
Construction & Real Estate
Jacobs Selected for Urban Development Project in Saudi Arabia
Jacobs and JASARA have been appointed by NEOM Company (NEOM) for THE LINE, its linear and cognitive city under development in the northwest of Saudi Arabia. A centerpiece for NEOM, THE LINE will play a leading role in NEOM’s aim of establishing itself as a new destination for global tourism, industry and innovation. Jacobs and JASARA will provide project and construction management consultancy services for the design, procurement, construction, testing and commissioning of THE LINE.
Parsons Awarded Contract for Megaproject in Saudi Arabia
Parsons Corporation announced today that the company was selected by the Rua Al-Madinah Holding Company (RAM-H) to provide construction project management consultancy and contract administration services for the Rua Al-Madinah mega mixed-use real estate project in the holy city of Al-Madinah Al-Munawarah. Under the $15 million contract, Parsons will manage the main infrastructure works including the tunnel, road, and utility works.
Parsons Wins Consultancy Contract for Mega Saudi Futuristic Project
Parsons Corporation, a leading US engineering and construction group, said it has been appointed as a delivery partner for The Line, the centerpiece project for Neom, the ‘land of the future’ being developed in northwest Saudi Arabia.
Digital Diagnostics, Saudi Arabia-Based Healthcare Firm Partner
Digital Diagnostics — maker of IDx-DR, the first-ever FDA-cleared, fully autonomous AI system for the diagnosis of diabetic retinopathy — is entering a strategic partnership with Tamer Healthcare, an integrated healthcare and wellness firm in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The agreement says Digital Diagnostics will distribute IDx-DR, as well as plan for future artificial intelligence technology development and expansion.
Finance and Investment
PwC’s Consultants Sign Agreements with Saudi Government Authorities
PwC’s digital consultants have bagged two public sector contracts in Saudi Arabia – taking the stage at the recently concluded mega tech fest LEAP to showcase their ‘wins’ to the world. The mandates will see PwC’s management consultants and technologists help the government authorities drive their respective digital-geared ambitions, aligned to Saudi Arabia’s massive digital agenda under the Vision 2030 umbrella.
Tourism & Entertainment
Collective Retreats Inks Deal with NEOM to Develop Sustainable Tourism Hub in Trojena
U.S.-based hospitality firm Collective Retreats has partnered with Saudi Arabia’s $500 billion giga-project NEOM to open a sustainable retreat in Trojena, the mountain destination located in the north-western part of the Kingdom. The retreat will feature approximately 60 open-air guest rooms and meeting spaces, along with water features, communal campfires, and culinary experiences.