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BEST OF

KINGdom of

saudi arabia Volume

1


Best of Kingdom 1


International Group Publisher Sven Boermeester Group Managing Editor Lisa Durante Group Sales Director Karl Hougaard Production Pronto FZ LLC Managing Director Hani T. Salman Publisher Kamila Ondrackova Editorial Team Arfa Saira Iqbal Jyoti Mansukhani Muaz Shabandari Ritesh Matlani Creative Direction Peter Batistich Graphic Design Mohammad Al-Mousa Sulaima Elamiri Photography Abdul Ahad Khan Awadh Al Hamazani Fahad Bahada Husain Al-Ahdal Project Coordination Heba Rahman Saudi Publishing & Distribution Partner Desam for Publishing and Distribution Contact details www.impronto.org connect@impronto.org Dubai : PO Box 500717 Saudi Arabia : PO Box 369, Riyadh 11411

Saudi Arabia, The Land of Opportunities Saudi Arabia is a country of great transformational change. As the world’s largest oil exporter, its economy has emerged into a leading regional and global power house. Despite its vast resources, it would not be precise to attribute all the success to its natural wealth. Through its dynamic socio-economic diversification process, Saudi Arabia has moved from dependency on Oil & Gas alone and tapped into a scale of sectors to secure its stability and multiply its future growth. This success is tangible today, where within four years, the economy of Saudi Arabia has doubled. BEST OF KINGDOM of Saudi Arabia celebrates the innovation, sustainability and excellence of the Saudi business and leisure scene. It recognises those organisations, companies and acclaimed individuals that are leading this progress and developing the multi-sector business prospects this country has to offer. The timing of this edition is particularly appropriate in light of the Kingdom’s bold investment strategy. Since 2005, King Abdullah bin Abdul-Aziz Al Saud, the King of Saudi Arabia and Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques has lead the country to total redefinition. By implementing long-term strategic plans and opening doors to investors, the country has jumped from 79th place to place 11th worldwide in terms of ease of doing business. In response to increasing international interest, it is a great pleasure for PRONTO Branding/Marketing/Events to introduce BEST OF KINGDOM of Saudi Arabia, Volume 1 and showcase Saudi Arabia as a country that is unique in terms of cultural heritage, as well as highlighting its pivotal position as the world’s fastest-reforming economy. Enjoy the exploration of Saudi Arabia, the Land of Opportunities.

In partnership with Global Village Partnerships FZ LLC www.gvpedia.com

Kamila Ondrackova Publisher

Disclaimer Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information in the “Best of Kingdom of Saudi Arabia” Vol. 1 publication. Neither 'Best of Kingdom of Saudi Arabia' nor Global Village Publishing FZ LLC takes any responsibility for errors or omissions. All right reserved No part of this publication may be repro duced, copied, transmitted, adapted, or publication shall not be stored in whole or in part in any form in any retrieval system.

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‫ﺍﳌﻤﻠﻜﺔ ﺍﻟﻌﺮﺑﻴﺔ ﺍﻟﺴﻌﻮﺩﻳﺔ‬ ‫ﺃﺭﺽ ﺍﻟﻔﺮﺹ‬ ‫ﺗﺸﻬﺪ ﺍﳌﻤﻠﻜﺔ ﺍﻟﻌﺮﺑﻴﺔ ﺍﻟﺴﻌﻮﺩﻳﺔ ﻓﻲ ﻫﺬﻩ ﺍﻷﻳﺎﻡ ﲢﻮﻻﺕ ﻋﻈﻴﻤﺔ ﺷﻤﻠﺖ ﻛﺎﻓﺔ ﺍﺠﻤﻟﺎﻻﺕ‪ ،‬ﺣﻴﺚ ﺑﺮﺯ ﺍﻻﻗﺘﺼﺎﺩ ﺍﻟﺴﻌﻮﺩﻱ ﻟﻴﺼﺒﺢ ﺍﶈﺮﻙ ﺍﻷﻭﻝ ﻓﻲ ﺍﳌﻨﻄﻘﺔ ﻭﺍﳌﺆﺛﺮ ﺍﻷﻛﺒﺮ ﻋﻠﻰ‬ ‫ﻣﺴﺘﻮﻯ ﺍﻟﻌﺎﻟﻢ‬ ‫ﻭﻋﻠﻰ ﺍﻟﺮﻏﻢ ﻣﻦ ﺃﻥ ﺍﳌﻤﻠﻜﺔ ﻫﻲ ﺍﳌﻨﺘﺞ ﺍﻷﻛﺒﺮ ﻟﻠﻨﻔﻂ ﻋﻠﻰ ﻣﺴﺘﻮﻯ ﺍﻟﻌﺎﻟﻢ‪ ،‬ﺇﻻ ﺃﻧﻪ ﻣﻦ ﺍﳋﻄﺄ ﺃﻥ ﻳﻨﺴﺐ ﺗﻔﻮﻗﻬﺎ ﺍﻻﻗﺘﺼﺎﺩﻱ ﺇﻟﻰ ﺍﻻﻋﺘﻤﺎﺩ ﺍﻟﺘﺎﻡ ﻋﻠﻰ ﺛﺮﻭﺍﺗﻬﺎ ﺍﻟﻄﺒﻴﻌﻴﺔ ﻓﺤﺴﺐ‪،‬‬ ‫ﻓﻘﺪ ﺃﺛﺒﺘﺖ ﺍﳌﻤﻠﻜﺔ ﻣﻦ ﺧﻼﻝ ﺧﻄﺘﻬﺎ ﺍﻟﻔﻌﺎﻟﺔ ﻟﺘﻨﻮﻳﻊ ﻣﺼﺎﺩﺭ ﺍﻟﺪﺧﻞ ﺃﻧﻬﺎ ﻗﺎﺩﺭﺓ ﻋﻠﻰ ﺍﻟﺘﺤﻮﻝ ﻣﻦ ﺍﻗﺘﺼﺎﺩ ﻳﻌﺘﻤﺪ ﻋﻠﻰ ﺍﻟﻨﻔﻂ ﻭﺍﻟﻐﺎﺯ ﻭﺣﺪﻫﻤﺎ ﺇﻟﻰ ﺇﻧﺸﺎﺀ ﻭﺗﻄﻮﻳﺮ ﻗﻄﺎﻋﺎﺕ ﻓﻌﺎﻟﺔ‬ ‫ﻟﺘﺄﻣﲔ ﺍﻻﺳﺘﻘﺮﺍﺭ ﺍﻻﻗﺘﺼﺎﺩﻱ ﻭﺩﻓﻊ ﻋﺠﻠﺔ ﺍﻟﺘﻨﻤﻴﺔ ﻧﺤﻮ ﻣﺴﺘﻘﺒﻞ ﺃﻛﺜﺮ ﺇﺷﺮﺍﻗﺎ‪ ،‬ﻭﻟﻘﺪ ﺃﺳﻔﺮﺕ ﻫﺬﻩ ﺍﳋﻄﻂ ﻋﻦ ﻧﺘﺎﺋﺞ ﻣﻠﻤﻮﺳﺔ ﻋﻠﻰ ﺃﺭﺽ ﺍﻟﻮﺍﻗﻊ ﲤﺜﻠﺖ ﻓﻲ ﺗﻀﺎﻋﻒ ﺣﺠﻢ‬ ‫ﺍﻻﻗﺘﺼﺎﺩ ﺧﻼﻝ ﺃﺭﺑﻊ ﺳﻨﻮﺍﺕ ﻓﻘﻂ‪ ،‬ﻭﻟﺬﻟﻚ ﺣﺮﺹ ﻛﺘﺎﺏ "ﺃﻓﻀﻞ ﻣﺎ ﻓﻲ ﺍﳌﻤﻠﻜﺔ" ﻋﻠﻰ ﺇﺑﺮﺍﺯ ﺍﻟﺘﻤﻴﺰ ﻭﺍﻟﺘﻘﺪﻡ ﺍﻟﺘﻲ ﻳﺘﻤﺘﻊ ﺑﻬﺎ ﻗﻄﺎﻉ ﺍﻟﺼﻨﺎﻋﺔ ﻭﺍﻷﻋﻤﺎﻝ‪ ،‬ﻭﻗﻄﺎﻉ ﺍﻟﺘﺮﻓﻴﻪ ﻓﻲ ﺍﳌﻤﻠﻜﺔ‬ ‫ﻣﻦ ﺧﻼﻝ ﺗﺴﻠﻴﻂ ﺍﻟﻀﻮﺀ ﻋﻠﻰ ﺍﳌﺆﺳﺴﺎﺕ ﻭﺍﻟﺸﺮﻛﺎﺕ ﻭﺍﻷﻓﺮﺍﺩ ﺍﻟﺬﻳﻦ ﻳﻘﻮﺩﻭﻥ ﻫﺬﺍ ﺍﻟﺘﻘﺪﻡ ﻭﻳﻄﻮﺭﻭﻥ ﺍﻟﻔﺮﺹ ﺍﻻﺳﺘﺜﻤﺎﺭﻳﺔ ﻓﻲ ﻣﺨﺘﻠﻒ ﺍﻟﻘﻄﺎﻋﺎﺕ ﺍﻟﻔﻌﺎﻟﺔ ﻓﻲ ﻫﺬﺍ ﺍﻟﺒﻠﺪ ﺍﳌﺘﻘﺪﻡ‬ ‫ﻭﻳﻌﺪ ﺗﻮﻗﻴﺖ ﺇﺻﺪﺍﺭ ﻫﺬﺍ ﺍﻟﻌﻤﻞ ﻣﻨﺎﺳﺒﺎ‪ ،‬ﺣﻴﺚ ﻳﺘﻤﺎﺷﻰ ﻣﻊ ﺗﻄﻮﺭ ﻭﳒﺎﺡ ﺍﻹﺳﺘﺮﺍﺗﻴﺠﻴﺔ ﺍﻻﺳﺘﺜﻤﺎﺭﻳﺔ ﺍﳉﺮﻳﺌﺔ ﺍﻟﺘﻲ ﺗﻌﺘﻤﺪﻫﺎ ﺍﳌﻤﻠﻜﺔ‪ ،‬ﻣﻨﺬ ﺃﻥ ﺃﺧﺬ ﺧﺎﺩﻡ ﺍﳊﺮﻣﲔ ﺍﻟﺸﺮﻳﻔﲔ ﺍﳌﻠﻚ‬ ‫ﻋﺒﺪ ﺍﷲ ﺑﻦ ﻋﺒﺪ ﺍﻟﻌﺰﻳﺰ ﺁﻝ ﺳﻌﻮﺩ – ﺣﻔﻈﻪ ﺍﷲ – ﻓﻲ ﺍﻟﻌﺎﻡ ‪2005‬ﻡ ﻋﻠﻰ ﻋﺎﺗﻘﻪ ﻣﺴﺆﻭﻟﻴﺔ ﲢﻘﻴﻖ ﺍﻟﺘﻄﻮﺭ ﺍﳌﻨﺸﻮﺩ ﻟﻠﻤﺠﺘﻤﻊ ﺍﻟﺴﻌﻮﺩﻱ ﻋﺒﺮ ﻭﺿﻊ ﻭﺗﻄﺒﻴﻖ ﺍﳋﻄﻂ‬ ‫ﺍﻹﺳﺘﺮﺍﺗﻴﺠﻴﺔ ﻃﻮﻳﻠﺔ ﺍﳌﺪﻯ ﻭﻓﺘﺢ ﺍﻷﺑﻮﺍﺏ ﻟﻠﻤﺴﺘﺜﻤﺮﻳﻦ ﻣﻦ ﺍﻟﺪﺍﺧﻞ ﻭﺍﳋﺎﺭﺝ‪ ،‬ﺍﻷﻣﺮ ﺍﻟﺬﻱ ﺟﻌﻞ ﺍﳌﻤﻠﻜﺔ ﺗﻘﻔﺰ ﻣﻦ ﺍﳌﺮﺗﺒﺔ ﺍﻟﺘﺎﺳﻌﺔ ﻭﺍﻟﺴﺒﻌﲔ ﺇﻟﻰ ﺍﳌﺮﻛﺰ ﺍﳊﺎﺩﻱ ﻋﺸﺮ ﻋﺎﳌﻴﺎ ﻓﻲ‬ ‫ﺳﻬﻮﻟﺔ ﺃﺩﺍﺀ ﺍﻷﻋﻤﺎﻝ‪ ،‬ﻭﺃﺳﻬﻢ ﻓﻲ ﺍﻧﻀﻤﺎﻣﻬﺎ ﺇﻟﻰ ﻗﺎﺋﻤﺔ ﺍﻟﺪﻭﻝ ﺍﻟﻌﺸﺮﻳﻦ ﺍﻟﻜﺒﺮﻯ ﺫﺍﺕ ﺍﻻﻗﺘﺼﺎﺩ ﺍﻷﻛﺒﺮ ﻓﻲ ﺍﻟﻌﺎﻟﻢ‬ ‫ﻭﺍﺳﺘﺠﺎﺑﺔ ﻟﻼﻫﺘﻤﺎﻡ ﺍﻟﻌﺎﳌﻲ ﺍﳌﺘﺰﺍﻳﺪ‪ ،‬ﻳﺴﺮ ﺷﺮﻛﺔ "ﺑﺮﻭﻧﺘﻮ" ﺃﻥ ﺗﻘﺪﻡ ﺍﻹﺻﺪﺍﺭ ﺍﻷﻭﻝ ﻣﻦ ﻛﺘﺎﺏ "ﺃﻓﻀﻞ ﻣﺎ ﻓﻲ ﺍﳌﻤﻠﻜﺔ" ﻭﺍﻟﺬﻱ ﻳﺒﺮﺯ ﲤﻴﺰ ﻫﺬﺍ ﺍﻟﺒﻠﺪ ﺍﻟﻌﻈﻴﻢ ﺑﺘﺮﺍﺛﻪ ﺍﻟﺜﻘﺎﻓﻲ ﺍﻟﻐﻨﻲ‪،‬‬ ‫ﻭﺳﺮﻋﺔ ﳕﻮﻩ ﺍﻻﻗﺘﺼﺎﺩﻱ ﻣﻨﻘﻄﻊ ﺍﻟﻨﻈﻴﺮ‪ ،‬ﻭﻛﻠﻨﺎ ﺭﺟﺎﺀ ﺑﺄﻥ ﻳﺴﺎﻋﺪﻛﻢ ﻫﺬﺍ ﺍﻟﻜﺘﺎﺏ ﻋﻠﻰ ﺍﻻﺳﺘﻤﺘﺎﻉ ﺑﺎﺳﺘﻜﺸﺎﻑ ﻛﺎﻓﺔ ﻣﻌﺎﻟﻢ ﺍﻟﺘﻄﻮﺭ ﻓﻲ ﺍﳌﻤﻠﻜﺔ ﺍﻟﻌﺮﺑﻴﺔ ﺍﻟﺴﻌﻮﺩﻳﺔ ﻋﻦ ﻛﺜﺐ‪.‬‬ ‫ﻛﺎﻣﻴﻼ ﺃﻧﺪﺭﻛﻮﻓﺎ‬ ‫ﻣﺪﻳﺮﺓ ﺍﻟﻨﺸﺮ‬

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ChapterS Best of Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

CHAPTER 1 “‫ ﻧﻤﻮﺫﺟﺎً ﻭ ﺭﻣﺰﺍً ﻟﻶﺧﺮﻳﻦ‬،‫”ﻟﻨﻜﻦ ﻣﻦ ﺍﻟﻨﺎﺟﺤﻴﻦ‬

Best of Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Best of Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Hotels & Hospitality 36 Chapter 2

Chapter 1

10

King Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz, Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques

Chapter 4

Chapter 3

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Finance, Insurance & Security

44

Education & CSR

CHAPTER 5 “‫”ﻟﻮ ﺍﺿﻄﺮ ﺍﻹﻧﺴﺎﻥ ﻻﺳﺘﻐﻨﻰ ﻋﻦ ﻛﻞ ﺍﻋﻀﺎﺋﻪ ﺳﻮﻯ ﺃﺻﺒﻊ ﻳﻀﻐﻂ ﺑﻪ ﻣﻔﺘﺎﺡ ﺍﻟﺘﺤﻜﻢ‬

Technology & Telecommunication

Industries

Chapter 6

Chapter 5

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Frank Lloyd Wright

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Technology & Telecommunication

CHAPTER 8

Best of Kingdom

“‫”ﻳﺎ ﺃﻳﻬﺎ ﺍﻟﻨﺎﺱ ﺇﻧﺎ ﺧﻠﻘﻨﺎﻛﻢ ﻣﻦ ﺫﻛﺮ ﻭ ﺃﻧﺜﻰ ﻭ ﺟﻌﻠﻨﺎﻛﻢ ﺷﻌﻮﺑًﺎ ﻭ ﻗﺒﺎﺋﻞ ﻟﺘﻌﺎﺭﻓﻮﺍ‬

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Travel & Transportation

Chapter 8

Chapter 7

88

Construction & Real Estate

4

People, we have created you all male and female and have made you nations and tribes so that you would meet

Travel & Transportation

The Holy Quran, Surat Al-Hujurat, verse13


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Health & Beauty

Chapter 9

Chapter 10

110

Food & Beverage

150

Saudi Women

Chapter 12

Chapter 11

130

Arts & Culture Heritage

174

Corporate Profiles

BEST OF

Chapter 16

196

Media

186

Dining

Chapter 15 208 Chapter 17

Shopping Destinations

Chapter 14

Chapter 13

164

Luxury Lifestyle

KINGdom of

saudi arabia Best of Kingdom 5


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Best of Kingdom


Best of Kingdom 7


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,‫ﺧﺎﺩﻡ ﺍﻟﺤﺮﻣﻴﻦ ﺍﻟﺸﺮﻓﻴﻦ ﺍﻟﻤﻠﻚ ﻋﺒﺪﷲ ﺑﻦ ﻋﺒﺪ ﺍﻟﻌﺰﻳﺰ‬ King Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz, Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques.

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CHAPTER 1 Best of Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

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Best of Kingdom


“‫ ﻧﻤﻮﺫﺟﺎً ﻭ ﺭﻣﺰﺍً ﻟﻶﺧﺮﻳﻦ‬،‫”ﻟﻨﻜﻦ ﻣﻦ ﺍﻟﻨﺎﺟﺤﻴﻦ‬ King Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz, Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques

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Kingdom of Saudi Arabia With the opening up of the Kingdom, gentle winds of change are ushering in a wave of progress and transparency, making it more business friendly in all spheres.

In the year AD622, Prophet Muhammad launched a successful campaign to recapture Mecca from the Persians, who had made it a province of their empire. Afterwards, the Muslims would continue their expansion across the Arabian Peninsula and into Syria, Mesopotamia (Iraq), Persia, and westwards into Egypt, North Africa and Europe.

With greater socio-economic diversification, Saudi Arabia is becoming increasingly accessible, attracting more global attention and developing a wider understanding about this country which has so much to offer. In reality, many commonly held ideas about this Middle Eastern homeland are misconceptions. For instance, geographically,

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the nation’s diversity surprises travellers with its mountain peaks, lush oases, pristine deserts, natural coral reefs and beaches. Whilst socio-economically, this regional powerhouse is an intricate mix of the old and the new, it is rapidly evolving as a viable template for the modern Islamic state of today.

Welcome to the largest Arab country of the Middle East, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Bordered by Jordan and Iraq on the north/northeast and Kuwait, Qatar, Bahrain as well as the United Arab Emirates on the east, it neighbours Oman on the southeast and Yemen on the south. With the Arabian Gulf to the northeast and the Red Sea to


Courtesy of Fahad Bahada Courtesy of Fahad Bahada

courtesy of Awadh Al Hamazani

the west, it has an estimated population of 28 million, with a size of roughly 2,149,690 square kilometres. Saudi Arabia, is also known as ‘The Land of the Two Holy Mosques’ thanks to Mecca and Medina, the two holiest places in Islam to be found there, the two mosques are: Masjid al-Haram (in Mecca) and Masjid

Al-Nabawi (in Medina). Even though its national origins date back to 1744 with the establishment of the First Saudi State, this current Islamic monarchy was founded by Abdul-Aziz bin Saud in 1902 after capturing the Al-Saud’s ancestral home of Riyadh, and culminated in 1932 with the proclamation and recognition of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

Geography Saudi Arabia’s geography is varied. From the sultry western coastal Tihamah region on the Red Sea, the land ascends towards a peninsula-long mountain range Jabal alHejaz that leads to the Nejd plateau in the middle. The southwestern ‘Asir area boast peaks as high as 3,000 m (9,843 ft) and is

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As the birthplace of the Prophet Muhammad, Saudi Arabia contains the holiest cities of Islam. The Saudis take the responsibility for protecting the integrity of this holy land with utmost seriousness, and invest vast sums of money each year to ensure the comfort and safety for over 2 million pilgrims to the holy sites each year.

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Courtesy of Husain Al Ahdal

One of the more devout nations in the Middle East, Saudi Arabia has flourished from a conservative desert kingdom to become one of the wealthiest nations in the region due to wise management of the country’s oil wealth and reinvesting these in a world class infrastructure and creation of a diverse industrial base. Skillfully managing societal reform while, its rulers face the delicate task carrying the Kingdom into the global village - whilst maintaining its roots firmly within the tenets of Islam. Much of the credit can be attributed to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Abdulla who has been influential in the development of the Kingdom since the early day.

famous for its green environment and fresh climate, attracting Saudis to resorts such as Abha during the summer. The rocky lowland to the east leads to the shores of the Arabian Gulf. Whilst the famous Rub’ al Khali, ‘Empty Quarter’, desert along the country’s porous southern borders contains sparse life. Less than two percent of the kingdom’s total area is arable land and the populated areas are to be found along the eastern and western coasts and densely populated interior oases such as Buraydah and Hofuf. Vast tracts of land, mainly the Rub’ al-Khali and Arabian Desert, are empty with no population whatsoever. Nevertheless, the petroleum industry has built integrated communities to support the oil and gas industry. Saudi Arabia has no year-round rivers or lakes; however, its coastline stretches for 2,640 km (1,640 miles) and along the Red Sea, harbours splendid coral reefs, including the Gulf of Aqaba.


Courtesy of Awadh Al Hamazani Courtesy of Fahad Bahada

Courtesy of Fahad Bahada

History Named after the ruling Al Saud family that came to power in the 18th century, the country includes the Hijaz region - the birthplace of the Prophet Muhammad and the fulcrum of Islam. The country was established in 1932 by King Abd-al-Aziz - known as the Lion of Najd, and united the country under his family’s rule. Since his death in 1953, he has been succeeded by various sons. The Al Saud dynasty’s succession of kings have all concentrated on modernisation and strengthening the country’s role as a regional power. Its international role has been most prominent as a founder member the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) a permanent, intergovernmental Organization, created at the Baghdad Conference on September 10–14, 1960, by Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and Venezuela. The five Founding

KISWAH- The special adorned black silk cloth, draped over the Holy Kabah in Makkah; Embellished with beautiful, embroidered calligraphy of Quranic Verses, using Gold & Silver Threads.

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Courtesy of Fahad Bahada

Oil accounts for more than 90 percent of exports and nearly 75 percent of government revenues, Saudi Arabia sits on more than 25 percent of the world’s known oil reserves. It is capable of producing more than 10 million barrels per day; that figure is set to rise. This wealth has facilitated the creation of a vibrant welfare state and vast investments in infrastructure and education. These revenues are also being utilised to successfully diversify the economy into manufacturing and services areas.

Courtesy of Fahad Bahada

Members were later joined by nine other members.

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Demographics Saudi Arabia’s population as provided by the OPEC Annual Statistical Bulletin in 2009 was 25.4 million people including an estimated 5.5 million resident foreigners. Until the Sixties, a nomadic population prevailed; however nowadays over 95 percent is settled, thanks to the nation’s swift economic growth and urbanisation. While the birth rate of 29.56 births per 1,000 people is high relative to

many other countries this brings advantages in having a youthful workforce and potential for sustainable economic growth going forward. Leadership King Abdullah Bin-Abd-al-Aziz Al Saud is the most senior member of the Al Saud dynasty that has ruled the nation since its foundation. King Abdullah succeeded the late King Fahd, his brother, in August 2005. A statesman of global stature, who is nevertheless still attuned to the traditional


Courtesy of Fahad Bahada

Foreign Relations Saudi Arabia is a peace loving country and one of the largest contributors of development aid globally, both with regards to volume of aid and in terms of the ratio of aid volume to GDP. Much of financial assistance goes to poorer Islamic countries or Islamic communities in non-Islamic nations. This sense of fairness extends to its philosophy regarding oil production and pricing and Saudi Arabia plays a moderating force balancing pricing that will allow for continued investment in the oil industry and continued global growth. General INFOrmation Full name: Kingdom of Saudi Arabia Population: 25.4 million (OPEC, 2009) Capital: Riyadh Area: 2.24 million sq km (864,869 sq miles) Major language: Arabic Major religion: Islam Life expectancy: 71 years (men), 75 years (women) (UN) Monetary unit: 1 Riyal = 100 halalah Main exports: Oil, gas, petrochemicals, steel, cereals GNI per capita: US $15,500 (World Bank, 2008) Internet domain: .sa International dialling code: +966

Courtesy of Fahad Bahada

tribal way of life, he favours reforms which are balanced with a respect for Saudi traditions. The kingdom has embarked on an $800 billion investment program running from 2008 to 2014 that could help create jobs and provide opportunities here which will give young Saudis a prosperous future.

Indigenous animals include the ibex, baboons, wildcats, hyenas and wolves found in the rugged highlands. Little birds exist in the oases, whilst the coastal regions on the Red Sea, with its coral reefs, boast a wealth of marine bio-diversity.

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The Five Pillars of Islam A simply structured faith that relies on the unreserved submission to God’s will as set forth in the Qur’an, the holy book of Islam, transmitted via the teachings of his revered messenger Muhammad (AD 570-632), the Five Pillars of Islam are the framework of sound Muslim living. A testament of faith, prayer, giving alms to the needy, (Zakat), fasting during the month of Ramadan and undertaking a pilgrimage to Makkah once in a lifetime for those who are able; these parameters essentially define what it means to be a Muslim.

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The Testimony of Faith: Iman or Faith “La ilaha illa Allah, Muhammadur rasoolu Allah.” This profession of faith means “There is no true god (deity) but God (Allah) and Muhammad is the Messenger (Prophet) of God.”  Called the Shahadah, this basic formula represents what all the faithful pronounce. The significance of this declaration is the belief that the only purpose of life is to serve and obey God, and that this is achieved through the teachings and practices of the last Prophet, Muhammad.  The first part, “There is no true god but God,” signifies that none has the right to be worshipped but God alone, and that God has neither partner nor son.  The Shahada must be said with conviction in order to convert to Islam. The testimony of faith is the most important pillar of Islam. Prayer: Salah or Prayer Salah is the name for the obligatory prayers that are performed five times daily, and are a direct link between the worshipper and God. As there is no hierarchical authority in Islam and no priests prayers are led by a learned person who knows the Qur’an and is generally chosen by the congregation. Prayers are said at dawn, mid-day, late-afternoon, sunset and nightfall, thereby determining the rhythm throughout the day. These five prescribed prayers contain verses from the Qur’an, spoken in Arabic, the language of Muhammad’s Revelation. Personal supplications, however, can be offered in any language at any time. Although preferable to worship together in a mosque, a

Muslim can pray anywhere, such as in fields, offices, factories and universities. This plurality of venues reinforces the centrality of prayers in daily life. Giving Zakat (Supporting the needy) As everything belongs to God, wealth is therefore held by human beings in trust and should be disbursed equitably.  Its original meaning indicates both ‘purification’ and ‘growth.’  An elightened practice that institutionalizes the practice of generosity, the root of giving Zakat prescribes means ‘giving a specified percentage on certain properties to certain classes of needy people.’  The percentage which is due on gold, silver and cash funds that have reached the amount of about 85 grams of gold and held in possession for one lunar year, is two and a half percent.  Through Zakat, possessions are purified by setting aside a small portion for those in need, and, like the pruning of plants, this cutting back balances and encourages new growth. Additionally, anyone can give as much as they wish as voluntary alms or charity. Fasting the Month of Ramadan: Sawm or Fasting Regarded principally as a method for self purification, during the month of Ramadan, all Muslims fast from dawn until sundown; also abstaining from sexual relations. By cutting oneself off from worldly comforts on a yearly basis - even if for a short time - a fasting person gains spiritual advancement as well as genuine sympathy with those who go hungry. Those who are sick, elderly, travelling, and women

Islamic tradition of breaking fast with dates in the month of Ramadan. It is also Sunnah - preaching of the Holy Prophet (P.B.U.H)

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Muslim pilgrims performing Tawaf (Circulations around the Holy Kabah in Makkah); A ritual of Hajj.

Courtesy of Fahad Bahada

menstruating, pregnant or nursing, are permitted to break the fast and make up an equal number of days later in the year if they are healthy and able. Children begin to fast and observe prayers from puberty, although many begin sooner. If properly carried out, this method of self control is not only good for health, but allows people to cut off from worldly comforts in order to focus on the purpose in life by constantly being aware of the presence of God.  God states in the Qur’an:  “O you who believe! Fasting is prescribed for you as it was prescribed to those before you that you may learn self-restraint.” (Qur’an 2:183) 

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The Pilgrimage to Makkah: Hajj or Pilgrimage The pilgrimage to Makkah (the hajj) is mandatory only for those who are physically and financially able. Nevertheless, over two million people go


Courtesy of Husain Al-Ahdal

Courtesy of Abdul Ahad Khan

Zakat - 3rd pillar of Islam, Charity, is manifested by donating any type of grain, money or food to the less fortunate ones.

to Makkah each year from every corner of the globe, providing a unique opportunity for those of different nations to congregate in a unified spirit of faith. The annual hajj begins in the twelfth month of the Islamic year - which is lunar, not solar - so that hajj and Ramadan sometimes fall in summer, sometimes in winter. Pilgrims wear special clothes: simple garments that strip away distinctions of class and culture, so that all stand equal before God. The rites of the hajj, which are of Abrahamic origin, include going around the Ka’bah seven times (The Ka’bah is the place of worship which God commanded the Prophets Abraham and his son, Ishmael, to build.) It also means going seven times

between the hills of Safa and Marwa as did Hagar (Hajir, Abraham’s wife) during her search for water. Later, pilgrims stand together on the plains of ‘Arafat (a large expanse of desert outside Makkah) joining in prayer for God’s forgiveness, in what is often considered as a preview of the Day of Judgment. The culmination of the hajj is marked by a festival, the ‘Id al Adha, celebrated with prayers and the exchange of gifts in all Muslim communities. Added to the ‘Id al Fitr, a festival celebrating the end of Ramada-n, these are the two principal holidays of the Islamic calendar.

Adan or Call to Prayer Through prayer, inner contentment is achieved and God is pleased. The Prophet Muhammad said “Bilal, call (the people) to prayer, let us be comforted by it.”  Bilal was one of Muhammad’s companions who was charged to call people to prayers. God is Great.  God is Great.  God is Great.  God is Great.  I testify that there is none worthy of worship except God.  I testify that there is none worthy of worship except God.  I testify that Muhammad is the messenger of God.  I testify that Muhammad is the messenger of God.  Come to prayer!  Come to prayer!  Come to success!  Come to success!  God is Great!  God is Great!  There is none worthy of worship except God. 

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Charting a New Course Nowadays it’s people that represent the world’s most valued asset; the 21st century equivalent to oil. If this is true, then the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is riding high on both fronts. With 60 percent of its 23.6 million-strong population below the age of 25 and boasting the world’s largest ‘black gold’ reserves with 260 billion barrels of known oil wealth - welcome to the unrivalled socio-economic powerhouse of the Arab region.

This is a golden era for foreign investment in Saudi Arabia. With the Kingdom introducing sweeping new measures to facilitate international business, its planned $624 billion worth of projects earmarked by the year 2020, reflect its position as the fastest growing economy in the Middle East.

The ninth largest country worldwide and the vastest in the Arabian Peninsula, accounting for 80 percent of its territory, even amid a pervasive climate of global economic instability, it holds its own. Thanks to both its copious buffer of capital reserves built up during the oil-boom years and the government’s bold policy of economic diversification propelled

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by a proactive fiscal stance; this nation’s commitment to non-oil sectors vital to its sustainability, is unstinting. Given its strong ties to the global oil market – and therefore the global economy overall – it was inevitable that Saudi Arabia would feel the impact of the worldwide economic downturn. Indeed, while 2009 was not a year

of straightforward progress, the Kingdom was soundly cushioned given its buffer of capital reserves. Moreover, the government has been careful to minimise the effects of the global crisis by deploying its resource wealth to fund development, maintaining stable governance and pushing education to the fore. For instance, the 2011 budget of


In 2010, the Kingdom ranked 13th out of 183 countries in the Top 20 countries in the World bank/IFC ‘Doing Business’ report which measures the quality of the regulatory environment. In 2008, Saudi Arabia stood 23rd out of 178 countries for ease of conducting business. Seventh for ease in paying taxes, third for ease in registering property and first in the MENA region for attracting foreign direct investment ($38 billion in 2008 according to UN sources).

US$ 155billion is the largest to date, targeting the development of non-oil sectors crucial to long-term development, such as health and education, as well as the funding of expansive infrastructure projects that have underscored its policy of increasing competitiveness through sustainable investments. With this buoyant performance carried on

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King Abdullah Financial City

The private sector’s prominence in the Kingdom’s overall economic has expanded impressively. Until the 1980’s it accounted for less than 10 percent of GDP. In 2008, it touched 48 percent. This proves that entrepreneurship, if properly nurtured, can reap enormous wealth for the nation.

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into 2010 and 2011, added to a reduction in inflation rates since the peaks of 2008, the Kingdom boasts unrivalled strength, matched by largely untapped potential across diverse spheres. While its petroleum resources undoubtedly remain the most prominent feature of its economy, it is by no means the Kingdom’s only asset. Expected to become the third most prominent bastion of the nation’s economy, together with energy and petrochemicals, mining is another appealing sector given the enormous reserves of gold, silver, copper and zinc to be found principally in the north-east and western mountains. Additionally, the advancement of manufacturing - from packaging and cars to electronics as well as construction - is rapidly feeding growing consumer demand. High average per capita incomes of close to $19,000 per annum means that the appetite for home-grown products is increasing. Equally, an insatiable demand for varied services, especially in the fields of leisure, real estate, telecoms and banking are also enjoying impressive government investment,


as well as public-private sector collaboration. For instance, the real estate market – a sector in pitiful disarray elsewhere regionally and worldwide – is healthy given the numerous and largely prosperous population, added to the erstwhile market undersupply. Shifting Gears Also positive is Saudi Arabia’s emerging profile on the global policy arena. Traditionally this Islamic nation was perceived as insular and more of a global financial benefactor rather than an agenda setter. However, its increasingly prominent role in the G20 is transforming erroneous perceptions. For instance, its active participation in addressing some of the world’s most obstinate challenges, including energy supply and demand, is crucial. As one of the top six contributors to the IMF and one of the largest donors of international aid when compared with GDP, Saudi Arabia espouses stability, participation and competiveness as strategic global objectives. These are also goals which the government is working hard to

promote domestically as a means of fostering social cohesion and increase employment. Ultimately, it’s in Saudi Arabia’s interest to see the global economy prosper since demand for oil depends on its health. However, it is also important for it to strike a balance between calls to support the international financial system and the imperative to invest internally in order to upgrade its education system and infrastructure as a route to greater economic diversity and balanced prosperity. On the international policy-scape, Saudi Arabia’s enhanced participation in global economic structures is nowadays based more on reciprocity (like China and India’s roles) so that the kingdom leverages its presence advantageously, instead of limiting its role to providing funding to the IMF and to receive the recognition it deserves. Participation in the G20 will give the Kingdom leverage to achieve greater regional consensus to emerge as a valid representative voice by the rest of the GCC and the Middle East.

Today the world recognises the role of Saudi Arabia not only in the global economic and financial system, but also in setting the tone for sustainable competitiveness and macroeconomic stability in the MENA region overall.

It has been said that ‘if you don’t communicate, someone else will communicate around you…nature abhors a vacuum’. Today the message of Saudi Arabia is loud and clear, and its means for getting heard are powerful. The world is listening.

Did you know? Today Saudi Arabia is the fourth largest holder of net foreign reserves worldwide and is one of the few G20 nations that present scarce macroeconomic worries. Within four years, Saudi Arabia’s economy has doubled to touch $500bn in 2010. Government debt to GDP (all domestically raised) has fallen below 10 percent from a high of 105 percent in 1999.

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Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority – SAGIA Across the organisation, from the National Competitiveness Centre to the Economic Cities and events such as the Global Competitiveness Forum, its core objective is to foster an agenda of sustainable competitiveness.

Aside from being a leader in terms of oil reserves, Saudi Arabia is at the forefront of oil production exports and refining capacity. Massive ongoing investment in this sector reflects its commitment to remain a leader in powering the global economy.

As the fastest growing economy in the Middle East, with $624 billion earmarked in diverse projects by the year 2020, never before has the Kingdom focused on its diversification progress so assertively. Assisted by positive economic indicators and international rankings such as the World Bank’s comprehensive ‘Doing Business 2008’ that ranks Saudi Arabia: 23rd out of 178 countries for ease of doing business, 7th for ease of paying taxes, 3rd for ease of registering property and 1st in the MENA region for ease of attracting Foreign Direct Investment (FDI); bold and innovative measures are in place to assist business practice and make the Kingdom an appealing destination for foreign investors. Having already risen from 67th to 11th in the World Bank / International Finance Corporation’s Ease of Doing Business rankings in the span of five short years, Saudi Arabia is committed to becoming one of the

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world’s most competitive economies for the attraction of FDI (Foreign Direct Investment) Attracting investors to participate in economic expansion, SAGIA was established by the Saudi Government in 2000. Designed to propel economic liberalization through various targeted measures, it is responsible for the management of the Kingdom’s investment environment. With an objective to achieve swift and sustainable economic growth through the creation of a pro-business environment, it nurtures investment with a range of services to investors. Saudi Arabia offers excellent business opportunities in key sectors of the economy such as energy, transportation, ICT and knowledge-based industries, with SAGIA guiding the drive for competitiveness; a bright future is coming to life in the Kingdom. What challenges does SAGIA face in ensuring that its model serves the truest

interests of your stakeholders and of Saudi socio economic diversification overall? SAGIA has been entrusted with the task of formulating and implementing policies for enhancing local as well as foreign investments, issue of licenses to foreign investors, facilitating to complete all formalities, issue of various documents to foreign investors to enable them to obtain visas and other permits etc. Towards this end, SAGIA has established three Investment Service Centers at Riyadh, Dammam and Jeddah, which serves as “one stop shops” for prospective investors from pre-investment assistance up to the beginning of the project. SAGIA, the nodal agency for investment promotion in Saudi Arabia was established to promote Saudi Arabia as an investment destination for domestic entrepreneurs as well as to attract foreign direct investment.


The Kingdom’s oil boom in the seventies paved the way for the establishment of one of the most thriving and fastest growing economies worldwide. Holding 25 percent of all known global oil reserves and as the vastest free market in the Middle East, Saudi Arabia accounts for 25 percent of total Arab GDP. With a domestic market powered by a youthful population with strong buying power, the opportunities are endless.

Salient features of the FIL are: • Right of full (100 %) ownership to foreign investors of their projects, including land, plant and buildings (residential as well as commercial) • Right to foreign investors to receive the full benefits and incentives normally available for Saudi investors, including favourable funding from the Saudi Industrial Development Fund (SIDF). • Right to foreign investors to hire and sponsor foreign employees • Right to full repatriation and prohibition of confiscation or expropriation of investment projects. • Right to allocate financial losses of foreign joint ventures to future financial years, with a free hand to companies in determining the number of years those losses can be allocated. With several other government investment vehicles already in existence, in what specific ways does the SAGIA offer critical differentials? While there are several government initiatives, agencies and commissions in Saudi Arabia that are seeking investors, their wider promotion to international investors is the sole responsibility of SAGIA. It is SAGIA’s role to market and position Saudi Arabia overall as an attractive destination for foreign investment. SAGIA remains independent and plays the role of a facilitator for these investment flows to specific projects within Saudi Arabia. One of the critical mechanisms in this facilitation is

Saudi Arabia’s Ease of Doing Business Ranking 1 10

16th

11th

23rd

20 30 38th

38th

2005 155 countries ranked

2006 175 countries Ranked

40 50 60 67th 70 80 2004 145 countries ranked

2007 178 countries ranked

2008 181 countries ranked

2010 183 countries ranked

Saudi Arabia was ranked by the 2006-2007 report as the 35th most competitive economy. In the most recent, the kingdom jumped to 11th spot.

through regulatory reform and improving the competitiveness of Saudi Arabia. In addition to this role as the foreign investment promotion agency for Saudi Arabia, SAGIA has also led the establishment of the Economic Cities, which are in of themselves locations for potential investment. An entity such as SAGIA finds itself in many ways, in an enviable position: with copious liquidity to move forward and a strong mandate to develop the future of

KSA ís economy through multi pronged investments, does it actually need a USP and does it have regional competitors? The recent global financial crisis has had a significant impact on global flows of foreign investment since the volume of flows have decreased and competition has increased as countries are increasingly reliant on foreign investment to drive economic expansion in their domestic economies. Despite the strong liquidity position of Saudi Arabia, foreign capital and know-how are an integral component of

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King Abdullah Economic city

its economic diversification. Therefore, it is imperative that Saudi Arabia offer investors a compelling value proposition for investment in key projects and sectors to effectively attract this know-how and capital. While it is natural to assume that other regional markets (UAE, Oman, Iraq) are competitors, increasingly Saudi Arabia’s true competitors are the fast emerging markets of China, India, Brazil and Northern Africa. These markets represent tremendous growth potential for foreign companies and each have a unique offering relative to Saudi Arabia. SAGIA is currently developing its 2010-2015 Strategy that will clearly outline the value proposition for Saudi Arabia as a whole but more specifically the value proposition associated with investment in a range of key sectors. In some regards it could be perceived that the SAGIA is competing with the

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private sector instead of empowering itÖ SAGIA serves two key stakeholder groups; the government and the private sector. For the government, SAGIA serves as the coordinating and promotion agency for foreign investment. For the private sector SAGIA’s activities are strongly focused on enabling and facilitating the flow of investment into Saudi Arabia. SAGIA remains independent and objective to where a foreign investor makes investments within Saudi Arabia, hence there is no overlap or areas of potential competition with the private sector. In the case of the Economic Cities, SAGIA served as the catalyst to their establishment and through the newly established Economic City Agency will coordinate and setup the regulatory environment and government services in these new cities.

Does SAGIA need to offer an alternative to the existing government investment culture, or are the prevalent systems fine as they are? SAGIA is currently taking two approaches to enhance the investment climate in Saudi Arabia. Firstly over the last five years, SAGIA has led a regulatory reform program entitled ‘10 by 10’, which aims to establish Saudi Arabia as one of the 10 most ‘competitive’ economies in the world. This initiative serves as a platform for regulatory reform that has resulted in an increase in Saudi Arabia ranking in the World Bank Ease of Doing Business Report from 67 in 2005 to 11 in 2010. In parallel to these efforts for broader reforms that will fundamentally change the investment climate, SAGIA has led the establishment of the ‘Economic Cities’ which will serve as pilot locations for new approaches at delivering


At a cost of more than $60 billion, Saudi Arabia’s economy is being propelled onto a whole new level with the construction of four integrated Economic Cities. This visionary development project will promote economic diversification, create over a million new job opportunities, homes for 4-5 million residents – and, most significantly, contribute $150 billion to Saudi’s GDP.

1. The jewel in the crown of KSA’s Economic City development scheme, King Abdullah Economic City (KAEC) is the largest private sector project in the region. Located off the Red Sea, between the two Holy Cities of Mecca and Medina and the commercial hub of Jeddah, KAEC is a dazzling metropolis that’s set to become one of the most important cities in Saudi Arabia. Home to two million people, when completed, it will be the size of Washington, DC

The city, costing US$ 27 billion is being built by a consortium headed by global real estate giant Emaar Properties and a select number of Saudi investors. government services that if successful could be rolled out across the Kingdom. Please describe the success of the “Economic Cities “programme led by SAGIA Investors in Saudi Arabia enjoy increasingly well-developed business clusters and value chains that set the nation apart from its neighbours and from other emerging economies. Forget everything you know about ‘industrial parks’ and ‘free zones’. Saudi Arabia’s four new Economic Cities – fully planned and under construction – are exactly that: new cities, where up to five million residents will live, work and play. Each will be an exciting metropolis, designed to maximise investment potential and deliver huge advantage to businesses located there.

KAEC is made up of six integrated elements, a seaport, industrial zone, central business district , residences and resorts, education zone and light industry based on low-cost feedstock. Elsewhere, the city’s state of the art port will make KAEC a global hub for light industries. With its close proximity to resource-rich Africa and the Middle East, the presence of innovative foreign and domestic industries and exceptional access to consumer markets in Europe, Africa and Asia, the city offers a wealth of opportunity. 2. Located in the northern-central region of Hail, the Prince AbdulAziz bin Mousaed Economic City (PABMEC) representing

an investment of US$8 billion, the city is expected to create 55,000 new jobs. PABMEC will be designed on clusterbased principles with an emphasis on transportation, logistics and supply chain centres.. A new international airport is expected to serve three million passengers per year while the city’s railway station will serve two million passengers annually.  As well as being a crucial transport hub for the region, PABMEC will play host to an agro-industrial zone, petrochemical and mining centres and processing and construction materials zones. In addition to its industrial zones, the city will also offer business, residential and recreational sectors and a knowledge centre. 3. Situated to the east of Al-Madinah, the Knowledge Economic City (KEC) will be a cultural landmark for visitors and a national centre for knowledge-based industries. It will focus on centres of excellence for education and training , as well as hosting new medical and bio –industries. 4. Located 60km northwest of Jizan City, Saudi’s most important port on the Red Sea, Jazan Economic City (JEC) is a state of the art industrial city that is geared to become an important logistics hub, a major destination for regional raw materials and an export platform for global consumer markets. As such, it’s expected to attract more than SAR 100 billion in investment and create 100,000 new jobs. The city will benefit from two key advantages; its location, close to the main trade routes between Europe, Asia and Africa, means it will have excellent access to these export markets plus it will become a strategic point for receiving raw materials from surrounding countries that currently lack processing facilities.

www.sagia.gov.sa

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High Commission for the Development of Arriyadh – HCDA

Al Kendy Plaza - Riyadh

Established in 1974 and chaired by the governor of Arriyadh region HRH Prince Salman bin Abdulaziz and HRH Prince Sattam bin Abdulaziz his deputy, the HCDA is responsible for the development of the city of Arriyadh. The capital’s comprehensive restructuring in terms of urban, economic, social, cultural and environmental fields is now flourishing rapidly thanks to the modern dimensions that the city is taking.

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Comprehensive strategic planning for Arriyadh To keep up with the rapidly growing pace of the city that has grown from (300 thousand people) in 1968 to (five million people) in 2010, the commission has focused on laying down a structural base by taking into consideration all the necessary elements for the its development such as the urban, structural, environmental, economic, social and cultural elements; in addition to transport,

housing, public services and infrastructure. This city planning is a reference for any future development of the capital and as also a means to control all elements that affect its growth. Carried out in three phases, this initiative is a work in progress that propels the cities’ sustainable evolution. Strategic regional planning for Arriyadh Balanced development in Arriyadh

region which is made up of 19 cities with an area of 374,370 square kms, representing 17 percent of the total area of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (total population 6.3 million) is being carried out via controlled evolution of towns and provinces. This must take place in accordance to a comprehensive urban plan that deals with the slow growth in most of the regional provinces which forces qualified people to migrate to the larger cities to find work.


King Abdul Aziz Historic Center

Overview of Riyadh with King Fahad Street and Al-Faisaliah Tower, displaying the dynamic metropolis development of the city

The development of the region needs greater vision and strategic programmes that will launch an all-out development process overall. This is the target of the high commission for the development of Arriyadh in cooperation with the regional council. This project aims to improve infrastructure throughout the suburbs and provinces through a unified effort that employs all public and private departments working together.

Executive development programmes The second aspect of the HCDA in developing Arriyadh is the focus on initiatives in response to the directives of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques. The Diplomatic Quarter This is a new neighborhood to accommodate embassies, regional and international organizations, with its own cultural aspects such as the cultural centre and another

area for holding conferences and exhibitions. Beautifully styled, the architecture of the neighborhood reflects the traditional Saudi Arabian design that matches the regional environment with its open places and elegant landscaping. The natural ambience was artfully leveraged to create isolators to protect against traffic pollution. Al-Direyiah Development This is the first capital of the Saudi state. Al-Direyah has its

social, historic, political and cultural values, in addition to its unique location, on the bank of Wadi Hanifa valley. Al-Direyah is blossoming as part of the capital or high-end cultural and tourist suburb with a historic town and the upgrading of old neighborhoods. Covering the social aspects of the town such as the security of the people, economy heritage and culture, the town is being rehabilitated to become a global hub for heritage and culture.

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King Khaled International Airport

Al-Hukm Palace area The commission went to the beating heart of the capital, the historic hub with all its traditional and commercial areas. The strategy to develop Al-Hukm palace area came in recognition of its pivotal historical, administrative and cultural role in the history of the capital. The central part of king Fahd Road that crosses the city from south to north was upgraded and Assalam Park was built, together with the Court of Justice. It is now trying to widen its remit to cover other old buildings in the heart of the city.

Interior of Al Hukum Palace

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King Abdulaziz Historical Centre Launched in 1999 to commemorate the centenary of the Kingdom foundation by the late King Abdul-Aziz Al-Saud, the centre is located in the historic Al- Murabaa neighborhood, which includes Al- Murabaa Palace that used to stand as King Abdul-Aziz Court. When designed, it was clear that it should look like an


High Commission for the Developent of Arriyadh

integral part of the architectural fabric of the area and the environment around it. Additionally, it should offer services to people living in the crowded districts in the middle of town. That is why greenery predominates. Wadi Hanifa development Wadi Hanifa is considered one of the most important land marks in Arriyadh. It crosses the city from far north to far south. It is 120 kms. in length with 40 sub valleys that bring about 7000 cm. of water with nearly half million palm trees growing around it. During previous decades, the valley deteriorated due to unchecked practices that harmed the environment. Today damage such as industrial activity, traffic, pollution is being tackled in order to rehabilitate the area to protect water sources, upgrade sewage systems and infrastructure sustainably. Ultimately, treeplanting, the construction of lanes and parking lots as well as overall measures to protect the valley and its tributaries, are transforming this area for the better. Al Thumamah Park Development To be built 85 kms from the city centre, near Al-Thumamah Ranch, northeast of the capital, the late custodian of the two Holy Mosques, King Fahd Ibn AbdulAziz gave part of this ranch to be included in this leisure development to be completed during the next 15 years. The Chamber of Commerce in Arriyadh has been invited to offer a plan for setting up a company to develop the park with the participation of investors,

financers and banks estimated at 2.5 b. SR. with an aim to create over 3000 jobs to service this integrated development. The Saudi Air Club and King Khalid Centre for Wild Life Research are also operating in the 10 square kms park with another portion of the area being dedicated to the King AbdulAziz Centre for the Arab Horse to create an open space as natural pastures for developing the best Arab horse breeds. King Abdullah Road’s Corridor This initiative is transforming Arriyadh into a multi- centre

city by creating ‘activity spines’ and establishing new urban hubs distributed on the edges of the city. The most important of these activity spines is the corridor of King Abdullah Road which extends from King Fahd Stadium on the east to King Khalid Road. In implementing this project several elements have been taken into consideration such as: Treatment of ground water, environment safety, pedestrian’s needs and economic capabilities in order to prepare the corridor to absorb light train transport and a means of modern traffic

management to protect housing units on the sides of the road. Light Rail Diversifying transport systems for the growing population of Arriyadh has been that is anticipated to cross 8.3 million inhabitants by 2030 means that city planners must upgrade public transport in the city including the establishment of a light railway. The corridor of King Abdulllah’s Road and OlayaBatha area has been earmarked for the first phase for this transport revolution.

www.arriyadh.com

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CHAPTER 2 Hotels & Hospitality

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“‫”ﺍﻟﻀﻴﻒ ﻻ ﻳﻨﺴﻰ ﺃﺑﺪﺁ ﻣﻀﻴﻔﺂ ﻋﺎﻣﻠﻪ ﺑﻠﻴﺎﻗﺔ‬

LOGO Position

Homer, Greek Poet

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Luxury in the Heart of Riyadh Since opening in 2000, Al Faisaliah Hotel has redefined not only Riyadh’s skyline, but also the five-star hotel experience for both business and leisure travellers to the capital city.

One of 18 international hotels operating under the prestigious Rosewood Hotels banner, the Al Faisaliah Hotel is considered the leading business and leisure destination in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Unparalleled luxury, attention to detail and personalised service is the ethos of this 330-room hospitality landmark. Its Managing Director, a seasoned global hotelier, Mr Peter Finamore explains more about this prestigious 330-room property. “Al Faisaliah Hotel is owned by Al Khozama Management Company, the property investment and management arm of the King Faisal Foundation, and has been the flagship property for the company since it opened a decade ago. The hotel offers a truly 5-star experience, with perfectly appointed rooms and suites, the finest in dining and shopping experiences, opulent banqueting facilities, unrivalled conference capabilities and superb health, leisure and wellness amenities.” ‘Il Terrazzo’, ‘La Brasserie’, ‘Cafe Royal’ and ‘La Cucina’, serve world-class food and offer guests a myriad of dining choices. The latter is Al Faisaliah’s newest eatery, serving Italian food at its best – simple, fresh and contemporary, guests can also choose to dine privately from a bespoke menu, taking advantage of the complete privacy this option offers.

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Luxury by design Positioned at the centre of the Al Faisaliah Centre - a profound architectural statement and milestone in the development of Riyadh’s urban landscape, the Al Faisaliah Hotel combines sumptuousness with inspired design to provide

the ultimate lifestyle and business destination. Fine furnishings, spacious rooms and the latest in communication and entertainment systems and stunning city views aside, he is quick to outline the deeper meaning of the exceptional luxury on offer at Al Faisaliah. “The opulence and attention to detail within the hotel extends well beyond the decor to the quality of service that Al Faisaliah Hotel guests can expect. Renowned for its professional, friendly and discreet service which is a hallmark throughout all the facilities of the hotel, guests also benefit from the Al Faisaliah’s signature 24-hour butler service. This is the embodiment of top tier service”, he explains. Opened in early 2011, the stylish new Al Faisaliah Hotel - South expansion of the hotel embodies 106 new premier rooms and suites to the five-star offering at Al Faisaliah. Designed in more than a dozen distinct styles, from comfortable junior suites to extravagant royal retreats, at 576 square metres and 77 square metres respectively, the stunning new wing boasts the most spacious hotel units in the Kingdom. Incorporating an exclusive ladies-only spa and wellness centre that complements the existing health and leisure club facilities offered to gentlemen guests at Al Faisaliah, this oasis


The recipient of numerous regional and international hotel awards and nominations, Al Faisaliah Hotel is recognised as the destination of choice for discerning business executives and leisure travellers who expect uncompromising quality matched by unrivalled service and amenities.

of tranquillity and wellbeing is the ideal place to go for the most comprehensive range of holistic treatments, fitness regimens and total relaxation experiences in Riyadh. Culinary delights Al Faisaliah Hotel is home to six of Riyadh’s leading restaurants. ‘The Globe’, the recent recipient of a World Travel Award for the Middle East’s Leading Architectural Concept, sits atop the Al Faisaliah Tower and has long been the most prestigious dining destination in the city. A masterpiece in architectural design, the three-storey geodesic dome also includes ‘The Experience’, open-air observation deck with unrivalled vistas of the Riyadh skyline, and the ‘Asir Lounge’, an exclusive cigar lounge that is unique in the Kingdom. The ‘Cristal’, specialising in contemporary European cuisine has recently introduced the concept of ‘Chef’s Table’. Mr Finamore says it is “A remarkable culinary experience offering insight into the tastes and techniques of the finest cuisine that is proving immensely popular with our guests.” An elite business destination “Ideally located in the heart of the city’s burgeoning business district, Al Faisaliah is regarded as the preferred address for discerning business travellers, government delegations and visiting dignitaries. It is also the venue of choice for many high profile business and financial events in the Kingdom”, Peter Finamore says. The conference and banqueting facilities accommodate all manner of business events, from corporate meetings and small exhibitions to multi-media conferences. Celebrations of grandeur In addition to exhibitions and business events, the grand rooms that comprise the Al Faisaliah Banquet and Conference Centre are ideal for family celebrations and weddings. For instance,

The Prince Sultan’s Grand Hall, which is the largest column-free ballroom in the kingdom, is the perfect setting for a lavish wedding. Likewise, the marble finishes, custom carpets and ornate chandeliers make the adjacent ‘Al Omsiat’ ballroom an ideal space for any prestigious event.

Rosewood Hotels & Resorts Rosewood Hotels & Resorts operates a unique collection of properties offering luxurious accommodations, unparalleled quality and personalized service. Each hotel features architectural details, elegant interiors and innovative culinary concepts that reflect local character and culture. This design and operating philosophy is core to Rosewood’s ability to create a uniquely authentic experience at each of its hotels and resorts. A Sense of Place® Al Faisaliah Hotel is part of the stable of Rosewood Hotels and Resorts. Headquartered in Dallas, Texas, Rosewood Hotels & Resorts manages properties worldwide including:

“Al Faisaliah Hotel holds a position of great stature in Riyadh, and we are privileged to be playing a part in delivering the vision of our owners – to offer the finest guest experience in the Kingdom and to ensure that our service excellence extends through every element at Al Faisaliah Hotel,” he concludes.

• Kingdom of Saudi Arabia - Al Faisaliah Hotel and Hotel Al Khozama (Riyadh); Rosewood Corniche (Jeddah) • USA - Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek and Rosewood Crescent Hotel (Dallas); The Carlyle (New York); The Mansion on Peachtree (Atlanta), Rosewood Sand Hill, CordeValle and San Ysidro Ranch (California) Rosewood Inn of the Anasazi in (Sante Fe) • Mexico - Las Ventanas al Paraiso and Rosewood Mayakoba • Caribbean - Rosewood Little Dix Bay (Virgin Gorda), Caneel Bay (St. John) and Jumby Bay (Antigua)

www.alfaisaliahhotel.com

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Make it Le Meridien Launched in 1981 to service the hospitality needs of the growing business community in the province, the Le Meridien Al Khobar offers a timeless enclave of elegance catering to the discriminating tastes of a diverse segment of travellers.

Centrally located in the heart of the city’s business district, this hospitality landmark delivers a world of understated class, comfort and convenience. ACCOMMODATION Every room boasts a private balcony with spectacular views of the Arabian Gulf and the Al Khobar Corniche, whilst the Royal Club executive floor extends special amenities to meet all traveller’s requirements; be it business or leisure. With 330 superbly appointed bedrooms, suites, villas and a Royal Suite, air conditioning, direct dial telephone with voice mail, remote-controlled flat screen television, mini-bar and safe - as well as internet connections - are

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Meridien AL–KHOBAR

standard amenties that ensure a ‘home away from home’ feeling that all Le Meridien properties are famous for worldwide. RESTAURANTS Embark on a culinary adventure to make any stay a memorable one. The two hotel restaurants and lounge provide a splendid variety of dining choices for any gourmet. Le Café de Paris offers international cuisine in an elegant setting yet relaxed atmosphere with its nightly theme night food festival. Whilst the 24-hour Al Nakhil Lounge, is an oasis of peace ideal for personal relaxation or a quiet business talk over a cup of coffee or tea and delicatessen treats.


A not-to-be-missed experience and an innovative way of dining, this eatery is considered one of the finest in the Eastern Province. Le Meridien Al Khobar’s pride – Fusion Restaurant is a new dining venue that offers a wide array of international specialties, fresh seafood and delicious selections in its one of a kind Sushi Bar. In addition, its famous ‘Water Bar’ adds a sparkle to bottled health waters that can be found - from still to sparkling - from different parts of the world. Located in the second level of the hotel, with stunning views of the Gulf,

Fusion is a haven of fine dining that has enriched the gastronomic panorama of the province overall. RECREATION, MEETING & EVENTS Welcome to Le Club, a recreation centre with extensive choices of health and leisure relaxation facilities where sporting activities abound. From temperaturecontrolled swimming pool with separate children’s pool, to a fully equipped gym, sauna, floodlit tennis courts and squash courts, sport and leisure time will be elevated to another level thanks to

these amenities that add value to any stay. At Le Meridien Al Khobar, all events are in perfect hands. With 15 ballrooms and meeting rooms that can comfortably accommodate from 10 to 450 people, complemented by

an excellent audio visual setup; conferences, seminars, meetings, weddings and more can be handled with expertise and effortless ease.

www.lemeridien.com

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Contemporary Luxury Comes Alive Bold moves in infrastructure development have given rise to integrated hospitality projects, such as the Park Hyatt Jeddah – Marina, Club and Spa. In response to the buoyancy of the tourism sector which, in 2007, received 11.5 million visitors; a 34 percent growth on the previous year .The beautifully landscaped gardens on the Jeddah Corniche not only envelop an innovative five-star sanctuary where opulence and exceptional service meets unrivalled views of the Red Sea and King Fahd fountain. They are also a fresh landmark at heart of the Kingdom’s second largest city. In Al Hamra District at the Equestrian Club, minutes away from the central business hub, diverse categories of travellers are welcomed with everything needed for a great stay: superb business facilities as well an impressive array of sport and leisure pursuits; an ideal launching point from which visitors can conduct business or explore destination’s activities. Guestrooms and Suites It’s not just the 142 guestrooms, including 15 suites, are appointed with the highest quality fixtures and home comforts combined with business and entertainment gadgetry, it’s about them being spacious. Measuring 40 square meters apiece, while the suites range from 80 to 200 square meters; there is true indulgence in their size. With bathrooms replete with deep-soaking baths and rain showers, total pampering is ensured. Meetings and Events Space With research showing that on average business travellers spend one week in Saudi Arabia, the Lazurde Meetings and Events Centre’s 2,500 square meters of meeting and banquet facilities adjacent to Park Hyatt Jeddah, demonstrates how facilities are being created to fill this growing demand. Accessible by a dedicated entrance, this elegant facility play host to wedding parties, product launches, corporate meetings and conferences for up to 800 guests. The 756 square-metre Ballroom can be divided into three separate spaces, with the exclusive Palm Courtyard accommodating up to 900 guests for outdoor events beside the Red Sea. Restaurants and Lounges The fulcrum of any hotel is always its lobby and here the central Lobby Lounge is the place to see and be seen, with high ceilings and deep, relaxing armchairs facing the Red Sea and King Fahd fountain views; it’s the ideal backdrop for business lunch or evening get together. The adjacent Cigar Room, serving quality cigars from worldwide is classy.

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Nafoura Restaurant This restaurant offers the finest Mediterranean food in “freestyle cuisine” - a concept that combines an excellent chef, a dynamic menu based on organic seasonal produce and a good dose of innovation. The design concept is a combination of high ceilings, stone flooring, contemporary interior and elegant relaxing seating. Nafoura serves from an open show kitchen and offers a large terrace featuring a traditional Middle Eastern grill station. Andalusia This buffet restaurant serves Moorish cuisine for dinner, and is located within the resort complex, adjacent to Seba, the Gentlemen’s Social Club. The open kitchen concept and lively atmosphere here provide a cozy, home-like ambience. Dardasha The Restaurant and Lounge at Evania, Ladies’ Spa, presents an elegant dining experience within the luxurious spa retreat. Offering exquisite à-la-carte dining for ladies, with indoor and alfresco seating, including a sophisticated array of traditional Middle Eastern and International cuisine. This is the perfect spot to relax before a spa pampering, or socialise after. Nadara The tea and juice Lounge is located conveniently on the ground floor within the Seba sports complex and Spa, offering a casual setting in which to unwind and enjoy a variety of natural freshly made juices. The dark wood and natural soft tones highlighted by vibrant accents provide a relaxing and peaceful atmosphere. Sports, Spa and Wellness Facilities An impressive 10,000 square meter complex for an array of sports and leisure pursuits is divided into separate ladies’ (Evania) and gentlemen’s (Seba) areas, including the Hydrotherapy Centre. Stemming from the true meaning of spa, or Sanitas per Aquas, Latin for ‘healing by water’, hydrotherapy draws upon the healing benefits of heated mineralised waters to revitalise the body and alleviate circulatory and stress-related ailments. An extensive range of massage therapies and the latest restorative and therapeutic treatments are available for total pampering and well being. Both separate sections are a haven of serenity with excellent relaxation, therapeutic and fitness facilities. A classic spa experience with a modern interpretation, where ancient healing rituals, natural spa products and

traditional spa experiences using essential oils, thermal mud, algae and caviar offers specific benefits to suit the specific needs of ladies and gentlemen. Gymnasiums with the latest Technogym equipment, indoor and outdoor swimming pools, squash court, authentic Hamam, large Aquamedic pool, three hydrotherapy suites and seven treatment rooms with private terraces

spell comprehensive well being. Additionally, a beauty salon where medical and nutritional professionals are available for consultation adds convenience, as do the outdoor facilities: a tennis court, extensive private gardens and a children’s playground at Camp Hyatt.

www.jeddah.park.hyatt.com

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CHAPTER 3 Education & CSR


“ ‫”ﺍﻗﺮﺃ ﺑﺎﺳﻢ ﺭﺑﻚ ﺍﻟﺬﻱ ﺧﻠﻖ‬ The Holy Quran, Surat Al-Alaq, verse 1


Cornerstone of the Future Education in the KSA is seen as paramount to the future socio-economic diversification and development of Saudi Arabia. The Kingdom is rich in working opportunities, and over the last decade, economic growth has been particularly powerful. The recent developments in all major industries teemed with the influx of foreign and local investments by both the private and public sector has meant that KSA will need more highly educated and skilled people actively participating in the workforce. As such, the Ministry of Education, (MOE) has formalised specific programs and initiatives to enable students in higher education to become better equipped in becoming part of KSA’s growing economy. Although education is free to all children, statistics in 1996 showed that only 61 percent of children attended school. This figure has been slowly rising over the last few years.

KSA is investing 25% of its annual budget into education, and is seen as one of the primary areas of development within the Kingdom Moreover, the educational system in KSA has traditionally been based more on religious teaching than academic relevance. In a bid to combat this problem and bring Saudi Arabia in line with the rest of the developed world in its educational development and policies, the government has developed a number of initiatives to help modernize teaching in KSA and to better equip teachers and students to deal with the technological advances which the Kingdom now relies upon to grow its economy. The MOE is investing heavily to eradicate illiteracy and to encourage students into more technical and IT based training. In terms of growth and development, the educational sector accounts for around a third of the national spending budget. There are five different types of schools in KSA, ranging from private and public schools to International schools and Tatweer schools. Tatweer schools are a government initiative set up by King Abdullah Bin Abdul Aziz for developing public education. Tatweer is seen as the most influential and powerful educational training program there is in Saudi Arabia to help radically transform and modernize the education system. The training program involves 1700 teachers from schools across KSA and has received government funding of SR9bn to implement the project.

One of the requirements for all new teachers will be to undertake specific examinations to ensure that teaching standards are fit to purpose and that the teachers have the skills necessary to deal with the students. The Tatweer training program involves training teachers on the latest technological breakthroughs in the classroom to replace the existing more traditional methods currently being used. The program will better equip teachers with specialist skills that will help their students achieve better results. The MOE has chosen to implement the project by picking one school in each governorate for a total of 50 schools. The project itself consists of four areas: development of teachers’ skills, curriculum development, improving school activities and bettering the school environment. The main goal of the project is to encourage students to analyze and think for themselves using a variety of different media, rather than being traditionally taught with heavy reliance on memorization of information.

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The teacher’s role is to facilitate better independent work from students, so that future generations of students will become selfsufficient thinkers who have a varied skill set. E-learning and distance education is another aspect being heavily invested in by the authorities in KSA. In 2005, King Abdullah implemented a scholarship program for Arab students who wanted to study in foreign Universities. To date, more than 5000 students have benefitted from this program which pays for tuition fees and living expenses for up to four years. The most common places for scholarships include Canada, USA, UK, Australia, France and Germany. In 2008, Saudi invested more than US$125m in e-learning, including distance learning classrooms in secondary schools. This figure is set to grow by 33 percent until 2013, and is a major step towards bringing Saudi Arabia into the 21st Century with its learning and teaching capabilities. The King Faisal Foundation is one of the world’s largest philanthropic organisations, promoting the importance of education in society. Its primary aims are to provide financial support via funding, programs and initiatives which improve communities and support local growth. Each year, it awards a cash prize of US$200,000 to those laureates who have made a dramatic impact on the World with their work. The main ethos of the foundation is to improve humanity and preserve the Islamic culture. Women in education are seen as a priority focus in KSA. On a cultural level, women in Saudi Arabia rarely take technical subjects due to religious restrictions with free mixing between males and females. To tackle this problem and to encourage women into the sciences, the government is developing specific higher education facilities aimed solely at women. The largest of these will be the Princess Noura bint Abdulrahman University (PNU), which will be the world’s largest university for women. Currently under construction, it will allow women to study more technical subjects without constraint.

Other notable women-only institutions include Effat University and Dar Al-Hekma, both of which are private institutions based in Jeddah. Both universities offer excellent teaching and pride themselves on the high calibre of graduates they produce each year, as well as implementing religious values in their students.

The Princess Noura University will cost a total of SR15bn and support 40,000 students in its selfcontained campus and residential area.

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Onwards & Upwards Established in 1976 by the sons of the late King Faisal of Saudi Arabia, The King Faisal Foundation (KFF) is one of the largest philanthropic foundations worldwide with well defined remits spanning six core areas.

Al-Faisaliah Complex

King Faisal’s son, the current DirectorGeneral, is HRH Prince Khalid AlFaisal, governor of Makkah Province in western Saudi Arabia, which includes Islam’s holiest city, Mecca, as well as Saudi Arabia’s main seaport and second largest city, Jeddah. Under his stewardship, KFF has evolved into a vibrant organisation that espouses diverse initiatives reflecting the steady progress - within an Islamic context – that represents the hallmark of modern Saudi Arabia today. Progressive nation building cannot be sustainable unless it is underpinned by institutions that exist to uplift, inspire and protect people in need. Whether it’s a grant to a talented student for post-graduate studies abroad, funding for hospitals, libraries or mosques, or a prize to an eminent scholar, benevolence enhances opportunities and

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therefore life. Once it is coupled with stringent selection procedures, a proven track record of excellence and a successful partnership between partners and stakeholders, it becomes infinitely powerful. King Faisal was credited for bringing prosperity to his Kingdom thanks to his ability in leveraging the nation’s wealth wisely and sustainably. This can be seen in the meticulous way in which the civic apparatus was developed during his 11-year rule - from the judiciary, infrastructure and defense, to enlightened welfare, education and labour policies - all within the clear Islamic parameters that he held paramount. A similar premise has been adopted by his eight sons, the current trustees of the KFF, in the management of this charitable entity that embodies his vision today. Although the Foundation welcomes


Al Faisaliah - The $320 million Al Faisaliah complex is the Foundation’s most spectacular investment. Comprising of five separate operations under a single management, the Office Tower, Hotel, Retail Mall, Hotel Suites as well as the Banquet & Conference Centre are a landmark in the heart of Olaya, Riyadh’s high-end business district. Designed by UK architects Foster & Partners, a commercial balance between the diverse entities ensures successful cross-trading opportunities. With all the profits from the complex going towards the Foundation’s extensive academic, scientific, cultural and community programmes concept represents the perfect example of profitability plus impact.

The King Faisal Foundation building designed to represent a Book with an Ink Holder and a Pen symbolizing Knowledge and Education - Located at the heart of the capital Riyadh

Prince Khaled Al-Faisal and Prince Charles announcing the KFF-Prince of Wales Chevening Scholarship Program in 1997

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King Fahed launching the opening of the new building of the King Faisal Foundation – 1984

King Faisal Palace in the heart of Al Faisal University

donations, it does not rely on this type of income to fulfill its mission. A carefully managed portfolio of investments, mainly in income-generating properties, create the revenues required to manage this vast operation, retaining the financial independence to grow existing programmes and develop new ones. Over the years therefore, strategic business partnerships that match the ethical calibre and operating efficiencies of the Foundation have been fostered. This approach not only fuels the revenues of the Foundation consistently, but by acting as an agent for change, it also strengthens the socio-economic fibre of the Kingdom by creating jobs and educational opportunities. Over the past three decades the KFF has touched numerous people’s lives worldwide. The varied programmes have either directly

Aside from these examples of munificence however, the King Faisal International Prize captures the popular collective imagination like nothing else. Rewarding scientific scholarship and acknowledging those who exceptionally serve Islam and Muslims, Arabic Literature, Medicine and Science has evolved into nurturing many of the leading thinkers of this age. Fifteen winners of the King Faisal International Prize winners have ultimately proceeded to win Nobel prizes. And the list goes on. With the establishment of schools and universities such as the King Faisal School, Alfaisal University, Prince Sultan College for Tourism & Hotel Sciences as well as the Effat University, the tools for this academic achievement are established for the overall future upliftment of the nation. Whilst with the King Faisal Centre for Research and Islamic Studies,

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or indirectly fostered the fundamental driver of growth and hope. With the common thread of Islamic cultural preservation and the improvement of the human condition woven into the fabric of the Foundation’s initiatives, it has evolved as a role model for similar institutions regionally. In terms of its philanthropic grants for instance, benevolence is not merely viewed as a handing out aid. All financial assistance is designed towards fostering self sufficiency, and creating opportunities such as employment. In addition, numerous scholarships rewarding outstanding academic achievements have been initiated. The renowned KFF-Prince of Wales Chevening Scholarship for greater understanding between the Islamic and Western worlds started in 1997 awards two scholarships annually for the study of Islam at postdoctoral level.


the achievements of the Arab-Islamic past and a modern appreciation of this cultural identity, are promoted with an outstanding library complex, manuscript and conservation laboratory as well as an in-house publishing house, lectures about various topics, series of reports, and Visiting Researcher Programs. Together this is how Islam’s rich heritage can be preserved for generations to come.

Philanthropy / Scholarships & Grants / King Faisal International Prize / King Faisal Centre for Research & Islamic Studies / Educational Activities / Al Faisal University / Prince Sultan College for Tourism & Business Abha / Jeddah / King Faisal School, University Preparatory Program (UPP), and Effat University)

Malaysian Prime Minister’s Wife visiting the King Faisal Museum Gallery – Jan 2010

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Al Faisal University

ALFAISAL UNIVERSITY What? Inspired by the legacy of the Late King Faisal and managed by the globally renowned King Faisal Foundation, this is a non-profit institution dedicated to world-class research and to the creation, dissemination and application of knowledge in the fields of business, engineering, life sciences and medicine; as well as to the development of knowledge-based economies. When & Where? Founded in 2003, Alfaisal University is located in Riyadh, in the surroundings of the Late King Faisal Palace. This purpose-built campus has the capacity to accommodate up to 4000 students. Equipped with superb facilities, it incorporates the four teaching college buildings, sports facilities, conference centre and cafes all on one site. Why? This is a student-centered university which creates and disseminates knowledge through world-class undergraduate and graduate education programs, research and service that benefit the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the region and the world. By stimulating the development of knowledge-based economies, Alfaisal is committed to ensuring that students have opportunities to succeed in their academic, co-curricular, extra-curricular, social, moral and civic pursuits; not just while they are enrolled as students, but lifelong. The focus is on assisting students in achieving their individual academic and personal goals in accordance with the university’s mission statement. In addition… Managed by a distinguished board of trustees, led by HRH Prince Khalid Al Faisal bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, the university is attracting world-class scholars and researchers to lead its Colleges and drive innovation in the Kingdom and the region. It has forged academic and research

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alliances with world leaders like Harvard Medical International, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, University of Cambridge, and Professor Michael E. Porter, Bishop William Lawrence University Professor. Using the latest technology and equipment, in both instruction and research, Alfaisal’s Colleges of Business, Engineering, Medicine and Science & General Studies work closely together, and with industry, government, and other leading institutions to address the region’s most exciting opportunities and challenges. Alfaisal has developed a comprehensive system of scholarships on undergraduate levels to provide the opportunity for qualified students regardless of economic circumstance to attend the university, develop into world-class scholars and researchers, thereby contributing to the tremendous future of the Kingdom and region.

www.alfaisal.edu PRINCE SULTAN COLLEGE FOR TOURISM & BUSINESS (PSCTB) What? PSCTB is a non-profit private college under the umbrella of Alfaisal University and accredited by the Ministry of Higher Education & Academic Cooperation. It collaborates with top universities worldwide, providing valuable exchange programs for both staff and students. Taught in a predominantly English language medium, the college fosters a balanced approach between the practical and academic spheres. Modern and student-focused teaching methods are used throughout the college where students are encouraged to take responsibility for their own learning, by questioning, planning, and taking initiative. When & Where? Established in July 2001, PSCTB has two branches: One in Jeddah and one in Abha, the capital of Aseer region in the southwestern part of the kingdom. With a temperate climate, the

KFCRIS Publications

region abounds in mountains, valleys and fertile plains. A prime tourist destination, PSCTB is located in the beautiful New Abha Resort with a spectacular view overlooking the Abha Dam Lake. Because of its location in a tourist area, an excellent and relevant environment to pursue their studies is ensured. Why? With the scientific development of business and tourism sectors, the college contributes to nurturing the evolving Kingdom’s business, tourism, hospitality as well as Hajj & Umrah services sectors according to innovative standards aligned with appropriate Islamic religion, culture and traditions. In addition… Vital for hands-on skill transfer, practical and coop training is an essential component in the college curriculum. It consists of two main stages. In the first stage practical training is offered within the college premises, whilst in the second stage students spend a term in training off-site in one of the chosen work fields.

www.pscj.edu.sa ww.pscabha.edu.sa KING FAISAL CENTRE FOR RESEARCH AND ISLAMIC STUDIES (KFCRIS) What & Why? A subsidiary of King Faisal Foundation, KFCRIS highlights the leadership and humanism of the


Late King Faisal bin Abdulaziz by promoting Islamic civilisation and supporting cultural and scientific activities and the academic research movement. It owns a vast library, as well as manuscripts and database systems, helping to prepare scholars in humanities and social sciences by offering academic and scientific assistance through the Visiting Researcher Program. KFCRIS preserves the Arab and Muslim heritage by promoting manuscript preservation, as well as contributing to the enrichment of the cultural movement in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia by holding lectures which address critical topics. When & Where? The centre was established in 1983 and is located within the premises of the King Faisal Foundation, in Riyadh In addition‌ KFCRIS publishes several publications: Alfaisal, Alfaisal Scientific, Alfaisal Literary, Linguistic Studies, Islam and the Contemporary World, the KFCRIS Bulletin, and the Islamic Civilization Magazine, an electronic magazine. The Centre, prepares a series examining

Prince Turki Al-Faisal receiving the US President Jimmy Carter at KFCRIS

current affairs in Saudi Arabia, the Arab region and worldwide: Contemporary Studies; Strategic reports on topics related to Saudi Arabia and the contemporary world; Special translated reports focused on issues related to Islam and Saudi Arabia; Review reports highlighting the conference proceedings organised by the Centre. With a total number of resources available at the Centre

by December 2009 end totaling 736,278, including books, manuscripts, documents, paintings, pictures and antiques this unique library offers visitors resources related to Islamic and humanities studies to both walk-in researchers and other visitors.

www.kfcris.com

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Effat’s vision for education, exemplifying the spirit of Islam in its quest for knowledge, truth, and enlightenment. The university provides an interdisciplinary environment, conducive to learning, research and life-long learning. In addition… After earning the university status, Effat University launched the first masters of its kind in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia - the Executive Master for Islamic Financial Management (XIFM) answering the needs of the Islamic Finance industry to educate the new generation of Islamic financial managers. Solid relationships with premier institutions such as KAUST (King Abdullah University of Science and Technology), Duke University, University of Miami, Paris Malaquais, Mount Holyoke College and University of Cincinnati position Effat University in the top realms of quality tertiary education regionally.

www.effatuniversity.edu.sa THE KING FAISAL SCHOOL (KFS)

King Abdullah giving Turkish PM Erdogan the Service to Islam Prize- KFIP 2010

What? The goal of the KFS is to develop youngsters through a rigorous national and international program of study. KFS students attain academic excellence based on a foundation of faith, knowledge and work in order to help create a sustainable and peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect. ‘Faith, Knowledge and Work’ is the school’s slogan. When & Where? KFS was established in 1991 as a non-profit institution and one of the most important academic projects sponsored by the King Faisal Foundation. The school lies on a beautiful, aesthetic campus with fourteen buildings and athletic playfields stand. All these facilities have been erected in harmony that is consistent with the style of the Diplomatic Quarter.

Effat University

EFFAT UNIVERSITY What? Effat University is a private non-profit institution of higher education for women in Saudi Arabia, operating under the umbrella of King Faisal’s Foundation. Effat University fosters the higher education of tomorrow’s leaders to international standards. Its graduates are living ambassadors of the educational and cultural legacy of Queen Effat Al-Thunayan Al-Saud.

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When & Where? The College was established in 1999, strengthened by the legacy of its founder, Queen Effat Al-Thunayyan Al-Saud, wife of the late King Faisal Bin AbdulAziz. In 2009, Effat College inaugurated its three Colleges and a Research and Consultancy Institute, paving the way to becoming a University as per Royal Decree. Why? Effat University is the living legacy of Queen

Why? King Faisal School was founded to achieve leading educational and academic goals that can be summarised in the simple phrase ‘man–making’ to enhance faith and loyalty to both the King and the nation. The School develops students’ abilities in the spiritual, academic and cultural domains while heeding Islamic values and Arab originality, it uncovers students’ potential talents and maximises these talents, helping students develop a sound character, habits and good behaviour to promote leadership qualities, as well as self-dependence, responsibility and constructive competition. The School boasts an impressive Electronic Library and has facilities to enhance the students’ ability to utilise modern technology in understanding different academic subjects and maximising their detection and deduction talent.


In addition… After reviewing the school’s operations, the decision to convert to the IB Programmes was made three years ago following a decree from the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdallah bin Abdulaziz and HRH Crown Prince Sultan bin Abdulaziz. This step gives students exceptional tools for growth. As a result, in 2007-2008 developed appropriate curricula, training teachers and administrators, providing the necessary facilities to receive official accreditation as an IB world school.

www.kfs.sch.sa KING FAISAL INTERNATIONAL PRIZE (KFIP) King Faisal School

What? Ranked by the ‘International Congress for Distinguished Awards’ as one of the world’s most prestigious awards, the KFIP has succeeded in creating a world-class award, respected for its transparency by the entire community of knowledge. Its primary mission is to revitalize and sustain the Islamic tradition of recognising human accomplishments that enrich life and society. Nominations for each Prize are accepted from relevant institutions globally. Independent experts examine all works in two elimination rounds, forwarding the works of finalists to autonomous specialist selection committees which convene at the KFIP headquarters to make the final choices. The Prizes are awarded during a ceremony in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, under the auspices of the King of Saudi Arabia. Each of the five Prize categories consists of a certificate, handwritten in Diwani calligraphy, summarizing the laureate’s work; a commemorative 24-carat, 200 gram gold medal, uniquely cast for each Prize; a cash endowment of SR 750,000 (US$200,000). Co-winners in any category share the monetary grant. When & Where? King Faisal International Prize is awarded annually by King Faisal Foundation. The Prize comprises five categories: Science, Medicine, Arabic Language and Literature, Islamic Studies, and Service to Islam. With the exception of Service to Islam, each category is distinguished by a topic that changes each year. Since the prize for Arabic Language and Literature, Islamic Studies, and Service to Islam were first awarded in 1979 and Science and Medicine were introduced in 1982 and 1983 respectively, there have been 209 laureates from 40 countries. Why? In the service of academic brilliance, awards received by KFIP laureates testify to the exceptional quality of their research. Fifteen of these winners have gone on to win Nobel prizes and dozens have won other awards that closely match the Nobel, such as The National Medal of Science, the Abel Prize, the Kyoto Prize, Prince of Asturias Prize,

King Faisal School

Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Prize, Marcel Benoist Prize, Gairdner Prize, Pritzker Prize and Shaw Prize. In fact, some KFIP laureates have garnered each more than 100 other prizes, tens of honourary degrees, fellowships, medals and various other accolades In addition… KFIP laureates’ have made awesome contributions to knowledge. For instance, Professors Gerd Binnig and Heinrich Rohrer (KFIP 1984; Nobel, 1986) invented a microscope that made it possible to see the surface of an atom with a diametre of 1/250 millionth of a millimetre. Professor Ahmed Zewail’s (KFIP1989; Nobel 1999) ingenious method of photographing chemical reaction at a shutter speed of a thousandth of a trillionth of a second made it possible to see how chemical bonds break

and reform. Professor Günter Blobel (KFIP 1996; Nobel 1999) discovered chemical signal tags, reminiscent of the luggage tags used in travel, which direct newly formed proteins to their exact location within the cell. It is the caliber of individuals such as these, combined with a rigorous selection process, which have earned the King Faisal International Prize international acclaim. Did you know? The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 2010 was awarded to Professor Robert G. Edwards “for the development of in vitro fertilization on 4 October 2010. Professor Edwards was the co-winner (with Professor Luigi Masterioanni) of the King Faisal International Prize in Medicine under the topic “Infertility” in the year 1989.

www.kff.com

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Cultivating Sustainability Social Corporate Responsibility is high on the agenda for most large organizations in KSA. This is because large corporations want to improve their core values and inculcate ethical business practices by giving back to those that are less fortunate than they are. They also want to increase transparency in the way they execute their business activities. Charity giving is the perfect way to increase corporate responsibility and help those people who rely on external help from charitable donors to give them a better quality of life. In particular, large organizations are now making it a part of their corporate culture to actively get involved in various projects both on a local and national level. Community projects include local projects which focus on alleviating poverty and helping those people who are struggling in their day to day existence. National charitable organizations include projects which generate funds for helping sick patients and their families with transport, lodging, medical and equipment costs. Some excellent charities which have benefited enormously from corporate fundraising include Al-Nahda Philanthropic Society, Prince Fahad Bin Salman Charity Association for Renal Failure Patients Care, Sanad Children’s Cancer Support Society and the Zahra Breast Cancer Association.

Al-Nahda Philanthropic Society Established in 1962, Al Nahda Philanthropic Society is founded by HRH Princess Sara Al-Faisal, HRH Princess Latifa Al-Faisal, Samira Kashukji and Mudaffar Adham. It is one of the first two non-profit organisations in the Kingdom. Working for the development of society, especially women and children, major initiatives include running Al Nahda Down Syndrome School. In addition, the Society works towards providing housing to underprivileged families, an institute for women’s training and employment, female employment in factories as well as a centre for heritage provision. Essentially, the mission of the society is to empower Saudi women, socially and economically, through financial assistance, training and job skills development.

Sanad Founded in 2003 under the Ministry of Social Affairs, among the aspirations of HRH Princess Adela Bint Abdulla Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Sanad is a non-profit organisation that supports children’s cancer centres along with the diligence of various other institutions in the Kingdom and also provides financial assistance, lodging and transportation services for children with cancer and their families. A variety of programmes ranging from educational, volunteer, appreciation, support and sponsorships, blood donation, preventive, and celebrations the most fondling are the ‘Toy for Joy’, ‘My Party’ and ‘Grant a wish’ Program that amongst others allows for the unfolding of its focussed activities to permeate throughout all levels of society within the Kingdom.

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Prince Fahad Bin Salman Charity Association for Renal Failure Patients Care Named in recognition of the humane role played by the Late HRH Prince Fahad Bin Salman, the association aims to give care to patients suffering from renal failure and assisting them socially and psychologically. The vast number of renal failure cases in the Kingdom prompted the move to start such an association to offer services like supplying medicines, equipment and medical supplies. By assisting needy renal-failure patients, the charity encourages and supports scientific research and support, via passable means, such as programmes of organs taking from clinically-dead people. The vision of the association is to create awareness about the risks of renal-failure, its causes and clarifying the steps that can be taken as precautionary measures.

Zahra Breast Cancer Association In 2001, Dr Suad Mohamad bin Amer created the Breast Cancer Awareness Program in memory of her mother, Zahra Bint Ali Bin Harfash who succumbed to the disease. Over the years, numerous activities and workshops have been held within schools, universities and women’s centres to create awareness about the disease amongst womenfolk. A dedicated group of volunteers made up of medical specialists, including psychology and physical therapists were selected for this purpose. The efforts of Dr Suad bore fruit when in 2007, when the Zahra Breast Cancer Association was established under the presidency of Her Royal Highness Princess Haifa Bint Faisal Bin Abdulaziz, together with a dedicated board of volunteers. The goals of the association include directing breast cancer patients to specialised healthcare centres for receiving treatment and necessary services, supporting scientific studies and research that aims to increase public awareness of the epidemiology and aetiology of breast cancer in women in Saudi Arabia establishing sound relationships with relevant professionals who can cooperate with the Association and participate in its activities.

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CHAPTER 4 Finance, Insurance & Security


“‫”ﺍﻟﻤﺴﺘﻘﺒﻞ ﻣﻠﻚ ﻟﻤﻦ ﻳﺤﻀﺮﻭﻥ ﻟﻪ‬ Ralph Waldo Emerson

LOGO Position


Securing Value Saudi Arabia has, despite the recent recession, maintained a strong economic position in the Middle East. With a stable currency and a vast amount of natural resources that are constantly in demand, Saudi Arabia holds 25% of the total GDP in the Arabian Peninsula, and is technically the largest free market economy in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). The Kingdom’s domestic market is growing at around 3.5 percent yearly, and the younger population is keen to spend money on consumer goods. The economic climate teemed with the propulsion of the government in foreign investments means that KSA holds a strong economic position and good financial authority. Saudi Arabia is ideally positioned as being attractive to outside investors. The main reason being that there are no restrictions on foreign exchange and also has a highly stable currency. The Saudi’s do not require taxes from companies until they become profitable and KSA does not have personal income tax either. There are also other laws on imports and exports which make it easy for investors to do business with Saudi. The cost of labour is low, so again, this is seen as attractive to private investors who see huge returns on their investment. All these factors mean that KSA has a stable economic infrastructure in place.

The Saudi workforce comprises of skilled and unskilled labour. Unskilled labour costs US$1.17/hr compared to US$22.60/hr in France. This keeps labour costs low and helps attract private investors. The commercial sector is heavily reliant on banks which offer a variety of financial services to its customers. At the heart of the KSA’s financial system is Saudi’s main bank – SAMA (Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency) together with commercial banks, the stock market and credit institutes. All banking is subject to licences and the Banking Control Law which are granted via the Ministry of Finance. Low inflation rates and the ability to use investment funds to buy stocks and shares means that Saudi is highly attractive to potential investors. The current banking system follows Islamic laws known as the Shariah. SAMA is Saudi’s central bank and is the acting bank to the Saudi government. SAMA issues the Saudi Riyal and supervises and manages the KSA foreign exchange reserves as well as protecting investments and investors.

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Islamic banking is changing the face of the economy for the better A number of other specialist agencies and authorities regulate the financial services provided to citizens and investors, and these agencies work closely with the government to enforce Islamic banking rules. The Capital Market Authority (CMA) controls the Saudi Arabian Capital Market and ensures that investors are protected from unsolicited or illegal acts in the market. The CMA is actively involved in all areas of financial banking and investment. It does this through Capital Market Law (CML). CML covers all aspects of finance from investments, brokers and the stock market to securities and loans, providing detailed guidance on the rules of Islamic finance.

Currently in the Middle East, insurance premiums make up less than 1 percent of the total global market, and premiums during 2010 were on average US$44bn. This figure is expected to rise along with disposable incomes and increased awareness of financial insurance products suited to the Islamic market.

Other financial services which are notable within the finance sector include insurance and security. Up until the 1990’s, insurance was forbidden under religious laws, but this has now been revoked and as such, the Kingdom realizes the benefits of the insurance system, even though it is not made compulsory like other countries. The most common forms of insurance cover cars, properties and corporate insurance. Life insurance is a highly controversial area, and although some companies do offer this, it is looked down upon by many religious leaders. As a result, the life insurance market accounts for just 4 percent of the total insurance market.

Security is big business in the Middle East and a key concern for Saudi Arabia which relies on exceptional security measures and advanced security systems being in place to protect its assets and resources. Security companies work with every aspect of the public and private sector from government and national security through to risk assessment and tailored security solutions for the oil, gas and utility industry and indeed any industry where security is seen as paramount. With an annual turnover of ÂŁ7.1bn, GS4 is the world leader in providing tailored security solutions for all business processes and has a strong presence in KSA. Under the name AlmajalGS4, their security solutions help optimize businesses and ensure safe and secure business operations and transactions across the board in Saudi.

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Al Rajhi Capital Al Rajhi Capital (ARC) is the independent, wholly owned investment banking subsidiary of Al Rajhi Bank, the world’s largest Islamic bank and the largest commercial bank in the GCC region in terms of market capitalization with total assets of SAR 185 billion, a paid up capital of SAR 15 billion and an employee base of over 8,500 associates.

Headquartered in Riyadh, Al Rajhi Bank is listed on the Saudi Stock Exchange (Tadawul). ARC is licensed by the Saudi Capital Market Authority (7068/37) to carry out investments related businesses and financial services. Al Rajhi Capital’s mission is to provide high quality investment banking products and services that are tailor-made to meet investors’ particular requirements.   In addition, ARC’s investments comply with the guidelines of the ARC Shariah Board.  Al Rajhi Capital is based on the solid values and investment experience established by Al Rajhi Bank, a leader in banking products and services.  Our staff has a breadth of global expertise and experience to assist clients in fulfilling their investment goals. Comprehensive investment solutions for individual and institutional investors include:

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Asset Management, Brokerage and Investment Banking Advisory are provided through Al Rajhi Capital. As a leader in providing brokerage services, ARC currently acquires the largest trading volume in the Tadawul stock exchange and also manages a wide range of asset management funds that are always amongst the top ranking in the MENA region. Asset Management The Asset Management Division of ARC offers both packaged and bespoke investment products to meet the investment needs of all investors and constantly endeavors to launch innovative products and customer focused initiatives to increase value to investors. ARC offers a wide range of professionally managed mutual funds suitable for all

investors, individual and institutional, with varying risk appetites and time horizon, across the key asset classes that include Commodity Funds, Equity Funds (Local, GCC and International) and Fund of Funds. ARC mutual funds have been recognized and awarded consistently for their outstanding performance over the years by industry leaders; some of the recent ones include the following: Lipper Awards • 2010 - Al Rajhi Local Shares Fund, ‘Best Islamic Fund over 3 Years’ (Equity Saudi Arabia - Gulf Region) • 2009 - Al Rajhi Local Shares Fund, ‘Best Islamic Fund over 3 Years’ (Equity Saudi Arabia - Gulf Region)


• 2009 - Al Rajhi Local Shares Fund, ‘Best Fund over 3 Years’ (Equity Saudi Arabia Gulf Region) • 2008 - Al Rajhi Local Shares Fund, ‘Best Islamic Fund over 1 year’ (Equity Saudi Arabia - Gulf 2008) • 2008 - Al Rajhi Balanced Fund 2, ‘Best Fund over past 1 year’ (Mixed Asset USD Aggressive – Gulf 2008) Brokerage Services Al Rajhi Capital is one of the leading largest brokerage houses in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, equipped with state-ofthe-art IT systems and well experienced staff. Amongst the broad range of hightech trading channels offered to satisfy the needs of all client segments not only in Saudi Arabia but also in the GCC and international markets is the ARC Internet Trading Service. This internet trading platform is innovative and progressively updated with the latest technological trends; providing full information and access to the Saudi Tadawul market. ARC also offers access to trading in major GCC and International markets, which can be accessed through phone or internet services offered by ARC. Other delivery channels include Automated Phone Trading, Mobile & Phone Trading and specialized Central Trading Units That caters for clients with large amounts of trading volumes. Research The Research Department works proactively to raise awareness & inform existing investors & potential investors (both on the individual & corporate levels) of the latest market trends & other particulars. The published reports also provide analyses of price indices & local as well as international markets. The data is designed to positively equip readers for better decision-making in their investments. Investment Banking Advisory The Investment Banking Division is staffed by a team with a wealth of experience in the full range of investment banking services. The Investment Banking Division offers strategic financial advisory to its clients and assists them in determining the most suitable fund raising options. ARC’s Investment Banking Division can support clients in various areas including Financial Advisory, Syndicated and Bilateral debt, Sukuk, Initial Public Offerings, Right Issues, Private Placements, Mergers and Acquisitions, and Underwriting. The Investment Banking Division is currently engaged in a number of mega transactions that involve advising and arranging for an amount exceeding SAR 15 billion. In 2010, ARC underwriting commitments were around 22% of total public offerings in Saudi Arabia. ARC’s IPO services continue to maintain a leading position as a receiving entity in terms of number of subscribers and collected amounts.

Zawya Rankings (As of Sep 2010) Name of the fund

Rank

Category

Type

Al Rajhi Balanced Fund I

1st

Saudi Fund of Funds

Islamic

Al Rajhi SAR Commodity Fund

1st

Saudi Trade Finance

Islamic

Al Rajhi GCC Equity Fund

2nd

GCC Equity

Islamic

Al Rajhi Local Shares Fund

2nd

Saudi Equity

Islamic

www.alrajhi-capital.com

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Shoulder Nothing Insuring reliability and sustainability, Medgulf Group has been doing business for over 30 years. The positive track record reflects its strong capitalization, strong operating performance and strong liquidity. and processes is another way to move into the big league and stay there. This immediately helps to expand the existing client base of corporations, individuals and partnerships with brokers, government agencies and institutions, both in the local as well as regional markets. MedGulf is succeeding in its mission to offer a wide range of business and personal insurance covers expertly customised and competitively priced to meet the exact requirements of corporate and individual clients. “Products are continually re-evaluated and redesigned to ensure they are appropriate in the current environment. We take our work seriously and it shows”, he concludes.

Since 1980, MedGulf has been offering the community in the Middle East with reasonably priced insurance products, designed on a basis of solid security, allied with quality service.

With its sound and variety of insurance products meticulously designed to service a range of clients and portfolios, Medgulf Group offers its services in Saudi Arabia as well as Bahrain, Lebanon, UAE, Jordan, Egypt, Turkey, UK and South Africa. Today MedGulf embraces core principles such as modernization and innovation to improve its service offering. Medgulf’s resolute commitment towards sound and prudent underwriting policies in the field of Insurance and Risk Management has contributed to its steady growth. This overall positive performance is in line with their strategic goals, consistent financial results and key positioning in local and regional markets. In Saudi Arabia, Medgulf operates as a cooperative insurance company, boasting the largest capital among insurance companies in KSA (SR 800 Million). The figures speak for themselves, with gross premiums of SAR 1,849,482,433 and net profits of SAR 146,514,414 in 2009. The Medgulf team is justifiably proud of the firm’s history, characterized by continuous, unabated growth that has transformed Medgulf in KSA into a sizeable risk carrier and the one of the largest players in the MENA region. Current economic vicissitudes notwithstanding, a solid financial base supported by sound reinsurance protection which upholds MedGulf’s shortterm and long-term commitments to clients and partners gives the edge required to evolve successfully in an increasingly globalised arena.

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“We recognise our humble beginnings, but today we have entered a new environment and the kingdom is positioning itself as a world respected player and a hub for regional excellence. We must ensure - as a key pillar of the Saudi business establishment - that we can effectively mirror that image”, explains Mr. Lufti Fadel El Zein - Executive President. So how is MedGulf going about strengthening its market share and extending its brand for the long haul? Medgulf’s specific strengths and experiences in complex products in Engineering ROP UP Projects, Aviation and Property All Risks, Health and Life covers have lead the Group to its current prominent position in the insurance market in the Middle East. In addition, ‘Takaful’ Insurance is a segment that MedGulf is looking at carefully as the organisation is keen to provide socially viable alternatives to conventional insurance. MedGulf’s long standing traditions of integrity may underline their commitment in every policy issued, but the firm’s commitment in valuing diversity – of people and ideas – is invaluable in creating a winning synergy for the organisation. When it comes to employing young Saudi nationals, another cornerstone of sustainability in KSA, Medgulf is determined to position MedGulf as a ‘magnet for insurance talent’. Although it has been said that more could be done to attract young Saudis to the industry, the management places great emphasis on training, rewarding and retaining talent. Upgrading internal infrastructure, IT capabilities

Welcome to a comprehensive range of insurance and reinsurance products and services of the highest standards and reliability • Insurance and reinsurance in Lebanon, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Kingdom of Bahrain, UAE, Turkey, and the United Kingdom, Jordan and South Africa. • Reinsurance placement in the UK and risk management for its clients in the Middle East. • Third party administration (management services) in Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, UAE and Jordan.

MedGulf Group is working relentlessly to correct the reputational damage carried out in some Middle Eastern markets due to decades of shoddy practices in the sector overall.


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Insurance the Elite way Decision, decisions, decisions. Choosing the ideal plan to insure one’s business, when numerous options clamour for selection, is a daunting task. Not anymore, when Elite Insurance and Reinsurance Brokers are at hand.

Elite Insurance & Reinsurance Brokers are committed to providing competitive products and exceptional service to earn the business entrusted to them by their policyholders and associates. The management and team remain focused on the vision and strategies necessary to continue the company’s long history of profitable growth and solid returns to shareholders.

Their expertise in the industry eases the process of sorting through the different pricing, products on offer, areas of strength and the quality of the security to be considered. Elite Insurance & Reinsurance Brokers was formed in 2008 under the umbrella of FH Elite Holding to develop and provide a complete panel of insurance and reinsurance brokerage and risk management solutions for carefully elected clients across a wide range of business sectors. This is a challenge given the rapid profusion of insurance companies currently operating in

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the Kingdom today. Each of them differ their pricing, products offered, areas of strength, and last but not the least, quality of the security. For someone not dealing with the insurance market on a daily basis, the array of choices is bewildering and often the best option available is not known. Simply put, an insurer who is outstanding at Marine Cargo Insurance may not be the best for, say, a Property Insurance or Life Insurance product. As an insurance broker, Elite Insurance & Reinsurance Brokers assists in accessing the best options available. The company has the distinct advantage of

being owned and managed by professionals with a wealth of expertise in Reinsurance and Insurance broking on a local, regional and global basis. Elite Insurance & Reinsurance Broker involves itself throughout the entire process in the event of a claim made under an insurance policy arranged by the company is made. It assists in the preparation of the necessary documentation for submitting the claims. The company also liaises with the insurance company, loss adjusters, surveyors, carriers and other involved third parties on the client’s behalf.


What makes Elite Insurance & Reinsurance Brokers successful? The company ensures that it builds the team and service program around each client’s specific needs. By being focussed on responding effectively to client feedback, it works towards creating a true partnership whatever the coverage requirement or complexity. Known for its expertise and knowledgeable, friendly staff their clientele includes most of the major insurance and reinsurance companies, as well as government entities and global corporations. In order to uphold its unwavering commitment to building customer service excellence and to support its clients, the company develops local teams who understand the importance of creating winning solutions that fit the culture and region.

Dr.Tariq AL Fayez Chairman & Chief Executive Officer

Dr. Mahmoud Abu Hweij Deputy Chief Executive Officer

Mission • To provide a wide range of general, health and life insurance products and services for both retail and corporate clients. • To build successful partnerships with key customers, channels, and institutions within each market. • To provide the highest standards of customer service and professional integrity within each market. • To create a rewarding working environment for employees to fully utilise their skills and experience. • To provide outstanding service and superior coverage to each and every one of its clients. Elite Insurance & Reinsurance Broker helps the client to identify its individual insurance needs in order to develop the most comprehensive, cost-effective solution. • To adhere to the principle of transparency in all of our business contacts with foreign principals and as well as to our local counterparts.

The company’s vision is to create an organisation to eventually lead the regional insurance industry. By opening its doors to the international insurance and reinsurance markets, the brand is acknowledged as a good alternative source and provider of reliable products across diverse areas.

www.elitere-sa.com

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Keeping Businesses Safe An essential prerequisite today, providing security against potential threats is vital to businesses worldwide. Placing appropriate security measures require professional handling. With threats taking on new and increasingly sophisticated forms, it is mandatory to seek the ideal platform to implement safety measures. G4S is one such platform.

Operating in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia since 1981, almajal G4S has grown to be a leader in providing security and cash services as well as an entire range of specialised solutions for diverse security challenges.

Operating in over 110 countries across the globe, G4S (Group 4 Securicor) is an international security solutions group that has become a brand that spells trust and integrity. A wide variety of business sectors that involve security and safety risks entrust G4S to meet their security needs. In addition to providing assessment of current and future risks, developing secure solutions to minimise their impact; G4S works with the Government around the world to assist in this sphere too. Holding more than a century of experience in security solutions, the company is listed on the London Stock Exchange with a secondary listing in Copenhagen and over 585,000 employees. In the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, almajal

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G4S Saudi Arabia is one of the top 100 companies in the Kingdom with 13 branches and over 16,000 employees throughout the Kingdom. Beginning its operations in 1981 today, it has grown to become the leader in providing security and cash services in Saudi Arabia. With the mission to seek the highest quality of services and successful partnership with its customers, almajal G4S Saudi Arabia provides integrated security solutions such as manned security, electronic security, Cash-In-Transit (CIT), cash counting and processing, ATM management, secure storage, facility services (housekeeping, Operation & Maintenance, landscaping, pest control and catering services), audit and consultancy.

Targeting sectors like financial/banking, diplomatic, Government, industrial, events, tourist/hospitality, real estate, retail, aviation and ports, almajal G4S Saudi Arabia is a specialist when it comes to taking care to what is important. • Static Security Services or Manned Guarding. • Certified Protection Officers (CPOs) • Security Post Management • Beat Patrol • Access and entry control • Fire Fighting • Emergency Response • Close Protection • Store Detectives


Through its network of local branches, local experts, and sector specialists, almajal G4S guarantees its clients a highly localised service and high level of responsiveness.

Certified Protection Officers almajal G4S provides high-end Security Officers who are capable to perform and maintain essential security measures • • • • • • • •

Protecting Life & Property Access Control Visitor and Badge Control Patrolling Services Emergency Responds Enforcing Security Rules and Measures Marine Patrolling Explosive Detection and Threat Assessment (K9) • Special Event Security • Incident Management and Reporting

Electronic Security Systems almajal G4S has developed an encompassing range of security products that facilitates comprehensive site security management. A multi-faceted approach to offering security requires, among others, physical protection (barriers), electronic protection (detection), and process (monitoring, screening and control). These security products reduce risk and optimise the overall security solution, keeping in mind efficient utilisation of electricity to help save money and be eco-friendly. Operation and Maintenance Holding extensive experience in the field of Plant Operation and Maintenance (POM), almajal G4S is dedicated to implementing professional key performance indicators for maximum productivity (KPIs). Operation Standards as well as designed Computerised Maintenance Management

Systems (CMMS) are being effectively utilised to plan preventive and corrective maintenance programs for all facilities being manned by almajal G4S. Specialised POM services, operates and maintains a wide range of facilities • Commercial and medical facilities • Residential and industrial facilities • Refineries, petrochemical and oil refuse disposal plants The Operational Objectives are to reduce downtime and operational expenses as well as to extend equipment life, automation and uphold safety procedures. Housekeeping Services One of the impacts of modern age on humanity is the demand for hygienic living conditions and working environment. Schools, hospitals, banks, commercial centers, office buildings and many other facilities require constant care in order to prevent contamination and the spread of disease in order to retain a healthy environment. With

this premise in mind, almajal G4S provides professional housekeeping services to all market segments. These services are controlled by experienced project managers and supervisors, executed by a welltrained work force equipped with the latest management systems and know-how. Competitive Advantages Its professional work forces are highly trained and customer service oriented. • G4S utilises correct systems, technology, know-how, tools and equipment. • It uses EPA registered, safe, and cost effective chemicals. • It applies strict quality control measures. • It respects its customer’s opinion in service and provides them with proper solutions. • It reduces cost incurred by its customers and assists them to optimally use their resources. In tune with its corporate vision, almajal G4S offers total integrated solutions.

www.almajalG4S.com

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CHAPTER 5 Technology & Telecommunication

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‫”ﻟﻮ ﺍﺿﻄﺮ ﺍﻹﻧﺴﺎﻥ ﻻﺳﺘﻐﻨﻰ ﻋﻦ ﻛﻞ ﺍﻋﻀﺎﺋﻪ ﺳﻮﻯ ﺃﺻﺒﻊ ﻳﻀﻐﻂ ﺑﻪ ﻣﻔﺘﺎﺡ ﺍﻟﺘﺤﻜﻢ“‬ ‫‪Frank Lloyd Wright‬‬

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Connecting with the Future Today, Saudi Arabia boasts of a rapidly developing communications and information technology infrastructure (CIT). Increasing efforts in liberalisation have allowed foreign entrants into the market. Two bodies overlooking developments in CIT are the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MICIT) and the Communications and Information Technology Commission (CITC). The former establishes plans and initiates expansion policy while the latter sees to its implementation. Both organisations promote growth in the sector through short term and long terms goals through annual plans. According to the CITC, Mobile penetration in Saudi Arabia was around 12 percent. Due to effective plans and liberalisation the figure had broken the 100 percent barrier and reached a 144 percent by end of 2008. The past decade has brought about tremendous change in the Saudi telecoms market. With 5 mobile broadband licences being mobile network providers and multiple licences issued to foreign data and communication service providers for services such, the market has turned lucrative for prominent foreign entities such as Mobily, Etisalat and Zain. The Kingdom is the El Dorado for foreign investors in CIT due its size, increasing demographic and high per capita GDP. Competition has not only brought more services at reduced rates for customers but has also encouraged companies to innovate new technology. Experts believe the country is on the path to global recognition and international competitiveness with appropriate and quality investments in state-of theart technology.

Etihad Etisalat is the parent company of Mobily which won the first round of licence bids in 2004 with a $3.5 billion offer. In 2007, Kuwait bred Zain was the new entrant with bidding fee of $1.6 billion for a mobile licence in Saudi Arabia. There has been a paradigm shift in how people in Saudi Arabia consume technology. Dissemination of news and technology through international media has brought consumers to demand better quality services and new innovative services from CIT authorities in the Kingdom. Service providers are aiming for better domestic understanding of the user to cater to different needs for information. Value added services among other basic trends are the only way one can retain customers and face competition. Also, a well educated dynamic youth with purchasing power and proliferation of internet and communication services has boosted the otherwise ‘late-bloomer’ to a direction of evolving into one of the world’s most dynamic and challenging telecom markets.

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Saudi Arabia is undergoing a tech-renaissance emerging as a heavy consumer of IT products. The National Communications and Information Technology Plan implemented from 2007 onwards, gives hope to a vision of spreading the latest technology in all parts of the Kingdom. Developing this sector is crucial to achieve the anticipated economic growth which also includes constructing ‘smart’ cities based on comprehensive IT solutions. The rising demographic has brought 40 percent of Saudi population under the youth that demand for technology to keep pace with their international counterparts. The same can be said about traditional businesses moving to IT operated businesses to compete better in the global market.

A crucial element of the IT reforms in the Kingdom is the introduction of e-government called’ Yesser’. This will ease interaction between citizens and public officers and bring positive change in people’s attitude towards IT.

Internet Growth and Population Statistics: YEAR

Users

Population

% Pop. Usage Source

2000 2003 2005 2007 2009 2010

200,000 1,500,000 2,540,000 4,700,000 7,761,800 9,800,000

21,624,422 21,771,609 23,595,634 24,069,943 28,686,633 25,731,776

0.9 % 6.9 % 10.8 % 19.5 % 27.1 % 38.1 %

ITU ITU C+I+A ITU ITU ITU

At the start of the millennium, a 64-kilobyte connection would cost $4,800 annually. Today, a standard 256-kbps costs less than $500. Though higher than other countries, rates are slowly declining, making it affordable for a wider subscriber base. Trends in IT have boosted profits for computer, laptop and hardware companies. More equipment is now being sanctioned for education, business and entertainment segments. Global brands such as DELL, Hewlett-Packard and Acer have seen exponential growth in the Kingdom. The importance of IT cannot be denied in a wholesome education which is why the government has allocated billions for the Tatweer Project, which aims at revamping learning in institutes through quality IT products and solutions.

Developing IT solutions locally has been troubling industry watchdogs. With economic slowdown it’s not in the best interest of the sector to wholly import IT products and solutions. Thus there is a hope for liberal CIT sector to encourage mushrooming of local IT enterprises.

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Gateway to the Middle East Advanced Electronics Co; (AEC) is a National Economic Offset Company established in 1988. Throughout its history, it has reached an unrivaled reputation as the largest System Integrator in the country.

As an offset company, AEC was created to meet government objectives of diversifying the economy, creating job opportunities and transferring technology. These objectives have guided AEC management towards excellence, whilst supporting the wider needs of society. Although the charter of AEC is wide in scope within the electronics business, AEC aims to create values to all stakeholders with no exception.

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It is engaged in developing local capabilities in strategic areas of advanced electronics: manufacturing, repair, system integration as well as sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services for different sectors like Defense, Telecommunications and Industrial. Dr. Ghassan Shibl President and CEO, AEC explains the rationale behind the company’s progress. “Exceptional organisations implement their mission and vision by developing a stakeholder focused strategy taking into account the markets and sectors in which it operates. Through dedication, we have made headway in serving the region respecting our corporate values with a range of products, solutions and services over the past 20 years”, he explains. The organisation’s goals are unequivocal. “We want to be the foremost electronics technology

leader and ICT solutions provider in the Middle East by developing a customer centric, market-driven, technologybased diversified organisation that localises technology and creates job opportunities.” Being customer-focused, they build their relationships on integrity, whilst ensuring total customer satisfaction. In this quest, AEC has adopted a holistic management approach that fosters business agility and effectiveness while striving for innovation, flexibility and integration. The AEC team is naturally diverse – encompassing 2,100 people with a variety of skills, qualifications and experience. “We benefit from this tremendous source of local talent to create a great company – an empowered workforce that is committed to the success of our customers.” This has been demonstrated across all aspects of the business and AEC is improving


its commitment to diversity by aligning its business strategies with end customer’s priorities, creating long-term partnerships with leading international companies, harnessing opportunities, acquiring new capabilities and investing in their people as well as the community at large. AEC is organised around three business areas: Military Systems Business Unit, Telecom Systems Business Unit and Industrial Systems Business Unit (supported by its Corporate Development Unit). Since 2008, non-organic growth by engaging joint ventures and partnerships has flourished. For instance, The AASC (Advanced Arabian Simulation Company) is a joint venture between AEC and Thales Training and Simulation, along with another JV, which is GBC (Gulf Batteries Company) to maufacture specialised batteries in partnership with HBL Power Systems Ltd and Abdullah H. Al Shuwayer group. “We are ensuing partnerships in the areas of Next Generation Networks and Automatic Meter Reading as these are examples of how AEC is addressing its growth strategy across all Business Sectors. We are considered a national asset by the customer communities and government institutions”, Dr. Shibl reveals, “This keeps us striving to achieve new milestones.” AEC has been instrumental in successfully delivering several major telecom programs in partnership with leading international OEM’s. The Telecom Systems (TSBU) is vital in supporting local telecom requirements for systems development, integration, manufacturing, repair and maintenance, telecom consultation services and other value added services. In 2010 with the fusion of the IT in the Telecom Systems Business Unit, The ICT strategy is not only focused on the telecom sector but also on the Public Sector market. This is divided into four sub-sectors, namely, Security and Defense Sector, Education Sector, Health Care Sector and the Central Government and SemiGovernment Sector. AEC has partnered with international OEM’s to offer complete solutions covering ICT Infrastructure and enterprise application solutions such as

Military Systems has been instrumental in delivering diverse military programs in partnership with international OEM’s. It also supports local military needs with electronics repair and maintenance, offering logistical support too. The Industrial Systems (ISBU) focuses on the energy, oil and gas, petrochemical and water industries; as well as offering manufacturing services to OEM’s operating in these sectors. The support of strong E&D capabilities, lifecycle management and Key Account concept, ISBU is well poised to serve requirements through innovative products and systems.

With the Total Quality Management (TQM) program at the heart of AEC since 1993, the organisation was the winner of the prestigious King Abdul Aziz Quality Award in 2008. With several accolades in this area, and more than triple the required number of Saudi nationals in their workforce that makes it a pioneer in this field, over the years, AEC has demonstrated leadership in Saudization. The company’s approach is based on Saudization by growth, development of Saudi talents and the promotion of responsibility and accountability.

VOIP, data centres, ERP, CRM, enterprise content management systems (ECMS), security, etc. “This line of business is expected to grow rapidly as AEC is strengthening its local presence in the ICT market by developing its operational arm internally and gaining market recognition and local references”, Mr. Shibil explains further. AEC has made strides by embracing the most advanced

tools in quality manufacturing and management (Six Sigma, Lean Manufacturing, Total Quality Management, Life Cycle management and Business Excellence). “These achievements are evident in the company results and we are convinced that a strong management approach has been beneficial to our growth in market share and revenues”, Dr Shibl concludes.

www.aecl.com

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Transcending User Experiences – Mubasher Chronology of Excellence! Mubasher pioneered bilingual real-time stock market information dissemination services back in 1999, established as a wholly owned subsidiary of National Technology Group (NTG) - one of the largest ICT companies in the Middle East.

Mubasher has leapt past the contemporary online trading platform market by bringing un-matched 3-dimentional completion; legendary Mubasher™ Market information (Data-vendor); leading-edge end-to-end technology together with superior Mubasher Front-ends and multi –markets / multi-assets class Mubasher OMS (specialized Brokerage Solution-provider); and multi-market financial industry Contents (Contentsprovider), to deliver a revolutionary user experience-based platform.

Today, Mubasher stands singularly unique in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia facilitating endto-end superior multi-market brokerage platform; nextGEN multi-channel frontends utilizing the power of Mubasher order management system; with legendry Mubasher market information, unmatched contents and precise/ultra–low latency data feeds. All Saudi Brokerage/ Financial Industry in general and Saudi Bank-basedbrokerage industry members in specific are Mubasher superior technology and Market Information partners, while Mubasher serving consistently for over 10-years single largest real-time Market Information customer-base since the Saudi Stock Market -Tadawul’s inception in 2001.

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Mastering the art of E-Tadawul “userexperiences” remains one of the true geniuses of Mubasher. For over a decade, Mubasher has been the single most-watched Tadawul market customer front-end. Quite naturally, as these front-ends became continuously enhanced successfully satisfying Tadawul-user experiences, these have created such a strong familiarity that “Check Mubasher” became synonymous to saying check live Tadawul Market (similar to stating “Google-it” instead of “search-it” or “DHL-it” instead of “courier-it”). Mubasher truly represents now a “cultural icon” driven by Tadawul user feelings with well-established emotional bonds driving Mubasher frontends to the centre-stage; be-it Saudi bank-

based-brokerage E-Tadawul presences, daily newspapers, television channels, or any userfacing access. Whenever chronology of Mubasher excellence will be written, fact remains: “Customer Experiences Enhancement” and that too specific to Tadawul — is the art Mubasher has mastered over the years. Mubasher has been continuously reshaping Tadawul User-Experience in profound ways “from Good-to-WOW”. Mubasher new generation of internet multi-channel front-ends delivering both Market information as well as E-trade (as integrated to OMS), includes; Mubasher™ NetPlus; Mubasher™ iPad, as well as Mubasher™ iPhone, Mubasher™ Blackberry, Mubasher™ Windows Mobile and Mubasher™ Android. For seasoned investors and HNWIs Mubasher™ Pro for Market Information and as well as for E-trade (as integrated to OMS) Mubasher™ Trader Workstation(TWS) — are pinnacle of Mubasher suite packed with intuitive interface, sophisticated features, and strong pre-trade, at-trade, post trade tools with real time market information to support smart investment decisions. All Mubasher products are developed in the internet-era, harnessing the inherent forte of “scaling to perfection”, as designed to handle large volumes and concurrent users without affecting system performance. Mubasher Order Management System (OMS) real-time transaction processing engine naturally completes superior Brokerage multi –markets / multi-assets class platform, for both Retail and Institutional trading. Being modern-day-reality, Mubasher OMS is rapidly replacing legacy order management systems, not only from technology stand-point but as driven by business agility of front-to-back features and functions completion getting increasingly popular within serious forwardlooking highly reputable Brokerage business in Saudi Arabia and all across MENA/GCC and global markets. Mubasher understands that no two businesses are exactly the same. That’s why Mubasher offers flexibility in both Mubasher OMS software and solution deployment. In Saudi Arabia, Mubasher OMS has been successfully deployed on a Softwareas-a-Services (SaaS) model other than licensing model. SaaS model facilitates lowinvestment-entry and pay-as-you-go (or OnDemand Mubasher OMS availability), ideally


Mubasher truly represents a cultural icon. Well established emotional bonds with Tadawul users requiring Mubasher front-ends to be at the center stage; be-it Saudi bankbased-brokerage E-Tadawul presences, daily newspapers, television channels, or any user-facing access.

suited for small-to-medium brokerages; whereas Licensing model is preference of Saudi Bank-based-industry members. With Mubasher total brokerage solution, superior front-end and modern-OMS / backoffice suite, Mubasher is marching ahead transcending “world-class User-Experiences” completion - aiming bringing superior brokerages business closer to its client’s - to bring meaningful business results. For

individual, retail customers, Mubasher newgeneration of productized services –always satisfying-yet-transforming Tadawul UserExperiences and design. Mubasher is more than a brokerage solution provider, data vendor, content provider; indeed Mubasher is business partner to Saudi Arabian Financial industry continuously delivering value – with proven leading vision and ability to execute the vision.

Mubasher: Spotlight Mastering the art of E-Tadawul “UserExperiences” remains one of the true geniuses of Mubasher. For over a decade, Mubasher front-ends have been the single most-watched Tadawul market customer experiences. Together with Mubasher OMS real-time transaction processing engine, Mubasher has completed the concept of a User-Centric (front-to-back) business-driven superior Brokerage platform, for both Retail and Institutional trading.

www.mubasher.net

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CHAPTER 6 Industries

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‫”ﻋﻤﻞ ﺭﺟﻞ ﺟﻴﺪ ﻏﻴﺮ ﻣﻌﺮﻭﻑ ﻳﺸﺒﻪ ﺍﻧﻄﻼﻕ ﻣﻴﺎﻩ ﻣﺘﺪﻓﻘﺔ ﻣﻦ ﺗﺤﺖ ﺍﻷﺭﺽ ﺗﺠﻌﻞ ﺍﻷﺭﺽ ﺧﻀﺮﺍء“‬ ‫‪Thomas Carlyle‬‬

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By Diversification to Growth

Over the last five years, Saudi Arabia has made some exceptional advances in its alternative energy strategies, with huge investments being made to enable the Kingdom to achieve economic independence from Oil and Gas. This independence is part of the overall strategy to help Saudi Arabia make the shift towards renewable energy sources such as wind, hydro and solar energy. One of the key points of Saudi Arabia is the idea of diversification and sustainable growth as part of the overall economic strategy of the Kingdom. This includes the build up of industrialized cities with residential areas for complete living solutions. These industrial cities will contribute to the GDP taking it from 11.3% in 2009 to 20% by the end of 2020. In terms of sustainable growth for the economy, oil and gas are still the core staples of Saudi Arabia, whose location is of prime importance and makes it ideal in serving

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an array of different markets. It has a longlasting supply of oil at its disposal, making it an attractive industry for investors seeking to make huge profits. Two of the main industrial cities in KSA are Jubail and Yanbu, which are located on Saudi’s Eastern and Western coast. These were established around 1973 and were once fishing villages which have now been converted into industrial epicentres for oil, petrochemical and industrial manufacturing. These industrial cities were originally developed to reduce the cost of petrochemical and crude oil supply by exporting the oil abroad so it could be processed into gasoline before being sold on. Jubail and Yanbu were seen as the first iconic steps towards modern day industrialization, and spawned the various industrial and economic cities which Saudi has today. Some of the world’s largest providers of both oil

and petrochemicals are located in these two cities, including ARAMCO (the world’s largest producer and exporter of crude oil and natural gas liquids) and SABIC (one of the largest suppliers and exporters of fertilizers, chemicals and polymers in the world today). The Saudi Industrial Property Authority (MODON) currently supervises and oversees the daily running of many different industrialized cities, of which more than 18 cities are fully operational and an additional seven cities are under the development phase – totalling an investment of more than SR200bn. There are also plans for a further eight cities to be built, although these are still in the planning phase. The scope of work undertaken by MODON includes granting licences for the further development of various sites as well as taking the necessary steps to help preserve the environment and limit the impact that these


industrial cities have upon the surrounding areas. MODON finalized plans in 2008 to build the largest industrial city in KSA, and once completed will be known as the Sudair Industrial and Business City. Sudair will cover a base of 264 square kilometre and will lie North of Riyadh. The project will be developed in phases, while Phase 1 is currently under development phase and phase 2 will be up for tender by the end of 2011. The aim of the city is to meet the demands of the Industrial sector to cater for the central region market. The development will include the North-South railway which will run through the Sudair Industrial city. The city will be self-contained and will include all aspects of residential living such as medical and educational facilities. Other main cities that MODON will develop in 2011 include: Jeddah 3, Phase 2 of both Sudair and Al-Kharj, Pharmaceutical Industrial City in Al-Oyayn, Al-Ahsa 2 and Gurayaat.

MODON has signed a deal with National Tri-Generational CHP Company to provide Jeddah 2nd Industrial city with a district cooling system at an estimated cost of US$293m, to be completed by the end of 2011.


Oil & Gas Because of the density of natural resources found in Saudi Arabia, its economy is largely driven on the oil and petrochemical industry. Saudi ARAMCO has refineries and distribution centres strategically placed all over Saudi and the Middle East, serving the entire industrial sector which relies heavily on these resources during their manufacturing process. ARAMCO is responsible for implementing various projects designed to boost the economy and deliver energy to the rest of the world. Recently, Saudi ARAMCO partnered with several companies to create three new refineries at an estimated cost of U$18bn – creating a wealth of long term job opportunities and making it perfect for potential investors. This aside, ARAMCO offers investors and companies the ability to partner with them for their hydrocarbon projects. The main advantage of doing so is because ARAMCO has a huge and secure supply of crude oil at its disposal and geographically, it is strategically positioned to serve both Eastern and Western markets with relative ease. There is a growing demand for hydrocarbon products and ARAMCO has access to a highly established industrial infrastructure such as petrochemical and refining facilities. ARAMCO also has an ideal investment environment for hydrocarbon projects which do not require typical bureaucratic red tape and regulations to go through in order to implement them. ARAMCO has a vast amount of private investment capital which can be used to provide financing for projects. Finally, ARAMCO is perfectly positioned as a sponsor due the company’s immense wealth of experience in executing projects on time and within budget, as well as their dedicated support of the existing companies which work with them. In line with delivering projects that are less harmful to the environment, ARAMCO has introduced an ‘Environmental Master Plan’ in which it promises to reduce the company’s impact on the environment. To date, ARAMCO has reduced the lead in gasoline by 50% and is leading the way in reducing sulphur and CO2 emissions, as well as flaring. ARAMCO is working with MODON and other key players to reduce its carbon footprint. It is doing so by capturing and storing the carbon dioxide which is released from its oil and gas plants and converting this gas into useable products and storing it underground.

ARAMCO was producing 7.9 million barrels per day in 2009.


Petrochemical

Mining

Saudi’s petrochemical industry is approximately worth 14% of the total world supply. SABIC is one of the largest companies in this field, and is publicly owned, with the majority of its shares being held by the Saudi government, and the rest being held by private investors in the Middle East. In 2009, SABIC generated more than SR$9bn in net profits, showing amazing growth despite a turbulent economy and worldwide recession. One of its major growth strategies is implementing methods that reduce the company’s carbon footprint in all stages of production, from sourcing of raw materials to the end life of a product. As a result, SABIC is dedicated towards building a more environmentally friendly company and promotes measures such as reducing the overall emissions from its plants, ensuring the plants are fuel efficient and also to reducing flaring. In addition to this, SABIC ensures that the contractors and suppliers it works with are also environmentally responsible. Although SABIC has offices in over 80 countries worldwide, its operation mainstay is based upon two sites in Saudi Arabia - Al-Jubail and Yanbu.

The mining industry is Saudi Arabia’s other major industry player and its main products are minerals, precious metals, aluminium and phosphate (used heavily in fertilizers). Ma’aden is Saudi’s own mining company and governs the regulatory framework for the general mining industry in Saudi Arabia. Ma’aden’s mainstay is gold, and they have five main goldmines including Mahd Ad Dahab, Al Hajar, Sukhaybarat, Bulghah, and Al Amar. Ma’aden has joint ventured with SABIC to implement the phosphate project and with Alcoa to implement the aluminium project. Other projects the Ma’aden is involved in includes the mining of magnesite, kaolin, low grade bauxite, garnet and chlor vinyl. In total, the mining and mineral industry presents opportunities worth a combined total of US$11.9 bn through to 2020 – a huge amount of investment opportunity for potential investors. Since Ma’aden has been entrusted with overseeing development in this area, there has been an explosion of activity based on exploration, research and the establishment of infrastructure services. Overall, KSA is working towards mining becoming the ‘third pillar’ of the economy after oil and petrochemicals and is investing heavily in this area. One of the ways in which the government will support this goal is by establishing industries which will extract, refine and process the minerals that are mined, as well as develop the transport infrastructure. This makes the minerals being mined much more accessible for processing needs and also aids in easy exportation abroad. It is expected that the overall growth of mineral and mining developments will be 10 percent.

SABIC is the largest petrochemical provider in KSA

Mining contributed to the annual GDP by 27 percent in 2009, making it the third largest contributor to the GDP, preceded by the oil and petrochemical industries.

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Manufacturing Over the next five years, KSA will invest heavily into manufacturing, providing excellent work opportunities for locals. There are more than 3800 manufacturing and industrial enterprises in Saudi Arabia providing jobs for around 415,000 people and creating more than US$21bn in revenue in 2010. The bulk of manufacturing work comes from the associated oil, gas, petrochemical and mining industries which rely on the manufacturing industry to create end products. General manufacturing companies are almost all run by private investors with over 20,000 various workshops for small scale industries. Around 20 percent of manufacturing comes from petrochemical industries and about 40 percent comes from petroleum refining. The remaining percentage comes from the manufacturing of chemicals, building and engineering materials and cement. The industrial cities of Jubail and Yanbu contain manufacturing plants to convert crude oil and petrochemicals into manufactured products such as plastic and fertilizers. In 1974, the Saudi Industrial Development Fund (SIDF) was initiated by the government to oversee the funding of new and existing manufacturing projects. Funding aside, SIDF also works to promote non-oil products and exports.

Over the next year, it is estimated that manufacturing will be one of KSA’s fastest growing industries behind oil, petrochemicals and mining. With the development of large scale industrial cities, manufacturing is currently booming and providing ample job opportunities for the growing population of Saudi. With industrial units cropping up all over Saudi and most notably in Jeddah, Dammam, Riyadh and Jazan, there has never been a better time to be involved in manufacturing. In Jubail’s industrial city for example, there are a total of 184 industries operating which are based on manufacturing alone. As such, the manufacturing boom is having a positive impact on the Saudi economy as Jubail is now in its second phase of development with phase three scheduled for completion in 2023. This development has meant a huge surge in job opportunities related to manufacturing. A project named as the national industrial cluster development program (started by Prince Faisal Bin Turki bin Abdulaziz) was created to expand KSA’s industrial base. The program aims to develop and promote basic manufacturing such as metals processing, automotive assembly, construction materials, packaging and electrical goods.

Courtesy of Husain Al-Ahdal

Manufacturing is one of KSA’s major industries, contributing to 12 percent of the annual GDP in 2009.

Courtesy of Husain Al-Ahdal

Manufacturing is vital to the Saudi economy


Agriculture The agricultural sector in Saudi accounts for 4.7 percent of the annual GDP and is an industry that the country is keen to develop further. Despite being mostly desert, Saudi has some regions whose climate favours agricultural activities and practices. The foundation of all major agricultural projects comes from irrigation projects which are an essential part of the agricultural industry. Modern technological advancements have made agricultural practices much easier and have taken small scale traditional farming methods to large scale processing plants capable of serving millions of citizens on a daily basis. The key differentiating factor between stability and exceeding growth in the agricultural domain has been largely determined by two factors: the amount of funding the sector has received from both public and private funds and the increasing demand for food products to sustain a rapidly expanding population. Over the last few years, the agricultural industry has seen an annual growth of eight percent and food exports from Saudi jumped by 34 percent to US$969m in 2009. Apart from growth fuelled by demand, the Saudi government is keen to encourage agricultural production on home ground by investing US$12.3bn from the annual 2010 budget on agriculture, water and infrastructure projects combined. This shows an increase by 30 percent from the previous year and includes water resourcing projects, irrigation developments, building new water plants and sewage works and building wells and dams to support local farming efforts. One of the determining factors in the growth of agriculture affects the underground water tables found in the Arabian peninsula throughout KSA. Over the last decade in particular, the water tables are showing some depletion, despite the relatively large supply of water available. In a bid to prevent future problems, the government is developing and implementing water conservation projects to preserve current water sources and ensure the future sustainability of agriculture in places such as Al-Qassim which is the second largest agricultural region in KSA and which grows cereals, fruit and vegetables.

Al-Qassim is a key player in the Kingdom’s agricultural industry

Water & Power Power and water is another booming industry in Saudi Arabia, as the expanding population relies heavily on energy consumption and in particular, general power and water supplies. The expansion of many industries, industrial and business cities has also created a surge in power and water usage. Power stations and desalination plants are in demand and investors are attracted by the high profit margins that are being seen by all major companies in this sector. The National Water Company has several initiatives designed to meet the needs of business development and strategically place it as one of the largest water and waste management providers in the Middle East. This is even more important as Saudi Arabia is officially the fifth largest consumer of water in the world per capita. Because Saudi is mostly desert, fresh water is low in abundance. As a result, the Kingdom has 27 desalination plants to remove the chemicals and salt from seawater and purify it so that it is suitable to drink. These plants provide 70% of the country’s drinking water and supply 28 million megawatts of electricity. In 2009, Saudi Arabia welcomed the world’s largest desalination plant which is located in Jubail ll industrial zone. The plant cost US$3.8bn and provides 800,000 cubic meters of water for the surrounding cities as well as 2,750 megawatts of electricity.

Desalination plants provide the country with clean drinking water KSA is planning on increasing the number of power plants and extending the Saudi transmission network by 30,000km. In addition to this, the government is planning to invest US$24bn in to extra water supplies and capacities. Privatization in this sector will create opportunities for both jobs and investment in KSA, and with growth in this sector estimated at around 6 percent per annum, the figures are amongst the highest in the world today. All these factors make the power and water industry highly profitable and attractive to potential investors who are virtually guaranteed a good return on their investment.

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Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC) SABIC was created by royal decree in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in September 1976. In almost every respect, the founding vision for SABIC went well beyond corporate profits.

PETROKEMYA, based in Jubail, is a wholly-owned affiliate of SABIC

SABIC UK Petrochemicals, Teesside, United Kingdom

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SABIC was created to better utilize the Kingdom’s energy assets, delivering highquality jobs and product lines that would drive economic growth and improve the quality of life in Saudi Arabia and beyond. Today, SABIC has grown to become one of the largest and most successful petrochemical companies in the world. Headquartered in Riyadh, it employs 33,000 talented people around the world with operations in over 40 countries. The company comprises six Strategic Business Units: Chemicals, Performance Chemicals, Polymers, Innovative Plastics, Fertilizers and Metals. SABIC ranks

among the world´s market leaders in the production of polyethylene, polypropylene, glycols, methanol – and is also one of the largest producers of steel in the Middle East. SABIC’s products are the building blocks of modern life and are used to make a wide variety of products that include medical devices, lighter and more fuel-efficient cars, pharmaceutical products, fertilizers that help crops feed the world and electronics that are becoming an essential part of people’s daily lives. Undoubtedly, SABIC has made an important contribution to quality of life improvements both in Saudi Arabia and abroad.


HADEED, a wholly owned SABIC affiliate, is one of the largest producers of steel in the Middle East

SABIC headquarters in Riyadh

Innovation and learning are key elements in SABIC’s success worldwide. SABIC currently has 18 dedicated Technology & Innovation facilities across Saudi Arabia, the United States, Europe and Asia and continues to forge close relationships with pioneering academic institutions the world over. These have been vital towards the development of more than 150 new products and several innovative technologies that have made the manufacture of petrochemicals even more efficient. SABIC’s Technology & Innovation Centers work closely with its Strategic Business Units to improve manufacturing processes and develop new technologies. SABIC’s commitment to research has given the company a vital competitive edge, allowing its affiliates – and customers – to develop their products more effectively, reduce costs and achieve their goals. Since its foundation, SABIC has also been committed to sustainability and this is a commitment that the company has adopted around the world. Sustainability sits at the top of SABIC’s leadership agenda, touching every business and operation across the world. From an internal perspective, the company is focused on continuously reducing the intensity of its global operational footprint. This includes reducing carbon intensity, improving energy and water use, and increasing material efficiency – benefits that ultimately also flow to SABIC’s customers worldwide. SABIC has been building upon its strong management

SABIC’s manufacturing site in Geleen, the Netherlands

QarmaQ is a technology demonstration vehicle by Hyundai and SABIC, reducing weight, saving fuel and preserving the environment

systems and history of responsible manufacturing to focus on an even safer and cleaner environment. The company’s sustainability plan also focuses on the marketplace, where it is committed to sharing its expertise and working closely with its customers to develop products, applications and solutions that respond to sustainability needs. SABIC’s product portfolio, coupled

with its technological expertise and culture of innovation, gives it the ability to develop materials that can help customers tackle a wide variety of environmental issues.

www.sabic.com

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CHAPTER 7 Construction & Real Estate

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‫”ﺿﻊ ﺧﻄﻄﺂ ﻛﺒﺮﻯ ﻭ ﺃﻫﺪﺍﻓﺂ ﺳﺎﻣﻘﺔ ﻣﻦ ﺍﻷﻣﻞ ﻭ ﺍﻟﻌﻤﻞ‪ ،‬ﻭ ﺗﺬﻛﺮ ﺃﻥ ﻣﺨﻄﻄﺂ ﻧﺒﻴﻶ ﻭ‬ ‫ﻣﻨﻄﻘﻴﺂ ﻻ ﻳﻤﻮﺕ ﺃﺑﺪﺁ ﻣﺎ ﺩﺍﻡ ﻣﻮﺛﻘﺂ“‬ ‫‪Daniel Burnham‬‬

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Building New Hope Saudi Arabia’s construction industry is the largest construction sector in the entire Gulf region. Because Saudi is keen to exploit its natural resources and investment potential, it has lead to a number of industrial cities and built up living areasbeing developed in KSA. This has had a huge impact upon the construction and real estate sector which is heavily supported by The Saudi Industrial Property Authority, (MODON). MODON works closely with the private sector to actively develop and construct industrial cities and technological zones which support other industries and the needs of their workforce. MODON also evaluates the various processes involved and seeks to minimize the impact of construction activities on the surrounding environment. MODON oversees every aspect of these industrial cities and technological zones, from the initial planning, management and development stage through to the maintenance and overall administration of these projects. The advantage here is that all construction work is regulated by one authority and makes for an easier process. In particular, MODON is keen to develop specific cities and areas for particular industries, thereby supporting the government’s framework for redeveloping KSA’s economy overall.

Riyadh has allocated a budget of $695b to be spent on 687 construction projects before the end of 2015. 151 projects are already underway. The majority of construction projects are based upon transport, infrastructure, ports, oil and gas production, education, health care, petrochemical and power development; as well as various refineries and dealing with waste and water. Despite the global recent recession, the Saudi economy is still growing and going from strength to strength. The Saudi Riyal is stable, making for secure financial investments from outside contractors and potential investors. Contracts for construction are heading towards a combined total of $39,138 million in 2012 – growth is more than 3.9 percent and is unprecedented despite turbulent times. Construction of industrial sites aside, the government is pouring millions into real estate to provide housing and apartments for the growing Saudi workforce.

The largest, fastest growing region in the Gulf is the construction market in Saudi Arabia. The combined value of ongoing construction projects in the Gulf are estimated at US$1.9 trillion. The 2010 financial budget for construction revealed that more than a quarter of its estimated US$36.5 billion budget would be allocated to education and manpower construction. The aim of this funding was to increase the quality of the human resource base in KSA, 70 percent of which are under the age of 30. The budget includes the building of four new universities as well as various vocational colleges and institutes. Prime hotspots include Damman, Alkharj, Shaqra and Majma. Schools will also be included in the budget which will affect more than 4,300 schools. In addition to this, more than 2000 schools are scheduled for redevelopment.

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PNU will be a major milestone in the Kingdom’s quest to educate and empower women. The University will cover admin buildings, hospital, 13 faculties, research centre, residential areas, a kindergarten and several specialist colleges for medicine, engineering and architecture. Mecca is a hotspot for tourists and the government has over the years, invested billions into renovating the central area around the Al-haram mosque as well as the mosque itself. Its most recent development was the Abraj Al Bait hotel which can house over 100,000 pilgrims, and is also going to be the world’s tallest building. It was built by the Saudi Bin Laden group at a cost of US$800m and will be completed by 2012. The surrounding landscape will house a gateway community with a massive 82m² capable of housing over 690,000 people. Headed by Sumou Real Estate group, the project will take 20 years to complete and will cost an estimated SR200bn. The King Abdullah Economic City is another major investment supported by the government and is being built near Jeddah, on the coast of the Red sea. The city will be seen as an economic gateway serving as a link to Europe, Africa and Asia. The city will be completely self-contained with industrial valleys, residential areas, educational facilities, central business district as well as resorts and tourist hotspots. Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority (SAGIA), is the prime catalyst for this project’s evolution. Other major construction projects in KSA include the Burj Rafal – a self-contained building which will house 260 luxury apartments as well as a luxury hotel and shopping mall. It will be the largest building in KSA and is due for completion in 2012 with an estimated cost of US$1.5bn.

The King Abdullah Economic City project is due to be completed in 2020 and is going to cost an estimated SR187.6bn.

Princess Noura Bint Abdulrahman University The world’s largest university for women Princess Noura Bint Abdulrahman University (PNU) in Riyadh is one of the most prestigious developments in the education sector. Costing a total of SR15 billion and covering a base of eight million square metres, PNU is tipped to be the first university in the world dedicated to women, and also one of the largest universities in the Middle East. The project will enable up to 40,000 women to partake in sciences and other subjects which were once deemed the realm of males. The project involves using state-of-the-art features to reduce the carbon footprint and greener facilities throughout the university. The construction contract for PNU was awarded to three main contractors: Saudi Oger, Saudi BinLaden group and El Seif engineering and contracting company.

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Development of Holy Land For centuries, the world’s Islamic centre and place for worship for Muslims has been Mecca in Saudi Arabia. Every year, millions of pilgrims, young and old, journey to the holy land and achieve the most important milestone in a Muslim’s life.

The Mecca Gateway Project is expected to become a role model for the development of new communities in the suburbs of the main cities and become a major economic driver for inhabitants. It will also attract investment from all over the Islamic world as a commercial hub due to its strategic location.

With Saudi Arabia economic growth, Mecca has seen some inevitable changes that have pushed it towards becoming a more urbanized township eager to make its mark a first world city. The government’s 10-year plan to give Mecca its deserving status has initiated several infrastructure, socio-economic, and cultural developments. The private sector has been a

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catalyst in this movement. With its magnificent Mecca Gateway Project, Sumou Real Estate Company has envisioned a bright future for the Holy Land. A pilgrimage to the symbolic centre of the Muslim world-a spiritual journey, a cultural awakening and a religious experience shall now be transformed into something more dynamic and urban.

Mecca municipality and Soumu Real Estate Company have partnered in a dream project called Mecca Gateway, to be completed in a span of 20 years. The gateway shall have a beautiful clustering of low and medium rise developments filling the valley with exciting activities and resources. With the hope to create a planned, affordable and functional edge city which can

provide 21st century services for residents and visitors alike within the holy region. This splendid development shall become an inspiration for suburb development throughout the region. Bawabat Mecca The Mecca Gateway project is about building a new city that spreads over 86 square


For Mecca municipality and Soumu Real Estate Company this is a dream coming true in the next 20 years. The gateway will have a beautiful clustering of low and medium rise developments filling the valley with exciting activities and resources. The project is expected to have the latest technology for infrastructure and utilities, as well as full-fledged services and public amenities, such as schools, mosques and community centres. Inspired by its founder Ayedh Bin Farhan Al Qahtani, whose penchant for professionalism and impeccable standards is well known, Sumou continues its drive for perfection. His deep insight into the real estate industry coupled with his wisdom and experience has resulted in the company developing successful to further evolve the brand.

kilometre of land only 13 kilometres from Al Haram (grand mosque of Mecca) and 40 kilometres from Jeddah. Bawabat Mecca, as the city is called, is built around a National Park and shall house a population of 690,000 people. It shall provide a new government district, financial district, CBD, university and research centre, exhibition centre, Prince Sultan

Cultural Oasis, King Abdullah Dialogue Centre, craft and heritage village, in addition to mixed-use residential and commercial developments and other public amenities. The city once complete shall boost economic advantages for inhabitants and bring investment from all parts of the Muslim world.

Soumu Real Estate: Spotlight Established in 2007, the company is the brainchild of founder Ayedh Bin Farhan Al Qahtani. It hopes to become a stalwart in the real estate industry through innovating and pioneering dynamic project developments, transparency in activities and gaining trust and satisfaction of customers. Deep insight into the real estate market coupled with experiences has put the company on a path to achieve its goal to transform Saudi Arabia into an urban global power boastful of great developments in community and infrastructure. “The Mecca real estate market is one of the best real estate markets in the world, combining reasonable revenues of investment in addition to the community growth initiated by the real estate developer for the visitors to the holy city. It is our dream to transform Mecca into an advance global spiritual destination for our Muslim brothers and sisters,� says Al Qahtani, Founder of Soumu Real Estate.

www.sumou.com.sa

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A Symbol of Success The world’s best cities have skylines which serve as a fingerprint of their influence and status in a global economy. Saudi Arabia’s efforts in building a skyline that is unique yet represents its dreams and ambitions have come of age with recent developments.

Saudi Arabia is the strongest economy in the Middle East calling for international media attention as well as more foreign investments. Like many other cities, developing an impressive skyline is on the things-to-do list to place it on the global platform. The Burj Rafal Community is the beginning of global fame and recognition.

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Based in Riyadh and incorporated in 2007, pioneering full facility residential communities with a focus on quality, RAFAL Real Estate Development Co., have called for a success story of their own. ‘Communities Innovation’ is what RAFAL believes in doing. It offers great investment and living opportunities to both clients and investors. RAFAL’s achievements are emblematic of its core values which are purpose, quality, culture, knowledge and personality. Focused on creating a vibrant, modern, friendly, bold, exceptional and transparent Saudi Arabia, the company is on its path to global recognition with the upcoming Burj Rafal community. It takes vision, creativity, determination and passion to develop a land into an environment; crafting different lifestyles, quality homes worth living in. Communities innovated by RAFAL overcome cultural challenges to create something superior and universal. This is because of its bullet proof business philosophy which is firmly rooted in combining local knowledge and best practices across the globe to deliver best value and services to clients. The mainstay of the company is its executive team of highly qualified professionals. Together,

they apply their knack for innovation and ardent passion in pursuit of better lifestyle solutions in Saudi Arabia. The sound business conduct and expertise at RAFAL is a result of 25 years of dedication and hard work. Burj Rafal 62 stories constructed on an exclusive 20,000 sqm plot in Assahafa District along King Fahd Highway in Riyadh, a very prominent and prestigious residential property situated near King Abdullah Financial Centre, Burj Rafal is set to create its own place in the sun as Riyadh’s tallest residential tower. Unique architecture and a beautiful view sums up the essence of Burj Rafal. The nurturing residential environment and thoughtful design of Burj Rafal will make it one of the most desirable locations in town. A short drive from the King Khalid International Airport, it holds elegant and luxurious apartments, the Burj Rafal Hotel Kempinski, Resense European Spa and a high-end boulevard. Well connected by roads to the main city and business centres, residents and visitors will enjoy an incomparable quality lifestyle everyday of the year through an ideal balance of tranquillity and modern convenience.


As a joint venture between Ibrahim A. Abunayyan & Bros., ACWA Holding and Arabian Tawazon for Commercial Investment Ltd. ‘Communities Innovation’ is what RAFAL believes in doing. It offers great investment and living opportunities to both clients and investors. RAFAL’s achievements are emblematic of its core values which are purpose, quality, culture, knowledge and personality. The sky touching Burj Rafal is sophistication with dynamic design. The scenic views through the glass-facade are breathtaking. Staring in amazement at the glorious Riyadh while socialising with friends seems like an ideal weekend getaway. In addition to state-of-the-art business and hotel facilities at Burj Rafal it shall become a luxury residential and hospitality masterpiece in Riyadh with a wealth of choices extended to inhabitants from recreational and retail amenities at their doorstep to encompassing fine dining experiences to informal café culture.

Burj Rafal: Know more Burj Rafal is scheduled to open in June 2013. It accommodates the lavish Burj Rafal Kempinski Hotel; with more than 351 luxury guest rooms and suites it will lie gracefully on 23 floors of the glorious Burj Rafal Community. All rooms and suits offer stunning views of Riyadh, making them the ideal places to enjoy the dramatic sunset or the sparkling stars and lights of Riyadh to discover the meaning of true prosperity and refined service at its highest levels. The Burj Rafal Community will be complimented with restaurants, cafes, conference facilities and a grand ballroom for up to 2000 people to celebrate life. Whether it’s a wedding, private occasion, a conference or an exhibition, the Burj Rafal Hotel Kempinski will definitely be the place to be. The Resense European Spa is fusion of modern and traditional design, art, therapies

and wellness services. It’s an oasis of tranquillity, where stress melts away to make room for newfound energy. Inspired by the natural cures and therapies in traditional Europe, Resense shifts the spa experience from pampering to healing. The elegantly laid luxurious residential apartments are dream come true, an exclusive haven with tranquility in spirit and harmony in design with contemporary living in mind and a variety number of bedrooms. Certainly this is more than accommodation, it is every day suite style living. Environmentally-friendly principles will be adhered to throughout the construction. A culture of minimal environmental impact is what Rafal wishes to inculcate in its communities. The innovative use of energy efficient materials to reduce carbon footprint will ensure that all residents will benefit from these initiatives.

www.rafal.com.sa

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A New Business Scenario A report, ‘Doing Business 2011’ declared Saudi Arabia as the world’s 11th easiest place to do business. It is one of the few economies that have made huge developments in making their regulatory and governance environment more favourable for smooth business.

APS activities include initial site analysis, acquisition, conceptual design and supervision, property and facilities management marketing, leasing and sales to just about anything to do with property. This successful cycle of any development project depends upon the establishment of circumspectly considered goals and objectives.

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It continues to post user-friendly information online, streamlining procedures, improving a one-stop-shop experience for all investor’s needs. Abiding by the new reformed ways of the kingdom is Arabian Property Services (APS), a real estate services agency that provides comprehensive, innovative and professional solutions for real estate property management. With an impressive client base, APS is involved in marketing and leasing for real estate portfolios. What drives this independent company to excellence is its skills-oriented approach to services. With a good backing of technology and the right entrepreneurial spirit it is able to customise its daily operations according to client specifications. The far-sightedness of people at APS makes them capable of identifying opportunities, extracting value from the client property or property portfolio, to more efficient management of projects and leases on large scale levels partnering with one or multiple clients to achieve best results. APS believes in providing a holistic feedback on client’s property. By adapting a powerful range of tools in order to participate in the wholesome management, strategy and execution of the client property needs, it is also able to predict future ups and downs in the volatile market of real estate. With many competitors in the market, APS has a goal of becoming the preferred real estate services’ provider for major and premier developers and owners of retail, commercial and residential properties. However, APS has little to fear as among many firms it stands out as an entity with unique values in corporate governance. With the emergence of more responsibility and accountability in the real estate and finance sectors, corporate governance is a must have in a company’s rule book. The moral fibre of APS demands a high level of governance and clean procedures in client servicing. In such turbulent times of economic downturn, leadership takes the front row. It is important for leaders to provide the right guidance and take risks to provide an up thrust against the tide of corporate scandals and mishaps. APS’s actions are driven by a versatile, creative and assertive group of leaders and individuals pursue great opportunities and take great pride in initiating change in real estate business through integration of Property and Facilities related services. The culture at APS is very courteous and the experienced property specialists are trained to find the right answers and provide unsurpassed property solutions. Despite a wavering


The new era of business at APS hails new directions in goal setting. Economic prosperity, social responsibility and environmental sustainability are primary areas of attention for the bunch of competitive leaders and individuals at APS.

APS advises on all property issues practically and responsibly. From day-to-day management of client’s properties and a number of high profile developments in its portfolio, APS provides clients with an ideal choice of services and varieties of opportunities complying with the highest worldwide standards and maintaining high returns.

financial graph in the real estate market, APS continues to invest in people to maintain the high performance at the workplace. It includes continuous training programs, performance appraisal and on-the-job training programs.

portfolios. APS is building and investing in developing core competencies that will bring professionalism and maturity to the Saudi real estate market.

Adding maturity to market Just in few years, APS has made a big impact on providing new era and developed lifestyle concepts. APS core values, integrity in approach, work ethics and commitment to maintain the highest quality services in all the fields of real estate industry have led associates customers to a high degree of trust on the company. An increasing number of property owners and landlords are acknowledging the importance of property management services, and how much easier they make it for owners to manage their growing property

A balanced approach to business Until recently, the success of a company was measured by looking at its financial bottom-line. When investors evaluated potential investment options, they were essentially interested in whether the company was making money, and what the prospects were of it continuing to do so. However, there has been a renaissance in business as more investors look for ethical and sustainable business practices. In the last decade, the realisation that making money and being a sustainable business required much more than focusing solely on the financial bottom-line, led to the development of the notion of a triple bottom-

line. The triple bottom-line concept recognizes that a “bottom line� should not solely reflect the economic return on investment of a business. Other assets, which deal with issues of environmental sustainability and social capital, ranging from labour practices to community uplift, should also be included. The new era of business hails new directions in goal setting. Economic prosperity, social responsibility and environmental sustainability are primary areas of attention for several board room decision makers today. APS prides in its ability to do business to persist in a truly sustainable state that will result from producing a positive and balanced return to all three forms of capital: economic, environmental, and social. Surely, the firm is here to stay.

www.aps-me.com

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Building Bonanza Saudi Arabia’s real estate market is immune to the vagaries of the global environment, thanks to the sheer volume of domestic demand.

Similar to most GCC nations, the construction sector is a significant area in the overall economic diversification strategy. Within five years, roughly $400bn in investments has been earmarked by the Saudi Arabian authorities, with most of it going into construction and construction-related projects. With more than a dozen new cities planned, including the expansion of two massive industrial zones – Jubail Industrial City, probably attracting over $80bn and Yanbu Industrial City on the Red Sea, attracting $30bn in capital investments, the going is not only good, it’s about to get better.

High demand may have increased real estate prices in the recent past, making real estate one of the biggest contributors to overall inflation, but it has also protected the Kingdom from real estate bubbles seen elsewhere in the region.

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The overall population is estimated at 25m, of which 40 percent is under 15 years old, with the majority under 30. Clearly these impressive demographics have impacted on growth and new housing demand. This is also fuelled by the gradual sociological process that’s sees more people moving towards nuclear families instead of the traditional joint family system, thereby adding to the number of units required. A veritable long timer in the world of real estate in the Kingdom is Mahmoud Al-Saleh, founder and president of CEE Commercial Group. He has always focussed on leveraging his brand’s growth in line with this real estate expansion. Established in the Seventies, four decades later CEE still offers myriad services within the real estate and construction sector, guaranteeing a name that epitomizes trust.


“Our desire to help the customer is our first goal; and customer service is how we drive to become number one.” Mr. Mahmoud AlSaleh says. “With a focus on the residential property management, we have built a reputable name and market share in the local Saudi market particularly in Riyadh. With its offices in the heart of the kingdom’s capital, CEE prides itself on understanding and valuing customer needs and responding to them accordingly. “Over the years, we have built a strong team to support this vision and to reinforce our belief in helping the customer in every way. This is the route to growth and sustainability”, Mr. Al Saleh feels. Today, CEE Group provides its clients and investors with a one-stop-shop for all real estate needs. “We have developed services so that our clients and investors work with a single organization starting from the early stages of architectural planning and due diligence, through to financial planning and property management. This allows them to have more time to manage their other investments and interests, we take the burden away from them”, he explains. Real Estate Clients enjoy a range of properties in the kingdom either for rent or sale. By focusing on return clientele, CEE’s strategy continues to evolve successfully since inception. With an impressive track record and a combined experience of well over 100 years, customer satisfaction continues to be the priority of all agents. “Unlike other real estate offices, CEE’s real estate division is supported by all our other internal divisions, creating a synergy that is difficult for other realtors to imitate”, Mr. Al Saleh says.

Property Management With a focus on the residential market, CEE’s property management division is a leader in handling multi-family properties known as ‘compounds’ or ‘apartment complexes’. “As of 2009, we manage over 40 such properties across the three regions and offer residents a unique line of services for each property. Depending on the house size, our tenants enjoy options designed to improve their lifestyles. This ranges from maintenance, sport facilities, house-keeping, school busses, shopping busses, security, entertainment, day-care centres, restaurants and the list goes on. There is no limit to what we will undertake in order to enhance our client’s convenience” he explains. The property management division is supported by a strong back-office and e-solutions for all services offered within. CEE’s website allows all compound tenants to access services and facilities in parallel compounds across the country. “This virtual connectivity, allows all tenants to be a part of a larger CEE community which is flourishing with over 2,500 inhabitants of all ages, nationalities and backgrounds that we look after.” Because of its winning strategy, CEE’s market share is blossoming. “Soon, we are looking to double the number of properties under management by 2015, making CEE the leader in this industry across the kingdom and MENA region” Mr. Al Saleh he says. Maintenance Based on customer satisfaction, this division supports all CEE’s properties, as well as other properties outside CEE’s network. The maintenance team includes over 200 specialized personnel ranging, from

With four service divisions ranging from Real Estate, Property Management and Maintenance through to Construction, CEE covers all three main regions in Saudi Arabia - Central, Eastern and Western.

technicians to foremen. With multiple maintenance teams knowledgeable in various disciplines (landscaping, operational maintenance, janitorial services, pest control, swimming pool…etc.), CEE has captured market share and continues to offer competitive rates to the landlords as well as its residents. As a result of the property management’s goal over the next five years, the maintenance division also aims to grow its business by targeting third-party property maintenance contracts. The objective is to target 100 properties and contracts by the same time frame - 2015.

by CEE’s valuable list of clients and investors in the early 1990’s. By working closely with other in-house teams are capable of delivering the highest qualities and finishing. With an impressive track record and list of private and public and government clients, CEE manages to work solely, as well as via joint ventures with other local and international construction companies on projects in the kingdom. “The opportunities for us are endless as is our desire to respond effectively to what our clients, investors and overall market needs requires”, he concludes.

Construction The construction division was established based on the demand

www.cee-ltd.com

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CHAPTER 8 Travel & Transportation

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People, we have created you all male and female and have made you nations and tribes so that you would meet

“‫”ﻳﺎ ﺃﻳﻬﺎ ﺍﻟﻨﺎﺱ ﺇﻧﺎ ﺧﻠﻘﻨﺎﻛﻢ ﻣﻦ ﺫﻛﺮ ﻭ ﺃﻧﺜﻰ ﻭ ﺟﻌﻠﻨﺎﻛﻢ ﺷﻌﻮﺑًﺎ ﻭ ﻗﺒﺎﺋﻞ ﻟﺘﻌﺎﺭﻓﻮﺍ‬ The Holy Quran, Surat Al-Hujurat, verse13

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On the Move Travel and tourism is the future backbone of the KSA economy. While over half of the visitors to the country are pilgrims who make the annual Hajj or Umrah travel to the Holy cities of Makkah and Medina, the remaining tourists are made up of business travellers and those who are visiting family and friends. The Saudi Commission of Tourism and Antiquities (SCTA) puts business tourism behind religious tourism at 23 percent. There is no known business hub where the tourists visit, but those visiting for the sake of pilgrimage usually arrive at Jeddah and then travel to Makkah and Medina from here. The SCTA has developed a unique framework or model for tourism which takes into account long term sustainability and economic feasibility based on the KSA’s different religious, cultural and social values. In particular, the SCTA has worked closely with the government of Saudi Arabia to re-affirm the core values of traditional Arabic hospitality, particularly for pilgrims who are seen as an integral and sacred part of Islamic tourism. The KSA is world-renowned for looking after the health and wellbeing of pilgrims and ensuring that they have a comfortable and enriching stay. Religious Tourism makes for the largest segment in Saudi’s tourism industry The other main concern for KSA is the general tourism industry and the need for creating long-term employment opportunities for both local people and those who are coming from abroad and seeking work using a work permit. In order to achieve this, Saudi Arabia has relied on a hybrid model of developing tourism by bringing together both the public and private sectors to do so. The State has assumed the role of planning and providing the tourism infrastructure on which Saudi depends, whilst the private sector is given the responsibility of garnering direct investment opportunities and implementing marketaing and promotional strategies to ensure a continual influx of tourists which will encourage the economy to thrive. One of the key goals that KSA have incorporated into their

Three million pilgrims completed Hajj in 2010. The total number of pilgrims visiting Mecca by 2020 will double to 45.3 million annually.

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development of the tourism infrastructure is providing extensive training for the National workforce. This training ensures that the workforce adheres to strict guidelines which foster a positive image of modern tourism and hospitality, while still remaining true to the traditional and cultural ideals that are intrinsic to the core values of KSA. Because tourism is so heavily relied upon throughout the KSA, the Government are putting measures in place to help support local growth by preserving the environment as well as sites and areas known for their Islamic, cultural and historic importance. Not only does KSA want to increase its tourism, but it also seeks to make it sustainable by imparting policies and guidelines which are aimed at expediting growth and development.


The KSA tourism strategy will mean generating US$650m in revenue and creating more than 15,000 jobs over the next few years to 2015. Over a period of 20 years, KSA tourism will create around 60,000 jobs. Investing heavily in preserving historical sites and artefacts excavated at archaeological dig sites is another mainstay of the overall travel and tourism strategy. The SCTA is actively involved in protecting monuments and antiquities, as well as helping to build and promote heritage sites and museums. One such project included the International ‘Islamic Art Masterpieces’ exhibition which was held at the National Museum in Riyadh back in March 2006. The exhibition was the perfect platform in which to enlighten the rest of the world to the wonders of the Arabian culture and history. Since then, SCTA has put several initiatives in place to develop tourism on a National scale. This includes: infrastructure establishment, financing and supporting small and medium enterprises, development of tourism projects and media involvement to promote them, environmental health and safety and promotion of culture and heritage. King’s Fahed Fountain in Jeddah

The National Museum of Riyadh contains a wealth of history on the culture and educational development of Saudi, and contains state of the art facilities to showcase KSA’s history to its fullest potential.

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Flying High Since its inception in 1945 with a modest fleet of one DC-3 aircraft, today Saudi Arabian Airlines has come of age. Flourishing, despite a global climate of instability, the national carrier is making tremendous efforts to improve services and achieve progress and prosperity.

Sumptuous cuisine onboard

The new Airbus fleet

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Yousef A. Attiah, Vice President Marketing & Product Management is upbeat about the present and positively enthusiastic about the future. “At the heart of everything is the passenger comfort and convenience. To this end, we have recently invested in upgrading our fleet with additional 82 new airplanes and the first new aircrafts of this upgrade have begun deployment on various sectors such as Asia, Europe, Africa, Middle East and domestic sectors. This will add flexibility to our schedule, add more nonstop services and increase flight frequency to give our passengers more choice.� The Middle Eastern aviation industry


Comfort and entertainment for all ages Saudi Arabian Airlines has a loyalty program called AlFursan. This is a unique initiative that offers frequent flyers of Saudi Arabian Airlines a range of benefits and privileges designed to make their travels even more rewarding. With Alfursan passengers can also experience a host of exciting offers, rewards and preferential rates on a range of selected services through our global partnerships, which include car rental companies, and world-class hotel

despite global aviation difficulties and stiff competition, witnessed an overall air passenger growth of 11.2 percent in 2009. Saudi Arabian Airlines is working hard to improve the overall customer experience. For instance, with the spread of the internet now a reality everywhere, the massive growth information technology has not been overlooked by the Airline. “We are improving the way we interact with customers. For instance, our web site services are now vastly upgraded with the introduction of online check-in, online ticket purchase options and online payment through the SADAD electronic payment system. Anticipating passenger needs and addressing them in the most cost-efficient manner is vital to the Airline’s continued growth and brand enhancement which is growing rapidly in tandem with the Kingdom’s global positioning propelled by its economic liberalisation strategy. This has been reflected on the superb choice of aircrafts and the routes on which they will be deployed. The Airbus A320s, A321s, A330-

300s and the Boeing 777-300 ER and Boeing 787 have all been selected to fly to Saudia’s network of 80 domestic and international global destinations. Most of our Boeing 777200 fleet underwent a massive overhaul and we introduced a state-of-the-art entertainment system offering passengers more than 500 choices of audio and video programmes as well as flatbed seats in first class cabin and comfortable seats in Business and Guest class cabin. Moreover passengers travelling onboard our new Airbus A330 can enjoy internet and the use of their own mobile ” says Yousef A. Attiah. This customer-oriented approach is perceived as the best way to take the airline forward. Our objective is “Always to improve passenger experience, making Saudi Arabian Airlines the most convenient and comfortable choice and do so - efficiently and profitably”, he adds. Clearly, the rapid economic growth seen in the Kingdom has opened the market for numerous global and regional carriers. Competition on services

State-of-the-art in-flight entertainment system Saudi Arabian Airlines is now in a strong position in terms of finance, business and quality of service. The management is confident that the gradual privatisation process will further strengthen its position to become one of the world’s top 10 airlines.

is ferocious; however despite the presence of competitors, Saudi Arabian Airlines remains the preferred carrier for passengers travelling domestically in the Kingdom given its enhanced services and convenient flight schedules. Nevertheless, “We

know that there is always room for improvement and are always diligent in fine tuning our services in order to become more a customer-oriented airline”.

www.saudiairlines.com

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Gearing up to Convenience Since 1991, Theeb has been driving its car rental services to higher levels of professionalism and market share in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, where its brand name is synonymous with reliability, choice and convenience.

No matter where you’re headed in KSA, Theeb shows you the way... Theeb has a great rate on a great rental car. You need to travel throughout the GCC and entire Arab region? No problem, Theeb delivers a range of flexible services tailored for diverse categories of traveller.

Rental cars for every occasion, like minivans for holidays, chauffeur-driven luxury models for conferences and vehicles for passengers with special needs.

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Theeb covers the entire national territory with a varied vehicle fleet that exceeds 7000 cars and is growing annually. Aside from a presence in the Central, Western, Eastern and Southern regions; international airports in Riyadh, Jeddah, Dammam and Al-Madina Al-Monawara boast branches too. Professionally managed by a Saudi team keen on upholding a strategy of excellence, the Theeb commitment is based on delivering optimum choice to all clients whatever their needs and budgets. “Experience driving a luxury car that you had always dreamed of, or to drive an economical vehicle that saves you time and money,

or even a comfortable family car suited to your wider needs. We make it possible for you”, explains Awadh Alhamzani, Theeb’s PR & Advertising manager. By annually updating models, Theeb now has a significant variation in categories spanning 55 types divided into small, medium, grand, luxury cars and trucks that are deployed systematically in 26 branches throughout KSA. Theeb has 10 branches serving East, West, South and North of Riyadh, in addition to a branch assigned for serving government departments and the private sector. In addition, all models over two years old are offered


Mohammed Ahmad Altheeb, Theeb owner and general manager

for sale in the renowned ‘Theeb Used Cars Showroom’ in Riyadh that guarantees buyers with vehicles backed by an impeccable maintenance record, coupled with an attractive sales price. In the Western region, there are eight branches, six of which are in Jeddah and two in Al-Madina Al-Monawara. For the Eastern region, deployment comes from branches in Dammam, Khobar, Jubail and Ihssa. Whilst for the Southern region, Theeb has its latest branch in Abha established to service this area. In order foster their special relationship with government departments and private sector nurtured over two decades, Theeb has assigned a separate branch extending services tailored to their unique corporate and government requirements: Providing the required quantity of cars based on customer’s requests; capacity to cover conferences with the most luxurious types of vehicles with the option of liveried drivers on call; comprehensive insurance on cars; 24 hours service to replace car in case of breakdown, or in case of accidents. “Our aim is to stand firm as leaders with our rent a car concept reaching new horizons of quality and innovation. This benchmark of excellence is maintained by providing the most superior levels of service through honesty, credibility and sincerity in customer service,” concludes Theeb’s General Manager, Mohammed Altheeb.

When it comes to car selection, Theeb has got 55 types divided into small, medium, grand, luxury cars and trucks that are deployed systematically in 26 branches throughout KSA.

Cross-Border Service Travelling outside KSA Theeb paves the way for passengers to travel to all GCC nations (Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar, UAE, and Oman) and Arab countries (Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, Egypt) through its varied fleet. For short trips, Theeb also issues relevant authorisation letters and finalises traffic procedures in conjunction with preparing vehicles for seamless travel both inside and outside the Kingdom.   One Way Service Travelling across KSA  Your movements become more comfortable and easier with Theeb’s ‘One Destination Service.’  Through its modern fleet and network of subsidiaries deployed throughout the Kingdom, clients are free to collect their selected model from any branch and handover the same to any other Theeb branch with reduced reshipment fees. If both branches are situated at the same region, the service is free of charge.  Comfort Service  Travelling with elders and those with special needs  Based on Theeb’s belief in serving community and in showing responsibility towards the more vulnerable sectors, family cars equipped with wheelchairs help in maximising ease of movement and convenience. Free of charge, Theeb is to date the first car rental company in KSA to extend this attractive option.  

www.theeb.com.sa

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Time Tested Service Building new start-ups and powering them with value-added services can prove to be a challenge for most entrepreneurs when starting new business ventures.

The holiday and festive season transport is a favourite of Fed Ex employees because it makes people who receive things on time happy. From imported electronics, to high end jewellery and personal gifts, FedEx has strategically positioned itself at world’s leading airports to ensure customers have a choice of shipping options at different prices from one time zone to another.

Add to it the challenge of supporting the logistic needs of every new start-up, the task of being connected with global business hubs can prove to be daunting. Often, a lack of mutual understanding is detrimental to the success of the start-up. However, such is not the case with services provided FedEx Saudi the kingdom, FedEx beats all its competitors to

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thrive in one of the world’s fastest developing regions. It began in 1971 as Federal Express Corporation. Forty years later, in 2011, the company is known to the world as the largest express transportation company, providing fast and reliable delivery to more than 220 countries and territories worldwide. Globetrotting deliveries through a well-

connected air-and-ground network, FedEx provides delivery of shipments, usually within one to two business days with guaranteed delivery on time. With annual global revenues of US$ 36 billion, the company offers integrated business applications through functional companies competing collectively and managed collaboratively, under the respected FedEx


brand. It provides transportation, e-commerce and a host of other business services that make daily procedures, local or international, easier for many businesses. Increasing online sales in the Middle East of a company like FedEx who believe time is money. For many people exchanging holiday gifts over long distances, from imported electronics, to high-end jewellery and personal gifts, FedEx has strategically positioned itself at leading airports around the world to ensure customers have a choice of shipping options at different prices from one time zone to another. With an excellent customer satisfaction track record and several best employee and workplace awards, the FedEx story has become a popular part of management classes where students learn about FedEx in case studies.

FedEx has a history of globally renowned employee relations strategy and customer satisfaction. It’s the inspiration for several business developers and management gurus and is always raising curiosity. The simple ideology seems to be of keeping people, internal and external, happy with timeliness and quality.

Spotlight: FedEx Excels With more than 285,000 employees worldwide, and some 1500 employees in Saudi Arabia, FedEx operations have the most widespread reach in the country beating all its competitors to emerge as the largest express transportation company in Saudi Arabia. Fed Ex consistently has been recognised as a great place to work, a technology innovator and one of the world’s most admired and respected companies.

People philosophy FedEx is a top notch company that, at team members help make each FedEx experience a unique one. Their Peoplethe fulcrum on which they balance the organisation. FedEx has a history of globally renowned employee relations strategy and motivation. The company encourages its team members to grow within the company and provides them with the tools necessary to develop their careers and managerial abilities suitable to business demands.

Fed Ex has the highest number of offices making it more widespread than its competitors to emerge as the best in transportation and related business services in Saudi Arabia.

www.smsaexpress.com

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CHAPTER 9 Food & Beverage

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‫”ﻣﻌﻨﻰ ﺍﻹﻧﺴﺎﻧﻴﺔ ﺃﻛﺒﺮ ﺑﺎﻟﻔﻌﻞ ﻣﻦ ﻣﺠﺮﺩ ﺍﻟﻄﻌﺎﻡ ﻭ ﺍﻟﺸﺮﺍﺏ‪ ،‬ﻭ ﻟﻜﻦ ﻣﺎ ﻧﺄﻛﻠﻪ ﻳﺴﺎﻋﺪﻧﺎ ﺃﻥ ﻧﺼﺒﻮ ﺇﻟﻰ ﺃﻛﺜﺮ ﻣﻤﺎ‬ ‫ﻧﺤﻦ ﻋﻠﻴﻪ“‬ ‫‪Adelle Davis‬‬

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Nourishing the Kingdom With such rapidly expanding regional demographics, the Food and Beverage (F&B) industry is of major significance to the KSA economy, since the majority of F&B is focused on export to other Middle Eastern countries. Saudi Arabia accounts for two thirds of the Gulf consumer market, and as such, is perceived as the ideal country for significant growth in both the short term and the long term. Consumers are estimated to expand by an average 11% between 2009 and 2014, making Saudi Arabia’s F&B market perfectly suited to potential investment opportunities. Despite the recent global recession, Saudi Arabia has maintained increasing economic strength and resilience in the consumer market. In the F&B sector especially, Saudi’s consumer confidence has been bolstered by the sound fundamentals of the economy, and is tipped to continue seeing a rise in spending in this area. In June 2010, some of Saudi Arabia’s largest food manufacturers reported strong growth in sales and exports. In particular, there is a notable trend of successful exports to the MENA (Middle East and North Africa) arena, with Egypt being one of the largest consumers of F&B overall. The F&B export industry in KSA is estimated to be worth SR3.657m.

Dates are in demand during religious festivals and is a prime source of income for food companies. The population of Saudi Arabia is growing annually at a rate of three percent, and in the next 20 years it will have an estimated population size of around 40 million. Overall, the market for retail products is steadily expanding with the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) at seven percent per annum. The expanse of other industries in and around the Arabian Peninsula and the expanding working population implies that there has been a steady increase in the need for prepared food items. Food such as potato crisps, non-alcoholic drinks, fruits and vegetables, confectionary, dates and honey are all in demand. In particular, items such as dates and confectionary are highly sought after during the Holy month of Ramadan. Almarai is the largest diary food company in the Middle East and is based in KSA. Chaired by HH Prince Sultan bin Mohammed bin Saudi Al Kabeer, Almarai was adopted as a visionary platform by the Prince for transforming traditional farming methods which could accommodate a rapidly progressing consumer market. Since its inception in 1976, the company shifted its traditional farming methods to state-of-the-art processing plants in order to keep up with the enormous demand of diary produce required. Recently, Almarai made SR 1,096.7M in profits - a significant increase of 20.5% respectively over the previous year’s figures. It is estimated that the dairy industry will grow by 35 percent by 2015.

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Dairy farming in KSA is no longer carried out by traditional means. Technological advances have ensured that process plants can meet the growing demand for dairy produce. In an aggressive bid to diversify its economy, F&B exports are a huge source of economic gain for Saudi Arabia, and this is especially true in the drinks industry. For instance, Aujan Industries is considered to be the fastest growing soft drinks company in Saudi Arabia and enjoyed profits of over SR500M in 2008. Its prime markets include the Middle East and North Africa. Estimated projections for revenue by year end in 2012 is expected to reach US$1bn. Another brand in this sector to watch attentively is AJWA. Founded in 1993, AJWA group for food industries processes, markets and distributes various foods including rice, grains, cereals, oil, poultry and livestock feed. It currently exports to countries all over the world including Europe, Africa and the Gulf states. AJWA owns the largest rice and grain facility in the Middle East and is tipped to become one of the fastest and largest growing food production companies in KSA. AJWA recently signed a deal to raise its capital by SR2bn, to transport it to the position of one of the biggest market players in the food industry.

F&B exports rely heavily on grains, soft drinks, dairy, dates and packaged food items. The general consensus and figures from the Saudi Chambers of Commerce confirm that Saudi Arabia has excellent export potential for its F&B, and is expected to increase yearly until 2020. However, despite the recent growth that the industry is experiencing, there are a number of challenges that the food industry as a whole is facing. Food safety and hygiene is of prime concern to the Kingdom. Only recently, the Saudi Food and Drug Authority teamed with the Saudi Arabian Standards Organization held an International food Safety Conference. The aim of the conference was to discuss the issues of food hygiene and the lack of awareness among consumers about general food safety. One of the issues that needed addressing included the labelling of some foods that claim certification for quality when in fact, they have no such certification. Good manufacturing practices also need to be instilled so that every stage of the manufacturing process ensures the highest levels of hygiene possible. One of the key recommendations from the seminar included extensive food handling and food safety training programs being made compulsory for all staff in the food industry.

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A Legacy of Quality Ever since the oil boom of the late 1960’s, opportunities for the establishment and growth of new sectors in the economy of Saudi Arabia have been plenty. Private companies have sprouted in sectors such as food and beverage, healthcare, real estate and retail.

Almarai promises – “Quality you can trust” which is emblematic of its superior products in dairy, refreshments, bakery and poultry ranges. Every day, in over 40,000 stores across the GCC, millions of consumers have Almarai products on their supermarket list.

As a prominent home grown brand, Almarai continues to forge ahead to become an iconic player in the global food and beverage industry. A brand that exudes excellence and an exemplary corporate culture, Almarai’s unwavering commitment to quality has made it a unique entity in the minds of the consumers. From being a pure dairy producer, the company today endorses manufactures, produces and markets brands across the F&B

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spectrum that have become household names. Every day in over 40,000 stores across the GCC, consumers purchase their beloved Almarai product with an innate trust in freshness and quality that has been imbibed by the consumption of its products over time. Not only do they rely on existing range of dairy products and juices for their daily needs, but also provide bakery and poultry specialities. The perfect testament to this is

the boost in sales volume and market share achieved during 2010 by virtually all Almarai products, reiterating the group’s objective of being market leader in every segment where it operates. Almarai has added new freshness to traditional dairy farming to meet domestic needs and the demands of a rapidly expanding international market. Being the market leader puts tremendous pressure on


Almarai’s distribution fleet undertakes approximately 100,000 trips annually, covers 110 million kilometres and comprises more than 3,400 trailers, tankers and sales vans. The company innovates and invests in people and capital to become a global force to reckon with.

Dominating consumer purchase Almarai products are an important part of the consumer’s grocery list. It has now become essential to their daily nutrition and way of life. DAIRY Still the group’s flagship range, the dairy products are responsible for majority of sales and shooting growth rates. The category includes fresh milk, fresh laban, flavoured milk, UHT milk, and evaporated milk. Almarai Vetal probiotic laban is a recent addition to the range. JUICES Almarai juices now come in 13 flavours in mainstream and premium categories and are sold in all GCC states. Almarai holds market leadership in Saudi Arabia, Oman,

the company to deliver quality with timeliness. An elaborate production and distribution method has helped in keeping competition at bay. The distribution fleet undertakes approximately 100,000 trips annually, covers 110 million kilometres and comprises more than 3,400 trailers, tankers and sales vans. As it takes on more challenges, it innovates and invests in people and capital to become a global force to reckon with.

New territory Almarai has moved from its conventional stand as a dairy products and refreshments brand to a more variety oriented food and beverage company catering to newer needs every day. Venturing into new territory of bakery and poultry, the brand endorses L’Usine, 7Days and Alyoum as new members to its family. Becoming the Kingdom’s first truly national bakery brand, L’Usine houses a wide range of sliced bread, burger buns, cluster rolls, pastries, cakes,

Qatar, Kuwait and Bahrain; Saudi Arabia alone constitutes 65 percent of the GCC market for juice products. YOGHURTS & DESSERTS Yoghurts and desserts are market leaders in their segment. The flagships of the category are the plain yoghurt, Gishta and Labneh. However, the range is filled with exciting delectable options like caramel custard, fruit yoghurt and the recent addition Vetal probiotic yoghurt. CHEESE Products of this range are well received by mothers and children alike. Becoming the staple home snacks already, cheese spreads and blocks of cheddar and halloumi variety continue to boost profits at Almarai.

mammoul, waffles and biscuits. 7 days is a collection of delicious cakes, Swiss rolls and croissants that have been loved immensely by the consumer. The brand is two years ahead in its five year plan of becoming market leader. Following the acquisition of HADCO, Almarai rebranded poultry products by the name of Alyoum. The range includes fresh, chilled and whole chickens and also portion packs – mixed parts, breasts, wings or drumsticks – where it has already captured substantial market share in 2010.

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Young consumers are a true inspiration for Almarai and are catered for with specially formulated flavoured milk, triangle cheese, and specially-formulated laban, yoghurt, and custards. They are key motivators in the business initiatives of Almarai.

Timeline: 21st Century 2005 • Almarai graduated from being privately owned to a publicly listed company by offering 30 percent of shares to the public. 2007 • Almarai acquired Jeddah based Western Bakeries expanding its product range into bakery. It initiated construction of a state of the art bakery facility in Al Kharj with 1 Billion SAR investment. 2008 • Ranked number 1 FMCG brand in Forbes’ ‘Top-40 Arab Brands’ list 2008 2009 • Almarai embarked on a journey of geographic expansion through the establishment of the joint venture with PepsiCo.

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• With the acquisition of HADCO, the company made whooping investments of 2 Billion SAR in the poultry category. • Valued at 800 Million SAR, the construction of the first Infant Nutrition Plant in the GCC was done by Almarai to launch a product in the Infant formula segment. 2010 • The Almarai-Mead Johnson collaboration established a one of a kind International Pediatric Nutrition Company which underpinned the company’s commitment to quality and good health of its consumers. • Almarai was declared to have a paid capital of 2.3 Billion SAR, turnover of about 7 Billion SAR and a market capitalization of 23 Billion SAR. • Ranked number one KSA brand by Gulf Marketing Review magazine • Ranked as one of the top 5 brands to go Global by the Financial Times


Service to society The crème de la crème always holds certain accountability to those who are affected by its actions. As a global force in the F&B industry, Almarai leaves no stone unturned while it undertakes in social activities for the general welfare and betterment of the people. Almarai supports various social and humanitarian organisations such as the Orphan Welfare Society, Down Syndrome Charitable Association, Saudi Autism Organisation and the Saudi Breast Cancer Society. Part of its philanthropy is to support the Bin Baz Charitable Project to Assist Young People in Marriage that enables Saudis with limited income to afford to get married. In partnership with King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology, it has launched the Award for Scientific Creativity to encourage scientific research. It encourages education of the youth by granting scholarships in its GCC markets.

Sales Revenue 8000 7000 6000 Revenue in SAR (Million)

Power to the employee The promise of quality permeates down the chain of people at Almarai and is a key factor that adds value to its enlightened corporate culture. Industry experts applaud its meticulous planning, decision making and wholesome business activity. It focuses on creating wellrounded professionals through intensive training and personal development. The first decade of the new millennium has closed with a staff volume of over 17,000 people firmly acknowledging Almarai’s position as an employer of excellence, with staff benefitting from the group’s high moral standards and ethical principles at the core of its functionality, where people are viewed as its greatest assets. Structured training and career guidance within the company has resulted in one in every three employees receiving annual promotion. The company has begun work on Almarai Dairy and Food Polytechnic, an institution that provides young Saudis with skills to become dynamic leaders in the F&B industry. A tie up with other vocational organisations, the institute provides a diploma in courses such as food, dairy production, production equipment maintenance and animal husbandry. As the company expands to lucrative markets, recruiting quality human resource is imperative. In addition, nurturing of employees fosters a positive environment and creates a culture where everyone is a winner.

5000 4000 3000 2000 1000 0

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Regarded as the number one KSA brand by Gulf Marketing Review, Almarai was declared to have a paid capital of 2.3 Billion SAR, and a turnover of about 7 Billion SAR towards the end of 2010

KSA Dairy Market 0.6%! 19.3%!

33.1%!

21.9%!

25.2%!

Recombined Laban  

Fresh Laban  

Long Life  Milk  

Milk Powder  

Fresh Milk  

The flagship of Almarai is the range dairy products, which are responsible for majority of sales and shooting growth rates. The category includes varieties of milk, milk powder and laban.

www.almarai.com

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CHAPTER 10 Health & Beauty

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“‫”ﻣﻦ ﻳﺤﺎﻓﻆ ﻋﻠﻰ ﺭﺅﻳﺘﻪ ﺍﻟﺠﻤﺎﻟﻴﺔ ﻻ ﻳﻬﺮﻡ ﺃﺑﺪﺁ‬

LOGO Position

Franz Kafka

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Unfolding Wellness Reflecting demographic expansion and the increased sophistication and volume of consumer spending, the health, beauty and wellness sectors are seeing a huge surge in KSA. During 2008, in the midst of a world recession, Saudi Arabia experienced a 12 percent growth rate per annum in the personal grooming market. The intensification was caused by soaring oil prices that benefitted the economy and affluent expatriates working in KSA powering mass consumer spending. In comparison, the personal grooming market saw a worldwide contraction of around four percent a stark contrast to the relative boom being experienced in Saudi and the rest of the GCC region.

The build up of residential areas and resorts also led to a demand in the beauty industry to cope with demand from tourists. There was also a shift in buying behaviour from consumers, particularly the younger population, who were keen to learn more about health, beauty and well being products and services. In response to this burgeoning interest and market demand, local salons were cropping up in smaller towns and cities, ensuring that a day of pampering was no longer the right of only the urban rich.

One of the main areas of growth is the Saudi Arabian professional hair care market which is becoming increasingly demanding in terms of quality, standards and products. Religious restrictions haven’t hindered consumers from visiting salons. Instead, salons are gender based with same gender staff making personal care more accessible to all consumers. Salons and spas are also becoming savvier in their use of client referrals and social networking sites to promote their business. In particular, the Saudi hair salon market is thriving, especially in the sale of hair colourants which account for 50 percent of all sales. A total of US$360.2m was spent on hair care in 2009, signalling an increase of just over eight percent from the previous year. This figure is projected to increase year in year out.

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The skincare market was worth US$389.7m, while colour cosmetics accounted for US$267.4m of the total personal grooming market. The beauty and personal care industry combined was worth US$2491.4m in 2009, indicating a nine and a half percent increase from the previous year.

Fragrance Rules KSA Of all the different aspects of personal grooming, nothing emerges quite as much as the fragrance market. In the Middle East, the average spend on perfumes alone is around $326 per capita in the Gulf region. In actual terms, consumers spend around $650 every three months on perfumes, and the average transaction stands at around $81 each time. This is great news for the Saudi economy which is enjoying growth in the personal grooming market and is up by 27 percent in their first quarter compared to last year. It is also worth noting that fragrance sales in the entire Gulf region accounts for 20 percent of the world’s spending on perfumes. It has also led to a huge demand for oriental and designer perfume houses to make their mark, since consumers are always looking to try innovative products to match rapidly evolving trends.

The Saudi Arabian health and beauty market is worth more than US$2bn a year. The greatest spend is on perfumes which account for 40 percent of this market. Premium cosmetics account for 38 percent of the market share. Overall, there has been a steady increase in the number of women entering the workplace and higher educational establishments. It is these women who are spending the most on health and beauty. In fact, Saudi women are amongst the highest beauty spenders who spend more per capita in the personal grooming sector than any other women in the Middle East. Salon sales in Jeddah and Riyadh have confirmed that the largest consumers for personal grooming products are students, graduates and working women. A total of SR9bn was spent on the personal grooming sector in 2009, making Saudi among the most prolific personal grooming markets in the world. Saudi women are also incredibly sophisticated in their ability to promote their business, and as such, over a million women connect daily on social networking sites to promote their business and talk about beauty. Social sites such as Twitter and Facebook are proving successful in advertising businesses.

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Healing Touch Healthcare is one industry which remains least unscathed by global volatility. With the increasing health concerns in the country, hospitals keep evolving to meet those needs.

The lifeblood of Thuriah Medical Centre’s success lies in the team of experienced healthcare managers recruited to oversee the smooth running of day to day operations. “By empowering doctors, nurses, clinical staff and the administrators that the group employs, significant improvements have been seen with a culture of excellence pervading every facet of operations; from premium-quality patient care to complementary needs for management and administrative efficiency in non-clinical areas”, says Dr Abdulaziz Alshahrani, MD .

In the longer term, superior maternity and neonatal services at Thuriah Medical Centre will benefit the Kingdom’s health needs, especially in relation to women’s wellness.” Key to this is establishing a solid foundation for research, including a focus on building skills among healthcare workers. Additionally, research activities will be prioritised according to specific disease patterns and health issues that prevail amongst this vitally important demographic of women “Says doctor Sameer Abdullah ,MD

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The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s keen interest in the health sector has accentuated the growth of Thuriah Medical Centre which was established in Riyadh, in 1996. Thuriah Medical Centre continues to sustain itself and the community and is on its way to achieving its vision of being a leader in medical services, with a focus on women’s health and wellness. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is aiming to develop a healthy nation and the medical fraternity is aware of the tremendous responsibility they have in participating in this core strategy that has both prevention and women’s health, as central aspects of this strategy. “Health is something that cannot be compromised upon and we stand firm in our commitment to extending support to our patients by offering premier healthcare, with a focus on Reproductive medicine &IVF ,Obstetric & gynaecology, urology and general well being,” says Managing Director, Dr. Hamad Ali al Sufyan (FRCOG) Consultant OB/GYN & reproductive medicine, Thuriah

Medical Centre. With the government’s encouragement, private healthcare institutions such as Thuriah Medical Centre are progressing to offer world-class medical care and instil regional health awareness. For instance, new departments such as Thuriah Continuous Health Education Centre and Screening Programme have been planned to manage more diverse and precise knowledge of growing medical needs of the people of Saudi Arabia. Each independent discipline is treated professionally, with an aim to be a one-stop-treatment facility, especially in terms of latest equipment, thorough medical supervision, all round care, privacy of individual , a friendly and reliable atmosphere. This blossoming healthcare operator is actively involved in the community with the group organising health programmes to encourage medical awareness among residents and promote a healthier community. “Our involvement is not limited to offering treatment and care, we are also focused on


promoting health awareness and a healthy lifestyle among the residents through health initiatives”, explains Dr. Lamiaa Al Sebay, Medical Director, Thuriah Medical Centre. In 2009, Thuriah Medical Centre won the prestigious Australian QA Award for High standard IVF lab. This accolade is the latest addition to other national and international recognition that the team has accrued. Previous acknowledgements have included the M.O.H Accreditation, and the Reproductive Medicine Quality Award. With one of the pillars of an advanced economy resting on the quality of its public health sector, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is undergoing a radical health reform. Recent structural changes have seen private involvement flourish, with improving standards and greater investment the public shall reap tremendous benefits. Reputed establishments such as Thuriah Medical centre are pivotal to this enhancement process.

Obstetric and Gynaecology, Reproductive Medicine and IVF, Andrology, Urology, and the Genetics Centre are the mainstay of health services offered at Thuriah Medical Centre making it a leader in medical assistance for Saudi women looking to enhance preventable diseases and uphold good health. The complete range of services includes: • Reproductive Medicine and IVF • Gynaecology and Gynaecologic Laparoscopies • Gyne-Urology , Pelvic Constructive and Plastic Surgery • Obstetrics and Maternal Fetal medicine unit • Urology and Urodynamics • Anorectal Medicine and Surgery • Sexual Medicine • Women’s Wellness Programme • SPA and Health Club • Complimentary medicine and Pain Clinic • General Laboratory • Radiology

Thuriah Medical Centre – In the spotlight • A new Kingdom-wide breast screening programme was implemented, with Thuriah Medical Centre as a core provider. • Recruitment of qualified staff achieved • Clinical reviews and audits were established to identify improvements in processes or services. • Specialty services were introduced in the four major areas of infertility treatment & IVF , Andrology & GyneUrology, Male infertility , maternal Fetal health care services.

Thuriah Medical Centre has branched out and expanded towards a wide range of healthcare-related services which sets an example for other private medical centres in the Kingdom. These range from out patients services, wellness programmes to pre conception and pre marriage counselling as well as day surgery services.

www.thuriah.com.sa

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Holistic Wellness Given the demography of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the burgeoning lifestyle demands of this booming economic nucleus of the Middle East, the government is keen to focus on health care facilities that improve standards of living.

Spa and Wellness treatments are valuable services offered by luxury hotels. They are essential to tourists who come on holidays to unwind. Despite the economic downturn, customers are willing to pay a high price for excellent service and serene ambience. At Lavanya Spa, the highly-trained therapists help you de-stress in a private, calm atmosphere that gets you every penny’s worth.

There is a recent shift from treating just communicable diseases to tackling more chronic and non-communicable diseases due to stressful routines. The authorities are turning to the private sector to help them realise the lucrative opportunity in providing unique services such as day spas and rejuvenation centres to inculcate a culture of good living, quality life and overall well being. New culture of living A prominent competitive establishment in the Saudi Arabia wellness market is Lavanya Spa. With its philosophy of ‘inner peace and outer

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beauty’, this popular day spa has a health club, skin care centre and treatments for the body, mind and soul. “Today, spas and salons have moved from being mere cosmetic and indulgence outlets to organisations that take interest in the holistic wellness of the individual, many of them taking on weight management and nutrition consultation as well,” says Rawia al Sufayan, Director of Lavanya Spa. Some may say, what is the need for pouring investments in setting up a wellness industry during turbulent economic times? However, the maintenance of health is critical given that the general healthiness of the


Today, in the Middle East alone, women control $383 billion of the region’s wealth and this exclusive purchasing power is the key driver of luxury markets. They now invest in their beauty and wellbeing, giving further boost to the spas in the region. Lavanya Spa has used this opportunity to become a hotspot symbolic of luxury, rejuvenation and wellness for women.

Women appreciate a good pampering session. For many, spa days are meant for weekends with their friends. At Lavanya Spa, from the Balinese Massage to caviar facials, Cleopatra milk bath to Keratin hair rituals are exclusive treatments perfect getaway from the hassles of the city life.

population is on a steady decline. It’s easy to neglect inner vitality when work pressures take over in a competitive marketplace. With higher chunks of budgets being allocated for expenditure on conquering health problems, less is being done to alleviate this culture of mental and social illness among people. “Studies show that high level of stress is a major cause for heart diseases, obesity, infertility and diabetes. With the wellness industry boom, more and more people are now looking at alternative ways of busting stress and coming to spas,” says Rania Manasrah Spa, Manger Lavanya Spa. Women are key drivers There has been a profound change in the attitudes and ambitions of women in the kingdom since the accession of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, his Majesty King Abdullah, whose social change initiatives are revolutionised the role of women in society. Likewise, their consumption patterns have come to define their identity. Today, in the Middle East alone, women control $383 billion of the region’s wealth and this exclusive purchasing power is the key driver of luxury markets. “As a luxury and wellness brand we hope to strike a balance between habits and demands of Saudi women. With our exclusive spa packages, ever increasing variety of body massages and beauty salon services, we have created a new social class for women who believe in keeping themselves in the best of health and happiness,” concludes Manasrah.

Investing in the wellness industry is like shooting a fish in the barrel. The world class Lavanya Spa is a pioneer in the field with a variety of services to offer • Health club and gym • Body Massages • Reflexology • Dermatology consultations • Beauty facials • Body baths & other treatments • Make up & Styling

People who are healthier will rarely visit emergency rooms, have lower needs for prescription drugs, fewer accidents, greater life satisfaction overall and be more productive. This is what we need in destitute economic situations and spas such as Lavanya Spa can ensure a change in perception through its quality input to the wellbeing of society.

www.lavanyaspa.com

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Think Skin, Think Kaya From its entry into the UAE in 2003, Kaya has today evolved to 15 clinics in the region across 3 countries. Forging a successful international identity for itself through its extensive range of services, over 55,000 customers from the UAE, Oman and KSA have entrusted themselves to this skincare brand and the glow of satisfied customers continues to grow. With a resounding ‘customer comes first’ philosophy across all operations, personalised services ensure that that everyone walks out of all Kaya clinics feeling great, both inside and out. By popularising the advent of non surgical skin treatments to improve myriad conditions or enhance rejuvenation, clinics embrace a Zen-like atmosphere to calm the senses and allow targeted skin enhancement treatments to take over. A taskforce of over 113 experienced dermatologists and skin practitioners working diligently to make the best of what clients have by adopting a range of treatments for the improvement or maintenance of a youth countenance. Core Values From skin renewal peels, acne scar procedures, pigmentation reduction to skin resurfacing, Kaya have touched upon a popular need of the day where the ideal of youth, vitality and wellness is rooted in a glowing complexion. For this reason Kaya is deeply committed to offering superior treatments accompanied by individual attention and matched by meticulous care aimed at making clients leave satisfied and come back for more. Laser hair reduction A highly popular service at Kaya, laser hair reduction cycle decreases the growth of hair to reveal a visibly hair-free skin. The sophisticated laser technology is safe and result oriented. Performed by experienced and certified laser therapists under dermatologist supervision, the treatment requires several sessions but eventually yields permanent effects.

Thanks to its commitment to offering personalised solutions, based upon safe and result oriented approaches all performed by experienced and certified therapists, Kaya Skin Clinic has grown by leaps and bounds since its inception in 2002.

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Age control Several factors like harsh sunlight, pollution and an unhealthy diet play havoc to the skin, hastening its ageing process. Kaya’s age control services stay abreast of the rapid improvements in cosmetological technology by bringing bespoke treatments aimed at delaying signs of ageing with face firming, face toning, laser skin tightening and photo facial procedures. Other solutions include anti ageing peel solutions, Botox and various collagen fillers. With a global market developing new and


increasingly effective solutions to either delay or maintain skin quality, Kaya has the expertise to pick the best treatments and offer them to clients in a consistently seamless array to choose from, based on requirements and budgets. Enhancement Aside from promoting rejuvenation, acne treatments and maintenance, everyone wants to see their skin glow and exude radiance. For this reason Kaya has developed a series of procedures: Skin Polishing, Everyday Radiance, Aqua Radiance, Mesoglow and Kaya Advanced Facials. Slightly more invasive procedures like lip volume enhancement, margin and cheek augmentation, facial volume with fillers and others are also a popular way for women of all ages to enjoy immediate results and notice an improvement in their faces. Products At Kaya the principle that constant maintenance is critical to a flawless complexion, besides treatment, is fundamental. Precautionary steps must be taken to prevent the skin pores from getting clogged, thereby erupting in pimples. Regular maintenance sessions therefore ensure the skin stays smooth and blemish free. To aid in this process, Kaya has formulated a range of cosmetological products like moisturizing creams, sunscreen, cleansing gels and antidandruff shampoos to make the art of beauty possible in an enduring way.

From high imaging skin and hair analysis by dermatologists, to its insistence on quality treatments throughout every service offering, Kaya believes that its underlying strength has been its work ethos. This is reflected by an open door policy which promotes a free flow of dialogue and a work culture that is experiential and scientifically advanced.

www.kayaclinic.com

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Beauty Au Naturel Today, the Middle East remains a hot spot for the world’s most innovative products as opportunity is scarce in markets badly affected by the recent recession. Saudi Arabia’s ever evolving retail market has a variety of dermatology products to offer consumers. There is also a demand for internationally recognised brands. These brands do not hold back when it comes to customisation to suit local tastes and cultural expectations. Housing exotic European scents and natural skin-care products in its 100 plus stores over the Gulf, Zohoor Alreef is one of Saudi Arabia’s fastest growing toiletries and cosmetics businesses.

At Zohoor Alreef beauty is all about being natural. Over the years, ‘quality’ and ‘newness’ have become bywords at Zohoor Alreef propelling the brand forwards and filling more than100 stores across the Middle East with world-class, natural skin care products.

Founder Faisal Al Khaldi is rightly proud of the outstanding growth of the brand over 20 years and the company now has a presence in competitive GCC markets such Bahrain, Qatar and Kuwait, as well as Saudi Arabia. He is still as passionate today as he was in 1991 - particularly about bringing new fragrances to the region and using only natural ingredients. “We set out to bring fresh, natural products from Europe to Saudi and many of the small

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suppliers we found when we first started are still with us today” says Faisal Al Khaldi, “We never compromise on quality and we know we always have to be as good as the international standard.” With fragrances of Arabia and those across the international spectrum, the brand continues to progress in terms of the variety of products it puts in the market. After exotic imports from Europe, the brand has come of age as a universal body care brand with

natural skin care products of superior quality. “A business like ours matures by listening to its customers. We look for fresh ideas and innovative products to bring to market and for that we have a very efficient customer feedback system in place,” says Faisal Al Khaldi. Taking pride in people A favourable long term economic outlook, foreign trade, sophisticated consumers and high disposable income are cited

as main drivers of retail growth in Saudi Arabia. However, a priority for Zohoor Alreef is to have sustainable business practices and to foster long term relationships with consumers, customers, communities and employees. With a headcount of several hundred, the company is growing fast. Many of the company’s first employees are still with the business as it gains prominence throughout the region. With the economic downturn, one may expect retail businesses to


lose some of their lustre. However, with affordable prices and better quality than its competitors, Zohoor Alreef prides itself on providing value-for-money. This doesn’t necessarily mean ‘cheap’, but it does mean that their items are worth every penny. ‘How I look’ and ‘How I feel’ are important motivators for the brand loyalty Zohoor Alreef garners in the market as it gives consumers what they desire. The cosmetics industry has always been under the microscope for the use of chemicals that may damage consumer skin over time. However, Zohoor Alreef’s emphasis on natural products has given the company its well deserved reputation in the market. At Zohoor Alreef taking care comes easily and naturally. The brand is resonant of beauty au naturel. Moving ahead In 2011, the company opened its first manufacturing plant in France. Owned by Zohoor Alreef, the factory will produce the company’s signature Le Verger Shop line - a range of 12 fragrances each containing ‘top to toe’ toiletries products from high gloss shampoo and conditioner through to special formula shower creams, body scrubs, deodorants, perfumes and body sprays. A couple of years ago, Jeremy Johnston was appointed as CEO. An Oxford University graduate, business manager and retailer with ten year’s experience in the Middle East, he has renewed the spirit of the company. “My job is to make a great company even better” says Jeremy, “I am here to help transition the business from small to medium scale, from family-run to professionally-managed.”

Affordable prices and better quality than its competitors are reasons enough for consumers to choose Zohoor Alreef as their store of first choice for skin care. Essentially, Zohoor Alreef provides value, which means not the cheapest product but items that are worth every halala. Zohoor Alreef takes a keen interest in how people look and feel about themselves encouraging loyalty from customers.

Plans to develop the Le Verger Shop brand into a nationwide stand alone store concept are in progress and the first “Le Verger Shop” stores have been opened in Mall of Dhahran and Al Rashed Mall in Al Khobar, Saudi Arabia.

Elaborating on aims to establish more business units in profitable markets such as the UAE, Jeremy added, “The business is doing well and we have a lot of exciting plans for the future. We have to be sure that that we are highly organised, that we operate to world class standards, and that we can execute superbly.”

www.zohooralreef.com

Humility in prosperity IIn the early days, when the business was just a handful of stores, some of the product was handmade at the back of each shop. A rudimentary soap-making machine, which used to produce a small number of bars on a daily basis, is in the board room in the company’s Al Khobar Head Office, serving to remind the

company and its employees of their humble origins. “I believe humility and an ability to listen intelligently are important to keep you going for greater things in life. As we gather more experience and achieve success, it’s important to remember where you are from, as well as where you are going” says Faisal Al Khaldi.

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CHAPTER 11 Arts & Cultural Heritage


‫”ﺇﻥ ﻛﺎﻥ ﻟﻠﻔﻦ ﺃﻥ ﻳﻨﻌﺶ ﺛﻘﺎﻓﺘﻨﺎ‪ ،‬ﻓﻌﻠﻰ ﺍﻟﻤﺠﺘﻤﻊ ﺃﻥ ﻳﻄﻠﻖ ﺍﻟﻌﻨﺎﻥ ﻟﻠﻔﻨﺎﻧﻴﻦ ﻛﻲ‬ ‫ﻳﺘﺒﻌﻮﺍ ﺭﺅﺍﻫﻢ ﺣﻴﺚ ﺗﺄﺧﺬﻫﻢ“‬ ‫‪President John F. Kennedy‬‬


‫ﻫﻝ ﻳﺴﺘﻮﻱ ﺍﻟﺬﻳﻦ ﻳﻌﻠﻤﻮﻦ ﻮ ﺍﻟﺬﻳﻦ ﻻ ﻳﻌﻠﻤﻮﻦ‬ “Are those who know equal to those who do not know?” Al Zumar Chapter 39 – verse 9

calligraphy Forbidden to paint living creatures and taught to revere the Qur’an, Islamic artists developed Arabic Calligraphy into an art that combineshapes with spirituality. Calligraphers have long drawn from the Qur’an or proverbs, using the flowing Arabic language to express the power of the spoken word.

‫اﳋﻂ اﻟﻌﺮﺑﻲ‬ ً‫ﻧﻈﺮﺍً ﻟﺘﺤﺮﻳﻢ ﺭﺳﻢ ﺍﻟﻤﺨﻠﻮﻗﺎﺕ ﺍﻟﺤﻴﺔ ﻭﺍﺣﺘﺮﺍﻣﺎ‬ ‫ ﻁﻮﺭ ﺍﻟﻔﻨﺎﻧﻮﻥ ﺍﻟﻌﺮﺏ ﺍﻟﺨﻂ‬،‫ﻟﺘﻌﺎﻟﻴﻢ ﺍﻟﻘﺮﺁﻥ ﺍﻟﻜﺮﻳﻢ‬ ‫ ﻭﻟﻄﺎﻟﻤﺎ‬.‫ﺍﻟﻌﺮﺑﻲ ﻟﻴﺼﺒﺢ ﻓﻨﺎً ﻗﺎﺋﻤﺎً ﺑﺤﺪ ﺫﺍﺗﻪ‬ ‫ﺍﺳﺘﻮﺣﻰ ﺍﻟﺨﻄﺎﻁﻮﻥ ﺍﻟﻌﺮﺏ ﻣﻦ ﺁﻳﺎﺕ ﺍﻟﻘﺮﺁﻥ ﺍﻟﻜﺮﻳﻢ‬ ‫ﻭﺍﻷﻣﺜﺎﻝ ﻓﻨﻬﻢ ﻣﺴﺘﺨﺪﻣﻴﻦ ﺍﻟﻠﻐﺔ ﺍﻟﻌﺮﺑﻴﺔ ﻟﻠﺘﻌﺒﻴﺮ‬ ‫ﻋﻦ ﺍﻟﺮﻭﻋﺔ ﺍﻟﺘﻲ ﺗﻮﺣﻴﻬﺎ ﻟﻬﻢ ﺍﻵﻳﺎﺕ ﺍﻟﻘﺮﺁﻧﻴﺔﻭ ﻋﻦ‬ .‫ﻗﻮﺓ ﺍﻟﻜﻠﻤﺔ‬


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‫ﻻ ﺍﻟﻪ ﺍﻻ ﷲ ﻤﺤﻤﺪ ﺭﺴﻮﻝ ﷲ‬ There is no God but Allah and Muhammad is his messenger

font These holy words are written in an Arabic font called “Thuluth”.This font is characterized by the solid form of its letters. The font has several types: Thuluth Al-Mufarrak, Thuluth Jaly, Thuluth Wasat and Thuluth Swashes. Although difficult to render, it gives the calligrapher higher flexibilty.

‫ﻧﻮع اﳋﻂ‬ ‫ﻛﺘﺒﺖ ﻟﻔﻈﺔ ﺍﻟﺸﻬﺎﺩﺓ ﻫﺬﻩ ﺑﺨﻂ ﺍﻟﺜﻠﺚ ﺍﻟﺬﻱ ﻳﻤﺘﺎﺯ‬ ‫ ﻓﻤﻨﻪ ﺍﻟﺜﻠﺚ‬،‫ ﻭ ﺑﺘﻌﺪﺩ ﺃﻧﻮﺍﻋﻪ‬،‫ﺑﻤﺘﺎﻧﺔ ﺗﺮﻛﻴﺐ ﺣﺮﻭﻓﻪ‬ ‫ ﻭ ﺭﻏﻢ‬،‫ﺍﻟﻤﻔﺮﻕ ﻭ ﺍﻟﻮﺳﻂ ﻭ ﺍﻟﻤﺸﺒﻚ ﻭ ﺍﻟﺠﻠﻲ‬ ‫ ﺇﻻ ﺃﻥﱠ ﺣﺮﻭﻓﻪ ﺗﻌﻄﻲ ﺍﻟﺨﻄﺎﻁ ﻣﺮﻭﻧﺔ‬،‫ﺻﻌﻮﺑﺔ ﻛﺘﺎﺑﺘﻪ‬ .‫ﺃﻛﺒﺮ ﻓﻲ ﺗﺸﻜﻴﻞ ﻟﻮﺣﺘﻪ‬


‫ﻨﻮﺭٌ ﻋﻠﻰ ﻨﻮﺭ‬ Light upon light – Al Nour - Chapter 24 / verse 359

‫ﺣﻮل ﻫﺬا اﻟﻌﻤﻞ‬ This Calligraphy is a masterpiece written in 1940 by the famous Calligrapher “Ismail Hakki” (18731946)

‫ﺳﻄﺮﺕ ﻫﺬﻩ ﺍﻵﻳﺔ ﺍﻟﻜﺮﻳﻤﺔ ﺑﻬﺬﺍ ﺍﻟﺸﻜﻞ ﺍﻟﻔﻨﻲ‬ ‫ ﻡ ﻋﻠﻰ ﻳﺪ ﺍﻟﺨﻄﺎﻁ ﺍﺳﻤﺎﻋﻴﻞ‬۱۹٤۰ ‫ﺍﻟﺠﻤﻴﻞ ﺳﻨﺔ‬ (۱۹٤٦-۱۸۷۳) ‫ﺣﻘﻲ‬


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Canvas of Expression orians since time immemorial. With a new cultural wave sweeping through Saudi Arabia, the Kingdom is fast catching pace with international art capitals of the world. Esam Dabbour, a Saudi national who self-invented the ‘Dabbourizum’ School of art is among some of the accolades from all over the world.

The sword dance or ‘Ardha’ is a folk dance performed by the Bedouins. Traditionally performed just before entering into warfare, the men carry swords or canes and dance to the accompaniment of musical instruments including drum beats and a male singer.

What moves Esam to express himself in myriad concepts and vibrant colours, are everyday life experiences. Fitting his work in a bracket is impossible as he moves with time and forces of nature to create what connoisseurs regard as a spectacular understanding of the soul and mind. The only Saudi artist to have been selected by the National Fine Art in United States, Esam’s art has earned the distinction of being Distinguished as a ‘world’ artist, Esam’s work has found a place among art collectors from royal families and celebrities from Europe and the GCC. ”It’s such an honour to be distinguished as an international artist. I am happy to represent Saudi Arabia on the art front and more importantly, I want to create a legacy for the youth so that art has a bright future in Saudi Arabia,” says Esam Dabbour. “A lot has happened in the past 15 years. However, there needs to be a union of artists, old and new, that can help orient young minds

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in schools towards cultural expression. This will boost art recognition in Saudi.” repute as an artist, regularly being invited for lectures at art schools in Poland, Saudi Arabia and Dubai. Esam Dabbour who is also a musician is in discussions with Universal Music to release sensibilities and unique style of expression in the world of interior design. Spotlight Esam Dabbour has been visited by the Polish President who encouraged him to open a state funded gallery in Poland, received a European invitation of such a kind. A French cultural attaché and several Arab state ministers have offered more exhibiting space in their embassy as well as countries.


The sword dance or ‘Ardha’ is a folk dance performed by the Bedouins. Traditionally performed just before entering into warfare, the men carry swords or canes and dance to the accompaniment of musical instruments including drum beats and a male singer.

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In Love, the man is on the left and the woman on the right..it shows pure love in my eyes and how a man feels the support of a woman since she is hugging him from his back and her face is by his face both looking at the future where they are becoming one, and he is protecting her and facing life to make her dreams come true.

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Lady wind, I have set the lady free from any restrictions and emotions and I didnt paint her face due to that I want her to express her emotions either happy or crying or whatever she feels without her feeling that anyone would hold anything against her.

The forest of missing you, This lady is from my imagination and were I love her just the way she is (a man is suppose to love a lady as she is and not as he wants her to be) the reason I made her eyes green is because I see peace in her eyes.

Life in my eyes. This painting has 24kg and 925 silver as my eye brows which means Iv have seen and faced lots of people in my life some are genuine relations and some who seeks something out of me, these people are not as before...they changed they became like animals...never think nor seek except for their own good with no mercy.. therefore in order for me to see the real them my eyes changed to an animal eyes so I can read them clearly.

Lady violin, she was broken from life and her thoughts were shattered around the painting


Nobility and Stamina Incarnate The Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), who loved horses, advised his followers, “Take upon you the mares! Their backs are a sanctuary and their wombs are a treasure.”

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Courtesy of Fahad Bahada

The Arabian horse is a cultural icon of the Arab world. Revered as the oldest and purest of equines, the breed was meticulously honed throughout centuries of breeding in the inclement desert environment of the Arabian Peninsula. Considered by their Bedouin breeders as companions rather than beasts of burden, the character, trainability and loyalty of the Arabian horse mirrors this special relationship. Today, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, along with other countries in the Arabian Gulf, is proud to preserve this priceless cultural heritage by breeding, showing, and racing the finest Arabian horses in the world.

Commemorated down the ages via literature and art, the magnificence of the Arabian horse is the subject of numerous poems and discourses in Arabic that celebrate the Arabian with a known history going back about five thousand years as the oldest breed of horse in existence. The earliest records depict its forbearers as war horses in the green crescent of Mesopotamia. These ‘swift spirited steeds hitched to chariots or bestrode by marauding warriors’ spread throughout the known world along with the conquering armies. Treasured by rulers, the Arabian horse became an emblem of supremacy and prosperity; universally acclaimed as the supreme saddle horse - the ultimate source of beauty, speed and endurance that contributed to the formation of virtually all the modern breeds of light horse. Their superior characteristics evolved as a result of the harsh desert environment which demanded physical adaptations, including fine skin, dark eyes, large nostrils, superior lung capacity, dense bone and high tail carriage. Additionally, the skilled stewardship of the Bedouins, the resilient and fiercely independent peoples of the Arabian region, who were amongst the finest horse breeders of all time, embraced their equine companions with unstinting devotion unsurpassed in human history. Eventhough the Bedouin’s survival was mainly ensured by the camel, an animal ideal for desert living utilised for transportation, meat, milk and leather; camels were unwieldy in warfare and for the type of surprise skirmishes that were the hallmark of the Bedouin tribes. Reared lovingly by the members of the tribe, to be riding a swift and agile Arabian horse gave greater advantage. The Arabian horse strengthened its bond with the Bedouins with characteristic loyalty and over time, these breeders realized that purity was vital in maintaining the desirable attributes of their mounts so attention was given to

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The Arabian, with a known history going back about five thousand years, is the oldest breed of horse in existence. The earliest records depict his ancestors as war horses in the green crescent of Mesopotamia, and along with the conquering armies, the Arabian horse’s fame spread throughout the known world. As the prized possession of the great kings and rulers, the Arabian horse became a symbol of power and wealth. They were the original source of quality and speed, and remain unsurpassed in the sphere of soundness and endurance. Their exquisite beauty, intelligence, stamina, and devotion to their owners has made Arabians one of the most popular breeds in the world.

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breed only asil, or pure horses. Because of their nomadic lifestyle, oral traditions abounded and the genealogies of their horses were passed down the generations so that the Bedouin, who preferred mares over stallions in warfare, starting giving strain names to the matriarchal lineage of their prized horses, retaining this practice until today. Arab poets of pre-Islamic times celebrated their horses in vivid descriptions illustrate the mount’s characteristics that were most revered – bravery, beauty, purity, stamina and nobility. From the onset of the Islamic era, the Arabian horse would be inexorably connected with Islam. Muslims mirrored the love that the Prophet (PBUH), had for these noble animals. As the religion stretched regionally and beyond, Muslims were unswervingly victorious on their agile and resilient mounts. While their enemies saw their own horses

merely as beasts of burden, the Muslims believed theirs were rational beings with an intrinsic understanding of morality. Effectively, two-thirds of the known world, from Austria to China, was conquered on the backs of Arabian horses. Throughout a succession of Islamic dynasties, during the Abbassid period for instance, the renowned poet Al Mutannabi wrote, “The best place to be found on earth is on the back of a galloping horse…”  It was during the reign of Salah ad Din, the founder of the Ayyubid dynasty who defended the region from the European Crusaders that the western armies of the West encountered this prized equine breed. On realising the value of these horses in improving their indigenous breeds, the Europeans down the ages, made numerous trips to the desert in search of precious bloodstock.


Courtesy of Fahad Bahada

During the rule of Mameluke in Egypt, Arabian horses were embellished with magnificent adornments and the literature and art during this time continued to mirror a fondness for the breed which can be seen in the treatises expounding the notion of furusiyya, or horsemanship, which emerged as an art form at this time. Even when Napoleon Bonaparte arrived in Egypt in 1798 he was in awe of the Mameluke horseman that he beautified his own Arabian horse in their fashion. During the mid-sixteenth through nineteenth centuries, royal families in Europe, including Poland, Spain, and Germany established studs for the breeding of purebred Arabians and emissaries were regularly dispatched to the deserts of Arabia and the Near East to acquire new blood. The popularity of the breed increased as countless artists were

inspired to depict these Eastern horses, both in their native lands and as the mounts of the aristocracy. Parallel to its prominence in poetry and literature, the breeding of this species progressed, with the Arabian deserts remaining the source of the prized bloodstock rooted around the date palm oasis city of Dir’iyyah. As the capital of the Najd region, seat of the region’s longest ruling dynasty – Al Saud – their collection of Arabian horses were unimaginably treasured. In the 1800’s, W. G. Palgrave, an Englishman who first visited the stables of Amir Faisal Bin Turki Al Saud stated that the horses of Najd were a awesome. “Never had I seen nor imagined so lovely a collection, their appearance justified all reputation, all value, all poetry.” Today, purebred Arabian horses are found worldwide, prized for their unparalleled beauty as well as their malleable character, versatility under saddle and superiority in Endurance racing. All these attributes are legacies from the Bedouin breeders of the past, who believed that when these horses are treated respect and admiration, they respond with unparalleled devotion and loyalty. In the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and throughout the Arabian Gulf, care is being taken to protect the cultural legacy of the Arabian horse. Breeders in the region have taken horses from the top international bloodstock and continue to win the most prestigious show and racing accolades worldwide. Although technology has replaced the traditional role of the Arabian horse in the area of transportation, many of the greatest advances of civilization, as well as the spread of Islam and contributions in science, mathematics and medicine, were reached in tandem with the Arabian horse.

Courtesy of Fahad Bahada

Courtesy Courtesy of of Fahad Fahad Bahada Bahada

A unique combination of beauty and utility, the typical Arabian is a symmetrical saddle horse combining strength and elegance - with a bright, alert outlook and great pride of bearing. The sharply defined facial features, the thin skin with its silken, iridescent coat, the fine hair of the mane and tail and the hard clean legs with their exceptionally clean cut tendons and joints, are characteristic Arabian features associated with a quality of the highest degree.

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Cultural Boost

Courtesy of Fahad Bahada

There is no better place than Janadriyah, a village situated about 43 kilometres from the Kingdom’s capital - Riyadh, to experience authentic Saudi Arabian cultural and traditional lifestyle. Annually, Janadriyah plays host to the National Heritage and Cultural Festival, thronged by thousands of visitors from in and around the Kingdom and from other countries, as well.

Courtesy of Fahad Bahada

The sword dance or ‘Ardha’ is a folk dance performed by the Bedouins. Traditionally performed just before entering into warfare, the men carry swords or canes and dance to the accompaniment of musical instruments including drum beats and a male singer.

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Popularly referred to as ‘Janadriyah festival’, the National Heritage and Cultural Festival has been held since 1985, following a Royal Decree issued by late King Fahd. When the event was held for the first time, it was met with such a rousing welcome that it has since become an important event in the Kingdom’s cultural calendar. Over the years, the Janadriyah festival has been showcasing the lifestyle that citizens of the Kingdom led before the discovery of oil. Organised by the National Guards, the festival also exhibits traditional dances, wedding rituals, food and everyday-life of the past. Prior to the year 1985, the only cultural event held in the Kingdom was the camel race that attracted wide participation and audience. Today, the camel race marks the beginning of the week-long cultural extravaganza. Inaugurated by the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz, the race attracts around 1,000 contestants and the prize winners are rewarded by himself. Following the camel race, cultural activities like poetry sessions, lectures, art exhibitions, book shows, debates and operas are also held to honour the works of poets, artists, thinkers and speakers. Symposiums throw light upon


Courtesy of Fahad Bahada

Courtesy of Fahad Bahada

Besides showcasing the traditional and cultural scene of the Kingdom, the Festival organises a grand camel race that is a highlight of the event. The winners of the race are rewarded by none other than the Custodian of the two Holy Mosques.

www.janadria.org.sa/Janadria25/Arabic

Courtesy of Fahad Bahada

courtesy of Awadh Al Hamazani

Courtesy of Fahad Bahada

debatable topics like Islamic unity and interfaith dialogue to voice out concerns surrounding the topic. Colourful pavilions, small and large, display a range of stalls and activities to represent the diverseness within the culture of Saudi Arabia. Each of the seven provinces in the Kingdom has different heritage buildings, folklore, tribal and family traditions and this is highlighted during the festival. The visitors can also witness the various handicrafts made by the artisans like pottery, handicraft items made from date palm fronds and other materials. Women also prepare traditional culinary dishes that can be sampled by all. Over the years, the festival gates were thrown open exclusively to male visitors. However, from 2009, separate days are allotted for families and only ladies. This move to encourage participation from women and children indicates the interest by the Kingdom to move to a less-conservative level. Not content with being just visitors, women poets have also participated in the poetry sessions and made a mark for themselves. In a land that is yet to allow women to drive cars, this is a great achievement, indeed! In early 2010, the organisers introduced a mascot to the festival to attract the interest of kids. Swayyer, the mascot is a brainchild of Dr Iqbal Al-Arfaj, the Chairwoman of the Women’s Culture and Heritage Committee. Images of Swayyer were used on t-shirts and other memorabilia to be distributed in the festival. This was done primarily to create a fondness for the festival in the hearts and minds of the children. Janadriyah festival holds a whole new meaning to the future generation of the Kingdom who have little or no idea about the past of their grandfathers and those who lived before them. The festival remains a link to their past and holds a key as to how they should lead the future. Janadriyah festival is a huge attraction in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Besides the locals, the festival attracts hundreds of expatriates and nationals from the GCC countries and elsewhere. Facilities like a new parking space that can accommodate 100,000 cars are also in place at Janadriya.

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Equine Extravaganza And God took a handful of South wind and from it formed a horse, saying: “I create thee, Oh Arabian. To thy forelock, I bind Victory in battle. On thy back, I set a rich spoil And a Treasure in thy loins. I establish thee as one of the Glories

Courtesy of Awadh Al Hamazani

Bedouin Legend)

This joint adventure between the Al Khalediah Arabian Horse Festival and the Saudi Arabia Equestrian Federation is considered unique in Saudi Arabia and in the Arabian Peninsula overall, the event is a horse lovers paradise, placing the heritage, preservation, and most importantly, the exceptional beauty of the Arabian Horse, in centre stage.

In 1983, (HRH) Prince Khaled Bin Sultan established a 1680 hectare farm, located 95 km southwest of Riyadh, transforming it into an oasis dedicated to Arabian Horses, Wildlife Reserve and Agribusiness. Since then Al Khalediah Farm has not only emerged as a stronghold of pure Arabian horses’ production, winning accolades in national and international championships, it has given birth to the annual

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Arabian Horse Festival, held since January 2008. Aside from being an event that now graces Riyadh’s annual social calendar, welcoming guests and equestrian enthusiasts from worldwide, this ‘A’ class Festival is a celebration of the Arabian horse, initiated to foster the equestrian disciplines in which this extraordinary animal competes.

patronage of HRH, Prince Khaled Bin Sultan Bin AbdulAziz Al Saud , Al Khalediah Farm, the headquarters of His Highness’s farms in Tebrak city, come alive with equestrian h as integral to the nation’s history. There is an auction of exceptional purebred Arabian horses on Arabian racehorses on the second;

consecutive days under the

the acme of the Festival, a three day International Arabian Horse of these animals. An avid horse lover, HRH is the mastermind of Al Khalediah. By creating and managing Al Khalediah Stables (AKS), he is the ultimate engineer of the farm’s victories, making Al Khalediah a famous stud, with a successful breeding programme, an undisputed leader in the Arabian horse world.


courtesy of Fahad Bahada

Regularly attended by Their Royal Highnesses, Crown Princes, Sheikhs, Ambassadors and prominent people in the regional business community, owners, breeders, key association members, international media and families who want to share in the excitement attend the five-day extravaganza.

the thoroughbred racing horses, breeding and showing of purebred Arabian horses, recognised as the most appealing species in the world. The AKS team competes in all major purebred Arabian Horse shows in the Middle East and Europe, winning championship titles - several in Saudi Arabia as well as Middle East, International and World Champion titles. It is only a few years ago that AKS started to acquire these elite animals and initiating an in-house breeding programme. Through dedication, AKS has added value to the gamut of specialist shows and events, giving recognition to the Arabian Peninsula and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia - the desert homelands from where this prized animal originated and now returns. Another treasure of AKS is the new ‘HRH Prince Sultan bin Abdul Aziz Race Track’ built in 2004, now ready to host and

courtesy of Awadh Al Hamazani

Besides the jumping and carriage horses raised and trained at AKS, attention is given to the preservation and breeding of pure d esert Arabian horses. The most

train racing horses. Built to international standards, the track is strategically located inside the farm. Through the construction of this track, AKS - that has represented in the AKS blackand-white racing colours - is Farm with superb capabilities to introduce racing champions to the public.

Through dedicated and accredited auctions, races and quality equine events, the Al Khalediah Festival has managed to do what others have tried in the past: to foster a loyal following within society and to engender appreciation for the incredible Arabian horse in its homeland - the heart of the Arabian Peninsula, Saudi Arabia.

Playing a vital role in the evolution of the Arabian culture and held in high esteem by those who participate in this amazing animal’s equestrian world, the Al Khalediah Arabian Horse Festival – Arabian Horse Racing will take place on Tuesday the 26th of January 2010 at Prince Sultan bin Abdulaziz Race Track at Al Khalediah Farm, Tebrak, 90km out of Riyadh on the road to Makkah.

www.alkhalediah-festival.com

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CHAPTER 12 Saudi Women

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“‫”ﺍﻟﻤﺠﺘﻤﻊ ﺍﻟﻨﺴﺎﺋﻲ ﻫﻮ ﻣﺪﺭﺳﺔ ﺍﻷﺩﺏ ﺍﻟﺠﻢ‬ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

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Beauty is in Strength Despite the fact that appearances in working processes were for the most part the domain of men, recent changes to the overall economic strategies for growth see women as a fundamental part of the future development of KSA. Current government strategies include encouraging educated women to take more active role in society, particularly in positions of power such as board positions within large organizations. This is seen as a priority, since KSA is keen to be more in line with other more developed first world economies which have women as heads of state and in powerful positions within the workforce.

Education is taking precedence for women, particularly in the realm of science, engineering, architecture and medicine. This strategy is supported by a quarter of the annual budget being allocated to education. For instance, the world’s largest female only university Princess Noura bint Abdulrahman University (PNU), is currently under development and will focus on mainly scientific subjects so that women can study with confidence in a segregated environment. A change in the economy combined with better education and more available opportunities make a positive impression on the corporate world. Subjects such as teaching and nursing have a high intake of females, and KSA is keen to help women assume more varied roles, especially within

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the fields of science, architecture, computing and medicine. Women account for around 45 percent of the total KSA population, of which 79 percent are literate. However, only 65 percent of literate women work, meaning the potential for working opportunities is huge. In response to this overwhelming need for more opportunities and to aid women further in all walks of life, several initiatives have been developed. In 2009, the Saudi government built the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST), which was the first co-educational institute in KSA. Other similar initiatives have also been developed to further the overall education and working opportunities for today’s Saudi woman.


Over 90% of women in the workforce hold a degree or other secondary qualification. The majority of teaching positions are held by women and the Ministry of Education is officially the largest employer of women.

Statistics show that women undertake an increased number of key positions in Architecture, Law or the Sciences.

Over the last decade, there has been a huge trend in women-owned businesses and these have gone from strength to strength. It is estimated that Saudi women hold around US$11.9bn in cash between them. The government is keen to tap into this wealth by encouraging banks to have women only banking available for them. Banks such as the National Commercial Bank (NCB) and BNP Paribas have taken the lead in commercial banking services for women. Other initiatives with regards to finances include specific programs designed to make the most of Saudi women’s wealth. The Al Jawarah Ladies Fund and TNI Dana Women’s fund have been specifically designed to help women manage their wealth more efficiently. Moreover, schemes and projects designed to fuel the entrepreneurial spirit of women have also been developed to provide financial support and assistance for those women seeking to expand their business opportunities. The King Abdul Aziz Women’s Charity Association’s Al-Barakah Loans Centre helps to fund projects which are taken by low income, divorced and widowed Saudi women. Furthermore, The Centennial Fund (TCF) which was also created by King Abdul Aziz, provides financial funds to young entrepreneurs for which 26 percent of the projects are run by women. Similarly, the Khadija Bint Khowailed Centre for business women aspires to help women by providing dedicated support, training and business advice. The centre aims to empower women in business and help them to achieve their business goals. Elsewhere in KSA, industries are changing their values to help women integrate into the workforce, allowing the modern Saudi woman to effectively contribute on the economic success of the Kingdom.

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Unveiling Woman Power Compassion, generosity and courage lie hidden behind the black veils of Saudi women. Despite facing odds, women in the Kingdom are proving their mettle across sectors and breaking down barriers in the process. Contributing to their upliftment is Princess Adila Bint Abdullah Bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud whose steadfast support has raised the level of acceptance of working Saudi women in the society.

Women in Saudi Arabia have participated in the elections of numerous institutions - Chambers of Commerce and Industry, board of directors of the Saudi Council of Engineers, the Saudi Journalists Association, the Saudi Playwrights Association and to the position of vice chairwoman of the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

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It’s a tough world out there…The challenges women face in the job market include gender barriers, reluctance of the private sector to hire women, restrictions that destroy initiative and an overall bias that chokes women’s path to progress. However, change is underway. According to a report by the Human Rights Commission (HRC), “the margin of freedom given to a Saudi woman is expanding, and that the system is protecting her rights and guaranteeing her a decent life.” The report also noted that since King Abdullah ascended the throne in 2005, women have obtained more rights, privileges and opportunities that have helped them advance while maintaining their Islamic identity. Also, the King had announced the start of women’s participation in public life and a women delegation took part in his first Asian tour. Carrying King Abdullah’s work forward, Princess Adila is an ambassador for the fairer sex of the Kingdom. She explains, “Saudi women have a great opportunity to be strategic partners in the development of society in the country. Women’s work in the private sector in the Kingdom goes hand in hand with the plan being followed by the leadership, which is making Saudi women capable of development following the tackling of difficulties and impediments.” The Princess encourages the initiatives undertaken by business sectors that support the welfare of women. Holding office as President of the Al-Sayyida Khadija Bint Khawilid Centre, she has recognised the efforts of institutions like Saudi Arabian British Bank (SABB), where 14 percent of the employees are women, all Saudis. In 2010, she paid an official tribute to the National Commercial Bank (NCB) in honour of its role in supporting working women. The NCB also has taken steps to support the role of women in contributing effectively to the development of the country. The organisation received a trophy and an appreciation letter from the Princess. A tireless advocate for their empowerment, she appeals to other banks to provide better loan incentives to help qualified women become decision-makers. Such accolades act as incentives to the institutions to pursue sustainable development while emphasising the indispensable role of women in serving the nation. Besides, the Princess supported the visit of a Saudi female delegation to Paris at an invitation from the French embassy in Riyadh. The delegation visited government ministries including Justice, Economy, Social Affairs; institutions concerned with children and family and other institutions such as the French Parliament, the Supreme Court and the Sorbonne. The report by HRC stated that the support of educational and social institutions for women had directly contributed to their accomplishments locally and internationally. It added that many Saudi women are enjoying independence with dignity, as stipulated in Article 26 of the Basic System of Governance,

The Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) and other conventions that the Kingdom has signed provide the Saudi woman a secure environment to contribute and prosper.

which clarifies “protecting human rights in accordance with Islamic Shariah.” It also stressed on ensuring that women are employed at agencies for them, and called for more job opportunities for them given their progress in education and various professions. The HRC said the King’s initiative, to pay special attention to education in general - and to women’s education in particular - was reflected in the budgets allocated for it. Some of the stepping stones gained by Saudi women included: participation in National Dialogue through forums and workshops; the decision to increase parttime women members at the Shoura Council from six to 12 members, the appointment of the first woman Deputy Minister of Education for Girls Education, the appointment of a woman as President of Princess Noura Bint Abdulrahman Girls University, the appointment of a woman Assistant Mayor for Information Technology in Jeddah, and the creation of women’s sections at the Passports Department, Prisons Department and the Civil Defence.

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AlSayedah Khadijah Bint Khawilid Business Centre As the Executive Director of AlSayedah Khadijah Bint Khuwalid Business Centre at Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Dr. Basmah Mosleh Omar has learnt the art of understanding diverse perspectives to market issues convincingly and to have the confidence to lobby for women’s empowerment. AlSayedah Khadijah Bint Khuwalid Center with the Ministry of Trade has ratified rules allowing women to become Board Members in IPO family companies and private companies, so women can now become Board Members, and therefore become a chairman. Additionally, women were not able to get trade licenses in construction, contracting and real estate, and today this is permitted. Earlier, women’s paperwork all had to be processed in Riyadh, now it is decentralized. Women can now trade in all trades, no exception, just like men. As for the Ministry of Labour, we have an official letter stating the abolishment of legislation 160 of the old labour laws advocating no mixing between genders in the work place. That has now been repealed and a clause mentions that men and women in the workplace must operate according to Sharia’a which means upholding greater leniency in a mixed gender work environment. How and when you became passionate about the cause of women’s empowerment?

Dr. Basma Mosleh Omair. With a database almost touching eight thousand, the AlSayedah Khadijah Bint Khawilid Business Centre at Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry is committed to helping women know their legal rights, lobbying government to further the cause of gender equality and ultimately playing a role in propelling the Kingdom’s march towards progress and globalization.

With a PhD in Education Technology / Leadership & Management Dr. Basmah has imbibed new skills with each new area along the way. During your tenure in the center, you have famously said; “King Abdullah has tried to help women, his ministers support him. Yet so far, not much has happened. The problem is that in the ministries where the paper is handled, there is resistance to change.” What are the steps required to speed up the endemic apathy that prevails towards gender equality in KSA? I have been misquoted on this point, with two separate comments merged erroneously into one. King Abdullah has done much for women’s empowerment, but challenges lie in the implementation of regulations. Issues

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and obstacles are sometimes found in middle management or the bottom line at client interface level. The implementation of regulations should be realistic and feasible. Raising awareness about these new policy changes is also important; as is the coordinating between ministries to ensure compliance. Islam traditionally exemplifies progressive women with pronounced leadership abilities being given the freedom to express these. What milestones has the AlSayedah Khadijah Bint Khawilid Business Centre (AKBK) reached in women’s advancement through the use of national development plans, international conventions and reforming current legislation?

It was 2004; I returned from the States and was working as a consultant in Savola to discover ways of employing the disabled into the private sector, at the time the historic move in the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce took place allowing the election of women members. The then Board of Directors asked me to head the businesswomen centre. I agreed, saying I would try it for a couple of months when I realized the numerous issues that needed tackling. So we changed the vision from training centre for businesswomen in the Chamber, into a lobbying centre to work on reforming legislation, policies and procedures regarding women’s equality. Gradually, from a training centre we evolved into a women’s lobbying movement to help provide opportunities to pursue their professional goals. It wasn’t something that intentionally we wanted to get into, it just happened. With government initiatives stressing on the need to establish a diversified SME base in order to sustain growth and absorb young people into the workforce, what specific programmes does the AKBK have for this vital group? The Chamber of Commerce has a department dealing with SMEs for both genders, whilst we study the regulatory issues affecting ease


of conducting business and working with government to enact viable reform. We don’t help them directly in training or in finding them loans, we handle the legislative side and then other departments in the Chamber of Commerce handle the more technical details of entrepreneurship. Ultimately, we are troubleshooters, concentrating on easing the obstacles for women entering business spheres by reforming legislation. We also act as facilitators on behalf of young people coming up with new concepts that may get stuck in ministry bureaucracy because their ideas are untested and licensing is challenging. Diverse age-groups have different needs that we handle.

Please list the challenges that you face in ensuring that the initiatives organised by the AKBK assist women to fulfill their entrepreneurial aspirations? There are several, such as: Once a regulation has been changed, systems must be followed to ensure standardized implementation, raise awareness amongst women that these regulations exist, and gaining acceptance from society if some regulations are perceived as overly ‘Dramatic’ to enact. Above all, verifying that within ministries policies have permeated across the board.

www.jcci.org.sa

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Empowering Womanhood AlMultaka providing food for the body, mind and soul of the contemporary Saudi woman, bringing forth a renaissance in womanhood.

On Mondays and Wednesdays, visitors to Fontainbleue can watch the preparation of Saj that is served hot with their own choice of topping.

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Madam Lama Aggad

AlMultaka is the perfect place to step into when a whole day stretches ahead with no schedules and deadlines to meet. This multipurpose ladies only hive of activity has so much to offer - Salon, fitness centre, spa, gallery, library and of course a designer-wear showroom for Riyadh’s most stylish ladies. With so much happening under one roof, there is never a dull moment at AlMultaka. This is an environment where beauty, design, art and aesthetics meet to conquer your senses and captivate your time with the utmost enjoyment. Besides, AlMultaka encourages reputed companies in the fields of investment, real estate, travel, law and interior design to set up their ladies’ branch under AlMultaka’s umbrella in order to facilitate networking and business growth. Saudi national Lama O. Aggad, Founder, AlMultaka, shares the idea and purpose behind her organisation. How did the idea of AlMultaka originate and what is the ultimate purpose? With the strong upbringing and support of my father, I grew up to be a well rounded individual who believed in facing challenges with grit and determination. My aim was to become a Saudi woman who instils change and excellence through her work in the country. I received an Honours graduate from the avant-garde and prestigious Chelsea School of Art and Design as well as the Ravensbourne College of Art and Design, in London. With a solid grounding in art and design, I returned to Riyadh to set up AlMultaka (the Rendez-Vous), a meeting place for women, where culture meets luxury, in an inspiring ambiance of hope, excellence and energy. The revolutionary idea drew parallels between business and community development through change and innovation. Today, AlMultaka caters its services to

250-300 ladies a day and has become one of the leading centres in Riyadh offering only the latest in high-end services and products. What are the challenges of running an organisation such as AlMultaka? Initially there were many uncertainties and hurdles. The concept itself was quite new therefore the legalities concerned or needed were unclear. With the support and assistance of the ladies branch of the governmental authority, licenses started to appear giving women the legality and strength to continue successfully in their varied chosen fields. Another challenge was staffing. We are great supporters of Saudisation but also needed superb, highly qualified personnel to portray AlMultaka in the best light. This took a great deal of training and perseverance. Initially we started with 8 employees, now after 18 years, we are a team of 168 with a majority being local Saudis. In the history of AlMultaka, at which point did you feel that all the effort was absolutely worth it? It is always wonderful to see AlMultaka in action especially when we have 600 or more ladies a night during our fitness sessions. I feel

Aside from housing its own Art Gallery, showcasing paintings by leading Arab artists and an in-house library where books on art, literature and design are available to browse through.

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like AlMultaka is doing everything right. There are many such instances but on a personal level, I rejoiced when my father, my wonderful mentor, Omar A. Aggad, decided to visit AlMultaka not having been there for some time. This significant tour, some years back started an endless barrage of astonishment, compliments, amazement and deep appreciation for the effort we had put in all those years that turned AlMultaka into this success story. He concluded we are a beacon of hope for several such new endeavours and he takes pride in the brand we have become. As we move to greener pastures, his appreciation and blessings remain our driving force. From the perspective of a business woman, why is AlMultaka the place to be? When you see three generations of our clients

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coming through the door hand in hand to participate with us the feeling is wonderful. There must be something about us which brings us such admiration and loyalty from the people. AlMultaka represents the success story of every Saudi woman whether she is a business woman, a housewife, a University Dean, a doctor or a student. We contribute to society, respect the environment and fully support local communities. The company’s success has been recognized through winning a number of awards and there’s scope for further and faster growth. How deeply is the idea “from women to women” incorporated in the daily operations at AlMultaka? We are becoming a global community and

the only way forward is hand in hand. Our philosophy of “drops that gather one by one finally become a sea” is the root of our efforts in expanding the AlMultaka community. With a team that is aware, dedicated and vivacious; we are sensitive to our clients’ and community’s needs and have thus achieved the amazing results. This is an exciting time for the country with many positive exchanges with other cultures. We are now in tune with worldwide events and have a better understanding of businesses and economies in general. We have to empower women with skill, proper managerial background, and the right education to implement business tools. We must also encourage all to participate in ladies oriented sectors which will translate into important roles women play in the national economy.


Umbrella AlMultaka

Designer-wear Showroom Elevating fashion to an art, AlMultaka houses a collection of designer wear from globallyrenowned haute couture designers such as Jean Paul Gaultier, Jean Louis Scherrer, Ashley Isham, Maria Grachvogel, Cliements Ribeiro and Carlos Miele. Presentations and showings of Lama O. Aggad’s designs and collections take place when time permits.

Beauty and Hair Salon Housing a team of highly qualified professional hairstylists and beauticians, with the objective of delivering innovative treatments and services, here is a haven where beauty and relaxation go hand in hand. Beauty is something all strive for, and it’s waiting for you at AlMultaka’s Beauty Salon. Whether you’re yearning to find the life-long beauty within or simply need to look drop-dead

gorgeous for one special night. AlMultaka Salon is here for you. Change your look, rejuvenate your skin. And bring a glimmer to your toes. Spend an hour, spend the day. The Hairstylists-Artists, use the finest products, to create “portraits” that fit the client, the occasion and the attitude. State of the art styles, wavy or straight, classic or chic, whatever mood, style or stage you’re in, the Hairstylists will create the look the clients always dreamed of. The colorists use the finest products and the latest techniques to create a color and texture that enhances the shape of the haircut and the quality of the hair. From IPL hair removal, to Crystal Peel, to firming the skin, AlMultaka’s Estheticians use only the finest ingredients to gently, effectively restore and protect your skin tone, texture and appearance. These techniques will help promote the general health of the skin, moisturize fine lines, reduce irregular pigmentation, smoothes, refines and firms the skin.

Welcome to a world where every amenity is provided to create maximum leisure pleasure and convenience. Surf online whilst enjoying a cup of coffee, or enjoy the benefits of personalised computer classes. In addition, AlMultaka leases space for retail, office use or private functions, as well as hosting fabulous seasonal exhibitions in the bespoke showroom.

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Fitness Centre Be it staying fit or losing weight, the fabulously appointed fitness centre offers diversified classes in aerobics, Pilates, body combat, body shaping, spinning, yoga, and

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our most popular Fight do, X55 and Mega Dance Classes. These are all handled by certified and highly qualified instructors. Besides, the gym has the highest quality equipment to enjoy an invigorating work-out. Memberships that allow unlimited access to the gym, steam room and aerobics classes are also available. This includes a comprehensive fitness evaluation and a personalised workout programme for diverse

categories of fitness levels. AlMultaka Fitness Centre is a Radical Fitness Certified training centre and a certified Stott Pilates Centre. Children also learn the importance of exercise and good health habits that will be used throughout their lives through workouts in Hip hop, Kid fit, etc. Classes that are fun and offer a unique child care experience not to mention the annual Ballet event.


Explore a new way to vitality An alternative way to a much healthier and cleaner body, allowing detoxification and relaxation, are the unique massage and therapy services at AlMultaka to give you renewed vitality. Ayurveda is a safe and relaxing centuries-old natural method. Holotherapy Treatment uses Chinese acupressure, shaping treatments by Mars, Aromatherapy relaxing massage, La Stone Therapy, Reflexology massages, back and neck massages and body wraps, be it cholcolate or specially made muds help to untie stress knots and improve blood circulation giving you that glowing skin you’ve always desired. Try the Moroccan Bath ultimate experience with deep cleansing and hydrating creams, have the soft baby skin you dream of. End your day at the spa, by stretching out and enjoying the Alpha Sphere, a Space Ship for the Inner Journey, consciousness levels get activated and conventional experiences of space, time and “me myself” get transcended, or simply enjoy the lazy breeze as you lounge on our intimate terrace high above – where the sky and spa meet as one. Have lunch brought in, browse through mail or just dream on…………

Spa and Weight Loss Centre Offering a refreshing, whole body and mind experience. AlMultaka Spa boasts a range of programmes that combine rejuvenating treatments with sustainable weight reduction. It also includes a well-balanced eating plan that awakens dormant energies and harmonises weight to healthy levels. This luxurious, refined treatment not only offers an upscale setting for its clientele but an amazing spectrum of experiences by professional certified staff who are unified in their dedication to superior service and client comfort.

Little Fingers Young mothers who seek a day off to relax by themselves can head to AlMultaka without hassles. Their kids will be well-taken care of at the colorful playroom with fun activities that are designed to develop selfesteem, coordination and social skills. Little Fingers provides the children with a safe caring environment. Kids aged between 0-month and 10 years are entertained under expert supervision with a range of activities like painting, drawing, sculpting, dancing, storytelling and making their own dolls, T-shirts, gift boxes, cards. The sky is the limit….In addition, classes offered for kids range from ballet and computer lessons to fitness exercises.

Fontainbleue Renowned as one of the most fashionable and favourite meeting places in Riyadh, the restaurant offers a bubbling atmosphere where you can enjoy delicious food and beverages, delivering an exceptional dining experience to every customer every time. Homemade salads, sandwiches, soups, wraps, fondue, crepe, croissants, saj, pizza, pastries and a lot more are available to soothe your palate. Besides, freshly squeezed juices and an extensive range of teas and coffees are offered on the menu. The restaurant organises international and traditional dinners featuring Italian, Chinese and Mexican cuisines, Swiss Fondue, Mediterranean and the renowned and much sought after Ramadan Sohour evenings. High expectations for the perfect experience are met at our Classical English Afternoon Tea apres midi’s reminiscent of times past. An ideal setting for any celebration. Engagement, graduation, or retirement parties. Time to catch up with friends. All you have to do is relax and enjoy your dining experience and the legendary customer service.

www.almultaka.com.sa

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CHAPTER 13 Luxury Lifestyle

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‫”ﺣﻘﺎً‪ ،‬ﻗﺪ ﻳﺤﺼﻞ ﺍﻟﺸﺨﺺ ﻋﻠﻰ ﺳﺮﻳﺮ ﺣﺮﻳﺮﻱ ﺑﺴﻬﻮﻟﺔ ﻭﺍﺳﺮﻉ ﻣﻦ ﺣﺼﻮﻟﺔ ﻋﻠﻰ‬ ‫ﻛﻴﺲ ﻣﻦ ﺃﻭﺭﺍﻕ ﺍﻟﺸﺠﺮ“‬

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Going Globe The Kingdom continues to add more spark to its grandeur with a fusion of local hospitality and European cuisine.

Housed in a dramatic three storey golden geodesic dome – atop the iconic Al Faisaliah Tower – the Globe restaurant provides the perfect setting for the country’s best ever culinary phenomenon. With a Gallery and the Asir Lounge, Globe provides business men and women, royal guests and cigar lovers an unrivalled experience.

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At the world renowned Globe restaurant, awaits an unforgettable experience which combines the stunning scenery of Riyadh with delectable varieties to soothe your palate. Placed elegantly in a geodesic globe on the top of Al Faisaliah Tower, the awardwinning culinary paradise offers an elaborate menu for lunch, dinner and high-tea on weekends. It boasts of an exclusive cigar lounge and a gallery to make it the most prestigious fine dinning restaurant in Saudi Arabia. Patrons of the Globe can also enjoy a boulevard of innovative retail shops and distinctive exhibits on the history of the tower that make the experience unrivalled in the Kingdom. “Al Faisaliah Hotel is proud to have the Globe that not only embodies the gastronomic excellence but also


At The Globe’s exclusive Asir Lounge, one of its kind cigar lounges in the region, modern elegance parallels with an outstanding ambience. In sophisticated comfort, guests savour light meals and revere the robust puff of the world’s finest Havana cigars and Saudi Arabia’s most spectacular sunsets.

affirms Riyadh’s leadership position as the Kingdom’s leading culinary destination,” said Peter Finamore, Managing Director of Al Faisaliah Hotel. The Globe is a favourite of Riyadh’s elite and is visited by top notch business executives from different parts of the world. Birthdays, anniversaries and just about any special occasion will become one of the most memorable moments of your lifetime where in the gleaming sunset of Riyadh, great food and good company will keep you elated. Applauded by food critics for its professional service and specially imported European food ingredients, the kitchen at the Globe is headed by Michelin star credited German master chefs. Asir: The Cigar Lounge Sophisticated comfort in a modern elegant style and the best of cigars whilst taking pleasures of panoramic views sounds like the perfect place for a gentleman. Asir is the only lounge in the Kingdom dedicated to cigars. They have a special cigar collection from Cuba (47 different types) including around 15 premium cigar brands and 3 brands exclusive to the Globe. Cigar connoisseurs are always around to help new comers have their perfect first time at this cigar haven. Special drinks to compliment with your cigar, be it a non-alcoholic Chardonnay or varieties of tea, can add to the robust flavours of Havana. As Somerset Maugham rightly put, “a good Havana is one of the best pleasures I know”.

The crowning event of Riyadh’s culinary calendar, The Globe Summit presents a unique series of gastronome events. Four Grand Chefs from among the most acclaimed kitchens in the world converge on The Globe Restaurant for an exhibition of skill and art. Exclusive dining events, seminars and product viewings with a dramatic backdrop of Riyadh’s skyline make this a hallmark event in the region.

Dining at The Globe An ‘a la carte’ European cuisine available at the Globe can be enjoyed at anytime. A stroll along The Experience, where you view glorious Riyadh from a magnificent height of 268 metres, is a perfect prelude to an extraordinary culinary experience. Conventional timings for lunch and dinner prevail while the weekend brings high tea during early evening hours with special promotions for children below 12 years. Did you know? Al Faisaliah Tower is the brain child of Sir Norman Foster, world renowned English architect. Its construction began in 1997 and

the complex which houses a 5-star hotel managed by Rosewood Hotels and Resorts regards the golden geodesic globe on the top of the tower as its unique selling point. The height of the tower is 267 metres and it is the second tallest building in Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The Globe hosts the Globe Summit which is a food festival with cuisines by world famous chefs from different continents. It is an event that is unprecedented in the Middle East welcoming both longstanding and loyal patrons as well as the many food lovers from other parts of the globe. Gala dinners and seminars on latest trends in the industry shall infactuate all attendees.

www.alfaisaliahhotel.com/dine5.cfm

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Elegance Personified ‘Be Dynamic - Dress in Style - Wear Lomar’. This buoyant motto is miles apart from the humble beginnings of this successful husband and wife team that started in 2002.

Why be boring when you can be dynamic and inventive? Lomar’s philosophy is to redefine thobe designs into more innovative styles that appeal to both the older generation and fulfill the taste of younger natives…“Where modern meets traditional”.

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Loai Naseem and his wife, Mona Al-Haddad, began by employing a tailor, purchasing sewing equipment and sketching some designs from their basement at home… By 2008 the couple boasted over 10,000 customers locally and regionally. Their thobe range became popular and finally in 2005, Naseem left his previous employment and entered the business full time with his wife. With four branches around the Kingdom, today Lomar is synonymous with the thobe as stylish attire worn both as a fashion statement and as a declaration of national pride. Amongst the winners of the

2009 ‘Saudi Fast Growth 100 Award’, Lomar ranked 13 out of 100. The accolade, devoted to those entrepreneurs playing a vital role in the transformation of the Saudi Arabian economy, inspires others to follow in their footsteps and is a testament to the sheer power of their enthusiasm for their brand. So is their listing in the 2010 GUINESS BOOK OF RECORDS with the creation of the biggest thobe in the world. At a length of 33 metres and width of 18 metres, the garment reflects the ‘nothing is impossible’ philosophy of this husband and wife team that today employ more than 250 staff members and have


Loai Naseem

Mona Al-Haddad

In 2005, the enterprising couple Loai and Mona decided to open a shop. They took the initial letters of their names and ‘LOMAR’ was created. Loai invited his ex-advertising company founders, Marwan Qutub and Eissa Bougari to participate in raising the required funds for the first store, which was, and still is, in Jeddah.

If beautifully designed and elegantly worn, the traditional Arab thobe brings respectability and authority to the wearer, as well as unbeatable comfort. By offering precisely this, Lomar is evolving its brand to become the leader luxury fashion thobe brand in the region.

elevated this traditional attire to levels of contemporary style and wearability. “Even though the event was covered by more than 60 media channels and made a huge publicity splash in town, for us every aspect of our progress has equal value. Even when we started with one of Loai’s friends ordering four thobes from him and my husband laughing and telling him “No way, I do this on a personal level, it’s not a business,” Mona recounts. So what is so special about the Lomar thobe? As pioneers in the market, the company was able to set a trend in thobe production with the introduction of

the zipper, coloured stitches and most importantly, the creation of designated designs for different events. By differentiating, some thobes are suitable for business meetings and others ideal for leisure and relaxation, Lomar has been the inspiration for countless other competitors, until it became a standard in the market in a mere few years. Not daunted by anything, Lomar’s vision is to become the world’s leading thobe company. Mona and Loai believe this is achieved via the continuous innovation of exquisite thobe designs to evolve a brand that is trendy yet traditional, making

a fashion statement while maintaining national pride. In the early days, as a creative director for a large advertising firm, he was always on the lookout for unique thobes to suit his ebullient personality, with no luck. “Tailors couldn’t understand my need, that’s why we recruited one tailor, then two, then more. Since then, the positive feedback from the market has been astounding, today Lomar is a force to be reckoned with”, Loai concludes. “Who knows what the future will bring?”

www.lomar.com.sa

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Dynamism in Design Diverse demographics dwell in contemporary Saudi Arabia today. A multi-ethnic business environment is a proof of Saudi’s acceptance of foreign entrants to achieve a competitive and quality lifestyle.

E.D. Design’s in-house team of experienced professionals provide new era design inputs to high-flying businesses in the GCC market. With myriad services under one roof, there is no other place that provides sophisticated and modern branding solutions.

Designing messages for effective communication can be a tricky job for many but the highly qualified designers at E.D. Artworks and Designs have carved a niche for their work. Well known for bringing new creative insights with their expertise for top businesses as well as private and residential projects in the GCC region, the creative house strives to be bold, distinctive and different. With myriad services under one roof, there is no other place that provides sophisticated interior designs & branding solutions.

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Leading this exquisite design firm is renowned world artist Esam Dabbour who serves as the managing director. E.D. Artworks and Designs hosted the most exquisite and luxurious fine art gallery called NU AGE Gallery. Among his many achievements, this venture is the first of its kind in Saudi Arabia and one of the fastest growing designing and branding firms in the region Myriad Interior Design services Dabbour had plans to leverage

his excellent aesthetic sensibility in the field of interior design for offices, companies, institutions, hotels, villas, palaces, and coffee shops. With his team of international and local designers at E.D. Artworks and Designs, he was able to transform hotels, palaces villas, and apartments to visual masterpieces of expression that exuberate the culture and environment in which they operate. The creations are always a topic of discussion for viewers and clients Designing and manufacturing

sculptures brings in tremendous business as sculptures and lifesize models are a growing fashion trend in the interior arrangement of offices and institutions. With expert sculptors working under the supervision of Esam Dabbour, the company has been able to deliver quality and value. Plated with gold, silver, copper or derivative rocks, these structures are an attraction for visitors and customers alike. Branding is taken a notch above with certified graphical art, 3D projects and models.


Under the management of Esam Dabbour, E.D. Artworks and Design has added visual brilliance to corridors of hotels and palaces with paintings that compliment the environment in which the institution or brand operates. His personal creations are always hanging on walls of boardrooms and homes of his impeccable clientele.

Product animations and corporate documentaries are among the many multi-media services provided at E.D. Artworks and Design. Basic branding services include designing logos, artwork, trademarks and slogans. Paintings and artwork reflecting the client business line, message and brand names incorporated effectively in interior layouts are a speciality at this one-stop designing firm. E.D Artworks and Designs is on a path of global recognition as work from this exquisite design firm has featured in the Florida Designs Magazine. With well known and professional Arab and international designers the company also does interior make over for individual and corporate clients. Executing impeccable designs as a contractor in Riyadh, under the guidance of Essam Dabbour, the firm is now reaching out to international clients with its meticulous attention to details and quality of work.

Branding services include designing logos, artwork, trademarks and slogans. The firm specializes in providing high-profile artwork as well as sculptures and life size models for corporate offices. Located in the heart of Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, this is the first of its kind are and design firm.

The need for a better sense of aesthetics and corporate ethos play an increasingly important role as regional and local brands become prominent players in the international market. Several businesses are reworking their identity to come across as international brands. E.D. Artworks and Designs provide exclusive services to develop brands through their creative and strategic designs. E.D. Artworks and Designs also provides creative interior design solutions to individuals.

A selection of some of the best clients served by E.D. Artworks and Designs: • • • • • • • •

HMS Co. Hamad Bin Saedan Group Al-Faisaliah Group Al-Safwa Hospital Shomo Investment Kenda Food Co. Rose Centre Mohammed Abdulaziz Al-Aqeel Law Firm

edabbour@yahoo.com

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Legendary automotive names.

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Authorized dealer Mohamed Yousuf Naghi Motors Visit our showrooms today and discover the finest in automotive luxury.

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RiYadh T. +966 1 463 2098 i Jeddah T. +966 2 215 1066 i aL KhobaR T. +966 3 858 4222 i CaLL CeNteR 920009778


CHAPTER 14 Shopping Destinations

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‫”ﺃﻳﺎ ﻛﺎﻥ ﻣﻦ ﺍﺩﻋﻰ ﺃﻥ ﺍﻟﻤﺎﻝ ﻻ ﻳﺸﺘﺮﻱ ﺍﻟﺴﻌﺎﺩﺓ ﻟﻢ ﻳﻌﺮﻑ ﻣﻦ ﺃﻳﻦ ﻳﺘﺴﻮﻕ“‬ ‫‪Bo Derek‬‬

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Shopping, Arab style

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Courtesy of Husain Al-Ahdal

Glitzy, air-conditioned shopping malls have sprung up all over the Kingdom, thanks to the rapid development that came along with the discovery of oil. Name any international brand, it’s available. However, none of the malls can replicate the timeless experience of shopping in an Arabian souk. The souk is ‘market’ in Arabic which serves as a trading point for the Arab merchants from all over the Middle East. Some souks are exclusively retail a particular single product, like the gold souk, for instance. Haggling the price with the trader for the best deals keeps the shoppers on their toes, while ensuring that a bargain is possible. Be it spices, fruits, vegetables, carpets, clothes or even gold ornaments, you can buy them all at the souks which have managed to retain their old world charm till today, despite modern shopping malls springing up by the dozen in the Kingdom.


Jeddah Al Bat-haa Souk - Located in central Riyadh, this souk boasts various shopping malls and complexes. Popular for electronic goods and watches, the souk gets very busy on Fridays. Thumeiri Gold Souk - Located within the area of Masmak fort, the souk sells white gold, yellow gold and silver. Engraving and re-setting of gemstones is also done here. Other goods like carpets, thobe, incense, oud and spices like cardamom and saffron are sold here. Al Deira Souk - Best known for its goods like men’s traditional dress and accessories, the souk also sells silverware, antiques, old silver jewellery in addition to Arab spices. Al Zel souk - Shopping at this market offers an enriching experience as tourists from all over the world come here to shop for Arabic rugs, antiques and ancient swords.

Abha Situated in Abha, the capital city of Asir province, the traditional Tuesday market provides a focal point where merchants, consumers and intellectuals can gather to chat and exchange goods. One of the oldest markets in the area is Ibn Madhan market that houses about 100 shops, an open court and pedestrian paths. Goods like clothing, coffee, spices and other such necessities are sold on a daily basis while livestock, handicrafts, farming tools and leather and wood wares are sold weekly.

Mecca

The capital city of Riyadh is renowned for its souks that sell quality goods at great prices

The Holy City of Mecca was a central route for ancient caravans and a destination for merchants from around the Arab peninsula and neighbouring Asian and African countries. Some of the popular souks are Al Judria, Al Mudai, Al Maala, Al Sagheir, Halat Jerul, Gaza and Al Badw. Even today, the traders in the markets of Mecca are a force to reckoned with. They stand by the old shops that haggle over prayer mats, traditional clothes, toys, accessories, souvenirs, spices and cosmetics.

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Courtesy of Abdul Ahad Khan

Al Bat-haa Souk - Located in central Riyadh, this souk boasts various shopping malls and complexes. Popular for electronic goods and watches, the souk gets very busy on Fridays. Thumeiri Gold Souk - Located within the area of Masmak fort, the souk sells white gold, yellow gold and silver. Engraving and re-setting of gemstones is also done here. Other goods like carpets, thobe, incense, oud and spices like cardamom and saffron are sold here. Al Deira Souk - Best known for its goods like men’s traditional dress and accessories, the souk also sells silverware, antiques, old silver jewellery in addition to Arab spices. Al Zel souk - Shopping at this market offers an enriching experience as tourists from all over the world come here to shop for Arabic rugs, antiques and ancient swords.


Shopping, Leisure, Life Eng. Salman Al Hokair, CEO, Arabian Centres Real Estate, is upbeat about progress. “When it comes to the flourishing retail industry in Saudi Arabia today, sophistication is the name of the game. Since the launch of Sahara Plaza in 2002, the retail excellence keeps rolling.

“Our success lies in social awareness and development; we have been assisting commercial and urban development in both primary and tertiary city developments, along with new job creation and career development for our youth”, Eng. Salman Al Hokair says.

Now we have a network of 10 operational shopping malls. Mall of Arabia, Mall of Dhahran, Salaam Mall, Aziz Mall, Khurais Plaza, Sahara Plaza, Al Nakheel Plaza, Ibn Khaldoun, Al Noor Mall and Al-Ahsa Mall. “Rapidly, and in less than a decade we have become the single largest owner and operator of shopping malls in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.” Director of Malls, Simon Wilcock, discusses the mission, vision and strategy of the organisation. How have you ensured the creation of three retail concepts where shopper’s choice, entertainment and convenience is paramount? All our locations are specifically

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designed for retailers and thereby retail consumers; the way the stores are laid out, sight lines in the properties as well as brand mix. The brand mix is vitally important, ensuring that the broadest volume of fashion retail stores are achieved, so that consumers have ‘no-reason’ to shop elsewhere. Our malls are conceptualised as ‘one stop’ environments, catering for fashion, grocery, entertainment and utility, all contained in airconditioned and service driven buildings. Shoppers should be able to come for entertainment and food, or equally fashion or homeware. Whilst children should be able to stay safely in the mall in crèches, entertainment or food areas; therefore increasing the stay

time of the parents and family in general. What challenges do you face in the smooth running of such a ramified operation? Our challenge lies in maintaining a ‘common sense’ and ‘consumer focused’ approach to the business. Ensuring that there is a balance between form and function, that is to say, that what looks great also ‘works’ great. Although complexity derived from facilities management through to marketing and sales exists, through efficient implementation of solid policies and procedures - supported by great human resources - major issues are usually mitigated.

What differentiates your malls that are regionally located in diverse cities? Our malls are designed to attract a multitude of different clients, but are in form, fairly similar to each other. They differentiate through brand mix, in particular the local ‘Mom’s and Pop’s’ traders that add the local retail flair and diversity of product. Our target has been the Saudi family, which is indicative of the region, reflecting the majority of consumers. Jeddah and Al Khobar are more tourist- driven, although this tends to be local tourism, but with a ‘Pan Gulf’ flavour. Religious tourism in Jeddah and strong traffic between Kuwait, Bahrain and Qatar in


the Eastern region changes the dynamic of the malls - they need to be more entertainment driven, with options for people to stay longer. Your business group has been involved in mall development for some time, how is the retail sector evolving in KSA? Saudi Arabia is undoubtedly the power house market in the Gulf Region. Despite the media drive behind the UAE, the size and growth of the indigenous population in Saudi ensures sustainable growth. The retail sector, both development and retail, continues to expand. The blip of 2009 we need to put down to experience and focus on development as this market is far from saturated and offers significant opportunities. Our retail partners, in particular Al Hokair Fashion Retail, have been experiencing growth ahead of the Gulf Market, and are aggressively pursuing further expansion. Therefore where there is perceived retail demand, there is retail real estate demand. Arabian Centres Real Estate is no exception and has implemented an ambitious five year growth plan. Clearly there are casualties in the market, but that is to be expected in any environment, but we plan for contingency and aggressively push forward. What are the future trends in the mall industry? A by-product of the recent recession is the emergence of larger multi-site operators and the thinning of the single site operators that do not have the resources and connections to facilitate suitable retail environments to attract substantial volumes of consumers. Those primary businesses that reacted quickly to the down turn have benefited from the cost cutting exercises and are therefore leaner and more efficient to be able to combat the current climate. The economies of scale generated by the multi-site operators make the whole development process more cost effective and efficient. The consumer ultimately benefits from this evolution as the businesses become more competitive, working harder to retain clients. This should be reflected in better services, more competitive pricing and greater offer.

Against what standards in terms of service and innovation do you benchmark yourselves, and why? There are several industry based mechanisms, to include the ‘International Council of Shopping Centres’ which works continually to update the industry and pioneer best practice in retail property. Market competition is also a driving force for development and change, pushing developers to source and implement new ideas and initiatives. I don’t think this is necessarily about marketing and promotions, but more akin to services, facilities and choice; for example in the range and diversity of entertainment and brands. With global brands foremost in the retail mix of malls in the Middle East, what progress can be seen in the gradual evolution of home-grown Saudi brands, if any? International is the order of the day... this is far from complete, especially in Saudi where restrictions to entering market have precluded some brands from being present. The UAE and Gulf states in general are ahead in this area where trading and legal status of the brand principle is more secure. The gradual opening of the KSA market is helping to encourage new brands and categories to come to market. For the consumer this means more choice and better pricing. The current market is two dimensional

- generally reflecting women’s and children’ fashion - with an ever increasing homeware component. However, niche brands and products are still absent from market and the sophistication of the speciality leasing market is low. Saudi brands are present in market, not including small local retailers with one to two stores, and are legitimate competitors. At first glance this is stronger in the food market (where international branding is limited), with businesses such as Kudu, that could legitimately play on the international stage. There are a few others, but the developers are still focused on delivering international brands to market.

How important is the concept of strong branding for the success of a mall? Strong branding is essential, however ‘random’ strong branding, is pointless and costly. There needs to be a relationship between the brands in the mall. That relationship defines the character of the mall and the kind of clientele. Is it fashion? Therefore ladieswear, with apparel, footwear, accessories or is it homewear – large scale, accessories, flowers etc? You can have all the elements, so long as they are woven together carefully and logically.

www.arabiancentres.com.sa

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Mall of Dhahran The ultimate shopping and leisure experience in the Eastern Province.

Simon Wilcock explains: “Our progress is innovative and spirited. Advancing beyond developing mere functional property space, our aspiration is to create living, vibrant and integrated communities for shoppers and tenants alike.”

Mall of Dhahran benefits from one of the most powerful retail mixes in the Kingdom, With more than 400 of the most celebrated shops from the world over, along with 26 fast food outlets and 15 branded restaurants.

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Anchored by Hyperpanda, Debenhams, Zara, Centerpoint, a large food court and Sparky’s Family Entertainment area, Mall of Dhahran is one of the largest and most exciting retail propositions for Saudi Arabia. Saudi Arabia’s ultimate family

destination is a beautiful one floor, column-less, ‘retailers’ mall, designed for ease of access and navigation. Shoppers from Dammam, Dhahran, Al Khobar, Bahrain and Qatar enjoy stunning range of services and products,

including family entertainment, exciting international fashion stores, a leading Hypermarket, leisure and lifestyle products, cafes, fast food outlets and much more. The region’s leading shopping mall is the one stop


haven that offers the latest, most innovative and widest range of global brands. With its extensive range and perfect blend of retail, restaurants, entertainment, easy car parking, there is something for every taste.

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Mall of Arabia The Kingdom’s premier shopping destination.

“The driving force and ultimate goal is to make all shopping malls owned and operated by Arabian Centres, the undisputed destination of choice for retailers and shoppers alike”, Eng. Salman Al Hokair explains.

Jeddah has embraced modernism, building a reputation as a progressive city with a passion for culture, art and the finer things in life, whilst retaining its heritage. Mall of Arabia is a landmark property,

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a unique shopping and dining destination, custom-created to be contemporary. Its ‘Arabian Peninsula’ theme of water, oasis and desert is designed to inspire. This fascinating architectural landmark, visible by air, is ideally

positioned to take advantage of the large number of pilgrims visiting Makkah, Saudi Arabia’s most populous region by offering a wholly inclusive family experience encompassing shopping, dining, leisure, entertainment and more.

Mall of Arabia’s strategic location near King Abdulaziz international airport and its stunning architecture, exceptional store mix and unique style of entertainment has established itself as the prime


shopping and tourist destination in Jeddah. With a “Snow Village” Entertainment Park set to open early 2011, this will be the ultimate ‘frozen’ destination in Jeddah and further afield.

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Al Noor Mall Top flight Retail in Medinah

“Arabian Centres unchallenged dominance in the retail real estate sector remains key to the success of the fashion retail business in the Kingdom, creating prime retail space where brands and customer enjoy prominent and positive exposure. That is why over 1,500,000 people visit our malls per week.”

Madinah enjoys a traditional and distinctive architecture, unlike many other regions of Saudi Arabia, and Al Noor Mall provides a change to this traditional environment. It provides a contemporary, highly visible point of reference in the city, especially the iconic ‘rotunda’ feature. The mall has an exciting blend of international retail, combined and complemented by Hyperpanda with a sophisticated combination of branded entertainment and

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food concepts. Sparky’s Family Entertainment area, the branded Arabian Centres entertainment partner, generates great synergies with the food court. Situated on a major road in Madinah’s primary residential district, Al Noor Mall stands out as potentially the city’s primary retail proposition and enjoys over 150,000 visitors a week. Within the contemporary structure, visitors get to experience some of the world’s most prominent retail brands.

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CHAPTER 15 Dining

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‫”ﻣﻦ ﺷﺄﻥ ﺍﻟﻮﺟﺒﺔ ﺍﻟﺸﻬﻴﺔ ﺃﻥ ﺗﺸﻌﺮ ﺍﻟﻤﺮء ﺑﺎﻟﺤﺒﻮﺭ ﺗﺠﺎﻩ ﺍﻟﻌﺎﻟﻢ ﻛﻠﻪ ﺃﻛﺜﺮ ﻣﻦ ﺍﻟﺨﻄﺐ‬ ‫ﺍﻟﺮﻧﺎﻧﺔ“‬ ‫‪Arthur Pendenys‬‬

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Voyage to the Stars As you enter the elevator that will be transporting you to the 77th food and luxury heaven, you can already notice that Spazio Restaurant & Lounge is not your usual restaurant.

The Spazio ambience has taken sophistication literally to another level ‘up in the air’ rightfully placed half way between earth and the stars. Each dish is a reflection of an ultimate experience, where inspiration comes naturally. And if you come to Riyadh, at the foot of the kingdom tower, look up, and see that star shine, it’s the only way you can reach one.

Located in the Kingdom Tower in Riyadh, its unique set up has a “way of making things happen”, thanks to its Chairman, Mr. Abdullrahman Al-Khathlan’s passion for food and dedication to make this restaurant unique. “We at Spazio are forging a presence not to be missed, with our delicious menu and panoramic views, but also by combining a

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calming and modern ambience with superb service that adds value to any dining experience.” He explains the ingredients of Spazio’s success. This overall quest for culinary virtuosity stems from the team’s constant thirst for improvement and innovation in line with global trends and a love for perfection. You’ll be received and served by a


‘Spazio at home’, makes it easy to repeat the magical restaurant dining experience at home. With professionally managed outside catering services, any event, dinner, celebration or even wedding becomes possible and uniquely popular in the ‘Spazio’ style.

team of 35 highly trained waiters and chefs that strive on pleasing their guests. Delicacies such as Whole Lobster bisque, Tomato tartar with fresh mozzarella, melting in the mouth lamb shank and a decadent chocolate fondant will be delivered to your table with all the expectations you have from a 5 stars restaurant. Famous for more than its food, the evolution of Spazio is a story in itself. “Even though securing the prestigious location had been initially declined, I was determined to give it another shot”, Mr. Al-Khathlan explains. “When I met Prince Waleed bin Talal, the owner of the tower in which we are situated, I told him that he had nothing to lose by looking at our plans. If he didn’t like what we had conceptualized, he was free to decline with no obligation on his part. Fortunately,

he was beyond impressed by our plans and agreed immediately on the courageous yet innovative approach to use the initial ‘service floor’ as a reflection of the ultimate luxury. That’s how Spazio came into being”, Mr. Al-Khathlan says. Aside from the restaurant, Spazio offers an innovative and unique twist to get pulses racing and energy levels rising: The Oxygen Bar. Sitting in a modernly designed ambiance, let the O2 flood your brain and relieve the pressure of a stressful day; accompany your session with a pastry and drink, and let yourself sink into this epicurean session. Oxygen treatments are said to be the newest trend. “Research shows that inhaling pure oxygen can clear the mind to study, increase endurance, boost energy and speed up recovery after illness. Our Oxygen bar is very

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Spazio has taken special care to deliver something special for the ideal family weekend, placing all the necessary ingredients to make it a habit for the family to get together at Spazio Restaurant and lounge. The location encourages relaxed conversation and enjoyment of food, while children have fun at the children’s corner with games and face painting. A true family bounding experience.

popular, people love the idea of wellness delivered in a relaxed environment. What is there to lose? …Stress”. So, with a plethora of gastronomic styles to choose from, 150 seats, 40 comfortable lounge sofas, and the ability to host party up to 350 guests, this eatery boasts and wide range of signature Mediterranean dishes made from the best ingredients and always true to the authenticity of each flavour. “For instance, a firm favourite with our clients is the Spazio beef tenderloin, which is a delicate combination of seared

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Prime beef, served with our unique Spazio butter sauce, which recipe is a trade secret. You’ll have to come to experience it, it’s the only way”, Al-Khathlan explains. As delicious as this may be however, there is always more to a restaurant as its menu selections. “The overall environment or ‘vibe’ is what makes a place memorable. This is what makes Sushi lit bar in the middle of the lounge the ideal ‘crowd puller’. Here diners can sit on Wasabi green Art Deco modern Rococo chairs and be served fresh Sushi while watching the chef prepare


the next crisp Japanese delicacy from the open kitchen in front’, Mr. Al-Khathlan says. Another cornerstone of a memorable eatery must be the treats listed in the ‘sweet tooth’ category.”If you haven’t been introduced yet to ‘Spazio Delights’, an enchanting experience waits to be explored… The collection of sweets and signature mouthwatering Parisian Macaroons, through to the delectable ‘millefoglie’; caramelized layers of puff pastry alternating crispiness and smoothness of the delicately flavored butter cream; which can also be ordered for takeout, has elevated the humble pastry to an art”, he claims. ­In addition, the Friday Brunch is a novel idea which creates tailor made buffets at individual tables,

suited for those who enjoy an easy but classy outing on Friday afternoon with their families. “Keeping in mind that diners are served right at their own table, choosing their own main courses from an exciting menu which is full of creative new dishes every week, the experience is a first for Riyadh.” Opened in Sept 2002 and owned by Azwaq Food Company (Group of Business Investors), passing by Spazio restaurant and lounge, either to dine or simply to enjoy a coffee, “Don’t be surprised to find a celebrity or an important politician sitting close by enjoying the same splendid panoramic views on top of Riyadh as you” Al-Khathlan concludes. “This place is addictive.”

www.spazio77.com

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Enjoy Tasty Tangles Perched on the second floor of Centria Mall in Riyadh’s top tier location, The Noodle House’s view over Olayah Street is spectacular, particularly at night when the twinkling lights of the city create a real feel good factor that stimulates more than just the taste buds…It gives a zest for life.

Welcome to a vibrant casual dining restaurant where chefs prepare aromatic South East Asian dishes within minutes over an open flame and in full view of the guests. With signature dishes ranging from Dim Sum, wok fried noodles and exquisite desserts to passion mocktails, diners revel in the cheery, communal, atmospheric buzz that is typical of the popular street stall to be found all over Southeast Asia. In keeping with the unpretentious, streetwise ambience, diners simply tick their choices on an order pad and hand it to their server.

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But while food is served at break neck speed, this dining concept is also light years away from the standard concept of fast food. The surroundings are informal yet unrelentingly stylish. The servers, dressed with understated chic, are remarkably friendly, enthusiastic and knowledgeable about the menu. The venue offers a smiling welcome to all, from fashionconscious singles on a night out to large groups of friends and families enjoying a leisurely get-together. With long lines, dark wood, natural finishes and clean contours, the look of the


The Noodle House is the flagship restaurant of Jumeirah Restaurants LLC. Launched in 2002, the brand has gone from strength to strength with 10 restaurants in the U.A.E., Kuwait, Egypt, Oman and Qatar and expanding globally with agreements already signed with franchise partners across the Middle East, Europe, and Asia.

noodle house is 100 percent contemporary. The woods used are mahogany, birch, and teak. Cool cream leather adorns the comfortable banquettes. Crockery is plain white, refreshingly simple, generously sized. Each place is set with a large cotton napkin. Places are also set with a choice of eastern and western cutlery. But while textural, natural materials like wood and leather abound in the dining area, the kitchen – which is fully open to view – features nothing but brilliant stainless steel. Launched in Riyadh in 2009, it is obvious that this 140 cover

eatery is much loved by diverse segments of diners all looking for good food and good vibes. It is impossible not to be drawn to the energetic atmosphere of The Noodle House. The experience is a unique combination of wholesome food and an energetic ambience that very few restaurants have been able to reach perfection like how The Noodle House has.

www.thenoodlehouse.com

Already a popular choice for diners in Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Muscat, Kuwait and Doha, The Noodle House restaurant provides a unique combination of wholesome food and energetic ambience. Inspired by the food and nightlife of exciting South East Asian cities such as Hong Kong, Shanghai, Bangkok, and Jakarta, The Noodle House offers Asian delicacies in an informal yet stylish setting.

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A slice of Armenia Prepare yourself to savour an evocative cuisine to celebrate the centuries-old tradition of proud people

Lusin serves its guests enticing Armenian specialities renowned for its distinctive aromas and flavourful preparations. Take a gastronomic journey and be tempted by a collection of exquisite dishes that feature pomegranate tanginess, along with an aromatically rich aftertaste such as Manti, Kabab and traditional appetizers aplenty. Located in Centria Mall overlooking the fashionable streets of Olaya and Tahliya, Lusin reflects the culture of Armenia not just in its food but also the tasteful art and architecture of the interiors. The restaurant accommodates up to 150 guests who are treated to

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a feast for the eye, as well as the taste buds. To the uninitiated, the uniqueness of the Armenian culture rests on three pillars – the inimitable grandeur of its mountainous geography, the ancient heritage and its original national culture that has been preserved over centuries, despite its tumultuous vicissitudes down the ages. This is true throughout Lusin. Not only does the menu have a fine balance that holds immeasurable appeal, but the restaurant’s contemporary Armenian architecture does too. Following the basic characteristics


of its historical architectural tradition - simplicity, reliance on locally available geological material and the use of volcanic Tuff for facings - the effect is welcoming. The subject of everyday life is aesthetically expressed in various forms like embellishments, carvings, needlework and design. The result is an eatery to remember in taste as well as form. The magical Lusin touch is encountered the minute guests enter through the door. The modernistic flooring, soft lighting, warm tans of the walls and the Armenian spirit offers a welcome note, settings a mood of anticipation. The interiors, in tune with typical Armenian style, are made of the rare pink and rose Tuff stone specially imported to Saudi Arabia for the first time. Copper lights and simulation of ancient inscriptions on the façade enhance the setting to magnificent Armenian flavours which follow. With an outdoor terrace seating up to fifty guests, overlooking the bustling street of Tahlya, it’s refreshing

to be surrounded with the contemporariness of the magically white ambiance. With culinary traditions over 2000 years old, Armenian recipes use bread, fruits, vegetables, meat and poultry to prepare dishes like mashes, soups and other delicate specialities. Greens and spices are used liberally to enhance the flavours. Armenian cooks use close to 300 kinds of wild-growing grasses and flowers as seasonings for even basic dishes. Popular spices like pepper, coriander, fenugreek, black pepper, mint, tarragon, basil, thyme along with onion and garlic are utilised to add fragrance. Whilst sweet treats are drenched in cinnamon, cardamom, clove, saffron and vanilla. A widely used ingredient in Armenian recipes is matzon, popularly referred to as yogurt. Widely used throughout Europe, the Middle East and the Far East, matzon is plainly drunk as a beverage or a cold or hot soup. It is perfect as a topping or garnish for other foods, just like sour cream or salad dressing.

Another ingredient that forms part of the dishes is the pomegranate. While succulent fruits like apples, pears, cherries, mulberry, figs, strawberries, water melons and also popular, it is the pomegranate that scores as a cultural national gastronomic symbol in Armenian cuisine. Most of Armenian dishes are

prepared with cooking on fire with a clay furnace; Tonir used for this purpose. Armenians also prefer clay kitchen ware with a medley of exotic ingredients cooked in a traditional manner that is then served in elegant style. Bon appĂŠtit.

www.mira-foods.com

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CHAPTER 16 Media

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‫”ﻧﺤﻦ ﻣﺨﻠﺪﻭﻥ ﺑﻘﺪﺭﺗﻨﺎ ﻋﻠﻰ ﺍﻟﺘﺨﻴﻞ“‬ ‫‪John Muir‬‬

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Capturing Im Perfectly Pronto With a vision to capitalise on innate desire to create, innovate and ‘transform’ the organizations they represent, PRONTO as a new entrant to the Saudi market put its energy into offering quality Branding, Marketing and Events services.

With Headquarters in Dubai, this transformational consultancy has brought together a team of passionate players with expertise from various industry sectors such as IT/Telecom, FMCG, Health, Tourism and Government. Since its inception, the two shareholders Hani Salman and Kamila Ondrackova swiftly realised the potential of Saudi market and expanded their operations with an office in Riyadh in 2008. “I was born

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and raised in the Kingdom and I can appreciate all the benefits this environment has to offer”, Hani says. My background of 25 years in leading international IT companies has provided me with deep knowledge of Technology sector and due to this understanding as well as strong dynamics of the Saudi market, we thrive to prove how technological, social and business forces are converging to create enormous, untapped opportunities in an unconventional

way,” he adds. His business partner Kamila explains, “In the times of technology driven transformation, companies need to realize they need to change also the way they market, sell, and communicate in general. Good old adaptation is simply not good enough. The endless possibilities of ‘next best thing’ is happening so amazingly fast that it is literally impossible for most organizations to keep track of what new communication means


magination

With a string of successful events such as 8th Conference of Meetings of Ministers of Endowments and Islamic Affairs held in Jeddah in 2009 or E-government National Conference held in Riyadh in 2010, PRONTO has proven its ability to deliver on large scale. As an expert in utilizing the latest technology, PRONTO was the first consultant to introduce the RFID system to the Saudi Event/Conference scene.

market brings and more so, adapt them in their corporate processes, events, media campaigns or training programs. That’s where we come in and ensure the latest technology is on the forefront of all marketing initiatives’. In order to expand her horizons, this goal-oriented Czech professional went on to study Communication & Mass Media at tertiary level and is now reaping the rewards of her efforts with PRONTO’s dynamic potentials taking shape.

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Capturing Im Another tailor-made features such as 3D Mapping or Augmented Reality are embedded into PRONTO’s event concepts to present the ultimate sign of futuristic effects.

What is the philosophy behind the PRONTO brand and the services the organisation provides? “PRONTO is about being ready for any challenge that is coming our way. Our byline ‘Capturing Imagination’ symbolises an ongoing, everlasting process of dreaming and being set free by endless possibilities of our minds. It is an energy that lifts us to fulfil our purpose in this field and in this world”, Kamila says. As relatively new entrant within the Saudi market, PRONTO is set to address the obvious hunger for fresh knowledge and innovative approach. “Companies today realise that the most important asset within their organisation is the brand itself and how is it perceived by their target audience. They acknowledge that sustainability is about more than just profit and that it requires long term planning to secure the fertile ground for

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growth and future expansion”, Hani explains. “With an enlightened approach to business, many Saudi organisations actively explore bold ways to give back to society and are brave in seeking expertise in order to ensure strong brand positioning to implement sound business practises. This is the current trend and we can see vast potential in this area and strategic marketing in general”, he adds. PRONTO also recognizes the tremendous potential for specialised training. Due to the trend of increasingly opened media channels in pursue of opinions from industry and management leaders, PRONTO has expanded its Event division to include Media Training courses aimed at senior executives and government technocrats to improve

their communication skills and be confident to pull off any discussion in the TV, press conferences or print media. Kamila says “As the Kingdom accelerates its socio-economic diversification strategy, existing industries are expanding rapidly and are becoming more sophisticated and media savvy. It is important to have a pro-active approach and be prepared for any media coverage as this has direct impact on the perception of the respective entity. Pronto’s portfolio of tailormade courses is therefore focused at diverse categories with one common aim: to train media-confident professionals.” With regards to its Marketing services, the enterprising duo are focused on bringing unconventional concepts based on trends dictated by the


magination What does the future hold for PRONTO? Hani is unequivocal in his response. “Our expansion is aimed at region with a close focus on Saudi market. We appreciate the opportunities that are available in the publishing sector, as well as those related to offering consultancy and marketing services to various brands that want to strengthen their advantage in the local market, or even enter it from abroad. There are many projects out there, but it really comes down to positioning PRONTO as partner to any organisation that seeks sustainable growth and that has a mission to progress in a healthy environment, addressing the needs of the society it lives in, in order to surpass its potential and contribute to the growth of the entire kingdom. These are the types of organisations we want to cooperate with and assist in nurturing even better success stories nationally and worldwide.”

market itself, rather than by offering traditional tools for their clients. This proves to deliver an edge to those companies they represent as it allows PRONTO to elaborate specific messages across all media channels: Print, TV, and Online. “Increasingly, companies realise they do not necessarily need to choose between expensive online marketing or a longterm print campaign in order to manifest their goals. Success of campaign depends on the consistency of a message and that involves visibility in a variety of media channels. We tap into such platforms that are a combination of these, while keeping the budget on the lower-edge and thus prove it is possible to communicate effectively across all media segments”, Kamila concludes.

PURPLE, the colour of PURPOSE Purple or Violet is often regarded as a colour of purpose. It is also a combination of blue and red. Red is a focusing, dynamic and active energy while blue is cooling, calming and expansive. Violet brings a new dynamic to the expansion of blue and the activity of red. Red brings practicality to the undirected expansiveness of the blue, and allows more creative energy to emerge. Therefore, put some violet in your life when you want to use your imagination to its fullest, re-balance your life and remove obstacles.

www.impronto.org

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Media on the Centrestage When affluence, socio economic expansion and cultural aesthetics merge, what we see are the efforts of media companies, creating tiers of frames which help the world view Saudi Arabia vividly. With successful globalisation on their agenda; publication, marketing and production houses contribute to showcasing diverse facets of the society.

Dur Alpha boasts sound relations with SDI Production, Nor Sat and the Satellite Jordanian Company Nile Sat, Arab Sat, Adfine Company and other specialised networks

Handling respected brands like MBC channel group, Riyadh Municipality, Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority (SAGIA),Ministry of Defence and Aviation, Royal Saudi Land Forces, Saudi TV, CNN , CNBC and many other renowned entities, the Dur Alpha group forges its pioneering mark on the Kingdom’s burgeoning media sphere. Established in 2006, the company undertakes a range of quality services; from developing technical productions, lights, conferences to exhibitions,

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and a multitude of various events. How a wider audience gets its window on the world of KSA is through the immense effort seen through the group’s versatile executions in advertising, publicity, marketing, promotional projects and PR campaigns. Media Production Being at the helm of innovative Media Production delivered with distinct technical service, Dur Alpha offers a unique turnkey

service related content and production services for a variety of TV programs, documentaries, comedy and religious series, as well as TV commercials, outdoor transmission vehicles, photography and light equipment. Through the depth of its amenities, Dur Aplha has highlighted its renowned exclusivity such as producing technical material for Alzaeem and Alkass Channels, Art Sport Group, and MBC drama in collaboration with SDI Production.


Dur Alpha supplies, installs and operates the latest in lighting, special effects and audio visual equipment for use at events such as corporate presentations, product launches, private parties, weddings and trade fairs.

• Coordination with all media entities to spread the awareness campaigns across diverse media platforms • Preparation of marketing programs for commercial centres and land plans • Media and publicity consulting for news companies • Publishing of all printed materials; posters, brochures flyers, booklets in all sizes, magazines • Websites development Conjoining public interest with commercial viabilities, Dur Alpha has also produced numerous documentary films for the Institute of Public Administration, the Human Rights Society, in addition to a group of religious programs and serials marketed in the Saudi Market and Arab region. Events Management When needed, Dur Alpha can provide A to Z arrangements, such as lighting equipment, laser presentations, water screens, sound effects , tents , catering services and other

creative value additions to add vibrancy to any event. With its imagination and sheer inventiveness, the company can easily support a client’s every desire of a superb show. Conferences take wings Dur Alpha gives events, conferences and exhibitions a voice of spectacular singularity. Audiences attending symposiums, workshops and public shows organised by them are enthralled by the consistent proficiency of their executions. Numerous events have taken

place with the excellence of Dur Alpha’s team that never lack creativity and enthusiasm. Media relations Dur Alpha has established itself as the hub between firms and industrialists. Through their effective communication skills and campaigns, they collaborate with government bodies to make people aware of current affairs, sharing latest updates on recent regulations.

www.duralpha.com

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Crafting Meaningful Messages As Saudi Arabia becomes a liberal state for business, there is a need for effective communication between parties involved in the business equation. The government, while allowing foreign entrants, aims at keeping check on activities while corporates also have a responsibility of keeping stakeholders informed.

Manning Selvage & Lee, a leading public relations firm in Riyadh, provides strategic counsel to corporations. The company focuses on areas, such as evaluation, branding, creativity, message development, and audience insights for creating better communication between business and customers.

A demand for active public relations has surged in the Kingdom as a new found media landscape has given birth to a knowledge oriented economy. Manning Selvage & Lee Public Relation (MS&L) has been a key player in the market coining effective messages for corporate clients and providing assistance with internal and external communication fostering a healthy business environment of international standards. MS&L is one of its kind multi-faceted public relations firm in the Middle East operational for more than nine years. The firm strongly believes in new thinking, innovation and execution of communication practices that yield astounding results. “MS&L Saudi

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Arabia strongly believes that effective communication is a cornerstone to success in business. Pulling together an successful communications campaign requires passion, clarity, creativity and the highest possible attention to detail - all of which we offer with a personal service,� says Anoir Adra, Managing Director, MS&L, KSA. Key roles As quality professional consultants, the team at MS&L performs three key roles for its client base. They are well reputed as advisors, advocates and activists. Within the realm of public relations, they provide thorough support to client with a 360 degree approach.


Anoir Adra - Managing Director The team at MS&L performs three key roles for its client base. They are well reputed as advisors, advocates and activists. It’s who they are trained to be and what they are meant for; a complete 360 degree approach to provide communications solutions to client needs.

As Advisors, they offer strategic counsel based on rock-solid judgment and extensive experience. Their strong research base helps companies and brands engage audiences and customers. In a constantly changing media landscape, they go beyond conventional channels and reach out through new media vehicles. As advocates, they aggressively represent the interests of our clients in every way possible. They adapt to the vision of the client and passionately incorporate it in their fundamental understanding of their clients needs. Today, the communication scenario has expanded and corporate leaders have the responsibility towards individuals who express themselves through new media outlets such as blogs and social networking. This has brought more on the shoulders of PR firms. MS&L also operates as an activist, watching out for its client well being and positive image on a variety of media fronts. These new age practices in a digital age have dramatic and powerful impacts of audience perception and cannot be ignored in the process of achieving lasting business success. Client specific approach At MS&L, we understand the strategic importance of public relations to our clients, while strongly believing in providing an integrated approach to communications. We will spare no effort to further develop our capabilities, with a primary focus on adding value and making a difference to our clients’ businesses,� says Anoir Adra. Clients are always satisfied best-in-class in consumer marketing PR, healthcare PR, corporate communications and technology communications provided at MS&L. With a growing global network and cutting-edge expertise in digital strategy, new investments research, an expert team of influencer marketers, and some of the best media relations experts in the industry, MS&L is well-positioned to meet the most difficult of communication situations.

With an impressive clientele, MS&L have provided effective communication solutions to brands across the spectrum of industries such automobile, real estate, FMCG, aviation, healthcare, hospitality and electronic and telecommunications.

Crisis Management Crisis communication is integral to the core services offered at MS&L. Consultants at the firm leverage their skills to maintain client reputation and integrity. Strong research inputs and effective measurement techniques help executive to spot grey areas in reputation management. Evidently, comprehensive management of issues and crisis is integrated in the broader PR strategy. Opportunity seeker MS&L supports all their clients with their involvement in events, exhibitions and conferences, whether by supporting their involvement, making their presence known, or even identifying opportunities for clients at these various trade events and conferences. CSR MS&L also conceptualises custom-made CSR programmes or activities and has the capability to execute these activities both on the ground and with the support of strong media relations for maximum visibility and communication on behalf of client to target audiences. MENA Reach For the Middle East and North Africa region, the firm is headquartered in Dubai with full service offices in Riyadh and Beirut. And 4 liaison offices have been established in Jeddah, Amman, Cairo and Damascus. In Riyadh, the firms partners locally with Abdel Kader Suleiman El Khereiji & Partners.

www.mslworldwide.com

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Framing Life With a post graduate degree in Marketing that enriched his understanding of the rapidly evolving consumer behaviour in Saudi Arabia, Awadh Al Hamzani initially started developing his photography skills as an art and not as a business. However by 2006 he came onboard as a freelancer in order to project an accurate imagery of Saudi Arabia in its diverse facets‌Since then he has never looked back. What changes are you witnessing in terms of the Kingdom’s development as modern centre for visual arts? Photography in Saudi Arabia is now capturing centre stage. Propelled by the growth of technology, young generations are joining in the blossoming of the visual arts. Both the internet and supportive parents are encouraging youngsters to hone their skills. The government launched the Saudi photography society in 2009 and I am one of the founders of this society. What challenges do you face in growing your practice? Initially I faced stiff competition from professional photographers from worldwide which forced me to fine tune my skills and sharpen my marketing ability (as well as overall professionalism with agents) in order to compete successfully. Today, I have established my name and my path is less complicated. KSA is diversifying its economy to develop a sophisticated image, what type of photography best serves the requirements of your growing consumer base?

Awadh Al Hamzani

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Stereotypes of Saudi Arabia do not reflect what Saudi Arabia truly is. Photographers have a responsibility to promote and accurately capture what the Kingdom is now, not what it was 100 years ago. We must take photos that are an invitation to the rest of the world to come and visit our nation as we have a lot to offer in our rapidly transforming environment.


Can you run through the individual themes of your operations and services, explaining the new trends and approaches in photography? I always ensure that I convey the real feeling and capture the right moment at the right time. I look for depth behind what is ‘seen’ and I ask questions, putting myself in my subject’s shoes in order to get an authentic feel for the emotions that give power to the visual. For instance, I had a project to shoot a young Saudi student in the US calling his family back home. My job was to feel what his family was going through and catch the moment through their eyes. It’s more than asking a person to smile for the camera, I rather make them laugh spontaneously and then snap a photo. What further strategies for progress do you have? I have lots to dream of in terms of my goals. Recently, I started my first attempt to write and direct a short movie.

What developments in the field of e-commerce have you initiated? Online photo library or others… I started my website in 2005 and it’s a great tool to promote my work and reach a new spectrum of customers. The hits have already surpassed one million and today I have contract business in places as diverse as Canada, China, UK and the UAE.

What further steps can be developed in order to strengthen the field of visual media in KSA? I am looking to coordinate an institute for photography training at all levels so that professional photographic talent can filter into the market for everyone’s benefit.  

www.hamzani.com

Do you believe in training for young photographers – as an experienced professional, do you have internships or other initiatives in this area? Over the past two years, I worked part time with Imam University in Riyadh as a trainer for one of their photojournalism courses. I collaborated with undergraduates on the principles of photography and engaged them with projects that have since been successfully showcased in exhibitions that were supported by the chairman and faculty.

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CHAPTER 17 Corporate ProďŹ les

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‫”ﺍﻷﺷﻴﺎء ﺍﻟﻌﻈﻴﻤﺔ ﻻ ﺗﻜﻮﻥ ﻭﻟﻴﺪﺓ ﺍﻟﻨﺰﻭﺍﺕ‪ ،‬ﺑﻞ ﻧﺘﻴﺠﺔ ﻟﺴﻠﺴﻠﺔ ﻣﻦ ﺍﻷﺷﻴﺎء ﺍﻟﺼﻐﻴﺮﺓ‬ ‫ﺍﻟﺘﻲ ﺗﺠﺘﻤﻊ ﻣﻌﺂ ﻟﺘﻜﻮﻥ ﺷﻴﺄ ﻋﻈﻴﻤﺂ“‬ ‫‪Vincent Van Gogh‬‬

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A World You Can Rely On In the late 60’s the Arab Supply and Trading Company (ASTRA) was established by Sabih Taher Masri. The company saw its beginnings as a food supplier to the Saudi Army and rapidly grew into the conglomerate it is today, with operations spanning across a multitude of areas.

These include the industrial sector, telecommunications, food and agriculture sector, real estate, as well as the contracting and healthcare fields. Today, it is conducting business, through its subsidiaries and affiliates, across the entire Middle East region. The new social wave sweeping through Saudi Arabia is transforming the quality of life to something more superior and sustainable than what has existed so far. The government along with corporate partners such as ASTRA is complying with international quality controls and assurance standards in all

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production and distribution. With the passing of time, research and new technology developments at ASTRA have attained cost-efficiency without compromising on excellence. One such benchmark would be the expansion in less water-intense sectors such as trade and communication. Within a couple of decades, ASTRA grew from a company focused on contracting, to a holding group, which is operating in a wide variety of industries. Although ASTRA was originally based in Tabuk, it now has

operations throughout the entire Kingdom of Saudi Arabia as well as MENA. The company’s success is outstanding, as it now ranks 23rd among the top 100 Saudi companies employing more than 5,000 employees. The ASTRA group is committed to delivering best-in-class products and services. It operates within stringent quality control and assurance measures, adhering to both national and international standards, as well as to the group’s strict quality policies. ASTRA has always believed in maintaining


a balance between a lean cost structure and excellence in quality. It has been able to accomplish this goal through the use of new technology and efficient management practices, which have allowed ASTRA to become a fierce challenger and raise the bar in whichever field it operates in. Dynamic business spectrum From polymers to plastics, steels to construction materials, ASTRA’s umbrella partakes in the most radical developments in the country. With each of them adding to

multi-tier growth of the economy, the company has successfully diversified outside its comfort zone of agro-based businesses. It welcomed the real estate boom by undertaking property development of luxury housing compounds; its Cordoba and Hamra housing compounds stand out as the paramount of such facilities in the Kingdom. Along with its community hospital, ASTRA began manufacturing generic high quality pharmaceuticals in 1995 at its Tabuk Pharmaceutical Manufacturing Company. This local produce of medicine was

reasonable, challenging the predominance of expensive imported drugs in the Kingdom. Nour Communication Company, an entrant in the ASTRA family in 1988, was set up to improve telecommunications in the Kingdom. Today it’s a significant participant in media, engineering, surveying and installation developments including the world’s biggest and most advanced and fully computerized digital radio network for Saudi Arabia. Additionally, Nour entered into the power sector and is a major player in the power rental sector.

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Accomplishments ASTRA met the ultimate test of its capabilities with flying colors when it served all joint forces participating in the liberation of Kuwait. This entailed providing over a million soldiers with fresh and cooked food on 24 hour basis across the Kingdom and battlefield locations. ASTRA is the proud winner of the Arab Agricultural Award for its water, soil and tissue analyses according to US and Dutch standards It was the first company to introduce quails in the Saudi market soon holding the biggest quail farm in the world with a capacity of 12 million birds a year. It won the Quail Quality Award from Italy in 1995. Astra has shown a steady growth year on year, fuelled by its investment into manufacturing and the diversification of its operations. Turning Point In 2002, ASTRA holding undertook the biggest re-structuring effort in the company history, where smaller, common businesses

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were merged together to create economies of scale. This massive endeavor streamlined all the activities within the multitude of companies and allowed ASTRA to emerge as a more robust, resilient and efficient holding group it is today. Moreover, it allowed for the ASTRA Industrial Group to be formed and to become a publicly listed company. ASTRA Food Company was also formed and is currently undergoing the same efforts to become a publicly listed company as well. Corporate Philosophy ASTRA Group is committed to provide high quality products and services, addressing their customers’ changing need and creating value in a way which enriches their life, exceeding their expectation, enabling us to build a long-term, mutually beneficial relationship. Moreover, ASTRA’s Vision is to promote the concept of ‘self-sufficiency’, as adopted by the Group founder. ASTRA aims to set new standards in the various industries which it operates in.

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Recent Highlights ASTRA has shown a trend of consistent growth over the past few years. This is due to its investment in manufacturing as well as the main group re-structuring which allowed operations to be more streamlined across the group. Despite the global financial crisis, ASTRA was able to obtain bank facilities and continue expanding, as a result of its impeccable credit history. This is a particularly notable achievement especially in the difficult economic climate. Current Challenges Due to its sheer size and the fact that it operates in more than one industry, the ASTRA group of companies, like many others, has been negatively affected by the global economic crisis. ASTRA is looking forward to the recovery period and to a renewed economic zeal, furthering the company’s growth prospect. ASTRA also faces difficulty in sourcing qualified human resources capable of sustaining the competitiveness of the company. Lastly, it also is weary of local and regional governmental regulatory changes which might pose a potential risk to the business.

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Future Outlook In line with the formation of the ASTRA Industrial Group, Astra’s main focus is down-stream industrial sector. This has proven to be a major success story for Astra and we believe that it will continue to be an attractive sector. This means investing in green field projects, partnering with technology providers and M&A transactions. Focusing on the Industrial Group has brought great rewards for the ASTRA group and it is our intention to continue growing this business sector. In addition, we also aim to focus on the Real Estate sector. Examples like the Cordoba and Hamra Compounds have proven to be extremely successful and we plan to continue our expansion in that sector. Moreover, we plans are also underway for extensive real estate development projects like the Ayla Oasis and the Aqaba Jordan project. We look forward to a bright future as we continue to focus on our core competency of best-in-class products and services.

www.astra.com.sa

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Dictionary Greetings

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English

Arabic

Hi!

Salam!

Good Morning

Sabah el kheer

Good Evening

Masaa el kheer

Welcome! (to greet someone)

Marhaban

How are you?

Kaifa haloka/ haloki (female)

I’m fine, thanks!

Ana bekhair, shokran!

And you?

Wa ant? / Wa anti? (female)

Good/ So-So.

Jayed/ ‘aadee

Thank you (very much)!

Shokran (jazeelan)

You’re welcome! (for “thank you”)

Al’afwo

Hey! Friend!

Ahlan sadiqi / sadikati! (female)

I missed you so much!

Eshtaqto elaika / elaiki (female) kaheran

What’s new?

Maljadeed?

Nothing much

Lashai jadid

Good night

Tosbeho / tosbeheena (female) ‘ala khair

See you later!

Araka / Araki (female) fi ma ba’d

Good bye!

Ma’a salama

Asking for help and directions

Ada’tu tareeqi!

Can i help you?

Hal beemkani mosa’adatuk?

Can you help me?

Hal beemakanek mosa’adati?

Where is the (bathroom / pharmacy)?

Ayna ajedu (al merhaad / assaydaliah)?

Go straight then turn left / right!

Imshy ala tool, thumma ‘arrij yaminan / shimalan

I’m looking for John.

Abhathu ‘an John

One moment please!

Lahda men fadlek / fadleki (female)

Hold on please! (phone)

Ibqa / ibqay (female) ala al khat raja’an

How much is this?

Kam howa thamanoh? (th as in bath)

Excuse me...! (to ask for something)

Men fathlek / fathleki (female) (th as in that)

Excuse me! (to pass by)

Alma’derah

Come with me!

Ta’ala / ta’alay (female) ma’ee!


Basics English

Arabic

Yes

Aiwa / na’am!

No

La

Maybe

Mumkin

Please

Min fadlik

Thank you

Shukran

You’re welcome

Afwan

Excuse me

Law tismah

Ok

Tayib

No problem

Mafi mushkila

Small talk How are you?

Keef halak

Fine thanks

Zein al-hamdulillah

What’s your name?

Ma ismouk

My name is ---

Ismi ---

I understand

Ana fahim

I don’t understand

La afham

I speak ---

Ana atakallam ---

Do you speak ---

Hal tatakallam ---

English

Inglizi

French

Faranci

German

Almani

I don’t speak arabic

La atkallam Arabi

Getting Around Where is (the) ---

Ayn (al-) ---

Airport

Al-Matar

Bus station

Mahattat al bas

Car

Sayyara

Camel

Jamal

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Best of Kingdom of Saudi Arabia Vol. 1 Partners Distribution In addition to being distributed via Council of Saudi Chambers, Ministries and foreign Embassies, this edition is circulated to the senior management of top 100 companies in Saudi Arabia, and through hand-to-hand corporate gifting by BEST OF KSA editorial participants to their principal clients and stakeholders. Ensuring a valued cross-section of business readers, copies of this VIP publication are also available via number of key channels for business community readers, such as Saudi Airlines’ Fursan lounges in Riyadh, Jeddah and Dammam, prime 5* hotels in the Kingdom or number of business events worldwide.

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Production Multimedia Partner Dur Alpha

Logistic Partner FedEx

Media Relations MS&L

Lunch Events Al Faisaliah

Photography

Name Email

Fahad Bahada

Name

Abdul Ahad Khan

Name

Husain Al-Ahdal

f.bahada@live.com

Email

aahadk@gmail.com

Email

h.alahdal@live.com

Website

www.bahada.com

Website

www.flickr.com/photos/aahadk/

Website

www.husainphoto.com

Fahad has not only adopted photography as a profession but his passion is beyond words. He believes every picture has something to say and the story is conveyed through his work, most of which includes commercial, architectural, cultural, and various collections.

Abdul Ahad is a self taught photographer with passion for fashion photography, portraits and street photography. His talent is showcased by number of advertising campaigns, while he mostly enjoys taking extraordinary shots of the ordinary life.

Husain started Photography as a hobby since 2005, and became a professional photographer in 2007. He has participated in numerous exhibitions and competitions, and has also worked for international and top advertising agencies within Gulf.

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BEST OF THE WORLD Growth and Opportunity Welcome to the world’s premier platform for showcasing and networking governments, leading companies and entrepreneurs in business, tourism and lifestyle. Through our Best of publishing series and gvpedia.com we showcase an ever expanding Atlas of Success and Sustainability across multiple continents and industries.

Brand Image Branding a Nation, a City and its People

Exchanging knowledge, skills and economies of scale in media With regional head offices in 5 continents, the organisation is currently involved in more than 40 territories where the ‘Best of’ series is published. GVP has a 5-year growth plan to develop a further 150 economic territories organically, through each continent’s regional head office, and through partnerships with companies and individuals that have the expertise to showcase their city, state or country.

More than 1000 000 unique readers from 165 countries

GVP brands and builds the image of the world’s most exciting economic regions to affect a change in the perception of a nation, a city and its people by the rest of the world. This then promotes the region in terms of its investment opportunities, key industries, innovations, people, culture, tourism potential and international objectives.

Product - The Books Celebrate your success The ‘Best of…’ publishing series produces annual maxi format book publications in over 40 territories, from Bangalore to Belgium. These detail success stories of people and companies making positive inroads into the commercial fibre of both mature and emerging markets.

“An encyclopedia of success stories from the world’s most interesting places, people and organizations.”

The www.gvpedia.com site was launched in 2008 so the success stories from the Best of the World print publications could all feature on an online platform. We have more than 8000 pages live and growing fast. In July 2009 we launched an online directory engine and an eBook library to complement our website which has opened up the scope for new publishing partnerships beyond the ‘Best of Series’ with new exciting books and magazines that focus on government, business and travel from around the world.

The books showcase entrepreneurial spirit; establishing powerful global networks and the creation of individual brand awareness by bridging cultures. The result is the ultimate interactive corporate gift and P.R. marketing tool for governments, companies, hotels and business people providing leading products and services for their region.

REGIONAL HEAD OFFICES

l Bangalore 220

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l Brussels

l Cairo

l Copenhagen

l Dubai

l Gaborone


GVPedia.com Global Village Encyclopedia

l Johannesburg

l London

l Santiago

l Singapore

l Sydney

l Washington DC


Glossary 74 38 148 62 56 114 158 156 96 178 210 206 98 202 170 66 138 108 68 166 220 30 172 146 126 48 57 124 40 168 194 64 80 204 76 42 154 198 94 86 26 56 104 92 188 192 106 122 57 128

AEC, Advanced Electronics Company Al Faisaliah Al Khalediah Al Rajhi Capital Al-Nahda Almarai AlMultaka AlSayedah Khadijah Bin Khawilid APS, Arabian Property Services Arabian Centres ASTRA Group Awadh Al Hamzani CEE Dur Alpha E.D. Artworks & Designs Elite Esam Dabbour FEDEX G4S, Group 4 Securicor Globe Global Village Partnerships HCDA, High Commission for the Development of Arriyadh Jaguar Janadriyah Kaya KFF, King Faisal Foundation Kilana Lavanya Le Meridien Lomar Lusin Medgulf Modon, Saudi Industrial Property Authority MS&L Mubasher Park Hyatt Princess Adila bint Abdallah Al Saud PRONTO RAFAL SABIC, Saudi Basic Industries Corporation SAGIA, Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority Sanad Saudia, Saudi Arabian Airlines Soumu Spazio The Noodle House THEEB Thuriah Zahra Zohoor Alreef


BEST OF KINGDOM OF SAUDI ARABIA - Volume 1  

Saudi Arabia is a country of great transformational change. BEST OF KINGDOM of Saudi Arabia celebrates the innovation, sustainability and ex...

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