ABB wins $150m orders to strengthen Saudi power grid

Updated 12 August 2015

ABB wins $150m orders to strengthen Saudi power grid

JEDDAH: ABB, the leading power and automation technology group, has won orders worth around $150 million from the Saudi Electricity Company (SEC) to expand five existing substations, helping to ready the country’s transmission system for a 50 percent expansion of power generation capacity to accommodate a growing economy.
SEC, Saudi Arabia’s national power transmission and distribution operator, is increasing the capacity of the substations, with three located in the central region and one each in the eastern and western regions.
The orders were booked in the second quarter of 2015.
Economic growth in Saudi Arabia and the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries, primarily driven by oil and gas, necessitates a strong power infrastructure to secure a reliable electricity supply to growing industrial and commercial sectors in the region, as well as to households.
To meet this rising demand, Saudi Arabia is boosting its power generation capacity from less than 60 gigawatts (GW) to about 91 GW by 2020, and to more than double existing capacity over the longer term.
ABB is supporting these efforts through several projects across the country, including an additional $60 million order booked in the second quarter from SEC for 65 power transformers.
“We are privileged to continue supporting the development of Saudi Arabia’s power infrastructure,” said Claudio Facchin, president of ABB’s Power Systems division.
“These substations will strengthen the grid and enhance transmission capacity, enabling electricity to reach more consumers and support this growing market, in line with our Next Level strategy.”
The extension orders include design, supply, installation and commissioning of new switchgear bays at five existing transmission substations as well as modification of associated automation, control, protection and auxiliary power supply systems and connected transmission substations.
ABB’s gas-insulated switchgear has been in successful operation for more than three decades in one of these substations.
The ability to extend equipment working since the 1980s using state-of-the-art technology demonstrates the flexibility of this equipment to be adapted to changing demands.
ABB is the world’s leading supplier of turnkey air-insulated, gas-insulated and hybrid substations with voltage levels up to 1,100 kilovolts.
These substations facilitate the efficient and reliable transmission and distribution of electricity with minimum environmental impact, serving utility, industry and commercial customers as well as sectors like railways, urban transport and renewables.


Saudi mall operator Arabian Centres bucks retail malaise as profits surge

Updated 21 August 2019

Saudi mall operator Arabian Centres bucks retail malaise as profits surge

  • Mall operator defies online shopping pressure by lowering discounts to tenants, boosting occupancy and rental revenues

LONDON: Arabian Centres, the Saudi mall operator which went public in May, said first-quarter consolidated net profit almost trebled to SR227 million ($60.53 million) as occupancy edged higher across its shopping centers. Revenues increased by about 2.5 percent over the year to SR572.5 million.

The results helped to propel the group’s shares 3 percent higher on Tuesday.

The group said that it boosted performance by offering lower discounts to its tenants which helped to drive rental revenues. Like-for-like occupancy across all malls increased  to 93.2 percent from 92.4 percent in the year earlier period. Finance costs fell by about 65 percent from a year earlier to SR73.9 million.

FASTFACT

 

27 - Arabian Centres plans to expand its mall portfolio to 27 within four years.

Retailers across the Middle East are coming under increased pressure as more consumers shop online, while at the same time, tourists are spending less in dollar-pegged economies because their purchasing power has been cut by the strength of the greenback. Still, in Saudi Arabia, the under-served retail market is expected to receive a boost from rising investment in the entertainment sector, especially new cinemas.

“Faced with the rising challenge of online shopping, the brick-and-mortar retail segment has sought to diversify its offering to secure its customer base, providing an increased range of leisure and entertainment facilities,” said Oxford Business Group, in a report analyzing emerging trends in the Saudi retail sector.

“The reintroduction of cinemas to the Kingdom in April last year ... is expected to increase retail footfall,” it said.

Arabian Centres, majority-owned by Fawaz Alhokair Group, listed its shares on the Tadawul stock exchange in May — the first to do so in the Kingdom under Rule 144a, allowing the sale of securities, mainly to qualified institutional buyers in the US.

The group aims to expand to 27 malls within four years.