KACST to receive applications for training boot camp in Riyadh, Al-Qassim

Nawaf Al-Sahhaf, CEO of the Badir program.
Updated 13 March 2018

KACST to receive applications for training boot camp in Riyadh, Al-Qassim

King Abdul Aziz City for Science and Technology (KACST), represented by the Badir Program for Technology Incubators and Accelerators, has announced that it will start receiving applications from candidates for its training boot camp, which will be held in Riyadh and Al-Qassim in mid-April.
The boot camp aims to accelerate the growth of startups, assist in attracting funding, and develop a culture of entrepreneurship among youth.
The training boot camp, which will last for five days in each region, will include lectures, training programs, workshops and special sessions on topics related to the creation of new tech companies, how to effectively present ideas to investors, finance and business models that include examples of leading companies at the regional level.
For a project to be successful, it should be able to present an executable solution to problems in society. The idea must be innovative and unique and should meet the market demand. It should be sustainable and scalable, with great opportunity for growth and expansion.
Nawaf Al-Sahhaf, CEO of the Badir program, said that since its establishment, the training boot camp has been a platform to support Saudi entrepreneurs in establishing new and innovative tech companies through the skills and tools they acquire in the camp. He said the focus is on various aspects of the business world, in particular the establishment of Information and communication technology companies.
Participants will be guided and educated on how companies are created and their financial affairs, as well as work plans, strategies and creating the appropriate team for new projects.
Al-Sahhaf said that successful projects will gain access to investments in the early stages of the project. The Badir program will also help these projects obtain additional investments through a large network of local and regional investors.

MCIT, Huawei launch Kingdom’s first IoT Lab

Updated 10 December 2018

MCIT, Huawei launch Kingdom’s first IoT Lab

The Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MCIT) and Huawei have announced the launch of the Kingdom’s first Internet of Things (IoT) lab and a fund of $1 million to support Saudi entrepreneurs. The announcement was made during the Huawei Day 2018 event held at The Ritz-Carlton, Riyadh.

The event was attended by Dr. Sulaiman Mirdad, minister adviser for IT industry development; Dennis Zhang, CEO of Huawei Saudi Arabia; and other representatives, including senior government officials, IT leaders and professionals.

The new lab will be located at Huawei’s innovation center in Riyadh and aims to provide entrepreneurs with a platform to innovate IoT applications, which will directly target the most important vertical sectors to the Kingdom.

This joint initiative between MCIT and Huawei is expected to boost the development of products and applications and promote an open and participatory IoT ecosystem. The new IoT lab is the first such innovation and development joint lab in Saudi Arabia. 

Under this cooperation, Huawei has also made available $1 million of funding to developers to accelerate the adoption of IoT in the Kingdom.

IoT development and innovation have transformed traditional industries and daily life. As hundreds of millions of IoT devices will be used for innovative services, the technology has a key role to play in digitalization across industries. Yet currently there is not much IoT adoption in Saudi Arabia, and there is a shortage in local skills and funding necessary to drive the sector forward. The lab is intended to bridge this gap, and ultimately to drive forward the Kingdom’s digital transformation forward and assist the leadership in achieving their vision of building a knowledge economy, in line with Saudi Vision 2030 and the National Transformation Plan 2020.

Dr. Ahmed Altheneyan, deputy minister for technology and digital capacities at MCIT, said: “We are proud to launch the Kingdom’s first IoT lab and fund with our partner Huawei, believing as we do that this initiative will help to promote ICT innovation and entrepreneurship ecosystem, accelerate the adoption of emerging technology within the Kingdom, and support in developing the skillset and technology necessary to enable our vision and national transformation plan.”

Huawei Saudi Arabia CEO Zhang said: “Saudi Vision 2030 calls for the development of the Kingdom into an innovative and globally competitive economy through digital transformation, and our aim at Huawei is to support the success of this vision. 

We are committed to open innovation and collaboration to promote the IoT sector here in Saudi Arabia and we see the launch of this lab as another milestone in our strategic partnership with MCIT.”