Saudi CEO funds Rhodes grant

The Rhodes Trust selects creative young leaders with a commitment to serving others.
Updated 15 April 2018
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Saudi CEO funds Rhodes grant

A new Rhodes scholarship has been announced in partnership with Saudi entrepreneur Mohammed Al-Agil and the Kingdom’s Ministry of Education.

Saudi students aged 19-25 will be eligible for the annual scholarship when applications open later this year.

The Rhodes Trust, based in Oxford, is hoping for a diverse set of applicants from around the Kingdom. Eligibility criteria will be published at www.rhodeshouse.ox.ac.uk/apply.

Al-Agil, co-founder of Jarir Bookstores and chairman of Jarir Marketing Co., is funding the annual Rhodes scholarship for Saudi Arabia.

The Rhodes Trust, the international scholarship program established at Oxford University in 1903, selects creative young leaders with a commitment to serving others. 

Charles Conn, CEO of the Rhodes Trust, said: “I am extremely pleased to announce another scholarship to add to the diverse annual cohort of courageous young leaders. Our mission will be to find those exceptional Saudi students a platform to explore their full potential as they prepare to make an impact on the world.

“The introduction of this scholarship comes at a time when the Kingdom is at the forefront of major economic and social transformations in line with Vision 2030. I look forward to welcoming our new scholar to Rhodes House in October 2019, and witnessing our community becoming increasingly more diverse.”

Al-Agil said: “I have benefited enormously from my education and the opportunities I have received from my country, and I believe that endowing a Rhodes scholarship to Saudi postgraduate students is a small gesture to pay back my fellow citizens.”

Jasir Alherbish, the Saudi Ministry of Education’s deputy for scholarships affairs, said: “We are excited about our collaboration with the Rhodes Trust and so keen about opening new horizons for our bright youngsters. It is yet one more excellent venue to be added to the Saudi distinguished scholarships. Thanks to Mohammed Al-Agil and the Rhodes Trust, as well as our team at the ministry, for making it happen.”


Mobily quarterly loss down by 49%

Updated 26 April 2018
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Mobily quarterly loss down by 49%

Saudi telecom provider Mobily decreased its quarterly losses in Q1 2018 by 49 percent to SR93 million ($24.84 million) compared with SR182 million in Q4 2017. This was mainly due to a growth of revenues driven by a better mix of products mainly from data, the increase of efficiency in managing operational expenses, the impact of implementing IFRS 9 and 15, and the reversal of certain provisions that are no longer required, according to the company.

Revenues improved for the second consecutive quarter reaching SR2,833 million in Q1 2018 compared with SR2,827 million in Q4 2017, a slight increase of 0.2 percent, despite the following:

l The impact on sales at the beginning of the year due to the implementation of the value-added tax (VAT). 

l The reduction in interconnection rates by 45 percent.

l The seasonality of handset sales, and its increase in Q4 2017.

l The seasonal decrease related to the number of days in Q1. 

Without the decrease of the interconnection rates, revenues would have grown by 2 percent.

Mobily’s gross profit increased in Q1 2018 by 6.6 percent to SR1,663 million compared with SR1,560 million in Q4 2017. This increase is mainly due to the reduction in interconnection rates during Q1 2018 compared with those of Q4 2017 and the reduction in equipment costs in Q1 2018 compared with Q4 2017.

Mobily managed to grow its revenues for the second consecutive quarter. Q1 2018 revenues slightly decreased by one percent (SR33 million) to SR2,833 million compared with SR2,865 million in Q1 2017. Mobily achieved a stable level in revenues despite the general economic and regulatory changes, including the impact on sales in the beginning of the year due to the implementation of VAT, and the reduction in interconnection rates by 45 percent.

Without the decrease of the interconnection rates, the revenues would have grown by one percent year over year.

The gross profit stabilized at SR1,663 million in Q1 2018 compared to SR1,665 million in Q1 2017 with a slight decrease by 0.12 percent, despite the slight decrease in revenues.