UL, STC to set up center of excellence in Riyadh

UL’s wire and cable division signed the MoU with STC at the world’s largest wireless industry event, Mobile World Congress 2019 held in Barcelona.
Updated 11 March 2019
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UL, STC to set up center of excellence in Riyadh

UL and Saudi Telecom Company (STC) have announced a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to establish a testing facility in Saudi Arabia.

The center of excellence (CoE) will be set up in Riyadh inside STC labs and will offer testing for various products across the “fiber to the home” (FTTH) ecosystem.

UL’s wire and cable division signed the MoU with STC at the world’s largest wireless industry event, Mobile World Congress 2019 held in Barcelona. The collaboration is aimed at ensuring a robust network for telecom operators in Saudi Arabia and the GCC countries.

UL recognizes the increasing need for Saudi Arabia’s wire and cable industry to accelerate the “time to market” for products and to meet the challenges of the growing complexity of global technological and business environment. 

With the support from UL’s engineering expertise, this new facility in Saudi Arabia will help all critical stakeholders along the global supply chain to design, manufacture, specify and procure compliant products in the marketplace.

Steven A. Galan, director of UL’s wire and cable division, said: “We are collaborating with STC to provide our testing services locally here in Saudi Arabia with a view to shortening the turnaround time for submitting samples, testing and certification.

“Additionally, suppliers of the telecommunications industry can conduct UL research testing at this facility to validate their product design during the product development stage, which will help enhance market competitiveness of the product.” 

Hamid Syed, vice president and general manager for UL in the Middle East, said: “Through this testing facility, we will be able to support the Kingdom’s digital transformation by ensuring only compliant products enter the marketplace.”

Bader A. Allhieb, vice president of operations at STC, said: “We are delighted to collaborate with a globally renowned industry leader such as UL, whose mission and expertise perfectly complement our goal to transform the telecom industry in the Kingdom and the region.

“This collaboration will not only benefit STC and UL but would also further support the growth of telecom sector of Saudi Arabia and other GCC countries.”


360-degree mentoring to boost Saudi social enterprise sector

Updated 23 May 2019
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360-degree mentoring to boost Saudi social enterprise sector

The King Khalid Foundation (KKF) and Mowgli Mentoring have collaborated to strengthen the growing social enterprise sector in the Kingdom through the provision of 360-degree mentoring, which will support the personal and professional development of social entrepreneurs. The EMCC-accredited mentoring organization is working to built the capacity of Saudi mentors by instilling best mentoring practices and sharing experiences from its 10-year work around the world.

Globally, the concept of social entrepreneurship is increasingly gaining momentum and positive attention as it combines commerce with social good, allowing entrepreneurs to go beyond profit to positively impact communities and societies. Supporting these entrepreneurs, therefore, is in line with the KKF’s vision, which is to have a Saudi society with equal opportunities.

The KKF’s collaboration with Mowgli resulted in the creation of the Athar (Impact) Mentoring Program.

This program aims to build and increase the capacity of Saudi mentors, and equip them with the necessary tools to be able to provide mentorship, support and guidance to social entrepreneurs in the Kingdom. Matching mentors with social entrepreneurs and managing their mentorship relationships is a key benefit of the program.

To commence the mentoring program, Mowgli recently delivered a four-day workshop in the KKF premises in Riyadh. Fourteen professionals and business leaders received training to be 360-degree mentors before being matched with 14 social entrepreneurs. Both groups were provided with the guidelines to build solid foundations for their 1-2-1 mentoring relationships. In addition, the matched pairs will be supported over a duration of six months, during which structured on-going support will be provided to ensure that trust-based and impactful mentoring relationships are developed.

Mowgli Mentoring’s CEO Kathleen Bury said: “We see this program supporting the three themes on which the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 was built upon: Developing a vibrant society, a thriving economy and an ambitious nation. By supporting social entrepreneurs, we’re working toward achieving the Kingdom’s economic aspirations of increasing SME GDP contribution by 20–30 percent by 2030. We are, therefore, excited to be back in Saudi Arabia and are honored to be working with the King Khalid Foundation in delivering this program, and building Saudi Arabia’s mentoring capacity to sustainably support change-makers and their surrounding ecosystems for years to come.”

The key to developing entrepreneurship and fostering economic development lies in having a well-balanced ecosystem with equal investment in four key pillars: Environment (schooling, parenting), finance (working capital, debt and equity financing), infrastructure (incubators, accelerators, utilities and sound legal frameworks) and human capital development (mentoring, skills and knowledge development). Mowgli supports the latter and has successfully delivered more than 110 mentoring programs across the Middle East, North Africa and sub-Saharan Africa.