Forum to spotlight emerging technologies & Vision 2030

Chiara Palieri
Updated 19 May 2019

Forum to spotlight emerging technologies & Vision 2030

The Saudi Emerging Technologies Forum will take place from Nov. 11 to 13 in Kempinski Hotel in Riyadh. It will be the first conference in the Kingdom to address the deployment of emerging technologies and the Vision 2030 plan for digital transformation that will power cities and economies of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.
AI is going to be a game-changer in the global economy and much of the value potential is up for grabs.
The annual growth in the contribution of AI is expected to range between 20-34 percent per year across the Middle East, with the fastest growth in Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Egypt.
The Riyadh forum will gather more than 500 government officials and senior level executives, and more than 50 speakers. It will feature 12 panel discussions with the participation of 900 attendees, 60 exhibitors, 12 certified technical workshops, 30 proof of concepts and live demo sessions, and a dedicated focus day for IIOT.
The forum will be chaired by Majed Alshodari, CISO at Allied Cooperative Insurance Group.
Mohammed Mahnashi, information security adviser of the Saudi Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said: “Saudi Arabia is the heart of the Arab and Islamic world, an investment powerhouse, and a hub connecting three continents. These three pillars form the basis of the Saudi Vision 2030, which lays out an an ambitious yet achievable blueprint, which reflects our country’s strengths and capabilities and depends on technology to achieve the goals.
“I believe the Saudi Emerging Technologies Forum is a key event to attend, to listen to and to discuss with experts in the National Transformation Program.”
Chiara Palieri, director of the Saudi Emerging Technologies Forum, said: “This event represents a turning point in the digital transformation domain in Saudi Arabia because it will be the only platform in the Kingdom that will celebrate the Vision 2030 digital transformation leaders who are driving the deployment of emerging technologies in government entities and private sectors.
“We are so thrilled to have received an enthusiastic response from government entities that will use the event to announce their latest digitization programs.”

Gaming giant Tencent Games picks Dubai for MENA headquarters

Updated 26 June 2019

Gaming giant Tencent Games picks Dubai for MENA headquarters

DUBAI: China’s Tencent Games has chosen Dubai as regional headquarters for its Middle East and North Africa operations, with Dubai Internet City housing the gaming giant’s office.

Tencent Games was launched in 2003 and has since grown into a global platform for game development, publishing and operation. Its ownership stakes and alliances with many major video game companies includes Fornite, Ubisoft, Activision-Blizzard, Riot Games, Supercell and Take-Two Interactive Software.

The opening of Tencent Games’ regional headquarter is an indication of increased activities in the local and regional games industry which covers digital entertainment, education and cultural experiences, a statement said.

According to market research firm Newzoo, the revenue of the UAE games sector is estimated at $324 million (1.2 billion dirhams) in 2019. Furthermore, over 80 percent of smartphone users in the UAE play mobile games, it said.

The UAE has the highest mobile penetration rate in the world at 173 per cent – nearly double the country’s population, according to a report by Statista released in late 2018. This is a considerable figure and represents a wealth of opportunities for game developers, with revenues from mobile games representing more than half the income generated in the entire industry.

“Gaming moves beyond entertainment and is increasingly used to engage and educate, and as more gamers and creative enthusiasts enter the industry, we can certainly expect the market to develop rapidly in the coming years,” Ammar Al-Malik, managing director of Dubai Internet City and Dubai Outsource City said.

Vincent Wang, general manager of the Global Publishing Department at Tencent Games, said: “The UAE’s high mobile and internet penetration is an extremely encouraging indicator for tech firms across the world, and is especially relevant to the global games industry.”