Nokia Middle East launches new smartphone range in Arabic

Updated 13 November 2012
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Nokia Middle East launches new smartphone range in Arabic

DUBAI: Nokia Middle East launched yesterday the Nokia Lumia 920 and the Nokia Lumia 820, the world’s most innovative smartphones based on Windows Phone 8 in the region with exclusive operator partnership with Mobily in the Kingdom.
In the United Arab Emirates, du will be the exclusive telecom carrier to offer the Nokia smartphone in the Emirates.
Nokia Middle East Vice President Tom Farrell, Mobily Vice President for Corporate Communications Humoud Al-Ghobaini and du Chief Commercial Officer Farid Faraidooni were present at the launch which was fully packed with local and foreign media.
The Nokia Lumia 920 is the flagship Windows Phone 8 smartphone, including Arabic language capabilities and the latest advances in Nokia PureView imaging innovation.
“At the beginning of last year Nokia outlined a new smartphone strategy to deliver devices that not only surpass their predecessors but revolutionize the industry. We are now proud to stand here and present to you the most innovative device in the history of Nokia, embodying the height of technology, design and user-experience,” Tom Farrell, Vice President, Nokia Middle East said yesterday during the event.
“The Middle East is one of the top key markets for Nokia and continues to be strongly committed to this region. This is testament to UAE and Saudi Arabia being among the six global markets for Nokia to introduce the new Lumia range with Arabic language capabilities with strong operator offerings and retail presence. The availability of a user interface in the local language combined with strong operator offerings are two key elements in satisfying demands of consumers from the region. We are confident that the most innovative smartphone — the Lumia 920 will be a milestone for the company as a whole,” Farell added.
Al-Ghobaini said that Mobily has entered into a historical exclusive partnership with Nokia as its exclusive operator partner in the Kingdom.
“This is a strategic partnership and we hope that we would be able to give our subscribers an enhanced services with the new features in the smartphone launched today,” he added.
Al-Ghobaini pointed out that Mobily has the largest traffic in the region, it is one of the top five mobile operators to enjoy such a record of traffic in the globe, he said, adding that it enjoys a data traffic of 300 tetrabytes per day.
Mandar Bhide, general manager of Nokia Saudi Arabia said the Nokia Lumia 920 comes in yellow, red, grey, white and black. The Nokia Lumia 820 comes in red, yellow, grey, cyan, purple, white and black. Both phones will be available at all the leading electronic retail outlets in the country and will be priced at: Lumia 920 SR 2,499, and Lumia 820 SR 1,899. These products will be available in the Kingdom from Nov. 23.
Using advanced floating lens technology, the camera in the Nokia Lumia 920 is able to take in five times more light than competing smartphones without using flash, making it possible to capture clear, bright pictures and video indoors and at night.
Nokia PureView technology continues to deliver cutting-edge technology to make it possible for a smartphone camera to take the kind of images usually only seen on a standalone SLR camera. With the Nokia Lumia 920 it is now possible to shoot pictures and video at home, outdoors, in a restaurant or even at night, and come out with professional-looking results.
The Nokia Lumia 920 also comes with Nokia City Lens, the latest addition to the Nokia location suite. By pointing the camera at a city street, City Lens overlays information about restaurants, shops, hotels and more on the surfaces of buildings, for the most intuitive way to explore surroundings.


NMC Health’s $450 million bond to boost Saudi expansion

Updated 19 min 16 sec ago
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NMC Health’s $450 million bond to boost Saudi expansion

LONDON: The UAE-based private health care operator NMC Health has launched a $450 million senior unsecured guaranteed bond to help pay off an existing $1 billion bridge facility and support its expansion plans into Saudi Arabia.

The earlier bridging loan was part of the $2 billion capital structure refinancing put in place at the start of the year, the company said.

The bond is due in 2025 and is convertible into ordinary shares. JP Morgan is the sole bookrunner on the issuance. Bonds will have a fixed coupon rate of 1.875 percent, paid semi-annually.

The new capital structure — which will feature a mixture of unsecured bank and bond financing — will aid the company’s continued growth into Saudi Arabia, with NMC having been one of the first private health care providers to capitalize on the Saudi government’s health care privatization plans.

The company first secured a foothold in the Kingdom in 2016 after acquiring a 70 percent stake in As Salama Hospital in Al-Khobar.

Since then, NMC won regulatory approval last September for a new long-term care facility, the Chronic Care Specialty Medical Center, in Jeddah. It is though to be the first greenfield medical facility in the Kingdom to be set up by a non-Saudi company.

Earlier this year, NMC said it acquired an 80 percent stake in the Riyadh-based Al-Salam Medical Group.

NMC’s acquisition-led expansion strategy aims to ensure the company retains its recently-won place on London’s FTSE 100 index. It was one of the first Middle Eastern companies to join the index when it qualified last September. It first listed on the London Stock Exchange in 2012.

The company posted strong growth in the last year, reporting $209.3 million in net profit for 2017, an increase of 38.2 percent on the previous year. The company paid out a total of $641 million in acquisitions last year.

“2017 proved to be a year of tremendous achievements for NMC,” said the firm’s chief executive Prasanth Manghat, in a statement in March.

NMC also secured secured its first public ratings of BB+ with a stable outlook from S&P on April 20, while Moody’s gave the firm rating of Ba1 with a stable outlook on April 20, 2018. The bonds are not expected to be rated.

“The company continues to strive to meet self-imposed standards that are higher when compared to what is expected of it by various regulators. This approach supports in turn its resilient business model, loyal customer base, strong brand recognition and market leading position,” according to a statement from Moody’s Investors Service.

Investors are so far reacting favorably to NMC’s strategy, with the company closing at a record high on April 20, according to Bloomberg reports, with a market value of $10.8 billion.

The company is now one of 24 equities in the region to have achieved a market capitalization of more than $10 billion, the report said.

Healthcare is seen as a lucrative sector in the Gulf due to its relatively wealthy population becoming increasingly at risk of problems related to obesity and diseases such as type 2 diabetes.