Dar Al Arkan signs deal with Majid Al-Futtaim for VOX Cinemas multiplex at Al-Qasr Mall in Riyadh

Real estate developer Dar Al Arkan has announced that it has signed an agreement in Riyadh with Majid Al-Futtaim to open a VOX Cinemas multiplex in Saudi Arabia. (Supplied: Dar Al Arkan)
Updated 05 September 2018

Dar Al Arkan signs deal with Majid Al-Futtaim for VOX Cinemas multiplex at Al-Qasr Mall in Riyadh

  • VOX will operate the new 15-screen multiplex, scheduled to open in the first quarter of 2019
  • VOX Cinemas is the largest cinema operator in the MENA region and the leading regional cinema operator in the Kingdom

RIYADH: Real estate developer Dar Al Arkan has announced that it has signed an agreement in Riyadh with Majid Al-Futtaim to open a VOX Cinemas multiplex in Saudi Arabia.
VOX will operate the new 15-screen multiplex, scheduled to open in the first quarter of 2019, at Dar Al Arkan’s Al-Qasr Mall in the Saudi Arabian capital. The project will also include outlets, restaurants and an indoor bowling alley.
Yousef bin Abdullah Al-Shelash, Dar Al Arkan chairman, said: “Majid Al-Futtaim is a perfect partner that will help us create a unique experience at Al-Qasr Mall for Riyadh residents and visitors.
“Al-Qasr Mall is an ideal site for this new feature in family entertainment and is expected to become a celebrated addition to our existing and diverse selection of outlets that offer something for everyone.”
He added: “These are exciting times for Saudi Arabia and we are delighted to be playing a small but significant part toward achieving the Kingdom’s Vision 2030, which aims to build an entire ecosystem for arts, tourism and entertainment.”
Kelvin Kwok Han Sim, CEO of Dar Al Arkan said: “The new cinema complex will feature the next generation technology fit for the current sophisticated and tech-savvy Saudi movie-buffs. This is a significant contribution and a novel addition to the evolving Saudi-cinema-culture.”
Cinemas had been banned in the country since the early 1980s but were reopened earlier this year as part of reforms led by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
In April, Marvel’s “Black Panther” made history as the first new release in the Kingdom for 35 years.
While regional and international cinema chains are eyeing the Saudi market — keen to tap into the spending power of the country’s young population — VOX Cinemas is the largest cinema operator in the MENA region and the leading regional cinema operator in the Kingdom.


Case against Ghosn excuse to get him out of Nissan, claim lawyers

Updated 13 November 2019

Case against Ghosn excuse to get him out of Nissan, claim lawyers

  • The former motor giant chief’s legal team has alleged that both his arrest and the prosecution efforts have been illegal

TOKYO: The drama surrounding the arrest of Carlos Ghosn, former boss of motor giants Nissan and Renault, has yet to reach its climax. Yet the plot continues to thicken with each new development.

On Monday, Ghosn’s defense lawyers unveiled court submissions highlighting the circumstances in which the 65-year-old executive was arrested and subsequently held in detention.

“We believe that Mr. Carlos Ghosn is innocent. We believe that the arrest and the prosecution efforts thus far are illegal and therefore Mr. Ghosn should be immediately released,” the head of his defense team, Junichiro Hironaka, said during a press conference at the Foreign Correspondents Club of Japan in Tokyo on Monday.

Hironaka claimed that Nissan wanted to kick out Carlos Ghosn from the company and therefore put together a team dedicated to searching around for something that would justify them to do that.

“This prosecution motion wasn’t initiated because the prosecution side believed that Mr. Ghosn had committed an illegal act. Fundamentally there is a problem with this being treated as a criminal act,” he said.

Hironaka further said that the prosecutor’s office is supposed to be acting in the public good for everyone and not behalf of a specific corporation.

“From the investigation level, there were various problems and mistakes with this case. Furthermore, the Japanese persecution office can’t reach overseas so they rely on Nissan employees to go into Mr. Ghosn’s offices and residences and removed objects illegally,” he said.

Hironaka said there is no evidence to support the alleged wrongdoing claim that Nissan made payments to SBA in Oman, and Ghosn re-directed that money to himself or his family.

“The amounts that were paid by Nissan matched exactly the amounts due to SBA,” he said.

The lawyer had a similar response to the reports connecting some donations by Ghosn to a school in Lebanon that would somehow benefit himself. “There is absolutely no evidence or factual basis for indicating that,” Hironaka said.

He said that his team is trying to access correct information and find out what evidence the prosecution might have.

“I have made an effort to share information with the media, including the foreign media, during this whole pre-trial motion,” he said.

Under the Japanese system, the prosecutors are not required to disclose all the evidence at their disposal. Japanese law requires that prosecutors must disclose anything related to any evidence related to the specific filings they make.

They must also disclose any evidence that is related to the filings that are made by the defense counsel. However, there is no requirement for them to disclose evidence from other parts.

Ghosn was arrested at Tokyo’s Haneda Airport on Nov. 19, 2018, on multiple charges related to his stewardship of the two companies.

The cases involved not only Nissan-Renault and Japan’s Mitsubishi Motors (part of the Franco-Japanese alliance), but also the Japanese and French governments along with various key players from Asia and the Middle East.

Nissan was on the brink of bankruptcy in March 1999, with about 2 trillion yen ($17.6 billion) in interest-bearing debt.

This is when it entered a capital partnership with major French automaker Renault SA. Ghosn has been credited for turning the company around dramatically since then.

However, fears that the high-profile CEO and chairman was planning to merge Nissan into a much larger multinational motor alliance appeared to have fueled speculation regarding the future of the company.

It was reportedly argued within Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s government that the automaker would no longer be recognizably Japanese.

The case has larger ramifications and the two governments have routinely become involved in discussions related to its future.

According to news reports, when Macron and Abe met in Buenos Aires, the French president asked that the Franco-Japanese alliance be maintained.

On being asked by Arab News Japan about reports of a prosecution team visiting Saudi Arabia and Oman, Hironaka confirmed that the visit indeed took place after Ghosn’s arrest.

“However, we have not been given any access to any information that they may or may not have gathered there,” he said.