Citigroup Saudi Arabia marks 1-year anniversary

Citi partnered with AMIDEAST through a regional grant worth $400,000 targeting youth in Egypt and Saudi Arabia. 
Updated 10 June 2019

Citigroup Saudi Arabia marks 1-year anniversary

Citigroup Saudi Arabia recently held its first board meeting of the year, marking its one-year anniversary in the Kingdom. The board comprises Citi senior executives and independent directors, including Alberto J. Verme, chairman of Citi Institutional Clients Group and chairman of Citigroup Saudi Arabia; Atiq Rehman, CEO of Middle East and Africa; Carmen Haddad, Citi country officer, Saudi Arabia and vice chairperson, Citigroup Saudi Arabia; Naveed Kamal, corporate banking head, MENA; Mutlaq H. Al-Morished, chief executive of Tasnee; and Omar Almohammady, chief executive of Alhokair Group.
The meeting discussed the business strategy and performance of Citigroup Saudi Arabia, followed by a high-level client roundtable led by a senior Citi speaker on disruptive innovation, digital banking, challenges in cybersecurity and technological changes.
“As we enter our second year of operation in the Kingdom we are on track with our stated plans to be part of the Kingdom’s economic transformation,” said Verme. “We look forward to continuing our journey of serving our clients and working closely with our partners and regulators under Vision 2030.”
In April 2017, the Saudi Arabian Capital Market Authority (CMA) granted Citi a license to provide a range of investment banking, debt and equity capital markets, markets, and securities research capabilities to its local and international institutional clients. This was followed by the Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority’s investment license in May 2017, and by CMA’s commencement letter. In April 2018, Citi announced the official opening of its new offices in Riyadh, located at the Kingdom Tower and has since led on a number of key capital markets transactions. Most recently, Citi received the permission to provide cash equity and custody services.
“Today’s board meeting comes at the heels of receiving the recent upgrade to the CMA license to provide equity and custody services, a testament to our ongoing efforts to provide comprehensive banking solutions on the ground,” said Haddad. “We are charging ahead with our strategy of establishing a value-added presence and being a responsible corporate citizen.”
Citi also announced its renewed commitment to supporting the “Skills for Success: Employability Program” with AMIDEAST, through a regional grant worth $400,000 targeting youth in Egypt and Saudi Arabia. The partnership is part of the Citi Foundation’s Pathways to Progress approach designed to prepare urban youth with the career readiness tools and opportunities to thrive in today’s economy.
In 2019, the partnership is expected to impact 54 more unemployed Saudi university graduates aged 20-24, who are residing in Riyadh and who want to enhance their employability skills to find a job. The program launched in 2018 and has concluded the first phase of training in business English and personal skills for 73 female youth, with the majority of the graduates slated to intern with corporate entities in Saudi Arabia.
“We are proud to partner with AMIDEAST and to invest in youth in the region through targeted empowerment programs,” said Haddad. “Such programs catalyze economic growth through Citi Foundation grants and in partnership with reputed regional NGOs.”


Entertainment hub ‘Xtreme Play’ opens in Jeddah

Updated 26 November 2020

Entertainment hub ‘Xtreme Play’ opens in Jeddah

Xtreme Play, the newest children’s indoor games hub in Jeddah, is offering visitors never-seen-before inflatable attractions, available for the first time in the Kingdom. The family-friendly entertainment center is spread over an area of 2,500 square meters at the Sultan Mall complex on Prince Sultan Street.

Xtreme Play consists of two main sections, namely the Trampoline Main Arena and Inflatable Ninja Warriors. The Trampoline Main Arena consists of several free-jumping zones, including a dodgeball and volleyball court, trampoline basketball court, slam dunk area, and airbag jump, while the Inflatable Ninja Warriors area includes different action games, such as bouncing, jumping, climbing, dodging, foam pit, sliding, maneuvering challenge and sledding challenge. The inflatable equipment has been brought in from specialized international gaming manufacturers and is suitable for children aged six and above.

The center has three halls — all designed in an attractive modern style — that will be used for hosting birthdays parties and events, as well training sessions by instructors specialized in judo, karate, taekwondo, ballet, gymnastics and other sports.

The center is well-equipped for school trips and corporate events. It has an upper viewing lounge overlooking a park, where visitors can enjoy food and drinks. Events for adults and Ninja Warrior tournaments are also held in this area. The management has ensured that all games are completely safe and that children are not exposed to any hard surfaces, which can lead to injuries.

Khalid Souri, board member and CEO of VIM Entertainment Company, which owns Xtreme Play in Jeddah, said: “The launch of the Xtreme Play center promotes the family entertainment industry in Jeddah, and provides world-class indoor entertainment services to all ages, the likes of which are available only in the world’s finest cities.”

He added: “We aim at making the Xtreme Play visit a unique experience for all family members, as it combines entertainment and safety at the same time. We also aim to expand in the rest of the Kingdom’s cities and provinces soon.”