stc, Thales sign MoU to develop digital solutions for businesses

stc, Thales sign MoU to develop digital solutions for businesses
Pascal Lesaulnier, chairman and CEO of Thales Saudi Arabia
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Updated 08 December 2021

stc, Thales sign MoU to develop digital solutions for businesses

stc, Thales sign MoU to develop digital solutions for businesses

stc and Thales have signed a memorandum of understanding for collaboration in various areas, such as ICT, AI, cybersecurity, smart cities, IoT, machine connectivity, identity solutions, payment solutions, and 5G satellite solutions. Through this partnership, stc aims to develop and enhance digital solutions in order to provide its customers with cybersecurity solutions, as well as provide training to enhance digital skills in these technologies through the stc academy.

The memorandum of understanding signed by the two companies includes investing in digital capabilities in the Kingdom through research, development and innovation. Among the areas of cooperation covered by the memorandum of understanding  are eSIM technologies and national security technologies, especially smart new cities and digital identity and payment solutions. The partnership will involve close collaboration between the two companies in relation to ICT training provided by stc academy.

stc chief business officer Riyadh Muawad expressed his delight at the signing of the MoU. He said: “As the digital enabler in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, we are interested in building strategic relationships with strategic partners like Thales and are working together to further our digital transformation leadership goals. Through this partnership, we aspire to leverage Thales Group solutions in the areas of cybersecurity, AI, and other digital innovations.”

Pascal Lesaulnier, chairman and CEO of Thales Saudi Arabia, said: “Thales is a leading global company in the field of advanced technologies and invests in digital innovations and ‘deep technologies’ such as connectivity, big data, AI, cyber security and quantum computing. Over the past 50 years, the Group has had an active presence in the Kingdom in all our areas of expertise. We are very proud of the partnership we have developed with stc over the years. eSim, stcPay and other solutions are a testament to this vital collaboration. This MoU confirms Thales’ commitment to keep integrating and working alongside stc as part of this exciting journey towards digital transformation in Saudi Arabia, in which stc is a key player.”


Sheraton Jeddah opens, unveiling brand’s new vision

Sheraton Jeddah opens, unveiling brand’s new vision
Updated 23 June 2022

Sheraton Jeddah opens, unveiling brand’s new vision

Sheraton Jeddah opens, unveiling brand’s new vision

Sheraton Hotels and Resorts, part of Marriott Bonvoy’s portfolio of 30 brands, has unveiled the Sheraton Jeddah Hotel. The newly renovated hotel exemplifies the brand’s worldwide elevation of the guest experience, showcasing signature key elements from the new concept that seek to create an environment where guests are truly at ease, whether working, meeting, or relaxing. Drawing on its roots as a community hub for locals and guests at flagship locations, the new approach for Sheraton creates an intuitive and holistic experience with places to connect and be productive.

“We are delighted to introduce Sheraton’s new design vision in Saudi Arabia and look forward to welcoming guests to discover the modernized look,” said Ahmed Hozaien, area vice president — Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Egypt, Marriott International. “Sheraton Hotels and Resorts has a long-standing history in this market, and we are proud to build on this legacy showcasing the brand’s contemporary updates as part of its global transformation. The reimagining of Sheraton Jeddah Hotel reinforces our commitment to offering premium accommodation for leisure and business travelers who are seeking an elevated experience, while enjoying all the familiar comforts of the Sheraton brand.”

Following extensive renovations, Sheraton Jeddah offers 172 redesigned guestrooms and suites. Guests are welcomed into a natural light-filled space with warm, residential appeal, along with new tools for productivity including a height-adjustable work table with integrated power and charging stations, while still retaining some of the classic Sheraton signature amenities such as the iconic “Sheraton Sleep Experience” bed. Enhanced technology in the guestrooms include upgraded internet connectivity and 55-inch TVs with built-in Chromecast and live streaming. Flooded with natural light and featuring soft finishes and light wood tones, the guestrooms offer expansive views of the Red Sea.

HIGHLIGHT

Surrounded by local attractions, the hotel is located in a popular leisure destination for residents and travelers alike with direct access to explore the Red Sea’s coral reefs through either snorkeling or diving.

The new lobby serves as the heart of the guest experience featuring a refreshed and contemporary aesthetic. Reimagined as a holistic, open space, the elevated lobby features Sheraton’s signature design elements aimed to foster a sense of community and ignite productivity, including the brand’s signature “Community Tables,” tech-enabled Studios, and purpose-built workspaces. Thrive Café is the anchor of the public space, serving international and local flavors from morning to evening.

Ahmed Hozaien Area, Marriott International's vice president for Saudi Arabia, Bahrain  and Egypt. (Supplied)

The Sheraton Club offers breathtaking views across the Red Sea. The exclusive space available to Marriott Bonvoy Elite members and guests who upgrade their stay, is welcoming, stylish, and purposefully designed for an engaging experience. Here guests can enjoy complimentary breakfast, evening appetizers, and a selection of refreshments.

Three elevated dining venues offer international and local cuisine, all-day dining and outdoor BBQ grills overlooking the Red Sea. Surrounded by local attractions, the hotel is located in a popular leisure destination for residents and travelers alike with direct access to explore the Red Sea’s coral reefs through either snorkeling or diving. For guests seeking adventure, there is a vast range of entertainment facilities and cultural attractions nearby, including the Fakieh Aquarium, Red Sea Mall, the historic Al-Balad section of the city, and The Royal Greens Golf and Country Club — with an 18-hole championship golf course.

Additional facilities include an outdoor swimming pool, Sheraton Fitness Center for men and women, tennis and squash courts, five meeting rooms, and a ballroom with private access.


Middle East Paper Company taps SAP for digital transformation

Middle East Paper Company taps SAP for digital transformation
Updated 23 June 2022

Middle East Paper Company taps SAP for digital transformation

Middle East Paper Company taps SAP for digital transformation

The Middle East Paper Company, the largest paper manufacturer in the Middle East and Africa, is deploying solutions from global software company SAP SE in an effort to streamline its business processes and increase efficiencies as part of a regional and global expansion strategy.

MEPCO’s comprehensive digital transformation journey is aligned closely with Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030, which has technology adoption and sustainability among its key pillars. In partnership with SAP, the paper production and waste management organization has automated, aligned and enhanced its most core internal business processes, and is now focusing on its B2B customer experience offering. In its next phase, MEPCO will deploy e-commerce solutions to deliver rich omnichannel experiences to its customers, from content management and customization to order processing, as it delivers more than 15 different products to the packaging, construction and furniture sectors across five continents.

On the sidelines of a signing event for the new deployment, Sami Alsafran, group president at MEPCO, said: “Manufacturing is a critical growth sector in Saudi Arabia and MEPCO is determined to institute global best practice to not only compete regionally and internationally, but to lead our industry in alignment with the country’s Vision 2030. Digital transformation with SAP has enhanced our business practices as well as our focus on health and safety, and now we are bringing that same focus and commitment to new channels in MEPCO’s customer experience offering.”

In the initial phase of its technology strategy, MEPCO deployed the SAP S/4HANA platform to deliver real-time data insights across its enterprise, as well as a single view of its entire operation for more informed decision-making. Given SAP’s expertise in the manufacturing sector, its solutions also enabled MEPCO to reduce manufacturing cycle time, enhancing the efficiency of the company’s manufacturing-related functions and ultimately streamlining processes and inventory levels.

Abdelmohsen Abo Hashem, group IT head at MEPCO, added: “The forthcoming digital transformation scope for MEPCO includes an elevated e-commerce customer ordering and engagement process through SAP’s CX commerce solution, with future stages incorporating greater automation and robotics in the manufacturing and waste management functions. MEPCO will rely on SAP solutions to support customer-facing functions including logistics, regional and international trade, and planning, as the company expands beyond its current footprint of more than 50 markets.”

Ahmed Alfaifi, senior vice president, Middle East North, SAP, added: “MEPCO’s commitment to increasing productivity and efficiencies both within its supply chain and in its overall enterprise underscores the organization’s leadership, not only in Saudi Arabia but regionally. With global expansion as a priority, the focus on elevating the customer experience through SAP’s solutions will continue to advance MEPCO’s business goals and set a dynamic example for other companies’ digital transformation aspirations.”


Bentley’s new Continental GT & GTC S have sharper edge

Bentley’s new Continental GT & GTC S have sharper edge
Updated 21 June 2022

Bentley’s new Continental GT & GTC S have sharper edge

Bentley’s new Continental GT & GTC S have sharper edge

Following the successful launch of Azure’s “well-being” range in Saudi Arabia, Bentley has now introduced the new Continental GT and GTC S range for drivers wanting to focus on pure driving pleasure. Adding an even sharper edge to the Grand Tourer family, the new S range boasts a multitude of enhancements to the exterior design and interior specifications.

“Effortlessly elegant, the sculpted bodywork and hand-finished paintwork of the Continental GT and GTC models combine to create one of the world’s most breathtaking luxury cars,” the carmaker said in a statement. “The muscular exterior design is a statement of intent, more sculpted and sharply defined than ever. With exceptional driving characteristics, the Grand Tourer experience allows drivers to explore the full breadth of performance and class-leading comfort, including the powerful performance of the 6-liter W12 Continental GT Speed to the dynamic 4-liter Continental GT V8.”

Peter Smith, general manager, Bentley Saudi Arabia, said: “Bentley created the modern, luxury Grand Tourer segment in 2003 with the launch of the original Continental GT. The latest, third-generation Bentley Continental GT remains the pinnacle luxury coupe in the world, blending spirited performance with the latest in cutting-edge technology. Now, with the arrival of the Continental GT and GTC S series, owners can choose to emphasize the sporting character of the 4-liter V8-powered Bentley Continental GT, thanks to a package of performance-focused design and engineering features.”

The new S range retains the 542 bhp and 770 Nm 4-liter V8 engine, which has already proved popular with drivers in the Kingdom, delivering a time of just 4 seconds for 0-100 km/h. For the GT and GTC S, the engine is enhanced by a Sports Exhaust to amplify the crossplane V8 beat, to further add to the thrill of the driving experience for the driver and passengers.

The eager, free-revving, and lighter 4-liter V8 engine gives the Continental GT S models a responsive and agile character, and this is amplified by Bentley Dynamic Ride — the advanced 48V electric active anti-roll control system first pioneered by Bentley to minimize body roll under hard cornering, while also improving ride comfort at cruising speeds by decoupling the left- and right-hand wheels.

From the black gloss radiator grille and black brightware to distinctive S badging on the front fenders, the new S models make an instant and dramatic impact. Headlamps and rear lights are dark tinted, while all exterior brightware is specified in gloss black — with only the winged Bentley badge and lettering being finished in bright chrome. Gloss black wings build on the darker exterior look.


ROSHN Group CEO named in Construction Week’s ‘Power 100’

ROSHN Group CEO named in Construction Week’s ‘Power 100’
Updated 21 June 2022

ROSHN Group CEO named in Construction Week’s ‘Power 100’

ROSHN Group CEO named in Construction Week’s ‘Power 100’

ROSHN Group CEO David Grover has been included in Construction Week’s list of the most powerful and influential people in the Middle East’s construction industry.

The “Power 100” list is Construction Week’s annual ranking of the regional construction sector’s most important and dynamic leaders — and one of the magazine’s most highly anticipated products. This year’s Power 100 identifies the industry’s most influential individuals across a range of sub-sectors, including contractors, developers, consultants, and designers.

The publication of this year’s Power 100 list follows a stellar year for ROSHN. The company has opened sales at its first development, SEDRA in Riyadh, and has revealed plans for new communities in nine cities across four regions. Its sponsorship of high-profile events, such as Formula 1, Riyadh Season and the Saudi Professional League, has brought ROSHN’s message of community living, enabled by walkable neighborhoods rich with amenities, to Saudis across the country. ROSHN’s vision has also been taken to the global real estate community, with a delegation from the company traveling to Cannes to take part in MIPIM 2022, the world’s leading real estate event.

ROSHN is a national real estate developer, powered by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund. It has a mandate to deliver high-quality living standards to Saudis and support government efforts to increase rates of home ownership. ROSHN communities look both to Saudi heritage and the evolving aspirations of the Saudi people, acting as the master developer, property developer and operator across a broad range of asset classes and land uses, including residential, retail, commercial, hospitality and public/civic facilities.


PR Arabia National Auto Award celebrates 10 years of launch

PR Arabia National Auto Award celebrates 10 years of launch
Updated 21 June 2022

PR Arabia National Auto Award celebrates 10 years of launch

PR Arabia National Auto Award celebrates 10 years of launch

Preparations are in full swing this year to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the launch of the National Auto Award. It all began in 2012 when PR Arabia, an agency specialized in marketing and media communications in the auto sector, introduced this one-of-a-kind award, governed by global standards and the supervision of various experts in the auto and mechanical engineering sectors, as well as car racing champions. The scope of the award expanded and its objective was greatly enhanced after the support and sponsorship it received from several competent authorities, such as the Saudi Automobile and Motorcycle Federation and Cars Agents National Committee Members, in addition to the support of the regional offices of car companies, resulting in the award’s consecutive successes crowned today by the launch of its 10th edition.

Walid Karanouh, founder of PR Arabia and secretary-general of the National Auto Award, said: “Since its first session, the National Auto Award has witnessed great interest from auto dealerships and those working in this sector, in addition to the encouragement the award received from several regional offices due to the importance of its goal and its high level of implementation mechanism.”

Over the past 10 years, many auto companies and factories have been honored, which played an important role in the production of different car models and contributed strongly to activating the auto sector and establishing fair competition between agents, thus enabling customers in the Kingdom to access the best car models and services. The year 2013 witnessed the organization of the first awards ceremony in Jeddah.

After the success of the award’s first edition, six new award categories were established, such as Community Service Programs, Marketing Programs, Motorsports, Personality of the Year in the Auto Sector and others. These categories met with a high level of enthusiasm among car agents who desperately sought to win at least one of the awards in their quest to raise the level of their marketing performance and enhance their activities.

Karanouh added: “The National Auto Award has gained universal fame among car manufacturers who are racing to put their logos in their marketing campaigns, due to the success and professionalism it enjoys annually. The efforts deployed by the award’s organizing committee and its sub-committees, in addition to the support of the print, audio and social media channels have truly strengthened the awards”

The award’s organizing committee will determine the venue and time of the celebration of the 10th anniversary. Karanouh said that a new logo has been chosen for the occasion, in line with the essence of the celebration, as well as the launch of the award’s new site. The award has begun to attract nominations in all its categories.