Here’s what you need to know before Tadawul trading on Wednesday

Here’s what you need to know before Tadawul trading on Wednesday
The Tadawul All Share Index rose 0.50 percent to end Tuesday at 11,503, while the parallel market Nomu traded flat at 20,218. (Shutterstock)
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Updated 21 September 2022

Here’s what you need to know before Tadawul trading on Wednesday

Here’s what you need to know before Tadawul trading on Wednesday

RIYADH: Saudi stocks returned to positive territory after slipping steeply at the beginning of the week, however, major central banks’ interest rate hike plans and recession risks remain concerns for investors.

The Tadawul All Share Index rose 0.50 percent to end Tuesday at 11,503, while the parallel market Nomu traded flat at 20,218.

In the same direction, the UAE’s stocks also ended Tuesday higher, with Dubai’s main share index up 0.7 percent and Abu Dhabi's index up 0.4 percent.

In Qatar, the index closed 0.6 percent higher, while in Egypt, the blue-chip index closed 1 percent higher.

In energy trading, Brent crude reached $91.19 a barrel, while US West Texas Intermediate traded at $884.46 a barrel, as of 9:08 a.m. Saudi time.

Stock news

The Saudi Exchange has announced the delisting of a government debt worth SR335 million ($89 million) due to maturity.

Saudi Fisheries Co. has signed a non-binding agreement with Oman Fish Co. for the purpose of strengthening cooperation in fisheries and fish farming.

Saudi Enaya Cooperative Insurance Co. received approval from the CMA to reduce its capital by SR50 million to SR100 million.

Al Sagr Cooperative Insurance Co. has received approval from the Saudi Central Bank to reduce the company's capital by SR260 million.

Dallah Healthcare Co. declared SR1 dividends to shareholders for the first half of 2022.

Taiba Investments Co.’s shareholders approved the purchase of all Savola Group Co. shares in Knowledge Economic City Co. for SR459 million.

Savola Group Co.’s shareholders agreed to sell all of Savola’s shares in Knowledge Economic City Co. to Taiba Investments Co. for SR459 million.

Public Investment Fund's digital security firm Elm Co. will distribute SR2 per share as dividends for the first half of the year.

Al Sagr Cooperative Insurance Co. reported a 36 percent drop in profits for the first quarter to SR25 million.

Abdullah Saad Mohammed Abo Moati for Bookstores Co.’s shareholders approved the distribution of SR0.5 per share for the financial year ending March. 31, 2022.

Red Sea International Co. reduced its accumulated losses to 20 percent of its capital.

Calendar

Sept. 22, 2022

Tadawul will be closed tomorrow, in observance of Saudi National Day.


Standard Chartered launches tech program for women-led startups in Saudi Arabia  

Standard Chartered launches tech program for women-led startups in Saudi Arabia  
Updated 22 sec ago

Standard Chartered launches tech program for women-led startups in Saudi Arabia  

Standard Chartered launches tech program for women-led startups in Saudi Arabia  

RIYADH: Women-led tech startups working in Saudi Arabia stand a chance to receive $50,000 in funding support if they take part in a tech program launched by Standard Chartered and Falak Investment Hub. 

The Kingdom's first cohort of the ‘SC Women in Tech’ program will provide women entrepreneurs opportunities for economic and social development, as well as funding.   

Applications for the eight-week program, part of Standard Charter’s global ‘Women in Tech’ initiative, currently available in six other countries, began on Nov. 28 and is set to remain open for around six weeks.   

During the program each start-up will be provided with opportunities to meet one-on-one with Falak teams, mentors and industry experts during workshops, events, or private discussions. The startups are expected to benefit from the guidance of entrepreneurs, technologists, as well as investors, aimed at supporting their growth.  

At the end of the program, all start-ups will be provided with the chance to pitch to over 40 angel investors, Venture Capital, and family office representatives through Falak Angels (the second established angel network in the Kingdom). The winners of this year’s cohort will receive up to $50,000 in total funding. 

Earlier this year, the Kingdom announced over $$6.4 billion in future technologies and entrepreneurship investments. It is a key pillar of Vision 2030, which focuses on strengthening entrepreneurship by boosting private-sector investment, supporting innovation, and attracting and training talent.   

Speaking about the initiative, Mazen Bunyan CEO of Standard Chartered Bank Saudi Arabia, said: “We are proud to collaborate with Falak Investment Hub and bring our ‘Women in Tech’ program to the Kingdom. 

The spirit of diversity and entrepreneurship are important values that we celebrate at Standard Chartered, and we hope that by providing early-stage support and mentorship we can help women succeed and become leading job creators.”  

Vision 2030 promotes Saudi women as an important part of the Kingdom’s strength. It aims to develop their talents, invest their energies, and provide them with the right opportunities to build their futures, contributing to the development of society.

Saudi women now comprise 33.6 percent of the Saudi workforce as of March 2022, according to the General Authority for Statistics. That figure is up from 17.4 percent just five years ago.  

The unemployment rate of women was the lowest in 20 years as of the first quarter of 2022, falling to 20.2 percent from 22.5 percent during the fourth quarter of 2021.  


RSG partners with The Ocean Race to promote next generation of sailors   

RSG partners with The Ocean Race to promote next generation of sailors   
Updated 2 min 43 sec ago

RSG partners with The Ocean Race to promote next generation of sailors   

RSG partners with The Ocean Race to promote next generation of sailors   

RIYADH: In line with its commitment to conserving marine ecosystems and desire to promote the next generation of sailors, Red Sea Global has announced a partnership with The Ocean Race for the next two editions of the race. RSG has also partnered with Warner Bros. Discovery which will amplify their stories around the world.  

The developer behind two of the world’s most ambitious regenerative tourism projects — The Red Sea and AMAALA — RSG was recently rebranded from The Red Sea Development Co.  

Known as ‘sailing’s greatest round-the-world challenge’, TOR has been providing the ultimate test for sailing teams since 1973. 

Beyond the race itself, TOR acts as a global platform to raise awareness of the environmental challenges facing the world’s marine environment and drive positive change. 

“We are proud to become the Regenerative Project Partner of TOR. Sustainability sits at the very heart of our work at RSG, so TOR – and its impressive ambitions when it comes to ocean health – makes them a natural fit as a partner,” said John Pagano, group CEO of RSG.  

He added: “The sea has always been an important part of Saudi Arabia’s history and heritage. Through this partnership, we hope to support the efforts of TOR to raise awareness of the challenges facing our oceans globally today, and protect the outstanding beauty of the marine ecosystems in areas such as the Red Sea.”  

As partners, RSG will help promote the race and drive awareness of the importance of ocean health to an international audience. The partnership will see RSG hold events and educational initiatives, supported by content developed in collaboration with WBD.   

RSG intends to use its partnership with TOR to help inspire the next generation of Saudi sailors, promoting a new sport to a Kingdom that has enjoyed a crucial and historic relationship with the sea for over 4,000 years.  

“We have lots of wonderful partnerships but the one that I’m most excited about is the partnership and sponsorship of TOR,” Tracy Lanza, group head, global brand development and marketing, RSG, told Arab News in an exclusive interview. 

“What is really interesting about TOR is that they have committed themselves to the health of the ocean, which was so important for us because that’s also part of our commitment to making sure that people are aware of the importance of coral health, of mangroves and of the ocean itself,” she continued. 

Talking about RSG’s commitment to the environment, Amjaad Alangari, senior marketing manager, RSG, told Arab News: “We have a new mandate. We have an ambition that grew with us from the past and is still growing, which is to build for the people and the planet.  

We are visionaries, we are innovators… And we have more projects to come with an ambition to protect and to enhance the environment around us.”  

The 14th edition of TOR will start from Alicante, Spain, on Jan. 15, 2023, and will finish in Genova, Italy, early in the summer of 2023. The race will visit nine iconic cities around the globe over a six-month period and will feature a leg with the longest racing distance in the 50-year history of the event; a 12,750 nautical mile, one-month marathon from Cape Town, South Africa to Itajaí, Brazil.   

“The Red Sea is a new type of development, and has a vision to prioritize both people and planet based around commitments in support of regenerative tourism. Similarly, this is an innovative new type of partnership for us, where our collaboration with RSG and WBD results in a stronger outcome in pursuit of this goal,” said Johan Salén, the co-owner of TOR.  

Mike Rich, head of sports marketing solutions, WBD, added: “We are proud to be the worldwide broadcaster for TOR and welcome the opportunity to build on the stories we will tell about sailing’s toughest round-the-world race with those around the RSG project, particularly this combined effort to promote ocean health and its wider conservation.”  


PIF-owned Badeel, ACWA to develop MENA’s largest solar plant in KSA 

PIF-owned Badeel, ACWA to develop MENA’s largest solar plant in KSA 
Updated 30 November 2022

PIF-owned Badeel, ACWA to develop MENA’s largest solar plant in KSA 

PIF-owned Badeel, ACWA to develop MENA’s largest solar plant in KSA 

RIYADH: Saudi utility firm ACWA Power has signed power purchase agreements with the Water and Electricity Holding Co. to develop the biggest solar plant of its kind in the Middle East, with capacity to power 350,000 homes.

The 2,060 MW solar photovoltaic plant will be built in Al Shuaibah, Makkah province and is expected to begin commercial operations by the fourth quarter of 2025. 

Known as Badeel, the Water and Electricity Holding Co., wholly owned by the Public Investment Fund, will jointly own the project with ACWA Power, with both companies holding a 50 percent equity stake each.  

The project will be executed through a newly formed joint company called Shuaibah Two Electrical Energy Co..

Yazeed A. Al-Humied, deputy governor and head of MENA Investments at PIF, said: "This marks a key achievement toward PIF’s commitment to develop 70 percent of Saudi Arabia’s renewable energy by 2030. 

“Utilities and renewables is one of PIF’s priority sectors as part of its domestic strategy, which focuses on unlocking the capabilities of promising sectors to enhance Saudi Arabia’s efforts in diversifying revenue sources.”  

In this regard, the Shuaibah Two Electrical Energy Co. signed a power purchase agreement with the Saudi Power Procurement Co..

 The $1.75-billion contract spread over 35 years will include the development, financing, building, own, and operation of 2060 MW of the Shuaibah Two PV solar energy plant.  

The project is part of Saudi Arabia’s energy transition strategy, highlighting how a giga-scale development in sustainable energy will play a key role in translating Vision 2030 goals.  

“Under the guidance of our visionary leadership and the Ministry of Energy, Saudi Arabia continues to accelerate its ambitious plans for diversifying its energy mix to include renewable energy. It is a great honor to partner with Badeel and SPPC in developing this milestone project which will set a benchmark for sustainable energy development in the region,” said Mohammad Abunayyan, chairman, ACWA Power.  

He said solar power is a key component in unlocking positive economic, environmental and social outcomes for the betterment of communities across our great nation, adding: “We remain committed to developing local capabilities in technology, supply chain, and talent and ensure they are realized to their fullest potential.”  

Badeel and ACWA Power will build, own, and operate Al Shuaibah 2 facility and the electricity produced will be sold to SPPC.  

Shuaibah 2 is ACWA Power’s sixth solar energy facility in Saudi Arabia, with its portfolio comprising 13 power, water desalination and green hydrogen plants. 

Badeel and ACWA Power are also developing the Sudair Solar PV 1500 MW project; which was the first cornerstone renewable energy project in PIF’s program.


NEOM’s hanging stadiums will help make the giga-project a top-rated tourist hub: CEO

NEOM’s hanging stadiums will help make the giga-project a top-rated tourist hub: CEO
Updated 30 November 2022

NEOM’s hanging stadiums will help make the giga-project a top-rated tourist hub: CEO

NEOM’s hanging stadiums will help make the giga-project a top-rated tourist hub: CEO

RIYADH: The hanging stadiums within Saudi Arabia’s $500 billion giga-project NEOM will make tourists reimagine and visualize the future, as the Kingdom steadily pursues its ambitions to become a global tourism hub by 2030, according to its CEO Nadhmi Al-Nasr.

Speaking at the World Travel and Tourism Council Global Summit in Riyadh on Nov. 30, Al-Nasr noted that everything in NEOM will be connected to tourism business models.

“In The Line, we want people to come and see how sports stadiums are built, and where they are built. The sports stadiums in NEOM are 300 meter high, loose and hanging in the air,” said Al-Nasr.

He added: “We did not build sports stadiums in NEOM loose just for the sake of having it loose. We believe in the best use of space.”

During his talk, Al-Nasr said that OXAGON, the industrial city in NEOM also has all the potential to become a world-class tourist destination, where visitors can come and see how the future will be.

“It is in OXAGON where all industries will be, and it is the port of NEOM. Yet, we would like to see tourists spending a day or two in OXAGON. They will see the future of industries in OXAGON. Everything in NEOM is built for the future era. We want them to come and see how future sea ports will operate,” he said.

According to Al-Nasr, NEOM’s location has all the potential to turn it into a global tourism hub.

“We are just two hours from Europe. Believe it or not, we see Africa within miles. We are a connection of three continents,” he noted.

Al-Nasr added that NEOM’s plan to launch a new airline is to ensure non-stop travel to visitors from their destination to Saudi Arabia’s mega city without any stop in the middle.

Al-Nasr further noted that NEOM’s tourism will be a blend of past and future, as the region is 5,000 years old with a rich heritage.

“NEOM is where all religions have passed through, and this is the region where prophets have passed through. So, in NEOM, we will blend the past and the future,” said Al-Nasr.

He added that 95 percent geographical area of NEOM, which is equal to 25,000 kilometers, will be an untouchable natural reserve.

Al-Nasr went on to say that everything that is being built in NEOM will be a piece of art which will elevate the tourism sector in Saudi Arabia.

“In NEOM, we will never use the term solar panels or plants, instead, we call them solar parks. Everything we are developing, we wanted it to be a piece of art, a piece of attention and a piece of attraction to our tourism,” said Al-Nasr.


Saudi hotelier Elaf Group expands its presence with newly launched brand Joudyan 

Saudi hotelier Elaf Group expands its presence with newly launched brand Joudyan 
Updated 30 November 2022

Saudi hotelier Elaf Group expands its presence with newly launched brand Joudyan 

Saudi hotelier Elaf Group expands its presence with newly launched brand Joudyan 

RIYADH: Elaf Group, one of the leading hospitality players in the region, is now set to focus on expanding its presence with the opening of its first property under the newly launched hotel brand Joudyan in Riyadh later this week. 

This will be Elaf Group’s first hotel in Riyadh and the opening of Joudyan in the capital will be followed up with other cities outside of Riyadh.  

In an exclusive interview with Arab News on the sidelines of the World Travel & Tourism Council Global Summit in Riyadh, Ahmed Al-Azzouni, director of marketing and public relations, Elaf Group, said they intend to expand in the Eastern Province and the north and south as well.  

“Joudyan will be the focus of Elaf Group’s expansion plan in the Kingdom,” he said. 

Elaf Group which offers a mix of five- and four-star hotels, promises to offer a “unique experience” of the local feel of the Kingdom to the visitors. 

Al-Azzouni added: “The hotel in Jeddah will be in the Red Sea Mall. We’re currently renovating the property and it will be reopened as Joudyan brand.” 

He said they are confident that Joudyan will soon carve a niche for itself in the hospitality industry. 

"The new brand would have multiple locations across the Kingdom,” informed Al-Azzouni. “The official opening of the first Joudyan brand would be in Riyadh this week. It will soon be followed by the opening of the second hotel in Jeddah during the second half of 2023.” 

Talking about the new brand name, Al-Azzouni explained that when you dissect the word Joudyan, joud is from the Arabic word which means alkaram or generosity. “We made sure that we created a new name that reflects that (generosity),” Al-Azzouni explained. 

“Generosity is part of the Saudi culture. And that’s what we intend to make sure our guests feel about us when they come visit us. We will also make sure that that is our core brand essence and how we do business,” he continued. 

As for Elaf hotels, Al-Azzouni informed they will be concentrated in Makkah and Madinah due to the Elaf name having its roots in the holy cities. 

The company is also planning to expand across the Gulf Cooperation Council and the Middle East regions while setting its eyes on the European market. 

“We are open to any kind of ventures and investment opportunities that is mutually beneficial to all parties,” Al-Azzouni said talking about the company’s future plans.  

Going on to discuss the overall outlook of the hospitality industry, Al-Azzouni said things were catching up with 2019. “We have seen positive numbers and things are going back to where we were in 2019,” he informed. “We’re almost there and we can feel it in different sectors including hospitality and travel and tourism. We see a positive outlook for 2023 and beyond.”   

Not surprisingly then that the group is currently working on the completion of extensive renovation and upgrading efforts in all its hotels in order to keep pace with the rapid growth in the tourism and hospitality sectors.