RIYADH: Global tech firm Microsoft announced its plans to invest in a new cloud data center region in Saudi Arabia in response to growing customer demand for cloud services and data residency in the Kingdom.
A region is a set of collaborating zones or data centers grouped together based on their geographical proximity.
Announced during the LEAP 2023 international technology conference, the company said the new cloud data center region will offer enterprise-grade reliability and performance combined with customer privacy, data residency, and high-speed latency standards in Saudi Arabia.
“This new data center region will provide organizations, enterprises, and developers in the Kingdom and around the world with access to scalable, highly available, and resilient cloud services while addressing their data residency, security, privacy, and compliance needs,” said Samer Abu-Ltaif, corporate vice president and president, Microsoft Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa.
Microsoft said its cloud region in Saudi Arabia will play a significant role in driving economic growth. Citing an IDC study, the company added that its partners, and cloud-using customers will together generate around $24 billion in new revenues above the 2022 level over the next four years.
“Today’s announcement reflects Microsoft’s longstanding commitment to Saudi Arabia and its ambitions for digital transformation,” said Thamer Alharbi, president, Microsoft Arabia.
He added that their data center region will enable even more enterprises and industries in Saudi Arabia to benefit from a trusted cloud framework that protects the privacy of organizations’ data to the highest standard.”
Saudi Vice Minister of Communications and Information Technology Haitham bin Abdul Rahman Al-Ohali said: “This important step is consistent with the steps taken by the Kingdom to accelerate its digital transformation and strengthen its position as an innovation hub.”
He said the data center will also provide huge opportunities for startups and small and medium enterprises looking to enhance their competitiveness and leverage the advancements of the Fourth Industrial Revolution to develop innovative solutions.
“This supports the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 goal of strengthening the role of the communications and information technology sector in creating a digital society, digital government, a thriving digital economy, and an innovative future for the Kingdom,” added Al-Ohali.