Engie appoints Alhajjaj as CEO of Engie KSA; promotes Alshehri to group VP for Paris office

L-R: Turki Alshehri and Mohammed Alhajjaj (supplied)
L-R: Turki Alshehri and Mohammed Alhajjaj (supplied)
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Updated 14 June 2023
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Engie appoints Alhajjaj as CEO of Engie KSA; promotes Alshehri to group VP for Paris office

L-R: Turki Alshehri and Mohammed Alhajjaj (supplied)

Engie, the global provider of low-carbon energy services and solutions for integrated utilities management, has appointed Saudi veteran executive Mohammed Alhajjaj as chief executive officer of Engie KSA. Alhajjaj succeeds Turki Alshehri, who has been the CEO of Engie KSA for more than four years and has now been promoted to a global role as the group vice president for the Key Client Office in Paris.

Alhajjaj has been the executive managing director for Regional Investment Development at the Ministry of Investment in Saudi Arabia, formerly the General Investment Authority, which he joined in 2018 after a rewarding career of more than a decade in multinational companies.

Alhajjaj will take on several critical responsibilities aimed at developing Engie KSA’s portfolio and more than 2,000 employees working on megaprojects in desalination and clean energy in the Kingdom. His mandates include driving growth, strategic development, and operational excellence as well as promoting low-carbon energy solutions. With his combination of global expertise and local knowledge with a focus on renewable and water initiatives, he will foster new partnerships and collaborations in the Saudi market.

Alhajjaj is taking the reins from Alshehri, who made a significant impact on promoting the company profile and portfolio within the Kingdom. With a strong commitment to excellence, Alshehri leveraged his expertise to not only shape the company’s success but also positively influence the industry.

Building on this remarkable track record, Alshehri is embarking on an exciting global role in France, a move that highlights Engie KSA’s rising profile on an international scale and its ambition for a global presence.

In his new role, Alshehri will lead the global account strategy across the group, with a special focus on enabling key customers to transition to a zero-carbon strategy. The Key Client Office, based in Paris, is responsible for working together with Engie’s key clients, partners, and stakeholders to accelerate the transition toward a carbon-neutral world, through reduced energy consumption and more environmentally friendly solutions. 

By embracing this new challenge, Alshehri is not only poised to further elevate Engie KSA’s standing but also actively contribute to showcasing Saudi talents’ capabilities and ambitions.

With its 96,000 employees, a presence in over 30 countries, and expertise in renewables, renewable gases/storage, and clean energy supply and services, Engie supports its clients in receiving a world-class experience to achieve an affordable and reliable energy transition.


Najm spotlights digital transformation journey at LEAP 2024

Najm spotlights digital transformation journey at LEAP 2024
Updated 04 March 2024
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Najm spotlights digital transformation journey at LEAP 2024

Najm spotlights digital transformation journey at LEAP 2024

Najm for Insurance Services Company is sponsoring the third edition of LEAP 2024, the premier technology event in the region, presently underway at the Riyadh Exhibition and Convention Center.

Through its participation in this event, which runs until March 7, Najm is showcasing its digital services and initiatives, highlighting its recent digital transformation journey. The company will also spotlight its efforts in raising awareness around traffic safety by providing services that leverage artificial intelligence systems and data analysis, emphasizing its role as the digital partner for insurance companies.

Najm’s pavilion at the entrance of Hall No. 1 showcases the company’s latest technological developments that enhance road safety and improve the quality of life for the community.

Najm’s CEO Mohammad Al-Shehri said: “Our participation in LEAP 2024 demonstrates our remarkable journey in digital transformation, and our ability to integrate relevant parties at multiple levels, starting with offering an advanced connectivity network that supports Najm’s services across the Kingdom. Additionally, Najm has established a modern and advanced data center that supports cloud solutions. This center is linked to advanced cybersecurity systems that will help to fully protect the Najm network.”

Al-Shehri added: “Najm provides automated services to facilitate the flow of operations with partners and government entities, through an advanced connectivity system supported by AI technologies. Najm also benefits from a strong information infrastructure that provides innovative services to raise the level of customer and partner satisfaction.”

The LEAP conference is the most widely attended technology event in the Kingdom and the region. The event brings together hundreds of thousands of attendees to discover the future of technology. This year, more than 1,800 exhibitors, 1,000 speakers, and 600 startup companies are expected to participate. The number of attendees this year will exceed over 170,000 visitors who will have the opportunity to discover the latest innovations presented by some of the world’s most advanced technology companies.

Najm is a closed and unlisted Saudi joint stock company established in 2007, to promote the vehicle insurance sector in the Kingdom. It provides an integrated system of insurance solutions and services to citizens, residents, and visitors in 44 Saudi cities through a skilled Saudi workforce.


Bahri sets Guinness record for largest mobile desalination plant

Bahri sets Guinness record for largest mobile desalination plant
Updated 04 March 2024
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Bahri sets Guinness record for largest mobile desalination plant

Bahri sets Guinness record for largest mobile desalination plant

Bahri Desalination, a specialized business unit of the National Shipping Company of Saudi Arabia — Bahri — the global shipping and logistics leader, has established a new milestone in seawater desalination production, reinforcing its position as the industry pioneer with the largest floating desalination plant ever built on a marine barge.

The achievement was celebrated at an event held at the Ministry of Environment, Water and Agriculture, where Guinness World Records officially recognized Bahri Desalination’s innovative mobile seawater desalination plant as the largest of its kind. Measuring an impressive 123 meters in length, the floating mega plant boasts a daily output of 50,000 cubic meters. Bahri, in association with the Saline Water Conversion Corporation and Metito Saudi Limited, has built three such state-of-the-art desalination units installed on customized barges.

Commenting on this achievement, Ahmed Alsubaey, CEO of Bahri, said: “We are honored to receive this distinction from Guinness World Records that validates our status as pioneers in engineering large-capacity, mobile seawater desalination solutions. As a leader in transportation and logistics, Bahri strives to develop innovative water projects that strengthen Saudi Arabia’s infrastructure and self-sufficiency. This record reflects our cutting-edge work in deploying sizable mobile floating desalination capacity where it is needed most along our coastlines.”

The record validates Bahri Desalination’s status as an industry pioneer in building large-scale, cost-effective mobile seawater desalination plants that can be deployed to new coastal locations. Going forward, Bahri will continue driving progress through projects dedicated to the sustainable development of Saudi Arabia’s maritime and water supply sectors.


stc Group unveils venture capital arm, tali ventures

stc Group unveils venture capital arm, tali ventures
Updated 04 March 2024
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stc Group unveils venture capital arm, tali ventures

stc Group unveils venture capital arm, tali ventures

stc Group, the Kingdom’s engine of digital transformation, has announced the launch of its corporate venture capital arm, “tali ventures,” which will serve as a catalyst for innovative startups, leveraging stc Group’s ecosystem. This milestone underscores the group’s commitment to propelling technological advancement and fostering a vibrant entrepreneurial ecosystem across its operating markets.

tali ventures has already made significant strides by investing in startups such as Nile (network equipment solutions), Rewaa (inventory management solutions), and NearPay (digital payments solutions).

“These initial investments demonstrate the group’s dedication to adopting new technologies, embracing innovative ideas and driving technological transformation,” a statement said.

Emphasizing the fund’s ambitious vision, the launch of tali ventures marks a pivotal moment in stc’s journey to empower the world’s brightest minds. The group aims to be a leading force in nurturing entrepreneurial talent and advancing groundbreaking initiatives, by committing to investing in revolutionary startups through collaborating with renowned global funds such as Sanabil and Prosperity7.

Focusing on key areas such as artificial intelligence, fintech, proptech, ICT, cloud, IoT, cybersecurity and other digital trends, tali ventures will support ventures that have the potential to revolutionize industries. tali ventures empowers startups from their inception to growth stage, providing comprehensive support across diverse fields. This holistic approach cultivates innovation from the ground up, nurturing a thriving ecosystem of talent.

The launch signifies a continuation of stc Group’s efforts to foster innovation through strategic investments. Initiatives such as the InspireU program, which incubates and supports more than 100 startups, stand as testament to this commitment. Furthermore, STV and stc venture funds have invested in numerous startups, driving economic diversification and growth in line with stc’s “DARE” strategy.


New Murabba to bring Riyadh’s visionary downtown to life

New Murabba to bring Riyadh’s visionary downtown to life
Updated 03 March 2024
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New Murabba to bring Riyadh’s visionary downtown to life

New Murabba to bring Riyadh’s visionary downtown to life

New Murabba Development Company has signed an MoU with the Tourism Development Fund to spearhead the transformation of Riyadh. The agreement will see the two entities work closely together to create New Murabba: the world’s largest, modern downtown, serving as a model for future urban development and contributing toward Riyadh city’s evolution, in line with Vision 2030.

NMDC’s strategic partnership with TFD aims to fulfill Saudi Arabia’s potential as a leading investment destination — a go-to tourism and hospitality hotspot distinguished by a thriving tech ecosystem, an enabling business environment and a diverse and welcoming society.

The MoU was signed by NMDC CEO Michael Dyke and TDF CEO Qusai bin Abdullah Al-Fakhri. As part of the agreement, TDF will provide direct financing opportunities — in collaboration with its network of partners and contracted investors.

Al-Fakhri said: “We are pleased to have partnered with the New Murabba Development Company to bring this bold undertaking to life, an innovative undertaking that will enhance Riyadh’s status on the global stage as one of the commercial and financial capitals of the world. This is a future-focused partnership that extends our efforts to work in a fully aligned manner with the private sector to create a greater, more prosperous Saudi Arabia.”

He added: “In line with Vision 2030 and the National Tourism Strategy, our agreement with New Murabba Development Company marks the beginning of an exciting new chapter for Riyadh, one that adds to the richness of the Kingdom’s inspiring story of transformation. Together, we aim to create a modern downtown in the Saudi capital that provides even greater access to exceptional living, working and entertainment experiences. Representing the very best of Saudi excellence, we believe New Murabba will attract tourists — as well as investors — to the Kingdom, and improve citizens’ and residents’ quality of life.”

NMDC CEO Dyke said: “New Murabba will be a gateway to the future. We are confident that our partnership with TDF will enable us to play a transformative role in diversifying sources of income for the Saudi economy, aligning seamlessly with the objectives of Vision 2030. Together, we will create groundbreaking opportunities that will elevate the Saudi tourism landscape and drive New Murabba to the forefront of global innovation.”

He added: “Reflecting our commitment to the community and the environment, New Murabba has been designed in accordance with internationally established best practices and sustainability standards, incorporating green spaces, providing an extensive network of walking paths and promoting healthy living. Our goal is to make New Murabba a truly exceptional place to live, work, play, and visit. We will offer convenient access to a wide range of amenities and experiences that will enhance the lives of residents and visitors, fostering a sense of security and well-being. Accessibility is also a top priority for us, with New Murabba being just 20 minutes away from King Khalid International Airport by car. The Mukaab — a new architectural wonder — will, of course, serve as the centerpiece of New Murabba, redefining Riyadh’s skyline from the outside, while presenting a truly jaw-dropping experience within the inside.”

Established in 2022, NMDC is wholly owned by the Public Investment Fund, with its board of directors being chaired by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.


stc raises the bar for innovation at Mobile World Congress

stc raises the bar for innovation at Mobile World Congress
Updated 03 March 2024
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stc raises the bar for innovation at Mobile World Congress

stc raises the bar for innovation at Mobile World Congress

stc Group, a global leader in digital transformation, has successfully concluded its sponsorship and participation in Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain.

The group solidified its commitment to innovation and growth through the signing of strategic MoUs with industry giants. The following partnerships were announced:

• IBM Middle East: stc Group and IBM Middle East agree to collaborate on upgrades to current fault management systems through the implementation of the latest cloud-based Netcool fault management platform.

• China Mobile International Limited: The agreement will see both partners work together to advance the deployment and implementation of IoT connectivity services for businesses in the region.

• Channels by stc x Huawei: In collaboration with Huawei, this MoU focuses on driving growth in the devices business, engaging in yearly business plans, and exploring strategic collaborations.

• Channels by stc x Samsung: This joint business plan with Samsung aims to sustain growth initiatives, marking a significant collaboration in the consumer electronics and services sector.

“Partnerships with global entities such as Ericsson, Huawei, and Samsung signify the great strides that stc is making toward an even more globally connected future,” the group said. “With these collaborations, stc is positioned at the forefront of shaping the ever-evolving digital landscape, driving collaboration, innovation and accelerating performance.”

During the event, stc Group showcased a variety of on-ground activations, each highlighting different facets of their technological prowess and commitment to sustainability. These included the AI Selfie, a customized interactive experience that enabled visitors to create their own digital avatars.

The Digital City 3D sand table demonstrated stc Group’s vision for the future of smart cities and their advanced technology. Visitors had the opportunity to be fully immersed in a 3D tour inside Makkah through Makkah 3D Experience, further underscoring stc’s continuous efforts in promoting cultural heritage and visualization technologies, all while illustrating how 5G-Advanced can catalyze digital transformation across sectors.

The IntelliReserve activation specialized in tracking and analyzing data on various wildlife species in the Kingdom, and the Sustainable Park activation gave visitors the chance to experience a virtual journey through interactive screens.

These on-ground activations represent stc Group’s innovative approach to digital transformation and its commitment to sustainability and connectivity.