RIYADH: Entrepreneurship and small and medium enterprise investments are set to receive a boost following a visit by a senior Saudi delegation to South Korea.
The primary goal of the trip was to enhance the collaboration between both countries in the field of SMEs while also fostering international business relationships to support the global expansion of startups, reported the Saudi Press Agency.
Sami Ibrahim Al-Hussaini, the governor of the Small and Medium Enterprises General Authority, known as Monsha’at, led the delegation to Seoul with the aim of providing support and empowerment to entrepreneurship, both at the local and international levels.
Al-Hussaini-led team was received by Korea’s minister of SMEs and Startups Young Lee, as both sides engaged in discussions aimed at reinforcing cooperation to advance startup and SME investments between their respective nations.
The Saudi delegation also convened meetings with Korean SME-related organizations, government officials, and leaders of major companies operating in the sector.
During the visit, the South Korean side proposed organizing a domestic competition, with the champions earning the opportunity to participate in the Entrepreneurship World Cup hosted in Riyadh as part of the Biban Forum.
The EWC is powered by Monsha’at in collaboration with the Mohammed bin Salman Foundation, also known as Misk, and the Global Entrepreneurship Network and is dedicated to supporting enterprises locally and globally.
In September, Monsha’at launched an acceleration program in the Saudi capital to boost innovative SMEs in the country. The program is a collaboration between the Riyadh governorate and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. It aims to enhance entrepreneurship in the region by evaluating its strengths and weaknesses.
The initiative will also develop management activities that support the growth of innovative enterprises in the region.
Its duration will be up to two years and consist of four stages, as reported by the SPA, which added that earlier versions of the program attracted participation from the Eastern Province, Makkah, and Madinah regions, leading to an entrepreneurship boom.
In April, Monsha’at joined hands with Silicon Valley Innovation Center in the US to launch a specialized initiative for fast-growing enterprises.
The program targeted 50 companies over three months, allowing firms to hone their capabilities with experts from Silicon Valley.
SVIC is one of the most important entities to advise startups worldwide by supporting clients in discovering trends and modern technologies for fast-growing enterprises.
In March, Al-Hussaini said that the authority offered financing solutions worth SR228 billion ($60.7 billion) to SMEs in 2022, which led to the Kingdom’s sector taking a massive leap as it was ranked second on the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor report that year.