Saudi and international companies prepare to set up the first artificial intelligence investment fund
Friday – 9 Jumada Al-Akhira 1442 AH – January 22, 2021 AD Issue No. [
Interest from the Saudi private sector to adopt investment in the fields of artificial intelligence (Middle East)
Riyadh: Fatah Al-Rahman Yusef
The Saudi Excellence Company, specialized in the field of technology, cyber security and industrial intelligence, is planning in cooperation with a group of international companies specialized in advanced systems, as well as working with investment companies specialized in investing in new artificial intelligence companies in the acquisition of shares and financing their projects, to create the first investment fund in this field, to support Its entry into the Saudi market.
“We have come a long way in making a conglomerate of a group of companies to establish an investment fund for industrial intelligence in the Kingdom, to support the direction led by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman For development and development to enhance alternative economies », explaining that there is spending of nearly 20 billion riyals (5.3 billion dollars) during the next 10 years until 2030 and the establishment of 300 companies specializing in technology, information and data.
Al-Melehi added: “We put forward the idea of establishing an investment fund to support and develop Saudi companies, as well as acquiring international emerging companies to invest in them and obtaining these modern technologies for the Kingdom, as well as training Saudi cadres so that we have specialists in innovation in the field of artificial intelligence for global competition.”
Al-Melehi added, “The idea of establishing the fund will be in partnership with one of the Saudi banks as well as one of the international banks interested in investing in this field, which is considered future investment, which makes it an opportunity for the investor in a step that paves the way for establishing a Saudi joint stock company in the field of artificial intelligence.”
According to Al-Melehi, it is planned that the fund to be established will be the first in the Middle East region, indicating that the fund’s policy will work to invest in the emerging technology company to buy shares and acquire technology for the Saudi market and the Middle East markets.
For his part, Saudi businessman Dr. Khalil Khoja told Asharq Al-Awsat that such a step is a required step that is in harmony with the reality and development of the Saudi market and strengthens policies aimed at diversifying the economy from the knowledge economy portal, adding: “The mega projects that the Kingdom are working on are considered Currently, it is the first global and local incubator for such partnerships that arm the economy with the most important components and foundations of artificial intelligence as one of the axes of alternative economies.
According to Khoja, this comes in support of the Saudi trend, to build an infrastructure for artificial intelligence technology as an economic component with a qualitative leap, which would increase employment opportunities, support productivity, double the non-oil GDP, and stimulate the increase of startups and companies.
Khoja expected that the prospective fund would contribute to attracting experts, establish laboratories for artificial intelligence, start introducing this technology to government systems and private sector institutions, and sign agreements that invest this technology in all fields, as well as contribute to the general Saudi goals of making the Kingdom within The 15 largest economies in the world, and one of the top 10 countries according to the Global Competitiveness Index.
Khoja pointed out that this trend in which Saudi Arabia is making great strides through mega projects spearheaded by “NEOM”, would increase non-oil revenues from $ 43 billion to $ 263 billion, and increase the share of the private sector from 40 to 65 percent. Promoting small and medium enterprises from 20 to 35 percent, as one of the most important goals of Vision 2030.
The Saudi economy