The Saudi Company for Artificial Intelligence (SCAI), has announced its investment with a value of SAR 776 million ($206.54 million) with SenseTime Group through a joint venture to establish SenseTime MEA, and work to build a sophisticated AI lab, create highly skilled jobs for talented Saudis, and contribute to positioning Saudi Arabia as the region’s leading AI-tech hub.

SCAI, is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Public Investment Fund (PIF), which aims to foster innovation in strategic sectors and accelerate key national technological priorities in Saudi Arabia ,

The AI lab will serve as a dedicated research and development center, allowing the next generation of data scientists to benefit from the transfer of technology and SenseTime’s extensive expertise in the field.

The partnership’s corporate vehicle, SenseTime MEA, is set to focus on empowering the local AI ecosystem by building capabilities in computer vision and driving innovation in the AI and emerging technologies sectors.

SCAI will work closely with SenseTime to develop solutions across diverse areas, including but not limited to the smart city, business intelligence, healthcare, and education domains, as well as localize the company’s cutting-edge computer vision and deep learning platform to enable the creation of intellectual properties which will be of immense benefit to the Kingdom and the region.

Founded in Hong Kong in 2014, SenseTime is a leading AI-software company focused on the application of advanced technologies. The company is committed to advancing AI research and developing scalable and affordable AI software platforms that bring positive benefits to businesses and people.

Launched to support PIF’s strategic objectives and achieve national priorities, SCAI will develop local capability, cutting edge technology, and strategic partnerships to support creating Saudi-owned solutions in the AI ecosystem.

Ayman AlRashed, CEO of SCAI, said: “We are pleased to enter into this Joint Venture with a global pioneer of SenseTime’s caliber. Today’s agreement represents an important strategic step on SCAI’s journey to develop national capabilities and build a robust, innovation-driven AI ecosystem. We look forward to working closely to provide world-class AI solutions that will contribute to the success of diverse smart city, business intelligence, healthcare, and education initiatives in the Kingdom and beyond.”

Xu Li, Executive Chairman of the Board and CEO of SenseTime, added: “It’s exciting to see the rapid digital transformation that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is undertaking, especially in the development of an AI ecosystem. SenseTime and SCAI share the same vision of creating a better society and improving people’s lives through the use of AI. I believe that our partnership will contribute to the realization of the Vision 2030 objectives and be a driving engine of next-generation cities across the Kingdom.”

As part of its commitment to customer-centricity and collaboration, SCAI is showcasing its range of customer-centric solutions this week through its participation at the Global AI Summit in Riyadh. Now in its second edition, the summit is organized by the Saudi Data and AI Authority (SDAIA) and serves as an inspiring platform for dialogue that brings together key stakeholders from the public sector, academia, and private sector to shape the future of AI. 

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