Naming rights for Riyadh Metro's 8 stations raise $278mln

Each of the winning bidders has been awarded a 10-year contract

A car drives past a construction site of Riyadh Metro and the King Abdullah Financial District in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, November 12, 2017.

A car drives past a construction site of Riyadh Metro and the King Abdullah Financial District in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, November 12, 2017.

REUTERS/Faisal Al Nasser

Riyadh Development Authority (RDA) – previously The High Commission for the Development of Arriyadh - has awarded naming rights for eight Riyadh Metro stations to leading commercial organisations from Saudi Arabia and the region, generating a total of SR1.045 billion ($278.7 million) over the 10-year period of the contracts.

The results of the station naming rights auction for the Riyadh Metro network was announced yesterday at an event. 

Each of the winning bidders has been awarded a 10-year contract, which will see their brands featured as the name of a Riyadh Metro station in a naming rights sponsorship deal, said a statement.

During a ceremony at the Cultural Palace in Riyadh, presided over by HRH Prince Faisal bin Bandar bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Governor of Riyadh, the new map of the Riyadh Metro network was unveiled, featuring the logo of the winning naming rights partners at their respective stations. 

The winning companies, the stations and the chosen station names are:

* The Saudi British Bank - Olaya St./King Salman Rd - The Saudi British Bank (Line 1)

* Dr Sulaiman Al Habib Medical Group - Olaya St./Anas bin Malik Rd.- Dr Sulaiman Al Habib (Line 1)

* Alinma Bank - Olaya St./Musa bin Nosair St.- Alinma Bank (Line 1)

* Bank Abilad - Olaya St./Prince Mohamed bin Abdulaziz St. - Bank Abilad (Line 1)

* Saudi Telecom Company - Olaya St./King Abdullah Rd. - STC (Line 1 & 2)

* Majid Al Futtaim Shopping Malls Company - King Abdullah Rd./Al Najah St. - City Centre Ishbiliyah (Line 2)

* Sabic - Al Imam Mohamed bin Saoud Islamic University - Sabic (Line 4 & 6)

* Granada Investment Center - Abi Jaafar Al Mansoor Rd./Eastern Ring Road (North of Granada Mall) - Granadia (Line 6)

Among additional benefits, sponsors will also be entitled to retail space, advertising and signage within their stations, together with a range of other activation opportunities, allowing them to engage with the 3.6 million ultimate daily users of the Metro network, in a unique and innovative fashion.

“Today’s event demonstrates the success of the Riyadh Metro’s first commercial initiative. Our programme has broken records and initially raised more long-term revenues than any other public transport naming rights programme globally,” stated Tariq Al Faris, CEO of the Riyadh Development Authority. 

“To have many of the kingdom’s leading companies participate in such a programme demonstrates the important role they believe the Riyadh Public Transit Network will play in citizens’ lives,” added Al Faris.

All large companies meeting RDA’s strict pre-qualification auction requirements, were given a fair and equal opportunity to bid on a shortlist of Riyadh Metro stations. The latter was awarded in each case to the highest bidder, with all accepted bids required to meet or exceed the set minimum bid prices, the statement said.

“We had stronger than expected interest in the naming rights opportunity and we are delighted to award eight of the 85 Metro stations to our new commercial partners,” continued Al Faris. “The companies will provide vibrant community hubs along the Metro lines through their presence, delivering convenience and unique brand experiences

that will benefit network users. Moreover, the revenue generated from this initiative will be re-invested into the operation of the Metro system, to help keep its operational costs down,” he concluded.

This is the first in a series of commercial initiatives using private sector participation to generate non-ticket revenue, in line with Vision 2030. RDA will be tendering further commercial opportunities across the entire Riyadh Public Transit System - such as retail, advertising and telecommunication - as it moves towards network operations, it said. - TradeArabia News Service

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