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Region's CEOs prioritise AI; G42 & VAST to build huge data cloud
Middle East AI News weekly digest...
Welcome to this week’s Middle East AI News!
Can someone please tell me how August got like this? Surely, it’s a quiet holiday month? Not so, this year! There’s even more news than last week!
First, more big infrastructure plans from G42. Following last month’s announcement that the Abu Dhabi-based tech group is building a massive 36 exaFLOP supercomputer network with Cerebras, it has now announced a deal with VAST Data to build a ‘multi-hundred petabyte’ data cloud.
This week has also been one of AI sentiment research reports, with IBM, Oliver Wyman and Boston Consulting Group all releasing survey reports on how the Middle East feels about and is using AI. See links below.
We’ve also aready seen a number of big deals announced this week, including the ADNOC-G42 joint venture AIQ deal with Malaysia’s national oil company PETRONAS to develop AI solutions. Meanwhile, Airobotics (that recently announced a string of civil defence deals in the UAE) has announced a new Saudi joint-venture.
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Scroll down for more AI news from across the region.
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#MiddleEast #sentiment - A study from IBM Institute for Business Value found 61% of CEOs in the Middle East see AI, including generative AI and deep learning, as pivotal for results in upcoming years. The study also highlights that 55% view cloud computing and 51% consider automation as key success drivers. (Zawya)
#MiddleEast #ethics - 84% of Middle East firms view AI as crucial, according to research from MIT Sloan Management Review (MIT SMR) and Boston Consulting Group (BCG). However, a mere 16% have responsible AI policies in place. Swift GenAI adoption has presented challenges in being tech-responsible. (Zawya)
#UAE - #digitaltransformation - Dubai Taxi Corporation (DTC) reveals its 2022-2025 digital transformation strategy. Highlighting digital mobility and sustainability, the plan encompasses 9 drivers, including AI, IoT, and smart services. Initiatives include AI chatbots, driver face recognition, and integrated cloud services, aiming for seamless operations and enhanced customer experience. (Emirates News Agency)
#UAE #cloudcomputing - Abu Dhabi-based cloud provider G42 Cloud and New York-headquartered AI data platform VAST Data have joined forces to build a central data foundation for a global network of AI supercomputers and to store and learn from hundreds of petabytes of data. (Zawya)
#Saudi - #cloudcomputing - Alibaba Cloud announces its Saudi headquarters in King Abdullah Financial District (KAFD) in partnership with Saudi Cloud Computing Co,. This venture aligns with Alibaba Cloud’s ambition to grow its Middle Eastern presence and fast-track regional digital transformation. (Arab News)
#Saudi #AI - Majmaah University in Ar Riyadh province joins the Deem government cloud following an MoU signed with Saudi Data and Artificial Intelligence Authority (SDAIA) to enhance AI and data collaboration. (Arab News)
#Egypt #recruitment - Egyptian AI recruitment firm, Talents Arena, has secured $750,000 in pre-seed funding, with participation from UI Investments and Saudi angel investors. The capital will fuel in their expansion to Saudi Arabia and the GCC. (Innovation Village)
#Tunisia #biotech - BioNTech, the German biotech giant, has acquired Tunisia’s AI startup, InstaDeep, for $550 million. The acquisition merges BioNTech's expertise in mRNA technology with InstaDeep’s advanced AI capabilities, promising breakthroughs in AI-driven drug discovery. (Empower Africa)
#UAE #energy- Abu Dhabi's AIQ and PETRONAS will collaborate on AI solutions to expedite the energy transition and bolster sustainability across the energy sector. This partnership marks AIQ's first international endeavor. (Zawya)
#UAE #digitaleconomy - The Dubai Chamber of Digital Economy reported key achievements for H1 2023, including bringing 69 emerging technology companies to Dubai. This move is part of the chamber’s dedication to help fulfill the goals of the Dubai Economic Agenda. (Emirates News Agency)
#Egypt #agritech - Students from the AI College in Kafr El-Sheikh developed a robot to help farmers. The six-legged device, accompanied by an app, tracks crop cycles, aids in sorting, and identifies fruit diseases. (Egypt Today)
#Oman #wastemanagement - Tech startups Rihal and Onsor Technologies are collaborating with Oman Environment Services Holding Company to fit 185,000 waste bins with IoT sensors. The initiative aims to enhance waste collection efficiency, covering vast areas swiftly and cutting operational costs. (Oman Observer)
#Saudi - #smartfarming - NEOM has signed a $120 million contract with Dutch greenhouse company Van Der Hoeven to leverage AI to create a ‘synthetic climate’ for desert agriculture. The initiative aims to establish a horticulture oasis in NEOM, emphasizing food security. (Yahoo Finance)
#UAE #education - The Ministry of Industry and Advanced Technology (MoIAT) and the Mohammed bin Rashid School of Government (MBRSG) have signed an MoU to facilitate academic support, innovative training, and research programs for ministry staff. (Emirates News Agency)
#UAE - #AI - DEWA, partnering with Google Cloud, hosted a generative AI workshop for employees. The effort aims to advance Dubai's ambition to become the world's smartest city, leveraging Fourth Industrial Revolution technologies. (Zawya)
#Saudi #drones - Ondas Holdings' Airobotics and Saudi Excellence Holding Company have entered a strategic alliance to establish an office in Saudi Arabia and provide advanced autonomous drone platforms and technologies for government and commercial use. (Yahoo Finance)
#UAE #wearables - Emirates Global Aluminium (EGA) has increased the use of Kenzen wearable tech among 350 employee volunteers for heat illness prevention this summer. Kenzen's devices monitor vital body metrics, including core body temperature and heart rate, allowing real-time detection of heat strain, safeguarding outdoor workers in the UAE. (Emirates News Agency)
#Saudi - #UAVs - Saudi Arabian Military Industries (SAMI) and Baykar signed an agreement confirming plans to establish manufacturing operations for the Turkish defence firm’s Bayraktar Akıncı high-altitude long-endurance unmanned combat aerial vehicle (UAV). (Arab News)
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