As Saudi Arabia aims to be a global events hub, these initiatives become important

Tahaluf has been formed by Informa and SAFCSP to help diversify the kingdom’s economy.

As Saudi Arabia aims to be a global events hub, these initiatives become important
[Source photo: Anvita Gupta/Fast Company Middle East]

Saudi Arabia is taking impressive steps to improve its business environment and attract foreign investment, thereby reducing its dependence on oil.

To deliver these ambitions, the kingdom has recognized the value of international events to build strategically important industries within the country. 

Acting on it, Informa and the Saudi Federation for Cybersecurity, Programming and Drones (SAFCSP) have formed a new joint venture company, Tahaluf, to help the country diversify its economy, aligning with the Saudi 2030 Vision. The new company will be replacing Informa’s existing operations in Saudi Arabia.  

By launching the Tahaluf joint venture with Informa, SAFCSP (Saudi Federation for Cybersecurity, Programming and Drones) extends its mission to stimulate growth in the Kingdom’s key economic sectors to now encompass the events industry. Tahaluf will leverage Informa’s global expertise to create a world-class events sector in the Kingdom which will further advance economic diversification, provide access to new markets for international businesses, attract foreign investment and support modernisation of business activity in the Kingdom. 

Tahaluf will also support the creation of new career paths for the Kingdom’s young, talented and digitally adept population, not just in events but also in the broader creative and digital economies, from communications and branding to digital marketing and digital product development. 

The Tahaluf Academy will provide an annual cohort of young Saudi professionals the opportunity to gain hands-on training and international events experience through a series of rotations across the global Informa business, and further benefit from an industry- recognised event professional accreditation programme.

Informa’s world-scale live and on-demand business and consumer events experience would aid in organizing mega events which “provide market access, drive inbound investment and generate international trade,” says Michael Champion (Regional Executive VP, Informa Plc).

The partnership builds on the relationship established between SAFSCP and Informa during the recent successful launches of two award-winning technology and cybersecurity events. 

Moreover, Tahaluf will license several market-leading brands that serve strategically-important industries in the kingdom and the wider region, further enabling Tahaluf to launch and scale-up events and related products rapidly.

The decision to partner with various ministries and expand its footprint in Saudi Arabia is aligned with Informa’s business purpose and commitments to its customers and communities. 

“By bringing our brands to the region, we support the growth and further development of those specialist markets and the customer communities. We aim to have a wider positive impact wherever we do business, and our events and local operations will support the creation of new jobs, knowledge sharing, and professional development in the region,” says Michael Champion (Regional Executive VP, Informa Plc). 

With official government support for Tahaluf’s program of activities for at least the next five years, the newly launched company will support the introduction and expansion of specific, strategically-important events in Saudi Arabia.

Faisal Al-Khamisi, Chairman of SAFCSP said, “Saudi Arabia has hosted an expanding portfolio of global events in recent years, and now, through Tahaluf, SAFCSP is investing to further elevate the Saudi events industry and related creative and digital sectors. Tahaluf will be a significant contribution to SAFCSP’s mission of supporting skills development and creating career opportunities for Saudi youth in dynamic, professional sectors, and will also contribute to the overall diversification and modernisation of key industries in Saudi Arabia.” 

“Informa has played a leading role in the events industry internationally, including pioneering digital, on-demand and data-driven experiences, and leading sustainability initiatives across the sector. This expertise has helped to launch successful events together in the past and will be invaluable in delivering the ambitious plans announced today. Tahaluf – the Arabic word for ‘Alliance’ – reflects the strength of the partnership between SAFCSP and Informa, and our plans to work closely together in this next stage of developing world-class events for Saudi Arabia,” Al-Khamisi added. 

The overarching aim of Vision 2030 is to build a digitally-led economy, and the country’s young, connected population is optimistic about the opportunities greater digitization brings for them.

Understanding this, KSA has recognized that a thriving events industry will create new jobs for the country’s digitally-adept young population, not just in events but also in the broader creative economies – ranging from communications and branding to digital marketing and digital product development.

Tahaluf-run events are expected to attract around 500,000 visitors annually by 2028 and Tahaluf plans to also employ nearly 200 professionals in the next five years. 

To build a portfolio of thriving, sustainable events, with world-class digital experiences, in the next five years, this partnership plans to build on Informa’s successful events, such as LEAP and BlackHat MEA in Saudi Arabia. With this partnership, Tahaluf plans to make Saudi Arabia a new global hub for events.  

Mentioned below are the events for 2023 and 2024. 

6-9 February, 2023 –

6-9 February, 2023 –

24-26 October, 2023 –

10-13 September, 2023 –

15-17 January, 2024 –


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