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Zain invests in UAE smart city advisory firm

The move to allow Zain to create smart city business unit

Kuwait-based telecom operator Zain Group announced a strategic investment in smart city advisory and consulting firm NeXgen Group.

Zain said the investment will enable the company to create a specialized business unit delivering smart city services to governments and real estate developers facilitating the deployment of smart city solutions and managed services across Zain’s regional footprint. NeXgen is headquartered in the United Arab Emirates.

The investment was announced at the recent Mobile World Congress event, and comes exactly on year after a strategic cooperation partnership was announced between the two companies.

Zain said its smart city business unit will focus on delivering solutions and managed services, and will include design and integration for applications including smart living in city districts, smart safety and security, smart education and health, and smart metering for the utility sector among others.

“With this strategic investment, we want to be able to develop all the different verticals for smart cities and make sure that we have both the platforms and the analytics,” said Zain Group CEO Scott Gegenheimer. “We see growth opportunities in smart city projects across all the markets where we operate, but Kuwait and Saudi Arabia will be probably our key markets in terms of smart city developments.”

Zain’s investment in NeXgen Group builds on the establishment of the Zain Digital Frontier and Innovation business unit. ZDFI is said to focus on innovation, digital services, corporate venturing and smart cities.

Zain operates mobile networks in Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Sudan, South Sudan, Jordan and Bahrain, and currently offers LTE services in Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Jordan, as well as in Lebanon through the operation it manages on behalf of the Lebanese government.

ABOUT AUTHOR

Juan Pedro Tomás
Juan Pedro Tomás
Juan Pedro covers Global Carriers and Global Enterprise IoT. Prior to RCR, Juan Pedro worked for Business News Americas, covering telecoms and IT news in the Latin American markets. He also worked for Telecompaper as their Regional Editor for Latin America and Asia/Pacific. Juan Pedro has also contributed to Latin Trade magazine as the publication's correspondent in Argentina and with political risk consultancy firm Exclusive Analysis, writing reports and providing political and economic information from certain Latin American markets. He has a degree in International Relations and a master in Journalism and is married with two kids.

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