stc CEO calls on companies to promote innovation via AI
During the virtual Global Summit of Artificial Intelligence (AI) - organised by the Saudi Data and Artificial Intelligence Authority (SDAIA) - stc’s CEO, Nasser bin Suleiman Al-Nasser called on companies to adopt transformative plans and develop solutions to promote innovation via AI and support growth and reduce costs.
During a discussion session on planning for the age of AI, Al-Nasser noted that stc relied on multiple AI technologies to serve customers and the group to improve efficiency and develop better experiences.
In addition, stc announced the launch of its Advanced Cloud Based Data Analysis Laboratory to analyse big data, predictive analysis and AI innovation. The analysis lab aims to provide an integrated structure to support the use of advanced methods and techniques that support open source.
Other features of the lab include the ability to process large quantities of data in a short time frame, as well as the ability to provide a collaborative work environment for multiple users and bodies.
“This advanced structure will allow the development of various projects, cooperation opportunities and partnerships locally and internationally. These would include datathons and artificial intelligence innovation competitions, in addition to cooperation opportunities with external governmental and private parties aimed at enabling research and development in the field of data analysis,” commented in a company statement.
The launch of its analysis lab follows its recent partnership with NVIDIA to launch a cloud solution for in-depth learning, enhancing stc’s role as a digital enabler of Saudi Arabia’s digital transformation, and its 2030 Vision.
“The launch of the Data Analysis Laboratory by stc is the first initiative of its kind in the Kingdom. It will help create a cooperative environment for the analysis of big data and the development of artificial intelligence models with all the local, regional or international partners, whether they were academic or research entities,” added .
Image source: stc
Nybl: Saudi Startup to Expand AI Solutions
According to co-founder Nour Alnahhas, nybl was formed for the greater good. A visual data mining and machine learning platform, the platform will help organisations streamline their operations. ‘We wanted to centralise our vision around AI and machine learning’, said Alnahhas. ‘Something not just for profit, but added value. Conscious capitalism’.
Nybl aims to democratise artificial intelligence by making it possible for anyone to build an AI solution. What website builders like Wix and Squarespace did for site design, nybl will do for AI—allowing even non-coders to feel comfortable creating solutions. In fact, Alnahhas calls it a ‘Shopify of AI’, or a third-party platform that helps businesses deliver better service.
With hubs in Kuwait, the UAE, North America, and India, nybl is focused on launching operations in Saudi Arabia, Alnahhas’s home country. When the company first launched, it was difficult to convince Saudi Arabian businesses to work with a startup. Yet now, nybl has proven itself. ‘We had support in the UAE, so now we’re coming back’, said Alnahhas.
Alnahhas has launched a pilot with Saudi Aramco and has slowly built partnerships with paper, heating, HVAC air conditioning, and manufacturing companies. In addition, the Saudi government has started to invest in the Kingdom’s National Strategy for Data and AI, which means that nbyl, as a tech startup, has finally gained credibility.
No War for Talent
One of the most critical parts of nybl’s expansion will be hiring the right individuals. Thankfully, there’s a current surplus of talented researchers, developers, and data scientists within the Kingdom. Like nybl’s Alnahhas—educated at the University of Houston, the Wharton School of Business, and INSEAD— many Saudi Arabians have benefited from government-sponsored education abroad.
Last year, Saudi Arabia signed several partnerships with tech firms to advance the Kingdom’s skills in artificial intelligence. ‘It’s exciting to be in Saudi Arabia where there’s alignment and support’, Alnahhas concluded. ‘You’re getting an increasing talent pool. And even old and big family conglomerates are finally changing to use AI’.