King Faisal Specialist Hospital & Research Centre Leading Health Sector Transformation in Saudi Arabia

King Faisal Specialist Hospital & Research Centre Leading Health Sector Transformation in Saudi Arabia

RIYADH, Saudi Arabia, May 09, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Harvard University — Eight years into Vision 2030, Saudi Arabia has made significant strides with digital innovations and enhanced access to quality care. Strategic investments in infrastructure, technology, and talent, have led to advancements revolutionizing patient care delivery and elevating the standards of healthcare locally. These efforts have notably raised the average life expectancy, reduced mortality rates, and enhanced overall well-being across the Kingdom.

Central to these achievements, King Faisal Specialist Hospital & Research Centre (KFSH&RC), renowned for its specialized care and treatments across critical fields such as oncology, cardiology, organ transplantation, and genetics has positioned itself as a leader in specialized patient care, taking the charge towards a brighter, healthier future for the Kingdom. Through its commitment to pioneering digital health initiatives, comprehensive educational programs, and novel research endeavors, it is reshaping the local landscape, and setting new standards of efficiency and accessibility.

In an era defined by technological advancements, and with the Kingdom’s push towards digitalization, KFSH&RC stands at the forefront of digital health integration among its local peers, leveraging cutting-edge telemedicine services, virtual consultations, and AI-driven tools such as the ANFAL AI System that transforms patient outcomes through predictive insights and personalized care, ensuring the best outcomes for patient satisfaction.

KFSH&RC’s digital health initiatives extend to addressing broader health threats through technologies such as Whole Genomic Sequencing (WGS) and Advanced Radiation Therapy. The hospital has also pioneered organ transplantation by performing the world’s first fully robotic liver transplant and introduced to the region innovations like the Harmony Transcatheter Pulmonary Valve (TPV), enhancing patient recovery and experience. These technologies facilitate personalized treatment plans and improve the accuracy and speed of medical diagnostics, contributing significantly to the elevation of patient care standards and a sustainable, resilient healthcare infrastructure in line with the objectives of the Health Sector Transformation Program.

KFSH&RC continues to push the boundaries of medical research addressing pressing health challenges and contributing to Saudi Arabia’s public health landscape, with discoveries like the PfAP2-MRP gene crucial for malaria treatment and the identification of the new Riyadhensis bacteria strain. These discoveries have not only improved diagnostic accuracy but also facilitated early interventions, ensuring timely and effective patient support, in line with the national objectives to reduce chronic disease prevalence.

These comprehensive efforts are supported by KFSH&RC’s robust educational initiatives, which prepare the next generation of medical professionals through training programs and international collaborations.

Recognized by ‘Brand Finance’ in 2024 as the most valuable healthcare brand in Saudi Arabia and the Middle East for the second consecutive year, placing 9th in Saudi Arabia and 28th in the Middle East. Additionally, KFSH&RC stands out as the only hospital worldwide to be ranked among its country’s top ten most valuable brands.

About King Faisal Specialist Hospital & Research Centre (KFSH&RC):

King Faisal Specialist Hospital & Research Centre (KFSH&RC) stands as a leading healthcare institution in the Middle East, envisioned to be the optimal choice for every patient seeking specialized healthcare. The hospital boasts a rich history in the treatment of cancers, cardiovascular diseases, organ transplantation, neurosciences, and genetics.

In 2024, “Brand Finance” ranked King Faisal Specialist Hospital & Research Centre as the top academic medical centre in the Middle East and Africa, and among the top 20 globally for the second consecutive year. Additionally, in 2024, it was recognized as one of the leading global healthcare providers by Newsweek magazine.

As part of Saudi Vision 2030, a royal decree was issued on December 21, 2021, to transform the hospital into an independent, non-profit, government-owned entity, paving the way for a comprehensive transformation program aimed at achieving global leadership in healthcare through excellence and innovation.


For more information, please contact:

Mr. Essam Al-Zahrani, Media Affairs Head, 0555254429

Mr. Abdullah Al-Aown, Media Coordination Officer, 0556294232

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GlobeNewswire Distribution ID 9114722

Curia and Carterra Partner on Biologics Symposium to Further Biotechnology Research in the Pacific Northwest

Curia & Carterra Biologics Symposium

Biologics symposium slated for May 31 in Seattle, WA

ALBANY, N.Y. and SALT LAKE CITY, May 09, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Curia, a leading contract research, development and manufacturing organization and Carterra Inc., the world leader in label-free high throughput antibody and small molecule drug discovery, today announced their partnership in hosting a high-throughput biologics symposium slated for May 31 at the Residence Inn at Marriott in Seattle, Washington.

The purpose of the collaboration is to promote the rising biotech focus within the Pacific Northwest region of the U.S and Canada. The symposium will bring together all levels of scientific leadership from the biotech and pharma communities.

“We are thrilled to be partnering with Carterra to organize this antibody discovery symposium, bringing the Pacific Northwest biotech community together and sharing the latest advances in antibody discovery,” said Steve Lavezoli, Vice President of Biologics at Curia. “We are also looking forward to sharing our optimal, high-quality and accelerated antibody discovery workflows to first-to-human antibody discovery, development and clinical manufacturing. Antibodies discovered and/or engineered with Curia’s platform technology are in the clinic and we have over 230 successful antibody discovery campaigns performed for the biotech community.”

Speed, scientific expertise and efficiency can surmount the high attrition rates of early antibody discovery and achieve first-to-market delivery of new therapeutics. The symposium will highlight Curia’s technology platform and integrated services with a focus on the development of enhanced mouse systems for antibody generation and high-throughput single B cell screening. The combination of next generation sequencing (NGS) and rapid recombinant production of milligram to gram quantities of purified monoclonal antibody (mAb) significantly accelerates identification of development candidate leads.

Since 2017, Carterra has been selling its powerful LSA® high-throughput biosensor to analyze and characterize antibodies using Surface Plasmon Resonance (SPR). With the launch of its LSAXT platform last year, Carterra now offers products that can perform small molecule analysis as well as antibody discovery. The LSA platform has been profiled in several peer-reviewed papers in Science, Nature and Cell, detailing the path of multiple therapeutics entering clinical trials. At the symposium, several leading scientists in biopharma will be sharing their insights into their specific areas of drug discovery and will highlight the transformative impact of integrating HT-SPR technology, AI/ML and other new technologies.

“We are excited to be partnering with Curia on our symposium. Carterra symposia are scientific events that we host each year throughout the U.S. and Europe,” stated Chris M. Silva, Vice President of Marketing and Product at Carterra. “These symposia help us to share the latest technology advancements and important data generated from the workflows of scientists using Carterra’s label-free platforms. Coming to the Pacific Northwest is an opportunity to create a deeper understanding of the technology in pharma and biotechs in this region.”

Click here to RSVP for the event. Registration is required as seating is limited.

About Curia:
Curia is a Contract Development and Manufacturing Organization (CDMO) with over 30 years of experience, an integrated network of 27 global sites and over 3,500 employees partnering with Biopharmaceutical customers to bring life-changing therapies to market. Our biologics and small molecules offerings span discovery through commercialization, with integrated regulatory and analytical capabilities. Our scientific and process experts and state-of-the-art facilities deliver best-in-class experience across drug substance and drug product manufacturing. From curiosity to cure, we deliver every step to improve patients’ lives. Visit us at

About Carterra, Inc.:
Carterra, Inc. is a privately held company. Its HT-SPR technology provides large-molecule and small-molecule drug discovery customers with screening and characterization throughput and functionality that scales with omics-level applications, condensing months of work down to days. Our solutions have enabled multiple therapeutics and breakthrough research and helped academic and translational researchers and biopharmaceutical companies in oncology, immunology, neuroscience, and more.  Carterra is based in Salt Lake City, Utah, and has Customer Experience Centers in San Francisco, Salt Lake City, Boston, Manchester, England, and Munich, Germany. Carterra products are available in Asia-Pacific and Oceania through our exclusive distributor, Revvity. To learn more, visit or connect with us on LinkedIn or X (Twitter).

Curia Contact Information:
Viana Bhagan
+1 518 512 2111

Carterra Media Contact:
Cheri Salazar
(408) 594-9400

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GlobeNewswire Distribution ID 9114095

Arqit warns CISOs why they must act now to secure their data ready for the post-quantum world

LONDON, May 09, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Arqit Quantum Inc. (Nasdaq: ARQQ, ARQQW) (Arqit), a leader in quantum-safe encryption, today urges CISOs and security teams to urgently address their post-quantum technology strategies, as quantum computing advances rapidly. The risk of Store Now, Decrypt Later (SNDL) attacks underscores that the quantum threat is not a distant concern but an immediate security challenge demanding attention today.

Arqit’s distinctive approach addresses the cost and complexity associated with quantum-safe migration strategies through its ground breaking Symmetric Key Agreement Platform (SKA Platform™). Mitigating the risks posed by SNDL attacks is paramount to safeguarding valuable long-term data. Failure to do so could result in a catastrophic breach of data privacy, threatening the secrecy of sensitive and classified information.

Further details may be found in the IDC Analysts Brief: “Securing Valuable and Durable Data in a Post-Quantum World”, sponsored by Arqit

Securing Valuable and Durable Data in a Post-Quantum World (

David Williams, Chairman and CEO of Arqit Limited said:

“Our cloud-based solution is designed for today’s modern and evolving network environments. Protecting data transmission across diverse communication links and device types necessitates security that is easily deployable, scalable and integrates seamlessly into existing infrastructures without the need for additional hardware. By using well established cryptographic techniques grounded in quantum-resistant symmetric encryption methods, Arqit offers organisations a distinct pathway to transition seamlessly into the post-quantum era.”

Notes to Editors

Arqit representatives will be attending RSA (6-9 May 2024) and will be available for interview.

For more information about Arqit visit Arqit’s website

IDC Analysts Brief: “Securing Valuable and Durable Data in a Post-Quantum World”, published May 2024, document number IDC #EUR252099724

International Data Corporation (IDC) is the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology, telecommunications and consumer technology markets. IDC helps IT professionals, business executives, and the investment community to make fact-based decisions on technology purchases and business strategy. For additional information on IDC, please visit

About Arqit

Arqit Quantum Inc. (Nasdaq: ARQQ, ARQQW) (Arqit) supplies a unique encryption software service which makes the communications links of any networked device, cloud machine or data at rest secure against both current and future forms of attack on encryption – even from a quantum computer. Compatible with NSA CSfC Components and meeting the demands of NSA CSfC Symmetric Key Management Requirements Annexe 1.2. and RFC 8784, Arqit’s Symmetric Key Agreement Platform uses a lightweight software agent that allows end point devices to create encryption keys locally in partnership with any number of other devices. The keys are computationally secure and facilitate Zero Trust Network Access. It can create limitless volumes of keys with any group size and refresh rate and can regulate the secure entrance and exit of a device in a group. The agent is lightweight and will thus run on the smallest of end point devices. The product sits within a growing portfolio of granted patents. It also works in a standards compliant manner which does not oblige customers to make a disruptive rip and replace of their technology. Arqit is winner of two GSMA Global Mobile Awards, The Best Mobile Security Solution and The CTO Choice Award for Outstanding Mobile Technology, at Mobile World Congress 2024, recognised for groundbreaking innovation at the 2023 Institution of Engineering and Technology Awards and winner of the National Cyber Awards’ Innovation in Cyber Award and the Cyber Security Awards’ Cyber Security Software Company of the Year Award. Arqit is ISO 27001 Standard certified.

Media relations enquiries:

Investor relations enquiries:

Caution About Forward-Looking Statements

This communication includes forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. All statements, other than statements of historical facts, may be forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are based on Arqit’s expectations and beliefs concerning future events and involve risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially from current expectations. These factors are difficult to predict accurately and may be beyond Arqit’s control. Forward-looking statements in this communication or elsewhere speak only as of the date made. New uncertainties and risks arise from time to time, and it is impossible for Arqit to predict these events or how they may affect it. Except as required by law, Arqit does not have any duty to, and does not intend to, update or revise the forward-looking statements in this communication or elsewhere after the date this communication is issued. In light of these risks and uncertainties, investors should keep in mind that results, events or developments discussed in any forward-looking statement made in this communication may not occur. Uncertainties and risk factors that could affect Arqit’s future performance and cause results to differ from the forward-looking statements in this release include, but are not limited to: (i) the outcome of any legal proceedings that may be instituted against the Arqit, (ii) the ability to maintain the listing of Arqit’s securities on a national securities exchange, (iii) changes in the competitive and regulated industries in which Arqit operates, variations in operating performance across competitors and changes in laws and regulations affecting Arqit’s business, (iv) the ability to implement business plans, forecasts, and other expectations, and identify and realise additional opportunities, (v) the potential inability of Arqit to successfully deliver its operational technology, (vi) the risk of interruption or failure of Arqit’s information technology and communications system, (vii) the enforceability of Arqit’s intellectual property, and (viii) other risks and uncertainties set forth in the sections entitled “Risk Factors” and “Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements” in Arqit’s annual report on Form 20-F (the “Form 20-F”), filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) on 21 November 2023 and in subsequent filings with the SEC. While the list of factors discussed above and in the Form 20-F and other SEC filings are considered representative, no such list should be considered to be a complete statement of all potential risks and uncertainties. Unlisted factors may present significant additional obstacles to the realisation of forward-looking statements.

GlobeNewswire Distribution ID 9113888

‫شراكة تجمع مجموعة أباريل و ” Sandbox VRساندبوكس في آر” لجلب ابتكارات الواقع الافتراضي إلى الشرق الأوسط

ستثمر هذه الشراكة عن 25 موقعاً في الشرق الأوسط بحلول عام 2028

شراكة تجمع مجموعة أباريل و ” Sandbox VRساندبوكس في آر” لجلب ابتكارات الواقع الافتراضي إلى الشرق الأوسط
· ستثمر هذه الشراكة عن 25 موقعاً في الشرق الأوسط بحلول عام 2028

دبي، الإمارات العربية, May 09, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) —  – ضمن مساعيها السبّاقة، تتعاقد مجموعة أباريل ذات المكانة الريادية العالمية في مجالات التجزئة وأسلوب الحياة، مع Sandbox VR ” ساندبوكس في آر” وهي الوجهة الأولى في العالم لتجربة متميزة في عالم الواقع الافتراضي المقدمة في الموقع، في سبيل تنسيق الجهود ضمن شراكة امتياز هامة. ويعوّل في هذا التعاون على سيادة مجموعة أباريل في المنطقة من خلال أكثر من 2200 متجراً لما يزيد عن 85 علامة تجارية تابعة لها في 14 دولة، ويبتدئ التعاون بـ 25 موقعاً في الشرق الأوسط. جاءت هذه الشراكة على أعقاب حيازة ” ساندبوكس في آر” على المركز الثاني عن فئة الواقع الافتراضي والواقع المعزز في القائمة المرموقة للشركات العالمية الرائدة في الابتكار لعام 2024 بحسب تصنيفات“Fast Company” ، نظراً لشهرتها الواسعة في تكوين تجربة واقع افتراضي آسر لجميع المستخدمين من شتى أنحاء العالم.

وقد علق نيراج تيكشينداني، الرئيس التنفيذي لمجموعة أباريل على هذه الشراكة بقوله: ” نحن متحمسون للشروع بهذه الشراكة مع ” ساندبوكس في آر “، كونها في طليعة الابتكارات في الواقع الافتراضي”، وأضاف ” لا يقتصر هذا التعاون على توسيع ملف أعمالنا فحسب، بل يعد بإنشاء تجارب خلّاقة تدمج بين التكنولوجيا والترفيه، وهذه هي التجربة الفريدة التي نتطلع لنوفرها لعملائنا في الشرق الأوسط وفي سائر المناطق، لنضع من خلالها معايير جديدة في قطاعي الترفيه والبيع بالتجزئة”.

وقال ستيف زاو، المؤسس والرئيس التنفيذي لشركة ساندبوكس في آر: ” لقد سررننا بردود الأفعال الإيجابية في مواقعنا في الولايات المتحدة الأمريكية وأوروبا وآسيا” وتابع بقوله ” تحظى التجارب التي نبتكرها على إقبال عالمي لا مثيل له. ونحن متحمسون للتعاون مع مجموعة أباريل لتوسيع بصمتنا العالمية، ولنقدم تجربة غامرة في عالم الواقع الافتراضي تسر المستخدمين في جميع أنحاء العالم”.

تنشط ” ساندبوكس في آر ” عبر أكثر من 46 موقعاً عالمياً وتتوسع بشكل ملحوظ وهائل. ومع إطلاق 18 موقعاً خلال الأشهر الـ 19 الأخيرة، بمساحات تزيد عن 4000 قدم مربع لكل منها مع نظم “هولوديك” المتعددة والتي تقدم الواقع الافتراضي للمستخدمين، تعد شركة ” ساندبوكس في آر” من الشركات الناشئة الواعدة في مجال الواقع الافتراضي المقدم في الموقع، والأسرع نمواً في العالم. ولتعزيز توسعها أعلنت الشركة مؤخراً عن افتتاحها برنامج حقوق الامتياز لوضع بصمتها في الولايات المتحدة الأمريكية بالإضافة إلى مواقعها حول العالم. وفي إطار التزامها المستمر في الشمولية، تعمل ” ساندبوكس في آر ” على توفير تجربة للمستخدمين متعددة اللغات وحالياً تتوفر بإجمالي سبع لغات وهي في ازدياد مستمر، وهذا ما يمكّنها من إيصال التجربة الغامرة إلى جمهور أكبر.

وقال لي هيبديتش، مدير شؤون حقوق الامتياز العالمية لدى ساندبوكس في آر: ” يعد توسعنا في الشرق الأوسط خطوة استراتيجية نحو التزامنا العالمي في تقريب الناس بعضهم من بعض، عبر تجارب آسرة رفيعة المستوى”، ثم أضاف “وإن السيادة الإقليمية التي تتمتع بها مجموعة أباريل والإنجازات الاستثنائية التي حققتها يجعلها الحليف العالمي الأمثل لشركتنا، ونحن مستمرون في مهمتنا لجعل التسلية في المواقع متاحة بشكل أكبر”.

ويُذكر في سبتمبر 2023، تعاون شركة ” ساندبوكس في آر” مع ” نتفليكس ” التي تم من خلالها إطلاق لعبة ” Squid Game ” الافتراضية الحصرية، والمستوحاة من المسلسل الحائز على مرتبة الصدارة في المشاهدات. وحققت اللعبة الافتراضية نجاحاً باهراً حطمت من خلاله أرقاماً قياسية كونها أسرع تجربة افتراضية تصل مبيعاتها إلى مليون دولار أمريكي. وفي أول شهرين لهذه اللعبة، حققت 4.56 مليون دولار أمريكي من مبيعات التذاكر في الملاعب الفعلية، وتابعت بعدها مسيرة النجاح وتحطيم الأرقام القياسية الجديدة باستمرار. وفي الآونة الأخيرة تعاونت شركة ” ساندبوكس في آر ” مع ” نتفليكس ” للإعلان عن استحواذها لفترة محدودة على موقعها في لندن للاحتفال بإصدار “Rebel Moon_ Part Two: The Scargiver” حيث قام الزوار بتجربة عالم “Rebel Moon” الافتراضي التفاعلي بكامل الجسم. ولمزيد من المعلومات والتفاصيل يرجى زيارة أو إرسال الاستفسارات عبر حسابات التواصل الاجتماعي انستقرام وفيسبوك وتيك توك.

لمحة عن مجموعة أباريل

تقف مجموعة أباريل، أكبر مشغل في مجالات الأزياء وأسلوب الحياة، على مفترق طرق الاقتصاد الحديث في مدينة دبي، بدولة الإمارات العربية المتحدة. واليوم، أضحت المجموعة قادرة على تلبية احتياجات ملايين المتسوقين عبر أكثر من 2,200 متجراً وأكثر من 85 علامة تجارية وبفريق من 22,000 موظف من مختلف الثقافات.

حققت المجموعة حضوراً قوياً وراسخاً في دول مجلس التعاون الخليجي كما أنها نجحت في توسيع مجالات تسويقها في الهند وجنوب أفريقيا وسنغافورة واندونيسيا وتايلند وماليزيا ومصر. وإضافة إلى ذلك، وضعت المجموعة استراتيجيات واضحة للدخول إلى العديد من الأسواق الناشئة مثل هنغاريا والفليبين.

تدير مجموعة أباريل العديد من العلامات التجارية العالمية الشهيرة، التي انطلقت من الولايات المتحدة الأمريكية وكندا وأوروبا وأستراليا وآسيا، وتضم الكثير من الأسماء الرائدة في عالم الأزياء، الأحذية ونمط الحياة على غرار تومي هيلفيغر، تشارلز آند كيث، سكتشرز، ألدو، ناين وست، إروبوستال، وغيرها من الأسماء بالإضافة لعلامات تجارية رئيسية مثل تيم هورتنز، جيميز إتاليان، كولدستون كريمري، إنجلوت، ريتوالز وذلك على سبيل المثال لا الحصر.

يذكر بأن الفضل في نجاحات مجموعة أباريل ونموها المذهل يعود لرؤية وتوجيهات مؤسستها ورئيسة مجلس الإدارة سيما جنواني فيد، التي انطلقت بالشركة من القوة إلى الأقوى منذ نشأتها وعلى امتداد عقدين من الزمن.

لمحة عن Sandbox VR “ساندبوكس في آر”

 “ساندبوكس في آر” هي الوجهة الرائدة الأولى من نوعها في العالم لألعاب الواقع الافتراضي المقدمة في الموقع. أنشأت الشركة منصة الواقع الافتراضي الغامرة التفاعلية بالكامل والأكثر تشويقاً على الإطلاق وتفتخر بالألعاب التي لا يمكن تجربتها في أي مكان آخر. “ساندبوكس في آر” تنشط حالياً في 46 موقعاً عبر سبع دول وتتوسع باستمرار وبوتيرة سريعة. ويقع المقر الرئيسي لشركة ” ساندبوكس في آر” في سان فرانسيسكو، كاليفورنيا ولها مكاتب في هونغ كونغ وفانكوفر. وجمعت الجولة الأخيرة من ” ساندبوكس في آر” 37 مليون دولار أمريكي من المستثمرين بما فيهم Andreessen Horowitz, Alibaba Entrepreneurs Fund, Gobi Partners, and Craft. ومن المستثمرين الأفراد جستن تيمبرلك وكاتي بيري وكيفن دورانت وويل سميث.

التواصل مع الإعلام

 الصورة المصاحبة لهذا الإعلان متاحة على

GlobeNewswire Distribution ID 9113692

Apparel Group and Sandbox VR partnered to bring Virtual Reality Innovation to the Middle East

The collaboration will result in 25 locations in the Middle East by 2028

Apparel Group and Sandbox VR partnered to bring Virtual Reality Innovation to the Middle East
The collaboration will result in 25 locations in the Middle East by 2028

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates, May 09, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — In a groundbreaking move, Apparel Group, a dominant force in the global fashion and lifestyle retail landscape, partners with Sandbox VR, the world’s premier destination for premium location-based virtual reality experiences, in a significant franchise partnership. With over 85 brands and more than 2,200 stores across 14 countries, Apparel Group’s extensive reach solidifies the collaboration’s foundation. This collaboration will begin with 25 locations in the Middle East. The partnership comes on the heels of Sandbox VR’s being named to Fast Company’s prestigious list of the World’s Most Innovative Companies of 2024. Earning the number two spot in the Augmented and Virtual Reality category, Sandbox VR is recognized for creating a fully-immersive virtual reality experience for a global audience.

“We are excited to embark on this partnership with Sandbox VR, a company that stands at the forefront of virtual reality innovation,” said Neeraj Teckchandani, CEO of Apparel Group. “This collaboration is not just about expanding our portfolio—it’s about creating groundbreaking experiences that merge technology and entertainment, offering our customers in the Middle East and beyond something truly exceptional. Together, we are setting new benchmarks in the retail and entertainment industries.”

“We’ve received an overwhelmingly positive response at our locations across the US, Europe, and Asia,” said Steve Zhao, founder and CEO of Sandbox VR. “The universal appeal of our experiences is unmatched. We’re excited to partner with Apparel Group as we expand our global footprint and bring our fully-immersive virtual reality adventures to even more audiences worldwide.”

Sandbox VR is now operating in over 46 global locations and expanding rapidly. With 18 locations launched in the last 19 months, each 4,000+ sq ft with multiple holodecks in which guests experience the virtual worlds, Sandbox VR is the fastest-growing location-based VR startup in the world. To accelerate that growth, the company recently announced it is opening its US footprint for franchising in addition to international locations. In an ongoing commitment to inclusivity, Sandbox VR is expanding its multi-language support to encompass a total of seven languages and counting, enabling an even wider audience to partake in its immersive offerings.

“Our expansion into the Middle East is a strategic step towards our global commitment to bring people closer together through world-class immersive experiences,” said Lee Hebditch, Director of Global Franchise Operations at Sandbox VR. “The Apparel Group’s profound regional proficiency and unparalleled achievements make them the perfect global ally for our brand. With this partnership, we’re continuing on our mission to make location-based entertainment more accessible.”

Additionally, in September 2023, Sandbox VR collaborated with Netflix to exclusively launch the Squid Game Virtuals, an experience inspired by their #1 hit series. The success of Squid Game Virtuals broke records as it was the fastest experience to hit $1M in sales. In its first two months, the game generated $4.56M in ticket sales at physical venues and has continued its march toward breaking new records. Most recently, Sandbox VR worked with Netflix to announce a limited-time takeover of its London location to celebrate the release of Rebel Moon — Part Two: The Scargiver where visitors previewed the world of Rebel Moon in a full-body VR experience.

For more information and to make reservations, please visit and connect with Sandbox VR on Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok.

Apparel Group is a global fashion and lifestyle retail conglomerate residing at the crossroads of the modern economy – Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Today, Apparel Group caters to thousands of eager shoppers through its 2200+ retail stores and 85+ brands on all platforms while employing over 22,000+ multicultural staff.

Apparel Group has carved its strong presence in the GCC and expanded thriving gateways to market in India, South Africa, Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, and Egypt. Additionally, clear strategies are in place to enter emerging markets such as Hungary and Philippines.

Apparel Group has created an omni-channel experience, operating brands originating from the USA, Canada, Europe, Australia, and Asia. The brands include leading names in fashion, footwear, and lifestyles such as Tommy Hilfiger, Charles & Keith, Skechers, Aldo, Nine West, Aeropostale, Jamie’s Italian, Tim Hortons, Cold Stone Creamery, Inglot, and Rituals.

Apparel Group owes its amazing growth to the vision and guidance of its dynamic Founder and Chairwoman, Mrs. Sima Ganwani Ved, who has taken the company from strength to strength since its inception in the last two decades.

Sandbox VR is the world’s premier destination for premium location-based virtual reality games. The company has created the world’s most immersive full-body VR platform and boasts games you can’t play anywhere else. Sandbox VR is now operating in over 46 locations across seven countries and expanding rapidly. Sandbox VR is headquartered in San Francisco, California with offices in Hong Kong and Vancouver. Sandbox VR’s latest round has raised over $37 million from investors including Andreessen Horowitz, Alibaba Entrepreneurs Fund, Gobi Partners, and Craft. Individual investors include Justin Timberlake, Katy Perry, Kevin Durant and Will Smith.

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High temperatures expected Thursday, Khamsini weather for weekend

Amman: Soaring temperatures are anticipated across Jordan on Thursday, as meteorologists project a significant rise in the mercury. Warm conditions are expected over high mountainous regions and relatively hot weather in other areas. Particularly, hot conditions are forecast at the Jordan Valley, the Dead Sea, and Aqaba, with occasional clouds at higher altitudes. Moderate southeast winds are expected, picking up and stirring dust in desert locales.

On Friday, the Kingdom is poised to experience a dry air mass known as Khamsini, leading to further temperature increases. It is anticipated that temperatures will exceed seasonal averages by approximately 6-7 degrees Celsius. Dusty conditions are expected to prevail, with relatively hot temperatures forecast for mountainous regions and plains. Cloud cover is forecast at higher altitudes, and winds are expected to shift from moderate southeast to southwest, occasionally picking up in intensity.

A noticeable drop in temperatures is expected on Saturday, accompani
ed by dusty yet warm conditions in most areas. However, relatively hot weather will persist in desert regions, the Jordan Valley, the Dead Sea, and Aqaba. Cloud cover is expected at medium and high altitudes, with winds shifting to a moderate to brisk northwest direction.

Sunday will bring further relief from the heat, with temperatures dropping once again. The weather is expected to be mild over mountainous areas and warm in other regions. Clouds may appear at lower altitudes, with moderate northwest winds occasionally stirring up dust, especially in desert areas.

Today, temperatures in East Amman are forecast to range between 32 and 19 degrees Celsius, while in West Amman, they are expected to hover between 30 and 17 degrees Celsius. The Northern Highlands will see temperatures ranging from 28 to 16 degrees Celsius, and the Sharah Highlands from 29 to 14 degrees Celsius. At the Dead Sea, temperatures are expected to range between 38 and 24 degrees Celsius, and at the Gulf of Aqaba, between 39 and 25 degre
es Celsius.

Source: Jordan News Agency

Saudi Arabia to unveil USD 100 bln investment opportunities in aviation forum

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia intends to raise the curtain on investment opportunities in the country’s aviation sector amounting to USD 100 billion during the Third Future Aviation Forum (FAF) which it will host during the period May 20-22.

A significant portion of the targeted investments, over USD 50 billion, is earmarked for the development of Saudi Arabia’s airports. Airlines are expected to place new aircraft orders valued at roughly USD 40 billion, reported the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) on Thursday.

It added that the remaining USD 10 billion will be distributed amongst other aviation-related projects, including USD 5 billion dedicated to special logistics zones within the major airports of Riyadh, Jeddah, and Dammam.

The investment push aligns with the Saudi Vision 2030 plan to transform the country into a leading logistics hub in the Middle East and achieve the goals of the National Aviation Strategy.

The Third Future Aviation Forum (FAF), to be held in Riyadh under the patronage of Custodian of the
Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud, is themed “Elevating Global Connectivity”.

It will highlight investment opportunities across airports, airlines, ground services, air freight, and logistics. It brings together over 100 countries and more than 5,000 aviation experts, airline executives, aviation authority officials, manufacturers, and airport leaders.

Key topics of discussion include advanced air mobility, aviation safety and security, sustainable fuels, digitalization and artificial intelligence (AI) in aviation, logistics, global partnerships, and innovation.

Minister of Transport and Logistic Services Eng. Saleh Al-Jasser highlighted the country’s exceptional investment opportunities in aviation.

The National Aviation Strategy aims to increase passenger traffic and connect the Kingdom to over 250 destinations worldwide by 2030. The strategy also targets an annual cargo shipment volume of 4.5 million tons.

Al-Jasser pinpointed Saudi Arabia’s geographical advantage – its position at th
e crossroads of three continents. This, he explained, strengthens the country’s bid to become a global logistics powerhouse.

The Future Aviation Forum serves as a platform to capitalize on this advantage, aligning with the civil-aviation sector strategy’s goal of establishing the Kingdom as a leading and integrated global logistics hub, as envisioned by the National Transport and Logistics Strategy.

Minister of Investment Eng. Khalid Al-Falih highlighted Saudi Arabia’s ambition to attract USD 3.3 trillion in investments by 2030.

The aviation sector is a key focus area, playing a crucial role in the country’s economic diversification plans. The forum provides a platform for investors to participate in this transformation journey.

Al-Falih emphasized the Kingdom’s commitment to fostering a competitive, transparent, and incentive-rich investment environment.

The country prioritizes innovation, human capital development, and attracting foreign direct investment, creating fertile ground for businesses from bo
th within and outside Saudi Arabia.

FAF 2024 promises a dynamic gathering. Investors will engage in meetings and discussions focused on major ongoing projects in the Kingdom, including the King Salman International Airport project.

The forum will also explore potential public-private partnerships for the airports in Abha, Taif, Hail, and Qassim.

Aviation sector suppliers will gain valuable insights into the expansion plans of Riyadh Air, Saudia Airlines, flynas, and flyadeal.

The forum boasts a prestigious attendee list, including executives from leading international companies like Boeing, Airbus, Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China, Ltd. (COMAC), and Embraer.

Source: Kuwait News Agency

20th Meeting of GCC Red Crescent Societies Presidents Held in Doha

Doha: The 20th meeting of the committee of presidents of the GCC Red Crescent societies and associations was held today in Doha.

The meeting was chaired by HE Qatar Red Crescent Society (QRCS) President Yousuf bin Ali Al Khater.

In his speech, he praised the significant role of Red Crescent societies and associations in the GCC countries, highlighting them as leading institutions in the humanitarian field globally by providing support and assistance in various forms to victims of natural disasters, conflicts, and in promoting humanitarian work culture.

He expressed hope that this contribution would continue and achieve more excellence by ensuring effective recommendations are made. He emphasized the importance of adopting practical measures concerning memoranda of understanding and agreements that enhance the mission of these societies and associations in international forums.

In this context, the QRCS President emphasized the importance of activating the provisions of the agreements with the Internationa
l Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the agreement with the Arab Red Crescent and Red Cross Organization. He explained that humanitarian principles strengthen solidarity and cooperation.

He also highlighted the nomination of Secretary-General of the Qatar Red Crescent Society Faisal Mohammed Al Emadi for membership in the permanent committee of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, calling for supporting his nomination.

In a statement to Qatar News Agency Al Emadi emphasized the importance of the meeting in discussing various topics, including ways to enhance cooperation between the GCC societies, adding that joint GCC humanitarian cooperation is longstanding.

Meanwhile, Vice President of the Kuwaiti Red Crescent Society Anwar Al Hasawi told QNA that the meeting is significant in in terms of discussing joint cooperation strategies in humanitarian fields and providing assistance during times of crises and disasters. He praised the cooperation and coordination between the Kuwait Red Cresc
ent and its Qatari counterpart in providing aid and relief to refugees and those in need in several countries and regions around the world.

Source: Qatar News Agency

NCCAL represents Kuwait culture at Doha book fair

The National Council for Culture, Arts and Letters is taking part in the 33rd edition of Doha International Book Fair to highlight the cultural and literary aspects of the State of Kuwait, NCCAL’s representative Khalifa Al-Rabbah said.

“The book fair provides us with a change to promote cultural exchanges with other participants in the event,” he told KUNA on the sidelines of the opening ceremony on Thursday.

He noted that the book fair also sheds light on the exemplary relations between Kuwait and Qatar.

All publications of the NCCAL, including “the world culture,” “global creativity” and the chain of “world of knowledge,” are on display at the book fair being organized by Qatar’s Ministry of Culture, he added.

Opened earlier today, the book fair lasts until May 18 with 515 publishers from 42 countries participating.

Source: Kuwait News Agency

Prime Minister Opens 33rd Doha International Book Fair

Doha: HE Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman bin Jassim Al-Thani inaugurated Thursday the 33rd Doha International Book Fair. Themed Knowledge Builds Civilizations, the event runs through May 19 at the Doha Exhibition and Convention Center.

HH Minister of Culture, Sports and Youth of the Sultanate of Oman Sayyid Theyazin bin Haitham Al Said attended the inauguration. Also present were a number of Their Excellencies sheikhs, ministers, heads of diplomatic missions, senior officials, and guests of the exhibition.

HE the Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs visited the exhibition pavilions and was briefed on the Qatari, Arab and foreign exhibitors, and the latest publications, books and manuscripts belonging to government agencies, Arab and international cultural institutions and embassies accredited to the state, especially the Sultanate of Oman, the guest of honor of this edition.

Oman’s pavilion showcases a special and diverse cultural program that highli
ghts the authentic Omani heritage, intellectual and literary production, and presents a group of popular and artistic performances.

His Excellency also visited the Doha Children, which is spanning 2,400 square meters, and offers a range of workshops and activities for children, theatrical and cultural programs, and booths for children’s book publishers.

Source: Qatar News Agency

33rd Doha Int’l Book Fair kicks off with wide participation

The 33rd Doha International Book Fair kicked off Thursday, under the slogan “Knowledge Builds Civilizations”, with the participation of about 515 publishing houses from 42 countries, including Kuwait.

The Sultanate of Oman participates as the guest of honor in this exhibition, where it participates in a special pavilion and a diverse cultural program that highlights the authentic Omani heritage, intellectual and literary production, and presents a group of popular and artistic performances.

The program of activities accompanying the Doha International Book Fair includes a group of workshops in various cultural, social and professional fields, in addition to a photo exhibition under the title “Read” in the Qatar Photography Centre’s pavilion.

Qatar’s Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, Sheikh Mohammad bin Abdulrahman, inaugurated the Expo.

Omani Minister of Culture, Sports and Youth, Dhi Yazan bin Haitham Al-Said, Qatari Minister of Culture Sheikh Abdulrahman bin Hamad, Egyptian Minister of Cul
ture Dr. Nevin Al-Kilani, and a number of others officials participated in the opening.

Source: Kuwait News Agency

Qatar Condemns in Strongest Terms Israeli Settler’s Attack on UNRWA Headquarters in Occupied Jerusalem

Doha: The State of Qatar condemned, in the strongest terms, the attack by Israeli settlers on the headquarters of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) in occupied Jerusalem, and considered it a blatant challenge to international law and blatant intimidation under the guise of freedom of expression.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs warned, in a statement today, that the systematic Israeli targeting of UNRWA, which began with allegations of its lack of impartiality, ultimately aims to liquidate it and deprive millions of Palestinians in the Gaza Strip, the West Bank, Jordan, Syria and Lebanon of its necessary services, especially with the continuation of the brutal war on the sector.

In this context, the Ministry stressed the need for the international community to stand firmly in line to confront this plan to avoid its disastrous humanitarian repercussions.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs renewed the State of Qatar’s full support for UNRWA, based on its f
irm and supportive position for the legitimate rights of the brotherly Palestinian people, foremost of which is their right to establish their independent state on the 1967 borders, with East Jerusalem as its capital.

Source: Qatar News Agency