King Abdullah Financial District Development and Management Company (KAFD DMC) and ASM Global have announced the signing of a strategic partnership through which ASM Global will lead the operation and management of the prestigious King Abdullah Financial District (KAFD) Conference Centre in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. This strategic partnership marks a significant milestone in ASM Global’s commitment to delivering world-class event experiences in the heart of the Middle East.

The LEED Gold certified Conference Centre is designed by the American architectural, urban planning and engineering firm Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM), and inspired by Saudi Arabia’s desert landscape. Defined by its bold structure, it features an organic faceted profile that connects the building with the surrounding terrain.

Recognised for its architectural excellence, cutting-edge facilities and versatile spaces, under the leadership of ASM Global, the KAFD Conference Centre eagerly anticipates elevating its standing as a premier venue for international gatherings, trade shows, and cultural experiences.

Gautam Sashittal (left) and Iain Wooldridge at the signing ceremony

A state-of-the-art facility capable of hosting various types of events and conferences, the Conference Centre includes a 1,215 sqm banquet hall that accommodates up to 800 guests, a 600-seat auditorium with full lecture and cinema support, and several outdoor plazas. It is fitted with operable walls and retractable projection screens, allowing for different configurations and digital networking.

Home to 1.6 million square meters of state-of-the-art office spaces, world-class venues, and iconic luxury residences, designed to transform the way urban communities live, work, and play, KAFD is the largest Platinum LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certified mixed-use business district in the world which is owned and managed by the King Abdullah Financial District Development and Management Company (KAFD DMC), a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Public Investment Fund (PIF).

ASM Global’s EVP of Asia and MENA, Paul Sergeant said, “Our commitment to excellence in venue management, event production, and customer service aligns perfectly with the KAFD Convention Centre’s vision of becoming a global event destination. With ASM Global MENA’s extensive global network, expertise, and industry-leading technology, we aim to provide event organizers with the tools and support they need to host successful and memorable events.

“As we embark on this exciting journey, ASM Global is committed to upholding the highest standards of sustainability, innovation, and community engagement. We look forward to building lasting partnerships with event organizers, local businesses, and the Riyadh community to create a thriving event ecosystem.”

Gautam Sashittal, CEO of KAFD DMC stated: “As the world ushers in a new era of global connectivity and transformative events, we’re filled with enthusiasm and anticipation about this partnership. Notably, Saudi Arabia’s tourism sector has recently elevated its 2030 target to host 150 million visitors, a substantial increase from the initial goal of 100 million. Riyadh, in line with a steady annual growth rate of 3.5%, anticipates a demographic surge, projecting a population of 10.5 million by 2030. Therefore, this collaboration underscores our commitment to delivering unparalleled event experiences within an integrated and comprehensive business and lifestyle destination, by working diligently with all concerned parties, in order to achieve the ambitious goals of Vision 2030”.

CFO and VP of Regional Planning of ASM Global MENA, Iain Wooldridge expressed his enthusiasm about this new venture, stating, “Assuming the operation of the KAFD Convention Centre is a testament to ASM Global MENA’s dedication to shaping the future of the event industry in the region. We are thrilled to collaborate with the visionary team behind the KAFD Convention Centre to bring innovative solutions and unparalleled experiences to event organizers and attendees alike.”

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