RIYADH, 23 January 2019 – The General Entertainment Authority (GEA) has revealed that 2019 will mark the start of a new phase for the entertainment sector in Saudi Arabia with a staggering number of projects and events lined up, including live performances, international exhibitions, Ramadan competitions, e-gaming events, and even the world-famous Madame Tussauds wax museum.
The Chairman of the Board at the General Entertainment Authority, Turki bin Abdulmohsen Al Sheikh, announced the authority’s new strategy during a press conference held on Tuesday in Riyadh in the presence of several officials and media representatives.
The new ambitious strategy seeks to position the Kingdom among the top four entertainment destinations in the Asian region and the top 10 globally.
In addition to revealing the new strategy, the GEA took advantage of the press conference to debut its new brand identity and to launch its new events platform, “Enjoy Saudi”, which will be “information central” for all entertainment, cultural and sporting events in the Kingdom. An app for mobile devices will allow everyone to enjoy easy access to all event information.
Also announced at the event were a number of recently signed agreements involving a number of governmental and private bodies. Four agreements were signed with each of the following: the Saudi Standards, Metrology, and Quality Organization; the Ministry of Municipal and Rural Affairs; the General Authority for Small and Medium Enterprises; and Sela Sport.
International Entertainment Mainstays to Partner with GEA
The GEA also signed numerous MoUs with major international and local private entertainment companies to begin activities in the Kingdom. These companies include Balich from Italy, AVEX from Japan, the truly global Broadway Entertainment, the Middle Eastern 1001 Inventions, and many others.
In his remarks, Chairman Al Sheikh stressed on the significance of the entertainment sector.
“The entertainment sector is an important sector, and the Saudi leadership takes every interest to ensure it fulfils the objectives of enhancing the quality of life in the Kingdom, effectively contributing to the economy and creating jobs – ” GEA Chairman Al Sheikh.
He also urged banks, financial companies, businessmen, and government entities to foster collaboration to contribute towards building a robust and world-class entertainment sector that fulfills the needs and aspirations of the Saudi people.
“Entertainment makes up a big portion of Vision 2030, it’s not just concerts, but it includes various sectors,” he said.
He also outlined a number of entertainment initiatives being prepared for the next phase of GEA’s new strategy. These include mounting international exhibitions, constructing theatres, and organising large-scale live performances in cooperation with the General Sports Authority.
GEA will work to attract global exhibitions and interactive presentations and shows, including the world-famous Madame Tussauds wax museum which will visit the Saudi capital Riyadh as well as the Red Sea port city of Jeddah. Also in the card is a Saudi version of Dutch reality television show “The Voice” as well as professional bull riding, and negotiations to win one of the National Basketball Association (NBA) professional basketball matches.
The announcement event commenced with the Saudi national anthem performed by Abadi Al Jouhar, Amir Abdul Majeed, and Mohammed Surour, and was followed by a visual presentation highlighting the new identity for GEA.
Chairman Al Sheikh also outlined a number of entertainment initiatives being prepared for the next phase which include conducting international exhibitions, constructing theatres and organising live performances in cooperation with GEA.
During the event, he also conducted a special live talk show with journalist Amr Adib where he reiterated the importance of entertainment as a key economic sector that creates jobs and attracts investors from all around the world. The interview also included a visual presentation of the most notable entertainment performances from around the world.