• New facility in Ras Bufontas Free Zone will cater to growing entertainment technology markets in the EMEA region
  • Facility to include an international experience and entertainment technology centre, innovation lab and a large‐scale production workshop

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Doha,  Qatar  –  13  December  2021:  Cityneon  Holdings,  a  global  entertainment  company  based  in  Singapore that specializes in unique, immersive, and large‐scale experiences, signed in Doha a strategic partnership agreement with Qatar Free Zones Authority (QFZA) to establish a facility in Qatar Free Zones. The facility will cater to growing entertainment technology and experience markets in the Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) region.

The  agreement  was  signed  during  a  ceremony  at  Ras  Bufontas  Free  Zone  in  the  presence  of  H.E.  Ahmad Al‐Sayed, Minister of State and Chairman of QFZA, H.E. Akbar Al Baker, Qatar Airways Group Chief  Executive  and  Secretary‐General  of  Qatar’s  National  Tourism  Council  and  H.E.  Jai  S  Sohan,  Singapore’s Ambassador to Qatar, as well as QFZA senior management. It was signed by QFZA CEO Lim  Meng  Hui  and  Cityneon  General  Manager  of  Middle  East  Feroz  Siddiqui.  Cityneon’s  senior  management team, including Executive Chairman and Group CEO Ron Tan, joined virtually from Singapore.

Cityneon’s new facility will be built across 15,000 square meters in Ras Bufontas Free Zone, and will include an international experience and entertainment technology centre, an innovation lab focused on R&D in animatronics and robotics, and a large‐scale production workshop. Cityneon will produce large‐scale experiences in Qatar as they have done around the world, such as their Jurassic World: The Movie Exhibition in Chengdu, China, and their Avengers S.T.A.T.I.O.N. exhibition in Las Vegas and many more.

Lim Meng Hui, CEO of QFZA, said, “We are delighted to welcome Cityneon, a leading entertainment technology company that designs and manufactures equipment and robotics for the sector. Cityneon’s decision  to  open  its  first  such  facility  in  the  Middle  East  at  Qatar  Free  Zones  is  testament  to  the  strength of our offering and the exciting trajectory of the entertainment technology industry and the tourism sector in Qatar and across the region, in line with Qatar National Vision 2030. Qatar Free Zones  provide  an  ideal  environment  for  international  and  local  companies  with  the  skills  and  innovation to help build a better future.”

Cityneon’s Executive Chairman and Group CEO Ron Tan said, “We are pleased to be working closely with QFZA to fast‐track our expansion plans in the EMEA region, which is a strategic and important market for the company. We see immense potential for our IP business in the EMEA region and the strategic location of our new facility in Qatar will be pivotal in addressing the markets that we plan to serve, as well as for us to reach out to potential partners and collaborators for the Group.”

Feroz Siddiqui, who will lead the new facility as General Manager ‐ Middle East, added, “With this new office we embark on our middle eastern journey in bringing cheer, joy, laughter and smiles to awe our audiences  with  our  large,  immersive  and  technologically  advanced  entertainment  assets  to  the  region.”

Singapore’s ambassador to Qatar  H.E.  Jai  S Sohan,  who witnessed the  ceremony, added,  “It is  my  delight to see Cityneon set up base in Qatar Free Zones, a leading hub for innovation in the region, as the latest of many Singaporean companies with operations in Qatar. The new facility will not only boost tourism across the region but also attract a new talent pool to the developing entertainment technology industry.”

The new venture is expected to bring varied benefits to Qatar. Cityneon is a global leader in immersive experiences and will help develop the regional entertainment technology and Intellectual Property (IP) industry to generate new jobs in robotics and animatronics, costume design and fabrication, and sculpting and moulding, among others. Qatar Free Zones’ technology and research ecosystem will enable  Cityneon  to  enhance  its  IP  business  operations  for  the  region  and  benefit  from  a  growing  community of like‐minded organizations, dedicated research and innovation facilities, and partnership opportunities.

The partnership between QFZA and Cityneon will also support Qatar’s National Vision 2030, which aims to create a knowledge‐based economy and promote economic diversification. It will expand the significant skilled labour pool in Qatar and support the ongoing digital transformation of the country.

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