Increases Investment Commitment to SAR 16 Billion Opens First Multiplex at Riyadh Park
Dubai (April 20, 2018) – VOX Cinemas, the MENA region’s largest cinema operator, is honoured to be awarded one of the first licenses to operate cinemas in Saudi Arabia. Its brand-new cinema, which will be the first multiplex in Saudi Arabia will open at Riyadh Park Mall in the coming days. Today’s announcement paves the way for VOX Cinemas to start delivering on an ambitious plan to bring its world-class cinema entertainment portfolio to Saudi Arabia and support the growth of audio-visual and creative talent across the Kingdom.
The VOX Cinemas Riyadh Park experience will include four screens located within the largest Magic Planet Family Entertainment Centre in the region. Content including animation, family-friendly films and educational movies will be available through a completely unique and world-class portfolio of viewing experiences including the first IMAX screen to exhibit movies and VOX KIDS, the concept designed especially for young movie fans.
VOX Cinemas parent company Majid Al Futtaim, the leading shopping mall, communities, retail and leisure pioneer across the Middle East, Africa and Asia is an active supporter of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030. Majid Al Futtaim has already announced project investments valued at SAR 14 billion across their mall asset, fashion, leisure and retail offerings in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. This commitment is expected to create more than 114,000 direct and indirect job opportunities.
Commenting on today’s announcement, Majid Al Futtaim CEO Alain Bejjani said: “We thank the Saudi Government, the Ministry of Culture and Information and the General Commission for Audio-visual Media for the confidence they have placed in us to contribute to a new chapter in the history of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. VOX Cinemas will join a growing stable of Majid Al Futtaim’s leading retail, leisure and entertainment brands operating across the Kingdom.”
VOX Cinemas is investing an additional SAR 2bn to open 600 screens in the next five years in Saudi Arabia. These new cinema developments will create some 3,000 direct jobs, providing a boost to the diversification agenda for the Saudi economy. Through its partnership with 20th Century Fox, the distribution arm of Majid Al Futtaim Cinemas will also be exclusively distributing Fox content to all cinemas across Saudi Arabia. In 2018, the company is planning to release anticipated hits including The Darkest Minds, The Predator and the James Cameron produced Alita Battle Angel.
Bejjani added, “Majid Al Futtaim is proud to be one of the largest private sector investors in the Kingdom and Vision 2030, with an investment commitment now increasing to SAR 16 billion.”
Majid Al Futtaim Ventures CEO Ahmed Galal Ismail said, “We are excited by the opportunity to be a catalyst for the development of creative talent and content in the Kingdom. VOX Cinemas is honoured to deliver our world-class portfolio of viewing experiences and premium concepts unrivalled anywhere else in Saudi Arabia. We are committed to providing our Saudi audience with countless great moments while making a direct contribution to the diversification of the Saudi economy.”
Further cinemas currently under design include Majid Al Futtaim’s Mall of Saudi and City Centre Ishbiliyah, with both locations opening in Riyadh in the coming years, with additional announcements on new locations expected in the coming weeks.
As recipient of the Global Achievement in Exhibition Award at CinemaCon 2017 and with 32 cinema complexes in seven countries in the MENA region, VOX Cinemas is already well-known to Saudi movie fans. In addition to the IMAX and KIDS concepts at the Riyadh Park location, VOX Cinemas complexes across the region also include THEATRE by Rhodes and GOLD by Rhodes. Both are unique concepts that combine fine-dining with a VIP cinema experience and appeal to the region’s discerning movie guests. VOX Cinemas’ upcoming locations in Saudi are expected to offer these concepts together with the open-air viewing experience, OUTDOOR and MAX, the mega-screen that’s ideal for blockbuster movies.
Majid Al Futtaim has had a significant presence in Saudi Arabia for more than 14 years through Carrefour, operating 16 hypermarkets and supermarkets with more than 7,000 employees. The company also operates Enova in Saudi Arabia, a facility management company, through a joint venture operation with Veolia and owns a fashion retail business representing international brands such as AllSaints, Abercrombie & Fitch and Sacoor.
About Majid Al Futtaim Cinemas
VOX Cinemas is the Middle East’s most innovative and customer-focused cinema exhibitor. VOX Cinemas is the cinema arm of Majid Al Futtaim, the leading shopping mall, retail and leisure pioneer across the Middle East and North Africa. With 32 cinema complexes totalling 318 screens across the region, including 163 screens in the UAE, 15 screens in Lebanon, 47 screens in Oman, 30 screens in Bahrain, 28 screens in Egypt, 18 screens in Qatar and 17 screens in Kuwait, VOX Cinemas is now the Middle East’s largest and fastest growing cinema exhibitor.
The company is undergoing a 1.2 billion Dirham investment that will see the company expand to operate at least 800 screens across 60 locations in the region by 2020. Tailoring every cinema location to the surrounding market place and customer preferences, VOX Cinemas offers a mix of cinema experiences including two luxury cinema concepts, THEATRE by Rhodes and GOLD by Rhodes which are collaborations with Michelin-starred Chef Gary Rhodes. Taking the MAX big screen cinema to the next level, VOX Cinemas currently operates the Middle East’s largest cinema screen in the region at the Virgin Radio MAX screen in City Centre Deira in Dubai. VOX Cinemas also has the very first and only IMAX with Laser screen in the Middle East, holds the Middle East’s exclusive rights to the immersive 4DX experience, and operates KIDS, the very first cinema in the Middle East dedicated to kids having fun. VOX Cinemas also recently introduced OUTDOOR, the first open air VOX Cinemas in the region located on Galleria Mall’s Rooftop in Dubai for the cooler months of the year.
About Majid Al Futtaim
Founded in 1992, Majid Al Futtaim is the leading shopping mall, communities, retail and leisure pioneer across the Middle East, Africa and Asia.
A remarkable business success story, Majid Al Futtaim started from one man’s vision to transform the face of shopping, entertainment and leisure to ‘create great moments for everyone, every day’. It has since grown into one of the United Arab Emirates’ most respected and successful businesses spanning 15 international markets, employing more than 40,000 people, and obtaining the highest credit rating (BBB) among privately-held corporates in the region.
Majid Al Futtaim owns and operates 23 shopping malls, 12 hotels and three mixed-use communities, with further developments underway in the region. The shopping malls portfolio includes Mall of the Emirates, Mall of Egypt, City Centre malls, My City Centre neighbourhood centres, and four community malls which are in joint venture with the Government of Sharjah. The Company is the exclusive franchisee for Carrefour in 38 markets across Middle East, Africa and Asia, and operates a portfolio of more than 230 outlets in 15 countries.
Majid Al Futtaim operates over 300 VOX Cinema screens and 32 Magic Planet family entertainment centres across the region, in addition to iconic leisure and entertainment facilities such as Ski Dubai, Orbi Dubai and Ski Egypt, among others. The Company is parent to the consumer finance company ‘Najm’, a fashion retail business representing international brands such as Abercrombie & Fitch, AllSaints, lululemon athletica, Crate & Barrel and Maison du Monde; and a healthcare business that operates City Centre Clinics. In addition, Majid Al Futtaim operates Enova, a facility and energy management company, through a joint venture operation with Veolia, a global leader in optimised environment resource management. The Company also owns the rights to The LEGO Store and American Girl in the Middle East and operates in the food and beverage industry through a partnership with Gourmet Gulf.
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