Google seems to be ending the year on a high note, as it announced a partnership with one of the largest Saudi Arabian oil companies – Aramco.
Through this partnership, Google will open a "cloud region" where it will provide services in Saudi Arabia via a joint venture, as COVID-19 prompts an acceleration in digital adoption across the country. Also, it gives access to a market that is expected to reach $10 billion by 2030.
From Aramco's point of view, the agreement will create room for political relations between the US technology companies and Saudi Arabia. The new infrastructure will boost the country's tech industry, in which it is already investing through the Public Investment Fund. According to Ahmad Al Sa'adi, Aramco's senior VP of technical services, "the future of Saudi Arabia's business transformation and growth depends on its ability to successfully leverage cloud services."
The deal, which is waiting for regulatory clearance, will be closed for an undisclosed amount.
But this is not Google's first major project in the region, as it prepares to establish a fiber-optic network that will connect Europe and India via Israel and Saudi Arabia. The project, Blue Raman Route, involves 5,000-mile-long underwater cables and is expected to cost $400 million.
Following the news, Google stock price traded 0.52% higher.
Sources: reuters.com, finance.yahoo.com