SOURCE: Cisco Systems, Inc.

January 26, 2008 01:00 ET

Prince Abdulaziz Bin Musaed Economic City to Create Quad Play Infrastructure With Cisco Technology

Project Set to Create Plug and Play ICT Environment for Businesses and Residents

RIYADH, SAUDI ARABIA--(Marketwire - January 26, 2008) - Prince Abdulaziz Bin Musaed Economic City today signed a strategic agreement with Cisco® (NASDAQ: CSCO) for the information and communications technology (ICT) infrastructure development of what will be one of the largest logistics hubs in the Middle East. The collaboration will open up the possibility of next-generation quad-play connectivity (data, voice, video and mobile communications) to all businesses and residents operating within the city.

Located within the northern Saudi city of Hail, the Economic City is envisaged as an integrated commerce and industry hub stretching across 156 million square meters. Once complete, the project will boast an international airport, rail link, dry port and operations centre, and a supply chain centre within the logistics zone. Hail Economic City is projected to generate employment for 30,000 people and contribute to the doubling of Hail's GDP in the next decade.

Cisco will be providing the ICT technology architecture for this ambitious project, based on Cisco's Connected Real Estate solutions, through which all buildings in the city will be interconnected and controlled over a secured Internet Protocol (IP) network, which will help to centralize management operations and reduce the cost of day-to-day operation of the real estate. The network architecture will also provide a Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) infrastructure to enable automated asset tracking across the city.

"The technology infrastructure which will be deployed will be second to none and play a significant role in attracting global businesses to set up shop in the city. Furthermore, it will help create an enhanced quality of life and working experience for citizens working in this comprehensive logistics and mining hub," said Abdullah Taibah, CEO for Prince Abdulaziz Bin Musaed Economic City. "The ICT infrastructure will help companies reduce their capital and operational expenditures in addition to taking advantage of innovative services and enhanced convenience from such technology."

He added. "This is part of our commitment to develop world class infrastructure and help in efforts to boost the Saudi economy with more investments and creation of jobs for Saudi residents. Additionally, we project over 400,000 people will be working and living in the city in buildings designed to provide a unique lifestyle."

"We are committed to driving and supporting technology innovations for developing the Prince Abdulaziz Bin Musaed Economic City with Cisco's Connected Real Estate Initiative, developed to be a globally replicable model, to help expand and build entirely new cities with state-of-the-art networking technology," said Wim Elfrink, executive vice president and chief globalisation officer for Cisco. "A city wired from top-to-bottom with IP technology will play a major role in transforming real estate businesses and traditional industries like logistics, agriculture, energy and mineral mining."

About PABMEC:

Prince Abdul Aziz Bin Mousaed Economic City (PABMEC) is a 30 billion SAR (US$8 billion) economic city occupying a total area of 156 million square meters and will be responsible for creating 30 thousand new job opportunities in Hail. PABMEC will have as its Primary Cluster-Based Sector Mining, Agro-Industrial and a Building Materials, which will be underpinned by a robust Transportation, Supply & Logistics Services Sector. The Airport, Dry Port, and Land Freight in addition to the Passenger Rail Service will be the city's economic nerve in addition to contributing to its dynamic growth. Moreover, PABMEC is strategically situated and only an hour by plane from 11 Arab and regional capitals, thus making it a natural hub and a regional focal point for the transportation of goods and people. The Knowledge Zone will have research facilities and centers of excellence linked to the city's Primary Economic Sectors which will be responsible for rehabilitating and training the necessary human resources thus contributing PABMEC's sustainable business development and growth of its knowledge base. In addition PABMEC will also be supported by a Commercial, Residential and Recreational Sectors.

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