The very model of a modern Arab diplomat: Prince Khaled bin Bandar bin Sultan

July 2, 2019

If French is the traditional language of diplomacy, it seems appropriate that Prince Khaled was born in Paris and, we understand, proudly retains his links to the French state. Indeed you might be forgiven for thinking that his appointment as the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s eighth ambassador to the United Kingdom in April this year, […]

Home grown in the desert: agri-tech companies in the UAE and Saudi Arabia

May 7, 2019

The dry, sun-drenched deserts of the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia are not the obvious place to think of cultivating crops, yet restaurants and supermarkets in the region are increasingly stocking fruits and vegetables that have been grown locally – how is this even possible? Local food production is rapidly rising up the political […]

To be a (business)woman in Saudi Arabia

June 27, 2018

In the week that Saudi Arabia became the last country in the world to permit women to drive, you may be forgiven for thinking that the Gulf is only just waking up to ideas such as women’s rights and equal opportunities.  However, issues that have dominated the Western news agenda in recent times such as […]

Diligencia 10 years on – Part 2

March 28, 2018

As I look back over the last ten years I am struck by the fact that the MENA region has seen seismic changes.  Quite apart from the political upheavals, notably the so-called Arab Spring, which at times led to a revolving door of the subjects we were asked to research, the following cases have had […]

The Saudi corruption purge in 5 charts and tables

January 19, 2018

Mohammed bin Salman’s crackdown on corruption briefly reappeared on the radar of international media outlets this week with the news that Prince Muteb bin Abdullah, previously head of the Saudi national guard, had been released and that the Riyadh Ritz (pictured) had re-opened after being used as a luxury prison for those detainees with a […]

2017 in review – ClarifiedBy Diligencia (Part 1)

December 27, 2017

For a region used to turbulence and conflict, 2017 has been an eventful year for the Middle East by any measure.  The motor behind many of the year’s most eye-catching moments was Saudi Arabia which, under the growing power of crown prince Mohammed bin Salman (pictured), has not only embarked on a radical programme of […]

The Independent’s Saudi investor

August 24, 2017

More details about Sultan Mohamed Abuljadayel have gradually been emerging since the announcement on 28 July that he had acquired 30 per cent of Independent Digital News and Media, owner of the Independent digital newspaper.  Based on our own research, Abuljadayel is remarkable largely for his lack of public profile – he has no corporate […]

COMPANIES IN THE NEWS: Mohammed Al Abbar, Noon.com and Adeptio

March 24, 2017

Amazon’s announcement this week that it has agreed to acquire Souq.com for an estimated USD650m sets the scene for a battle between the global online retail giant and a soon-to-launch regional competitor in the shape of Noon.com. The prize at stake is large, with the Middle East region’s online shopping market set to grow by […]

Feast and famine: current investor sentiment towards Saudi Arabia

September 5, 2016

Institutional investors are salivating over Saudi Arabia’s first international debt sale, likely to be held next month, as reports over the weekend suggest a “clamour” of interest – reportedly prompting Riyadh to consider a whole series of such sales. Together with the promised (though so far vague in its detail) partial float of Saudi Aramco, […]