Amazon Web Services among firms investing over $10 billion in Saudi Arabian data centers

Saudi Arabia said firms including Amazon Web Services will invest over $10 billion in building data centers in the country as the desert kingdom tries to modernize and diversify its oil-dependent economy.

The deals were announced at the annual tech event LEAP in the capital city of Riyadh and will support the development of tech startups, the Saudi Press Agency reported. AWS, as Amazon’s cloud business is known, said its plans include spending $5.3 billion to create a new infrastructure region that’ll open in 2026 and help train local developers.

Amazon was among global technology giants including Alphabet Inc.’s Google and Microsoft Corp. that established regional headquarters in Saudi Arabia last year in response to a deadline for foreign firms to move operations to the country or risk losing government contracts. Its investment is a boon for the kingdom’s efforts to attract foreign investment and its plan to become a technology hub for the Middle East. 

DataVolt, a Saudi-based data center company, will also invest $5 billion developing data centers with a capacity of more 300 megawatts. IBM Corp. plans to allocate $250 million to a software development center, whille software firm ServiceNow is dedicating $500 million on localizing services in Saudi. 

Dell Technologies Inc. also intends to open a manufacturing a fulfillment center in the country, SPA said.

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