Under an agreement signed with Saudi Minister of Culture Prince Badr bin Farhan in 2020, MBC Group has moved its headquarters from Dubai to Riyadh.
Saudi-owned MBC Group (Middle East Broadcasting Centre) has inaugurated its new headquarters in Riyadh.
During an exclusive purple-carpet event held under the patronage of Dr Majid bin Abdullah Alkassabi, Acting Minister of Media of Saudi Arabia, MBC Group’s new centre of operations in the Saudi capital was inaugurated by Waleed bin Ibrahim Al Ibrahim, Chairman of MBC Group.
The celebration was attended by a host of royal family members, ministers, ambassadors, representatives of diplomatic missions in Riyadh, and dignitaries. Other guests included MBC Group’s executive directors, famous faces of MBC’s host of TV channels as well as from Al Arabiya, plus strategic partners, advertisers, media, and Saudi influencers.
During the launch, Al Ibrahim stated: “Three decades on after the beginning of MBC Group’s journey, we are finally here in Riyadh – we are finally here in our homeland. It was always in our ambitions to be based here; right from the very first day of our launch in London in 1991. But back then, we truly thought that this dream would remain what it was; merely an ambitious yet unattainable dream. Little did we know that one day, it would become a reality.”
He continued: “Our great nation has been witnessing a spectacular revival, with rapid development across numerous fields and industries. This, of course, is under the leadership of the Custodian of Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, and His Royal Highness the Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdulaziz.
“The development of, and the unlimited support that has been made available to the Kingdom’s cultural and creative industries – including media and entertainment – has made it possible for the Arab world’s talented creators to realise their dreams. And this has only made us even more excited and enthralled to be with you here in Riyadh today.”
Al Ibrahim concluded: “It’s difficult for me to put into words the magnitude of changes that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has undergone in such a short time. It truly is awe-inspiring.
“And as we continue to lead in our field in the region, we know that being based here in Riyadh will only make us stronger and more accomplished, elevating our projects to even higher grounds that match our immense ambitions. Today, our goal is even bigger, with us working towards MBC Group becoming one of the world’s most prominent international media organisations.”
Chairman of MBC Group stated: “On this momentous occasion, I must take a moment to express our endless thanks and gratitude to our brothers in the United Arab Emirates – the leadership and their people, led by His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE and Ruler of Abu Dhabi. The encouragement of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai had a great impact on our numerous successes that were achieved during our time there.”
Sam Barnett, CEO of MBC Group, added: “For many of you, MBC has always been here. For 31 years, MBC has been in the corner of your living rooms. We’ve been here in Ramadan and Eid. We’ve been here in your cars as you drive to work. And we’ve been here reporting on the events that have shaped your nation.
“As we celebrate the opening of our new headquarters – we’re also celebrating the special bond between MBC and its Saudi audience that goes back over three decades. And we’re excited, because this new headquarters is a springboard to launch new projects across the Kingdom.”
Barnett also revealed that more than 80 titles were scheduled to be produced in Saudi Arabia in the coming period.
A video, featuring the MBC Group’s television career spanning over three decades, was presented on occasion. MBC Group moved its base of operations from Dubai to a new complex in Riyadh.
Saudi Arabia introduced its first channel, MBC 1, in London in 1991 and it moved to Dubai’s Media City in 2002. In 2020, MBC Group signed an agreement with Saudi Minister of Culture Prince Badr bin Farhan under which MBC shift its headquarters to Riyadh as a hub for its 24-hour news channel Al Arabiya and its breaking news channel Al-Hadath.