Global Business Ventures Awarded License from Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority, Paving Way for Multibillion-Dollar Mixed-Use Development
Randall Langer, chairman of Chicago-based Global Business Ventures, today joined officials from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority (SAGIA) in Washington, D.C., for the presentation of a SAGIA business license – the first step in a planned multibillion-dollar, mixed-used development that could bring as many as 25,000 housing units and 1 million square feet of commercial space to three sites north of Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
Global Business Ventures, a consortium of U.S. and Saudi Arabian business leaders dedicated to planning and executing large-scale community developments that align with the Saudi Vision 2030 plan, currently has the three parcels under contract. Together, they comprise more than 9.75 million square meters, or approximately 2,400 acres.
“We are delighted to award this license and look forward to welcoming Global Business Ventures to Saudi Arabia,” said Ibrahim Al-Omar, governor of SAGIA. “The unprecedented program of reforms being implemented in Saudi Arabia is unlocking an exciting range of opportunities for investors in the Middle East’s largest economy.
“One of SAGIA’s strategic goals is to act as an advocate for investors, enable them to invest, and establish their businesses in Saudi Arabia,” continued Al-Omar. “In its efforts to ease licenses procedures, SAGIA has extended the license period for foreign investment from one year to a period of up to five years, renewable.”
A member of both the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and Gulf Cooperation Council, Global Business Ventures has retained two global commercial real estate firms to conduct site evaluation and feasibility studies. The pre-development design process, led by GBV Master Architect Scott Sarver of Chicago-based smdp LLC, is currently underway, with the goal of creating a next-generation development that realizes the shared vision of SAGIA and the GBV team. When complete, it will create a live-work-play community that is both affordable to Saudi citizens and sustainable.
“We welcome the opportunity presented to Global Business Ventures by SAGIA and the government of Saudi Arabia to assemble a consortium of the world’s finest companies to provide new and innovative housing projects to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia,” said Langer. “SAGIA’s outstanding support of our investments extends across all of the ministries to whom they have introduced us. It is very refreshing to be working with such a collaborative, forward-looking group of government and business leaders who firmly believe in the Vision 2030 plan.”
Thursday’s meeting was co-hosted by SAGIA and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s U.S.-Saudi Arabia Business Program, a leading platform dedicated to strengthening and expanding the commercial and investment relationship between the United States and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
“Receiving the license today from SAGIA’s governor is an important step forward for Global Business Ventures,” said Steve Lutes, vice president of Middle East Affairs at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. “It demonstrates their commitment to doing business and growing in the Kingdom. At the U.S. Chamber, we hope more American companies will similarly deepen and expand their work in Saudi Arabia and pursue the vast opportunities made possible through the economic diversification of Vision 2030.”