British Airways launches business opportunity grants in Saudi Arabia to support SMEs
- Saudi Arabia: Thursday, January 19 - 2012 at 11:52
- PRESS RELEASE
British Airways announced the launch of Opportunities Grants in Saudi Arabia. The initiative sees the airline award 50 Club World tickets (business class) to SMEs in Saudi Arabia.
Each winning business will receive one return Club World (Business Class) ticket to use anywhere on the airline's global network to help support their businesses and seek out new opportunities. The booking can include up to four sectors - a winning company can fly between Saudi Arabia and New York return.
British Airways is committed to Saudi Arabia and by investing in local business they are confident that it will demonstrate the value of travelling for business. With this, Saudi Arabia thus joins countries like South Africa, India, Hong Kong and the United Arab Emirates, where the airline has launched similar programmes.
Andrew Crawley, Commercial Director, British Airways spoke at the event: "For businesses to be successful you need to travel to where the opportunities are. Connecting people globally is one of our priority objectives, and we've long known that the key to building a successful long-term business partnership is through face-to-face meetings.
"By launching British Airways Business Opportunity Grants we hope to help small and medium sized businesses in Saudi Arabia to increase their revenues, and help with their strategic growth plans."
SMEs in Saudi Arabia represent almost 93 per cent of total enterprises and account for about 24.7 per cent of total employment. Extensive surveys carried out by the Council of Saudi Chambers of Commerce and Industry (CSCCI) and the United Nations Industrial Development Organization document that among the main concerns of businessmen is the lack of opportunity to connect globally with other businesses to grow capital and increase credit ratings.
Saudi Arabia is one of the least affected countries by the global economic crisis, where the government was successful in staying on course with its development plans. This partly created fresh opportunities for entrepreneur-minded Saudis to setup and invest in new SMEs. The growing government emphasis on this sector, through a number of financial and educational support programs has visibly impacted its growth.
Ms. Kim Al-Sahhaf, Head of Competitiveness Initiatives at SAGIA commented: "It is an exciting opportunity for SAGIA to partner with British Airways on their important initiative to support entrepreneurship in the Kingdom. SAGIA has been supporting the small and medium sized businesses in the Kingdom through their own initiative, the Saudi Fast Growth 100 (SFG 100) and this new partnership with British Airways will potentially further fuel the opportunities and growth for the SFG 100 community. We will promote this new partnership with all of our partners to spread the awareness, the reach and the impact of the British Airways Business Opportunity Grant."
Chris Innes-Hopkins, Director of UK Trade & Investment in Saudi Arabia added: " SME development and support for entrepreneurs are key priorities of the Saudi and British governments and the Saudi British Joint Business Council. I warmly welcome British Airways' initiative which will help to build business partnerships between small and medium-sized companies in Saudi Arabia, the UK and the wider world."
The grants will offer winning companies the opportunity to travel overseas and conduct face-to-face business meetings that will result in stronger partnerships, new projects, and revenue for small-medium business sectors in Saudi Arabia. For the chance to win, companies should visit ba.com/saudigrants and state their business objectives for 2012, and how a British Airways Business Opportunity Grant would benefit their organization.
On board, British Airways Club World customers can enjoy their own private space to work or relax as they choose. From the ergonomically designed seating with 'z' bed position, more storage and greater privacy, to a 6 foot fully flat bed and Club Kitchen, the business travellers every need is catered for. On the ground, refreshments and business facilities in the Galleries lounges at Terminal 5 ensure the business traveller benefits from feeling refreshed and ready to seize every business opportunity.
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