Tencent Cloud, the cloud business unit of Chinese technology conglomerate Tencent Holdings, will mark its entry into Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region by setting up an internet data centre (IDC) in Bahrain by the year-end.
Tapping into the growing opportunities in the region, Tencent Cloud has inked a collaboration with the Bahrain Economic Development Board (EDB), the Kingdom of Bahrain’s Investment promotion agency. The two parties signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with an aim to drive the Kingdom of Bahrain’s IDC development and make it the hub for cloud and IDC sectors in the MENA region, according to an official statement.
It is Tencent Cloud’s first ever public cloud infrastructure in the MENA region.
The partnership is expected to boost the local digital economy as it would empower organisations in the region to expedite their digital transformation journey. It will also allow Tencent Cloud to leverage on Bahrain’s regional position, and the EDB’s connectivity with local and regional stakeholders, including Bahrain’s sovereign wealth fund, Mumtalakat.
“While the local government in Bahrain has been making significant efforts to grow the local IDC industry, Tencent Cloud is excited to collaborate with Bahrain EDB as part of our ongoing efforts to ramp up the global IDC landscape. We will launch all necessary steps to set up a brand-new IDC in Bahrain to provide better coverage all over the Middle East and North African regions along the Belt and Road, fully supporting Bahrain’s ‘Cloud-First’ strategy,” Poshu Yeung, Senior Vice President, Tencent Cloud International, said.
Under the MoU, Tencent Cloud will launch an IDC in Bahrain, which will go live by the end of 2021. Bahrain EDB, together with public and private stakeholders, will encourage the continued adoption of cloud services to further the digital transformation agenda. According to the statement, support will be offered to partner companies to leverage cloud services in collaboration with local stakeholders such as Tamkeen.
Tencent Cloud will set up training initiatives jointly with the local government in universities and educational institutions across the Kingdom to allow for further knowledge transfer and qualified digital technology talents.
“As a global leader in technology, innovation and cloud services, the EDB is very proud to be partnering with Tencent to set up their first MENA data center hub in Bahrain. We are confident that Tencent will be able to leverage on the Kingdom’s regional connectivity, local talent, and business friendly environment to expand their services and reach clients across the region,” H.E. Khalid Humaidan, Chief Executive, Bahrain Economic Development Board, said.
Tencent Cloud’s interactive and AI-enabled cloud platform offers features such as optical character recognition technology; custom templates; and facial, image and speech recognition.
The company has launched a number of new solutions including VooV Meeting and Global Office Access (GOA), and set up 300 edge computing centres to help businesses improve process efficiency and quality, customer experience and employee productivity.
Tencent Cloud, which operates in 27 regions and 60 availability zones around the world, provides cloud products and services to organisations and enterprises across the world. It leverages cloud computing, big data analytics, artificial intelligence, Internet of Things, and security capabilities to provide hybrid cloud solutions, global availability, and protection to enterprises. Its enterprise solutions covers a slew of sectors including finance, education, healthcare, retail, industry, transport, energy and radio & television.