Saudi NEOM's tech unit rebrands as ‘Tonomus’, invests $1 bln in 2022 in AI

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NEOM Tech & Digital Company – the first company to be established as a full-fledged subsidiary of NEOM; Saudi Arabia’s flagship business and tourism development on the Red Sea – has rebranded as ‘Tonomus’, the company announced on Tuesday, as it works to integrate artificial intelligence-led technology in the building of its mega projects.

Headquartered at NEOM, Tonomus is building the cognitive foundation and adopting AI-led solutions integral to the development of NEOM and its flagship initiatives, including the futuristic city THE LINE, - which, when completed, will accommodate up to nine million residents in communities characterized by their revolutionary vertical design – and the city of OXAGON. This is in addition to the city of TROJENA which will feature a global mountain tourism destination offering the Arabian Gulf’s first outdoor skiing destination.

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In 2022, Tonomus invested $1 billion in 2022 in AI-driven products and hyperconnected, predictive and proactive solutions. These include the first-of-its-kind, mixed-reality, digital twin metaverse, and a cutting-edge consent management platform designed to restore trust and place personal data ownership back in the hands of users.

The name change represents Tonomus’ commitment to “realizing its vision, which includes attracting world-class tech talent to sustain and extend innovation, making Saudi Arabia a hub for global entrepreneurship and enabling NEOM to act as a global connector for the Kingdom,” the company said in a statement on its website.

Abdullah Alswaha, Saudi’s Minister of Communications & Information Technology and Chairman of Tonomus, said: “Tonomus has positioned NEOM as a global innovator of cognitive innovation with its constantly expanding portfolio of AI projects, its development of human-centric technologies and its collaborative partnerships with leading multinational tech companies. Tonomus is strengthening economic growth and igniting diversification and innovation within Saudi Arabia with its cutting-edge technologies and solutions.”

Nadhmi Al-Nasr, CEO of NEOM, added: “The launch of Tonomus confirms our progress toward achieving the goals of NEOM and Vision 2030. Tonomus will support our ambitions by contributing to the future of the tech and digital industry, stimulating innovation, and driving the development of the world’s first cognitive community. This will be realized by involving the most talented and brightest minds to develop the integrated system that will be utilized across all of NEOM’s businesses, sectors and projects.”

The rebrand represents the next step in the company’s ascent, it said.

A key element of this strategic pillar is the $200 million (750 million SAR) joint venture with Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellite operator OneWeb, aimed at providing rapid and reliable connectivity and enabling NEOM’s ground-breaking ecosystem of cognitive technologies.

In addition to deploying 300 km of fiber optics, 200 5G cell sites and a Telco Park, Tonomus’ Cognitive Connectivity Hub strategy comprises the establishment of ZeroPoint DC, NEOM’s half-billion-dollar, next-generation hyperscale data center, and a partnership with Oracle, the world's largest database management company.

Joseph Bradley, CEO of Tonomus, said: “Technology is constantly evolving, and – as a global disruptor and innovator – Tonomus is on the same forward-thinking and fast-moving trajectory toward the future. With a new identity, renewed sense of purpose and focus on true inclusivity, Tonomus will be a synonym for cognitive tech and proactive, predictive solutions that fundamentally reimagine human experiences and the way we live.”

“Tonomus is also nurturing entrepreneurship both within and beyond the organization, which will cement NEOM’s reputation as the epicenter of innovation, and Saudi Arabia as a place where the world’s brightest minds can bring their ideas to life.”

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