NEOM opens its first international office in London

NEOM opens its first international office in London
NEOM opens its first international office in London

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Jeddah - Yasmine El Tohamy - RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund has raised its stake in luxury carmaker Aston Martin to 20.5 percent from 17.9 percent, a bourse filing at the London Stock Exchange showed.

With a 2.6 percent increase in is holdings, the Public Investment Fund now holds a greater of share in the UK-firm than Geely and Chinese entrepreneur Shufu Li.

Aston Martin chair Lawrence Stroll remains the top shareholder at the carmaker made famous for being fictional spy James Bond’s car brand of choice.

According to the bourse filing, the new shares were awarded to PIF-backed Lucid Group.

On Nov. 8, Lucid unit Atieva also disclosed to have a 3.44 percent stake in Aston Martin.

In June, Lucid and Aston Martin had agreed to establish a long-term strategic technology partnership.

Under the deal, the US electric vehicle firm will provide Aston Martin with technology, including a rear drive unit with twin motors, battery modules and software for integrating systems.

In September, Lucid announced that the company’s first international manufacturing plant in Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah Economic City has began production, with more than 155,000 EVs to be assembled annually.

The PIF, widely touted to be the region’s vibrant economic engine that is currently steering the Kingdom’s diversification efforts has made several strategic investments in the automotive industry in recent years, which includes the establishment of Saudi Arabia’s first national EV brand, Ceer, in partnership with Foxconn.

In August, Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Industry and Mineral Resources said that Ceer is expected to contribute SR30 billion ($7.9 billion) to the Kingdom’s gross domestic product by 2034.

The ministry added that Ceer’s factory will attract over SR562 million in foreign direct investment and create up to 30,000 direct and indirect jobs.

In October, the PIF partnered with Saudi Electricity Co. to establish 5,000 fast EV chargers across the Kingdom by 2030.

Last month, the fund also launched a new company named Tasaru Mobility Investments to boost EV manufacturing and develop local supply chain capabilities in the Kingdom.

In a statement, PIF said that Tasaru Mobility Investments will accelerate the development of Saudi Arabia’s EV and autonomous mobility ecosystem.

Meanwhile, earlier in November, Aston Martin announced that it narrowed its pretax losses for the third quarter of this year to $142.9 million, compared to the loss of $227.2 million it incurred in the same period of the previous year.

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