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Abdullah Al-Badi CEO, Future Cities SAOC (TADOOM)

OMAN - Telecoms & IT

Abdullah Al-Badi

CEO, Future Cities SAOC (TADOOM)

Bio

Abdullah Al Badi, the CEO of TADOOM, is a Omani visionary entrepreneur with 14-plus years of experience in project management, process management, business analysis, system study, data modeling, and more. He has experience in driving government utilities projects in PPP models and a documented track record in electrical domain in metering and discom processes and solutions.

"Smart cities will sustain Oman’s growth, whether yielding immediate returns or in the years to come."
Tadoom focuses on developing end-to-end solutions including IoT connectivity solutions, renewable energy solutions, AI, big data solutions, and more for smart cities.
What was the rationale behind establishing Tadoom?

Tadoom is a semi-government company established by the National Energy Center and Omantel. Its purpose is to serve as the executing arm for smart city projects, IoT, and building the entire ecosystem to support Vision 2040 in terms of digital transformation at the city level. Tadoom aims to be a leading force behind pillar seven of Vision 2040, focusing on sustainable smart cities and the environmental pillar. With Tadoom, cities in Oman will have a reliable provider for the latest technologies, including IoT, AI, cloud computing, and big data analytics.

How is Tadoom expected to shape the ICT landscape in Oman through the development of smart cities?

In the public sphere, Tadoom will concentrate on facilitating the digitalization of newly announced city projects, such as the Sultan Haitham City project, and enhancing ecosystems in cities like Salalah and Muscat. The development of these new cities involves constructing everything from scratch, encompassing infrastructure connectivity, digitalization, and automation, paving the way for them to have a smart DNA. In the private sector, various projects related to urbanization and housing, such as Ras al Hamra, Tilal Al Irfan, and Hay al Sharq, have been announced by private operators. Tadoom will provide solutions for smart lighting, waste management, and irrigation systems, revolutionizing their operational processes and achieving significant savings of up to 40%.

What will be the impact of the development of smart cities on Oman’s investment landscape?

Smart cities will sustain Oman’s growth, whether yielding immediate returns or in the years to come. The entire ecosystem for constructing these projects can be encouraged. In Sultan Haitham City, numerous stakeholders need to engage in building the city from the ground up, encompassing infrastructure, roads, and various interest companies—whether public, private, international, or local. These projects also create opportunities for public-private partnerships (PPPs), a departure from the development paradigm of the past 50 years. The entire ecosystem will undergo a comprehensive transformation, fostering long-term private company presence in Oman, supported by Tadoom through its services.

How will Tadoom contribute to the development of PPPs in Oman?

There are two crucial pillars: technology and financing. Tadoom aims to transfer technology and know-how to Oman, fostering in-country capacity for city digitalization. On the financing front, we have attracted investments from the World Bank and International Finance Corporation for our projects. With long-term contracts spanning 20-50 years, international banks and multilateral financial institutions are keen to invest, given the government’s backing for such projects. Oman’s well-known rating and stable ecosystem contribute to this interest. Tadoom plays a vital role by supporting the IT aspects, including the application of technology for implementing PPP projects.

Which sectors are currently best positioned to be targeted?

Tadoom focuses on four distinct sectors, smart building, street lighting and infrastructure, environment management (waste, irrigation), asset management, automation, and robotics applications. With around 2,000 factories operating manually across Oman, there is a potential to not only reduce costs by automating processes but also to enhance efficiency significantly. Although this is a greenfield for us, we have already initiated efforts and developed in-house capabilities. Moreover, we have been granted a project called the Centers of Excellence, a training initiative led by the Ministry of Higher Education. In this ecosystem, monthly courses will be launched, training students, and connecting them with our projects, particularly in IoT and smart cities. Our role is to bring in the right experts and offer specific courses linked to projects.

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