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Abu Dhabi's Bloom to enter Saudi Arabia with education assets

CEO Sameh Muhtadi said a deal would hopefully be signed "before the end of the year"

Abu Dhabi-based developer Bloom is set to enter the Saudi Arabian education sector [representational image].
Abu Dhabi-based developer Bloom is set to enter the Saudi Arabian education sector [representational image].
Sameh Muhtadi, CEO of Bloom Holdings.
Sameh Muhtadi, CEO of Bloom Holdings.

Abu Dhabi-based developer Bloom Holding will enter Saudi Arabia by building schools and nurseries in the kingdom. 

The company is in “very advanced discussions” with up to three partners to build education assets in Saudi Arabia, Sameh Muhtadi, chief executive officer of Bloom Holdings, told Construction Week.

“This would be our first venture in Saudi Arabia,” he added.

The company's schooling arm, Bloom Education, currently has Brighton College, Dwight Schools, and MindChamps in its portfolio, all in the UAE.

Saudi Arabia has emerged as an opportunity after the kingdom launched a major schooling reform as part of its Vision 2030 programme, which will see Saudi Arabia's government work with the private sector on the construction, financing, and running of education assets. 

READ: Construction start of Abu Dhabi's Bloom District likely in 2019

“We have two or three partners that we are in very advanced discussions [with] about expanding our education offering in Saudi Arabia, which would be for both nurseries and schools,” Muhtadi said. 

“This would be very positive for us in terms of diversification and it will help to build up our recurring revenue, which is something we are very focused on.”

While no agreements have been signed yet, Muhtadi said he hoped Bloom “will have a deal signed before the end of the year”. 

Meanwhile, Bloom recently opened two new schools in Dubai – Brighton College and White. The latter is a private school from Manhattan.

“Our schools will now have a capacity for 8,000 students and we are leveraging the fact that our teaches will need housing, so we will [accommodate] them in Tower A of Bloom Towers.”

Located in Jumeirah Village Circle, Bloom Towers in a trio of high-rise buildings collectively featuring 944 units connected by a four-storey podium.

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Construction Week - Issue 749
Sep 15, 2019