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RIYADH: The Cultural Development Fund has announced the launch of a film sector financing program with a budget of SR879 million ($234 million) on the sidelines of the Ignite the Scene event in Riyadh.

It is an initiative of the Ignite Digital Content Program, and will contribute to the Saudi film sector and promotion of digital content.

Ignite the Scene is organized by the Saudi Ministry of Communications and Information Technology and will run until March 18 at the King Abdullah Financial District.

Mohammed bin Dayel, the CEO of CDF, said: “We are excited to announce that we have partnered with strategic financial institutions across the country to provide companies working in the film sector with the financial solutions to shore up the sector, establish financial sustainability for projects, and enable healthy market dynamics.”

Bin Dayel added that the program will activate two funding vehicles “lending and investment.”

CDF signed agreements with financial partners Lendo and Sukuk Capital that will provide financing packages to companies working in the Saudi film sector. The investment vehicle will be launched later this year.

Ignite the Scene attracts people in the film and media industry from all over the Kingdom to learn more about the future endeavors of the movie industry.

CDF signed agreements with financial partners Lendo and Sukuk Capital that will provide financing packages to companies working in the Saudi film sector. (AN photo by Huda Bashatah)

Ahmed Baageel, production designer and CEO of Riyadh video production service Makzn7, told Arab News how such events were important in the film industry.

He said: “In production design and art in general, a lot of the attention goes to the writing and directing, but there are other people involved: the lighting and art department who go through a long journey.

“That’s why, at the end of this, I would love to shed a light on all art directors in the team who work so hard.”

Baageel said that he attended the event to connect with participants in the film industry, get to know new individuals, and learn from others’ experiences.

He added: “These events help us individuals in the industry reconnect with one another and benefit from one another.

“It’s crazy how these events can bring us together and lead us to new opportunities.”

Abdullah Al-Eyaf, CEO of the Saudi Film Commission, expressed his appreciation of the industry in his opening speech.

He said: “This progress in the film industry enables us today to point our country towards a bright tomorrow, and we will reach it in a manner worthy of us.”



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