Samsung SDS is pushing for a “smart town” project in Saudi Arabia after the Korean information technology service provider recently announced a plan to downsize its business in Korea to focus on the global market.
The concept of a smart town is somewhere between a smart city and a smart building, as the buildings in the town are interconnected by information communications technology.
“Samsung SDS is eyeing an ICT-based medical town in Saudi Arabia, as part of its new smart town project,” said an industrial source.
“The company is to provide IT solutions to connect hospitals, hotels, schools and parking lots in the medical complex,” he said, asking to not be named. “Solutions to be applied are hospital information systems and electronic medical records for health care, a smart learning platform, automatic fare collection, and digital space convergence.”
Industrial observers said chances are high that Samsung SDS will win the Saudi project as Samsung’s reputation there is good due to the success of Samsung Engineering and Samsung Corp. in the Middle Eastern country’s construction market.
They also said it was a good choice for Samsung SDS to do business in Saudi Arabia given that hospitals in the country are not capable of meeting the patients’ rising demands.
Saudi Arabia is currently struggling with a lack of medical facilities. Some 200,000 people are known to fly to Thailand for medical tourism each year. Recently, the Saudi government has expanded its budget for medical infrastructure.
“Recently, more Middle Eastern countries have turned to Korean and Japanese companies over multinationals because they can get better customized systems and maintenance services. This may be good opportunities for the company,” the source added.
Samsung SDS has recently turned its attention to the global market largely because it judges that the domestic market is saturated and that the software-related law revised this year works against large IT companies on grounds of protecting small IT firms.
In July, the company said it would cease domestic business in public and financial sectors, and significantly expand its overseas projects. The company said it would drive overseas sales to 60 percent of total sales by 2017.
By Shin Ji-hye (firstname.lastname@example.org