In a move aimed at establishing robust, equitable energy systems, PermianChain Technologies Inc. (“PermianChain”) a WealthTech startup focused on natural resources tokenization and digital energy monetization and Saudi based Ejada Business for Energy a renewable energy developer (“Ejada”) have partnered to shape the future of renewable energy through distributed energy in Saudi Arabia and the broader GCC region. The agreement promises to revolutionize how renewable energy projects are developed and executed.

The partnership grants Ejada exclusive representation in Saudi Arabia for PermianChain’s innovative WealthTech platform-as-a-service. This platform offers sustainable finance opportunities and cutting-edge digital asset mining services. Ejada, a leading provider and developer of renewable energy services in the Saudi market, is poised to drive a substantial transformation within the regional energy sector.

Abdulrahman AlNimri, CEO of Ejada, stated, “Our steadfast commitment to strategically accelerate renewable energy in Saudi Arabia makes this partnership with PermianChain a pivotal step in maintaining Ejada’s competitive edge in regional energy system development. We aim to contribute significantly to economic and social growth.” Mr. AlNimri went on to emphasize that “the digital energy value chain, harnessed by the PermianChain platform, streamlines sustainable finance, offering new avenues for natural wealth creation and enabling unprecedented treasury optimization for both public and private sectors.”

PermianChain, known for its expertise in natural resource tokenization and digital asset mining, envisions itself as the gateway for investors and Web3 enthusiasts eager to participate in the burgeoning digital energy revolution. The PermianChain platform services are poised to unlock fresh opportunities for natural wealth creation. Mohamed El-Masri, founder and CEO at PermianChain Technologies, noted, “Our dedication to the PermianChain mission of building, managing, and operating a distributed digital energy market for decentralized compute applications has brought this partnership with Ejada in Saudi Arabia to fruition. We see promising opportunities in ambitious mega projects such as NEOM and smart cities, which rely heavily on AI and IoT technology, with increasing adoption of blockchain and digital assets in the region.”

An Invest Saudi report revealed that the Saudi market’s data center industry is rapidly expanding, with an expected market size of USD 19 billion by 2030. The Kingdom’s plans to expand traditional data center capacity to over 1GW, involving capital investments of USD 11 billion into the sector, underline the immense potential of the market. Both PermianChain and Ejada are determined to pioneer Saudi’s digital asset and blockchain data center market, to establish a strong presence in the GCC region, paving the way for expansion into the broader Middle East and Africa. This endeavor is contingent upon obtaining the necessary regulatory licenses to operate PermianChain’s holistic WealthTech platform, offering sustainable investments and digital asset mining services.

As of this announcement, PermianChain and Ejada have plans to develop, construct, and operate an initial 25 MW solar power plant. A portion of the power generation capacity will be allocated to users of PermianChain Miner, creating an exclusive offtake opportunity for low-cost power to drive digital asset mining and compute applications. This innovative approach allows regional investors to actively participate in building equitable energy systems while optimizing treasury.

What distinguishes this partnership is its unyielding dedication to the communities where energy projects are based. By pioneering a strict approach that ensures energy is consumed where it’s produced, PermianChain and Ejada aim to foster local development, generate employment opportunities, and stimulate sustainable growth in often overlooked regions.

This transformative alliance embodies the broader global shift toward clean energy, decentralized power generation, and the empowerment of underserved areas. It stands as a testament to the power of collaboration in realizing a future where energy is equitable, sustainable, and accessible to all.

Saudi Aramco has signed a memorandum of agreement with Data Gumbo, a US based Blockchain technology company which developed a blockchain as a service platform to streamline smart contracts management for industrial customers. The agreement between Saudi Aramco and Data Gumbo is for Blockchain collaboration over a three year term.

This is not the first time Saudi Aramco has dealt with Data Gumbo. In August 2022, Saudi Aramco’s investment arm Saudi Aramco Energy Ventures made its fourth investment in Data Gumbo series C round where Data Gumbo raised $4million. The round was led by Saudi Aramco Ventures and Equinor, Norway’s energy operator.

As per the Data Gumbo blog post, “ Data Gumbo is proud to announce that on 8 February, 2023 we entered into a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Saudi Aramco for Blockchain Collaboration.  The agreement has a 3 year term. We are honored by the opportunity to deepen our collaboration and look forward to several transformational projects in the coming years.”

The MOU was signed by Mohamed Marzouk, Saudi Arabia Country Manager and Saudi Aramco’s Senior Vice President, Digital and Information Technology Mr. Nabil Al-Nuaim in Riyadh.

As per the agreement the Areas of collaboration will include, accelerating digital transformation within the Oil & Gas Industry, exploring,  identifying and co-innovating blockchain use, improving operational efficiency and driving ROIU with Aramco, its customers and suppliers, providing blockchain training and finally identifying potential applications for managed blockchain services

Siemens Energy in its belief that progress on clean energy solutions will provide golden opportunities and socio economic benefits has partnered with Abu Dhabi Investment Office to accelerate the journey to net zero with the Middle East Innovation center that will focus on Blockchain for energy applications among others.

Under the partnership, Siemens Energy will receive support to set up its Middle East Innovation Centre in Abu Dhabi, as part of ADIO’s AED 2 billion (USD 545 million) Innovation Program that creates growth opportunities for businesses in the emirate.

The center represents one of four Siemens Energy-established global Innovation Centers, with other locations in Orlando in the United States, Shenzhen in China, and Berlin in Germany. These hubs are designed to bring customers, industrial partners, and academia together, and act as incubators for new startups, and technologies.

The Siemens Energy Innovation Center will be located at the Khalifa University campus in Abu Dhabi, where Siemens Energy can share the right tools, skills, and broad experience to unleash the talent of young engineers.

The Innovation Center will strengthen specialized skillsets and create up to 75 high-skilled jobs in Abu Dhabi by 2025. Siemens Energy will also offer at least six internships annually to students from Abu Dhabi universities, of which 50 percent of the interns will be Emiratis.

As per the announcement, the focus is on co-creating decarbonization technologies in the areas of Power-to-X, Decarbonized Heat and Industrial Processes, Condition-based Service Interventions, Energy Storage & Fuel Cells, and Blockchain for Energy applications, among others.

Eng. Abdulla Abdul Aziz AlShamsi, Acting Director General of ADIO, said: “As the UAE makes strides toward our net zero goal, we are prioritizing the development of pioneering technologies to meet the demand for sustainable energy. The partnership between ADIO and Siemens Energy will enrich the energy technology ecosystem with the introduction of new ideas and solutions that open pathways for the global energy transition. ADIO will continue to partner with innovation-driven companies in high-impact sectors to help them reach the next stage of their growth.”

Dietmar Siersdorfer, Managing Director UAE and Middle East, Siemens Energy, said: “To accelerate decarbonization and reach net zero faster, we need to leverage partnership and innovation. As one of four globally, this Siemens Energy Innovation Centre in Abu Dhabi, in collaboration with ADIO, will enable us to leverage the rich industrial ecosystem in Abu Dhabi, and work with startups, academia as well as public and private companies to develop and commercialize new technologies that will make a meaningful impact on carbon reduction.” 

The launch of the Innovation Centre not only aligns with the goals of 2022’s COP27 in Egypt but supports the vision for 2023’s COP28 in the UAE, which aims to increase global climate action, while maximizing the economic benefits both regionally and globally.

Siemens Energy is also working with UAE ADNOC on the same goals using blockchain technology.

Oman Al Shawamikh Oil Services Company will cooperate with Oman Frontech, a government entity established by both Omantel and Ethcha (Oman Investment Authority) to implement Blockchain to ensure sustainable management of its energy solutions. 

Frontech launched the National Blockchain Platform to accelerate the digital innovation efforts in the Sultanate of Oman, in line with the requirements of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. The platform offers two services: Blockchain Factory as a sandbox environment, Blockchain as a Service (BaaS), and Blockchain as a Service (BaaS).

Oman’s Energy entity, Al Shawamikh Oil Services Company, will work with Frontech to develop a sustainable energy management system built on blockchain technology.

Frontech will utilize blockchain to represent the production units in the sustainable energy network, as well as track and manage these units.

During the signing ceremony, Dr Aflah bin Said Al Hadhrami, CEO of Al Shawamikh Oil services, said, “Blockchain or the digital blockchains are the new digital revolution that may go beyond the Internet revolution and has gained great momentum recently. The agreement between Al Shawamikh and Frontech comes to take advantage of one of the possibilities of the fourth industrial revolution to develop sustainable energy solutions and to meet the aspirations and objectives of Oman’s vision 2040 in its renewable renaissance.”

Dr Ammar Al-Obaidani, CEO of Frontech, said, “Frontech was established to achieve national goals by providing high-level technical solutions to leading technologies. The company works on implementing many projects and initiatives with various sectors, whether from the governmental or private sectors. This partnership with Al Shawamikh Oil Services Company will accomplish one of those goals through the National Blockchain Network, as it provides a points system on blockchain technology for its partners and clients.

For the fourth time since 2019, Saudi Aramco Energy Ventures, a subsidiary of Saudi Aramco has participated in an investment round in Data Gumbo, the blockchain enabled smart contract provider. This time Data Gumbo raised 4 million USD in its Series C round led by Saudi Aramco Ventures and Equinor, Norway’s energy operator.

In 2019, Data Gumbo the Houston based blockchain Technology Company which had developed a Blockchain-as-a-Service (BaaS) platform to streamline smart contracts management for industrial customers, completed a 6 million USD Series A equity funding round co-led by Saudi Aramco Energy Ventures, and Equinor.

Then in 2020, Data Gumbo, closed its Series B funding round of 4 million USD led by new investor L37, a Bay Area and Houston-based venture capital company, with Saudi Aramco Energy Ventures as a participant in the round.

In 2021 once more Data Gumbo closed a Series B funding round totaling 7.7 million USD with follow-on investments led by Equinor Ventures, and Saudi Aramco Energy Ventures.

So far, Saudi Aramco Energy Ventures has been one of the consistent investors in Data Gumbo. So it was no surprise to once again see Saudi Aramco invest in Data Gumbo’s Series C round, and be a lead investor as well. Saudi Aramco given the amount of investments raised to date by Data Gumbo, has definitely invested millions into the startup.

This funding round follows a year of impressive growth for Data Gumbo, which has introduced the first ever Smart Contract Marketplace with forty smart contract templates ready to be deployed for immediate reduction in transactional friction and grown to over 180 enterprises participating in Data Gumbo’s smart contract network.

Data Gumbo also opened its offices in KSA in 2022. At the time Data Gumbo stated that it was establishing a local presence to take advantage of the regional business opportunities ripe for smart contract network adoption.

Commenting on the recent fund raising, William Fox, CEO of Data Gumbo stated, “We have continued to lead the way in the adoption of smart contracts for industrial use. The partnership with Equinor and Saudi Aramco, and their associated supply chains and partnerships, will continue the momentum for the Data Gumbo’s smart contract network.”

By tapping into existing IIoT data sources to trigger confirmation and payment automation of contractual commercial terms, organizations are able to eliminate the time-consuming process of validating invoices and transactions and fully automating the procure-to-pay and order-to-cash processes. 

Data Gumbo plans to expand its reach, helping any organization who captures field data today to streamline their back office processes and realize time and cost savings.

“While we started in energy, we already have value for bulk commodity haulage, trucking and shipping, with plans to parlay our momentum into other global industries,” commented Andrew Bruce, Founder of Data Gumbo. “Wherever two or more organizations share a contractual relationship that can be verified with a digital source of data, opportunities abound to realize efficiencies and cost savings utilizing our blockchain network.”

Frank Andrasco, Senior Investment Director, Saudi Aramco Energy Ventures stated, “Distributed ledger technologies bring win-win efficiencies between industrial companies and their suppliers, and Data Gumbo is at the forefront of introducing this innovation. While they have started in the energy sector, Data Gumbo’s platform has broad industrial applicability.”

To date Saudi Aramco’s Venture arm has participated in all the investment rounds of Data Gumbo, which  has raised a total of close to 21 million USD. One thing known for sure is that Saudi Aramco is backing the Blockchain smart contract service provider, and much more will be seen in the future.