SIDF hits innovation excellence milestone across Saudi Arabia

16 February 2023 2 min. read

The Saudi Industrial Development Fund (SIDF) has hit a national milestone in the area of innovation excellence, becoming the first organisation in the Kingdom to be certified by the Global Innovation Management Institute.

Headquartered in the US, the Global Innovation Management Institute (GIMI) is a global certification body for innovation management. The Boston-based non-profit helps organisations with developing world-class innovation capabilities through global standards, framework, certifications and a network of experts that provide counsel.

With the remit to help build and finance Saudi Arabia’s next crop of innovators in the industrial scene, the Saudi Industrial Development Fund is keen on being a frontrunner in innovation.

SIDF hits innovation excellence milestone across Saudi Arabia

According to GIMI’s certification process, SIDF now ranks up with the very best when it comes to innovation, joining a select group of only 1,200 organisations worldwide that also qualified for the status.

In a release celebrating the achievement, SIDF’s leadership team stated, “We’ve been encouraging innovation since our inception in 1974, and during the past few years, efforts have been targeted to institutionalise innovation within our organisation and make it part of the DNA.”

“SIDF continuously strives to provide better products, services, and experiences to customers, and this is where innovation plays a vital role. We’re delighted to be recognised for our achievements by the international gold standard for innovation management.”

To pass the certification, SIDF had to prove its merit across four key areas of innovation: strategy, capabilities and capacity, discipline and track record, and portfolio. The independent audit was delivered by Sia Partners, a management consulting firm that sits among the region’s top consultants for innovation.

In the GCC, Sia Partners serves as the official representative of GIMI. “We congratulate SIDF on becoming the first organisation in Saudi Arabia to achieve this prestigious certification status (‘Innovative Organisation Level 1’),” said Rafael Lemaitre, partner at the global consultancy.

“The Saudi Industrial Development Fund is a pioneer in the region and has set the standard for others to follow,” commented Hitendra Patel, Executive Director of the GIMI.

SIDF’s portfolio of companies includes several well-known names in the energy, mining, industrial, automotive, and logistics sectors. According to Patel, SIDF’s leading capabilities in innovation will help the investment fund not only deliver on its own group-wide mission, but also trickle down to benefit its portfolio companies.

One level up, the Saudi Industrial Development Fund is part of the Kingdom’s National Development Fund, which in 2022 approved total financing support worth over SR135 billion ($36 billion) to its several industry-focused funds.