Fully owned by the Ajlan&Bros holding group, Scopa is one of the most prominent defence companies in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Launched less than 2 years ago, Scopa directly contributes to the strategic plan of Vision 2030 through the establishment of local military industries, the modernization of the Saudi armed forces, and access to the global defence and security market in partnership with major international companies.
To learn more about the company, Al-Jundi magazine interviewed Mr Mohammed bin Abdulaziz Al-Ajlan, president, owner and founder of Scopa Industries, and had the following dialogue with him:
Tell us about Scopa, its areas of work in general, and its most prominent products
As a prominent defence company in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and the defence arm of the Ajlan & Bros Holdings Group, Scopa specializes in providing US, European and NATO defence products for the Saudi armed forces.
While continuing to establish itself as the leading private defence company in Saudi Arabia and the region, Scopa has established many partnerships to provide unmanned combat systems suitable for various environments (land, air, and sea), marine applications, integrated air defence, cyber security, and intelligence systems.
We established Scopa to be in line with the Kingdom’s Vision 2030, which aims to localize 50% of military spending to Saudi Arabia.
We started by developing a strong strategy based on studies and research, establishing the advisory board first to develop the strategy and pave the way for our company to start transferring the military industry and advanced technologies to Saudi Arabia, and ever since, our teams have been working tirelessly to adhere to the best international practices, bridging the gap between original equipment manufacturer (OEMs) and the local Saudi market.
How important are the markets of Saudi Arabia and the Gulf for Scopa?
Scopa mainly targets the Saudi market, as it strives to build a platform for the localization of defence industries first in the Kingdom, and then the Gulf.
How do you see the cooperation between Scopa and the Gulf countries?
Scopa will expand its operations in the Gulf region while seeking out reliable partners.
Furthermore, we expect an expansion in the market as well as an increase in the demand for defence procurement, however, the focus will be mainly on new technologies rather than conventional weapons.
How big are Scopa’s investments in the Saudi market?
Having been launched less than 2 years ago, Scopa is still establishing its status in the market.
However, we are working hard to identify investment opportunities, and have managed to pinpoint some areas of interest, completed the due diligence process, and are currently waiting for government agencies to provide further guidance.
What new products is Scopa offering Saudi Arabia and the Gulf region?
We are focused on new technologies such as unmanned aerial and naval systems, AI-based intelligence solutions, force modernization using next-level C5ISR systems, guided munitions, and conventional defence equipment.
What are your most prominent projects and plans for the next stage?
Multi-role combat vehicles (MRCVs), unmanned aircraft (UAVs), unmanned surface vehicles (USVs), C5ISR command, control and intelligence systems, and integrated air and missile defence systems (IAMD).
We aim to be a defence engineering and design company, as we participate in the development of our own intellectual property and technologies. The next 24 months will be critical, given that the coming period will define Scopa’s foundations, concepts, strengths and core business.
What are Scopa’s most prominent achievements in the defence sector?
In less than 18 months and with far fewer resources than competitors, Scopa managed to position itself as one of the key players in the Saudi defence industry, and now we are considered a preferred partner for many global defence OEMs, and an integral part of many defence exchange programs with foreign governments.
What are Scopa’s short-term goals? How do you see Scopa in 10 years?
In the short term, our objective is to secure sufficient business to establish the needed industrial capacity in Saudi Arabia and the region. We strive to be an important part of the defence ecosystem, providing the Saudi Armed Forces with special solutions and concepts, while our long-term objective is to be one of the best defence manufacturers in the region, and one of the top 100 companies worldwide.
Would you like to send any message through Al-Jundi Journal to the defence community?
Scopa is your new defence partner in Saudi Arabia and the region, We designed and built this company to emulate the international defence business, guided by the principles of the industry as we contribute directly to successful partnerships.
We aim to achieve the goals of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 and support the common goal of The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman bin Abdulaziz and His Royal Highness Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman to localize 50% of defence spending and achieve autonomy in the defence industry.
Mohammed bin Abdulaziz Al-Ajlan
• Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors of Ajlan & Bros Group
• Chairman of the Board of Directors of Scopa Industries Corp
• Chairman of the Saudi-Chinese Business Council
• Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors of more than 75 companies around the world
• possess more than 40 years of experience in industry and trade, as Ajlan & Bros Group owns the largest factories in the textile sector, and employs more than 15,000 individuals.
• A current member and a former board member of the Young Arab Leaders non-profit Organization.
• Received many awards and honours from the Chinese government.
« Interviewed by: «Al Jundi»