Building Momentum

Building Momentum

Zoho accelerates Saudi Arabia’s digital transformation with US$100+ million investment

By Hyther Nizam

In the heart of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, a hub of innovation is emerging.

Driven by a young, tech-savvy population and a government committed to digital transformation, the Kingdom’s information and communications technology (ICT) sector has shown remarkable growth. Saudi Arabia has become the largest and fastest-growing market in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. With a value of US$48 billion as of 2023, the ICT sector is poised to play a pivotal role in shaping Saudi Arabia’s future.

Zoho has made Saudi Arabia a focal point of its regional expansion strategy. Recognizing the Kingdom’s unique market potential, Zoho has embarked on a long-term expansion plan that will help businesses and government entities embrace new technologies and tackle complex challenges. With steady steps and a clear vision, Zoho is navigating the Saudi market, investing in local talent, opening new offices, and forging partnerships with key stakeholders. Along the way, Zoho is tailoring its products and services to meet the unique needs of Saudi businesses, offering localized solutions and Arabic UI/UX.

Zoho is set to invest in setting up digital infrastructure in Saudi Arabia, a significant milestone in the company’s commitment to the Kingdom’s digital transformation and data privacy. This investment aligns with the local Personal Data Protection Law (PDPL), and reflects Zoho’s dedication to safeguarding user data. Zoho’s unique business model, devoid of ad-based revenue, and complete ownership of its technology stack ensure complete oversight of customer data, privacy, and security.

But Zoho’s journey in Saudi Arabia is not just about pixels and bytes; it’s about building bridges, empowering communities, and weaving a tapestry of trust and innovation.


Zoho, recognizing the intrinsic link between a nation’s prosperity and the well-being of its people, is actively enabling Saudi citizens and entrepreneurs to thrive in the digital economy and contribute to the nation’s ambitious goals. Through strategic partnerships with private and public sectors, Zoho is accelerating the digitalization of businesses and upskilling the Saudi workforce.

Zoho has committed over $100 million in investments to support the growth of the SME sector, educate and train the workforce, and collaborate with leading public entities like the Ministry of Communication and Information Technology (MCIT) and Monsha’at, the Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) General Authority. Zoho’s training and development programs on its technology solutions are further enhancing digital literacy, and fostering a digitally empowered workforce.

Zoho is forming similar partnerships with key private and public stakeholders in other countries in the region such as the UAE, Jordan and Lebanon. Through these partnerships, the company has gained a deep understanding of the region’s unique needs and challenges.


Zoho’s “transnational localism” strategy, a harmonious blend of global reach and local adaptation, has guided its expansion into Saudi Arabia. The company has established a strong local presence, opening offices in Riyadh and Jeddah, and doubling its local workforce in a testament to its commitment to establishing roots in the Kingdom. Zoho has also prioritized hiring local talent, with over 78% of its current Saudi workforce composed of Saudi nationals.

The transnational localism strategy has also seen Zoho launch nine products with Arabic User Interface (UI) to open up its solutions to a large and growing population of Arabic speakers in the region. At the heart of it is Zoho Books, the VAT-compliant accounting software, which has been localized to ensure compliance with the Zakat, Tax and Customs Authority (ZATCA) requirements.

Furthermore, Zoho has been enabling Saudi retailers in setting up online stores by offering native Right-to- Left (RTL) capabilities in its ecommerce platform, Zoho Commerce, as well as international and regional payment gateway options. Zoho is one of the few vendors in the market that offers RTL capabilities.


Zoho’s journey to 100 million users has been marked by a relentless pursuit of excellence in research and development. By constantly adapting to the evolving needs of customers and staying ahead of the curve, Zoho has cemented its position as a trusted partner for businesses of all sizes.

The growing demand for Zoho’s cloud-based business solutions saw a significant 40% revenue growth and 43% increase in partner channel network in Saudi Arabia in 2022, making it the company’s fastest-growing markets in the region.

 As Zoho celebrates this remarkable milestone, it remains steadfast in its mission to empower Saudi businesses with cutting-edge technology solutions. With a dedicated team of experts, local investments, strategic government collaborations and a strong emphasis on continuous improvement, Zoho is poised to lead the digitalization of businesses with purpose and heart.


Hyther Nizam is President of Zoho Middle East and Africa.

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