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Entertainment Sector in Saudi ArabiaBuilding the $23 billion industry

Vision 2030 Unleashes a World of Entertainment Opportunities

A rising industry opening a world of opportunities

Following the nation’s Vision 2030 blueprint, the Kingdom secures its position as a global entertainment hub that attracts major international players. Local and foreign-owned businesses supported by the state’s General Entertainment Authority (GEA) are able to capitalize on the vast potential of the entertainment sector and drive growth in Saudi’s lucrative economic landscape.

Key Facts About the Entertainment Industry

Over 12,600

Entertainment licenses issued to date

Approximately 120 million

Attendees at entertainment events since 2019

$9.8 billion

Revenue from tourism in Q1 of 2023, up from $3 billion the previous year

$23 billion or 3% of the GDP

Is the projected contribution of the entertainment sector by 2030

Saudi Top Entertainment Projects for 2024

The Saudi Entertainment Industry Is Stronger Than Ever


With an estimated worth of $2.31 billion in 2023, the entertainment industry is booming. Thanks to its youthful demographic, funds for large strategic investments, and a vision to diversify its economy, the Kingdom’s entertainment sector is set to become a global sensation. In the upcoming five years, the market is projected to soar to $3.80 billion, growing at a CAGR of 10.44% in the 2023-2028 period.
The Development and Investment Entertainment Company (DIEC) is one of the key players driving this unprecedented growth. With an initial capital of $2.6 billion, the company aims to open 30-40 cinemas in about 15 cities over the next five years. By 2030, this number is expected to reach 50-100 cinemas across 25 cities. Collaborations with global giants like AMC Theaters, Six Flags, and Cirque Du Soleil further underscore the Kingdom's entertainment ambitions and signal to growth-driven corporations that the time to expand is here and now.


Saudi Arabia’s commitment to the sector is evident through countless initiatives, such as the establishment of several public funds, including the General Entertainment Authority (GEA), SCTH, General Culture Authority, and the General Commission for Audiovisual Media (GCAM).
In the forthcoming years, the entertainment sector has set ambitious targets: the establishment of numerous entertainment venues and attractions, a significant boost in the GDP contribution from entertainment enterprises, and numerous new job opportunities for its citizens. The Kingdom’s goal for the entertainment sector is to contribute 4.2% to the country’s GDP and create 450,000 job opportunities by 2030.

Sources:KenResearch, SEA Expo, and Mordor Intelligence

Future Outlook

To meet its goals under Vision 2030 and drive further growth in the entertainment sector, Saudi Arabia turned its attention to innovators and entrepreneurs, both local and international, who can help the country set up entertainment ventures within its borders.

Vision 2030 envisions the creation of iconic entertainment hubs like Qiddiya, Diriyah, and SEVEN that will enrich the cultural and entertainment experience of local audiences while drawing attention from the rest of the world. This innovative blueprint also highlights the importance of supporting artists, performers, and creators who can represent Saudi on the global scene and reflect the sweeping changes occurring across the country's sectors.


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FAQs

Vision 2030 sees the entertainment sector as a key element in diversifying the economy. The goal is for the industry to contribute over $23 billion or 3% of the country’s GDP and create more than 100,000 jobs by 2030.


The Saudi government has been proactive in issuing entertainment licenses, supporting large-scale events, and investing heavily in the sector. A $64 billion investment plan is in place to further spur growth.


Absolutely. With the nation's clear vision, proactive approach, and substantial investments, international players see Saudi Arabia as a lucrative market with vast potential. SEVEN (Saudi Entertainment Ventures Company) has already teamed up with major global names such as Warner Bros, Discovery, Mattel, and Hasbro to bring international attractions to KSA.


The growth of the entertainment sector fuels tourism. With the launch of events and destinations that attract global audiences, the entertainment sector is sure to help Saudi Arabia’s goal to triple the contribution of the tourism sector to the country’s GDP by 2030.


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