ACES joins as SCF member and board member

We’re pleased to announce ACES, an international neutral digital infrastructure company has joined SCF as a member and board member.

We caught up with Dr. Khalid Al Mashouq, Chief Technology Officer (CTO) from ACES and Executive Board Member of SCF, to find out a little more about them and the wealth of knowledge they’ll be bringing to the forum specifically from a Middle East perspective.

SCF: Tell us a little bit about ACES

Dr. Khalid: “We are an International Digital infrastructure Neutral Host company – headquartered in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia – and provide In-Building Solutions, Wi-Fi-DAS and Managed Services.

“ACES designs, builds, manages and enables Telecom-Operators, Airports, Metros, Railways, Smart & Safe Cities, MEGA projects and large organizations to implement their digital wireless infrastructure through an OpEx based fully managed model, eliminating CapEx and operational expenses.  With an operations footprint in countries including Europe, APAC, GCC and North-Africa, we serve over 500+ million annual passengers through our wireless networks, and have a diverse projects portfolio with a focus on futuristic ICT technologies like Small-cells, ORAN, Cloud-Computing.”

SCF: What do you see as the key challenges facing our sector?

Dr. Khalid: “There are a number of challenges right now, from deployment and operational costs to complex networks, high power consumption, integration with MNO cores, high data demand and low space availability for indoor deployments.

“However, we also see exciting and potential solutions to some of these. Deployment costs for instance can be reduced by building owner-funded sites, and with Active and Passive RAN sharing which ultimately demands a shareable RAN solution. And neutral host system integrators can act as bridge between MNOs and building owners.”

SCF: Why did ACES decide to join SCF?

Dr. Khalid: “We know that our region is lagging behind when it comes to small cell deployments, despite them being critical for network densification and coverage improvements.

“ACES, as a leading regional neutral host player, therefore is pleased to join the SCF as an executive board member in our bid to make it easier to deploy small cells. We are looking forward to getting involved in policy making decisions and proposing essential regulations related to small cells.

“We are also excited to contribute neutral host use cases to the forum as we are hosting multiple venues including the world’s largest neutral host site.”

SCF: How critical are forums like SCF both in the Middle East and globally?

Dr. Khalid: “Being involved in such ventures is always helpful, providing a platform to discuss and find solutions to implementation problems and the possibility for collaborative, innovative ventures. The ability to hear and learn from global players and understand international market trends is also hugely helpful.

“We particularly value the ability for members to work with other members and take part in – and benefit from – the peer review process.

“And we see being part of a forum like SCF as a boost to our reputation, helping to increase our presence on a global scale.”

SCF: What are your priorities for the next 12 months?

Dr. Khalid: “ACES has the vision to be a market leader both in technology and research domains. So, our priorities are focusing on the adoption of small cells in our current region, and contributing in respective research domains.”