Snap Inc. has announced that it will launch a Creator Studio in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia in 2022 to support its highly engaged local community in delivering new experiences on Snapchat. The company has recently been investing in such studios in key international markets as a means to better serve local talent and business partners, including its growing creator ecosystems of augmented reality (AR) Lens developers, verified users, and local media publishers.
Riyadh will be the second location globally to house a Snap Creator Studio following the launch of a similar location in Paris, France. Snap has already confirmed that the two studios will be followed by the opening of other regional studios in the future.
The Creator Studio in Riyadh will engage current and future creators to showcase user-generated content and AR experiences built with Snap platforms, formats, and hardware. The company will leverage its global network of creatives and technical experts to evangelize new use cases. The studio will further provide in-person and virtual opportunities to train creative and technical talent. Snap will provide advice, resourcing, and investments to support creators within the local ecosystem to prototype and test new ideas, as well as incentivize creators to innovate with new content and AR tools.
Hussein Freijeh, General Manager for MENA at Snap Inc., said: “For years, Snap has been improving the way people live and communicate through visual self-expression and storytelling. The decision to open a Creator Studio in Saudi Arabia reflects the level of creativity we see on Snapchat amongst local users, the high levels of engagement on the app, and our desire to deepen the level of support that we can provide to the creator community and our business partners.”
The Creator Studio will support all creators delivering experiences for Snapchat. Notable examples include Lens creators, those producing video content for Discover and Snapchat’s newest entertainment platform Spotlight, as well as developers focusing on Snapchat offerings such as Games, Minis, Layers, and more.
In Saudi Arabia, Snapchat’s Official Lens Creator community includes artists, designers, developers, and more who share an enthusiasm for redefining the world of camera creativity. Meanwhile, user-generated content is being produced by a large and thriving ecosystem in Saudi Arabia.
Publisher brands will also benefit from the Creator Studio. Saudi publishers see the value in their collaboration with Snapchat via Discover, tapping into Snap’s deep expertise in made-for-mobile content, while reaching an audience that is extremely engaged on the platform. In Saudi Arabia today, more people watch content on Discover than any of the top ten TV channels. Snap currently works with many premium content partners from Rotana Media Group to MBC, Saudi Broadcasting Authority, UTURN Entertainment, and many more.
“We deeply value these creator partners, and are grateful for all the exciting new experiences they build and bring to Snapchat,” adds Freijeh.
Through Snapchat, these creators can engage a monthly addressable reach of over 19.5mn individuals in Saudi Arabia. Snapchat now reaches 90% of 13-34-year-olds in the Kingdom. Not only is this a large community, but one that is highly engaged. Approximately 90% of Snapchatters in Saudi Arabia are engaging with Lenses on a daily basis, and 83% of those on Snapchat in the Kingdom use AR on a weekly basis to communicate–the highest use case in the world for Snapchat. According to data from Snap, over 80% of consumers in Saudi Arabia believe that AR will be both useful and important in the next five years.
“In Saudi Arabia, there’s a real understanding of Snapchat’s full value proposition, whether in communication, entertainment, commerce, or elsewhere,” concludes Freijeh. “Saudi Arabia is an incredibly exciting and dynamic market in terms of media, technology, and creativity. That is only being bolstered now as more businesses move to the digital economy and individuals spend more of their time online. The new Creator Studio will thus help inspire the next generation of creators about the possibilities of using the Snap camera across the arts, education, media, and cultural sectors.”