A Terminus intelligent service robot is on display at an exhibition of scientific and technological achievements in Beijing in October 2019.Terminus will deploy more than 150 robots at the Expo 2020 Dubai, which has been rescheduled to next year. [Photo by Feng Yi/For China Daily]
Terminus sews up plans to expand into the Middle East, North Africa post Dubai expo
At the corporate headquarters of Terminus Group in Beijing, engineers of the high-tech company are busy testing robots.
The machines will add value to the Expo 2020 Dubai to be held from Oct 1, 2021, to March 31, 2022.
Terminus is the only Chinese company selected as the official premier partner of the Expo 2020 Dubai.
It will serve as a representative of Chinese companies and showcase the nation's experience in artificial intelligence, internet of things, digital economy, smart city, among others.
During the event, Terminus will press into service more than 150 robots, including patrol robots, welcome robots, guiding robots, and goods-delivering robots.
Its mascot robot called Opti is expected to interact with tourists from around the world, welcoming them, hugging them, and even taking photos with them.
Mohammed Al Hashmi, chief technology officer of the Expo 2020 Dubai, said that the world is astonished by China's lead in technologies like 5G, IoT, AI, edge computing and rights management. The expo offers a great opportunity for China to showcase its advantages as well as the Belt and Road Initiative.
"As a pioneer in robotics and AI-enabled IoT applications, Terminus is a valuable new partner. Our collaboration will demonstrate the potential of robotics, while also establishing the foundation for the expo venue as a center for technology innovation," he said.
Victor Ai, founder and CEO of Terminus, said the company was selected by the expo as a result of its mature core technology and the experience it accumulated from the domestic market.
"Our global vision, good corporate image and strong resource integration competence also helped us to go global," he said.
Terminus will establish its first overseas headquarters and research and development center in District 2020, a venue that the expo area will be transformed into soon after the event finishes.
"As a pioneer among AIoT tech companies, Terminus finds it natural to select Dubai as our first overseas headquarters' location. The United Arab Emirates, the second-largest economy in the Arab region, has made remarkable progress in the field of AI in recent years," said Ai.
In 2013, the UAE government launched the "Smart Dubai" project, to boost the local economy with cutting-edge technology innovations in all sectors, ranging from upgrades in the field of technology development to the government administration processes.
In 2017, the country's first "minister of state for artificial intelligence "was appointed. In 2019, the National Artificial Intelligence Strategy 2031 was adopted by the UAE cabinet, with the ultimate goal of making the UAE a global leader in the AI industry by 2031.
According to Ai, the establishment of the overseas headquarters and R&D center in Dubai will allow the company to implement its previously successful solutions in entirely new business scenarios, enabling the company to diversify, adjust and improve its existing range of technologies and products.
With those goals in mind, it is part of the company's strategy to expand the application value of its products into new niches, and therefore enhance the adaptability of its smart solutions.
According to the "Master Plan for the District 2020 after the Expo 2020 Dubai", 80 percent of the 438-hectare infrastructure of the exhibition venue will be retained after the expo concludes, with plans made to redesign the space to fit entirely new purposes such as residential buildings, hotels, museums, schools, and office facilities.
The entire new district will be constructed with the deployment of newest technologies－the IoT, AI, and augmented reality, just to name a few.
By that time, Terminus will provide local communities and businesses with knowledge exchange programs, financing and investment initiatives. It also plans to closely cooperate with local leading technology experts and scientists, and set up an accelerator in the R&D center to incubate local AI and IoT startups.
The company said that District 2020 will become a crucial component of Terminus' global AI City network deployment strategy. Having earned recognition for its substantial expertise and capabilities in the field of building smart cities, the company will develop a smart system that can integrate fire protection, energy and facility management, and smart parking.
The next-generation technologies will be digitally interconnected and help create a smart and innovative ecosystem for future-oriented space.
"By far, Terminus has been operating its five existing projects in China, and the company will be able to see its global AI City network come into being once the final stage of the District 2020 project is finalized," Ai said.
Now that the AI City in Dubai has been established, Terminus plans to expand its business in other Middle East countries, as well as in North Africa, bringing its already mature business lines like energy management, facility management, smart parking, and security management, to the world.