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RIYADH: INTRA Defense Technologies Ltd plans to expand its workforce as the Saudi firm expects more defense contracts to flow in, requiring them to hire more people to meet the rising demand for their services.  

The home-grown company plans to hire 500 employees by 2024, the company’s executive director of Technology & Engineering Solutions, Asim A. Qureshi, told Arab News during the World Defense Show in Riyadh.

Headquartered in Riyadh, INTRA currently has 110 employees operating from two bases, one in the south and one in the east. 

INTRA’s facilities are ready but the company executive said they are awaiting the implementation of the logistics system. Among the first companies to receive a license from General Authority for Military Industries, or GAMI, to manufacture in Saudi Arabia, INTRA expects to have large staff once the facilities are up and running, revealed Qureshi. 

The private high-tech company mainly designs and manufactures high performance and innovative unmanned aerial vehicles, also known as UAVs. It provides end-to-end solution for customers while also operating flights, maintaining aircraft and controlling systems.

Asim Qureshi speaking to Arab News

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic slowing down its growth plans, the top executive said that INTRA received its license to manufacture from GAMI in 2019. 

However, in the past two years, INTRA has experienced a spike in demand, Qureshi said. “We realized we needed to expand before we started.”

INTRA’s initial plan was to develop around 20 aircraft a year but due to high demand the company is now aiming for about 50. “By the end of the following year, we will be looking at 70,” he said. 

One of the reasons driving this expansion is that INTRA offers a deployable solution that assembles and disassembles quickly.

“To tell you the truth, our growth was because of that one pillar of the workforce. We trained our people to take it not just as a social responsibility, but more than that, and I believe that is the critical pillar,” said Qureshi. 

The Saudi firm, which also operates aircraft, provides end-to-end solutions for Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance, or ISR. 

Qureshi said INTRA has flown on various missions for up to 18,000 hours in the last five years without disclosing the names of its customers. 

INTRA is also debuting Simone, which he said “is a concept for UAV” that is currently in the works. 

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