UAE cabinet approves new law regulating public-private sector partnerships

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, chaired the UAE Cabinet meeting held at Qasr Al Watan Abu Dhabi.The meeting was attended by H.H. Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai, Deputy Prime Minister, and Minister of Finance; H.H. Lt. General Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Interior; and H.H. Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Court. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum said: "I chaired the Cabinet meeting at Qasr Al Watan in Abu Dhabi. We reviewed the UAE’s competitive and development indicators. Our commercial and development sectors surpassed pre-pandemic growth." Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid noted: "Under the leadership of my brother Mohamed bin Zayed, the UAE has managed to overcome the COVID-19 pandemic. Our country has become globally prominent for its significant economic growth and development." Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum added: "The number of global indices topped by the UAE rose from 121 to 156 indicators. We ranked among top 10 in 432 global indicators, compared to 314 pre-pandemic. We are the first in the world in terms of security and safety, infrastructure, flexibility of regulations, and more."He said: "The UAE’s foreign trade exceeded AED 1 trillion, compared to AED 840 billion pre- pandemic and this year’s economic growth exceeded 22%."He added: "Our tourism sector’s revenues surpassed AED 19 billion in the first half of 2022. The total number of hotel guests reached 12 million, achieving 42% growth, and we expect a strong tourism performance in this winter season."His Highness noted: "During the Cabinet meeting, we approved a new law enhancing partnership between government and private sectors... Also, we approved the licensing of the first electric cargo aircraft in the region fully powered with clean energy."The Cabinet meeting reviewed the achievements of the country at the global level, where the UAE ranked first in 156 global indicators for the year 2022, compared to 121 indicators in 2020. Also, the UAE has ranked among the top five in 288 global indicators this year, compared to 189 in 2020. The UAE has been among the world’s top 10 list in 432 indicators, compared to 314 in 2020.The Cabinet also reviewed the UAE’s significant growth in economic and trade indicators, as the Constant Price GDP growth rate for the first quarter of 2022 reached 8.4%, with a total of AED 399 billion, compared to AED 368 billion in the same period of 2021. The UAE’s foreign trade recorded a leapfrog of more than 50%, with a total of AED 1.060 trillion during the first half of this year, compared to AED 702 billion in the same period of 2020.The Cabinet reviewed the achievements of the tourism sector in the country in the first half of the year 2022. The results showed an increase in tourism's contribution to the national economy by 12%. The number of hotel guest establishments increased by 42% with a total of 12 million guests, compared to 6.2% before COVID-19 pandemic. The total revenues of the sector amounted to AED 19 billion, during the first half of 2022.New opportunities of partnership with the private sectorThe Cabinet approved the issuance of a federal law regulating the partnership between the federal authorities and the private sector in the UAE. The law aims at organizing partnership between both sectors, encouraging the private sector to participate in development and strategic projects, increasing investment in projects of economic and social values, and enhancing the competitiveness of projects in the local, regional and global markets.The banking sector supporting financing programs The Cabinet approved a suggested federal law decree to amend the Federal Law No 14 of 2018 regarding the Central Bank and Organization of Financial Institutions and Activities, aiming to achieve a balance between rights and duties in the banking sector.The amendment on the federal law also aims at ensuring compliance with the directives and decisions of the Central Bank, and limiting the phenomenon of financial stumbling, legislations for medical facilities and veterinary profession.Also, the UAE Cabinet meeting approved amendments on the Federal Law regarding private health facilities, including gradual administrative and financial penalties on violating medical facilities.The Cabinet approved the issuance of a federal law concerning Practice of Veterinary Medicine Profession. As per the law, practicing this profession requires a license to practice the profession, and a public registry in the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment to register veterinarians and those working in the veterinary paramedical professions in the country.The Cabinet meeting agreed on the procedures of temporary licensing to operate a new type of cargo aircraft, within the UAE Regulations Lab at the General Secretariat of the UAE Cabinet. The temporary licensing aims to achieve the requirements of alternative and green energy, and reduce shipping costs on both suppliers and consumers.The Cabinet approved the restructuring of the Emirates Youth Council 2022, headed by Shamma bint Suhail bin Faris Al Mazrui. The Cabinet also approved adding all professions related to medical and health sector in the country within "Nafis" programme.Also, the Cabinet approved several international agreements with a number of friendly countries, including Spain, Indonesia and Jamaica, as well as an agreement with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC).

Evergent announces expanded partnership with Brightcove

Evergent, the customer management and monetization leader for streaming and digital subscription businesses, today announced an expanded partnership with Brightcove Inc (NASDAQ: BCOV), the trusted leader in streaming technology. The new integration will see the introduction of Evergent’s agile monetization solution to Brightcove Beacon for over-the-top video streaming, making it possible for Brightcove customers to test and implement flexible monetization approaches within the platform.Integrated into the Brightcove Beacon offering, Evergent's solution, which will be available in the Brightcove Marketplace, will power complex user and payment management scenarios for Brightcove's global customer base. The new offering allows global media and enterprise customers to benefit from both Evergent and Brightcove’s services seamlessly.As more companies develop and launch streaming platforms into an increasingly competitive marketplace, Evergent’s agile products make it possible to quickly establish and refine monetization strategies in order to maximize business results. Evergent’s flexible monetization tools will make it possible for Brightcove customers to apply different payment methods and pricing models across currencies, payment types, and languages to individual platforms and devices, allowing each customer to create a business strategy tailored to individual customer preferences and trends.“Brightcove and Evergent have built a longstanding partnership based on shared values and innovative technologies that meet growing market needs,” said Vijay Sajja, founder and CEO of Evergent. “The integration of Evergent’s agile monetization solution into Brightcove Beacon demonstrates the commitment of both companies to serve customers with truly flexible products which are capable of scaling together with high-growth solutions. We look forward to continuing our relationship with Brightcove and delivering new solutions for its global customer base.”“Content creators and entertainment providers have high demands of their technology partners, which is why Brightcove is always looking for new partners to help enrich our platform offerings,” said Rajan Shah, VP, Technology Partners & Integrations at Brightcove. “The integration of Evergent into our OTT platform will allow for Brightcove customers to optimize their streaming businesses through agile monetization strategies.”

Netflix partners with Ubisoft for three exclusive mobile games from 2023

Netflix and Ubisoft are announcing plans to create three mobile games from some of the world’s most beloved game franchises to Netflix, starting in 2023. First announced today at Ubisoft’s annual digital event Ubisoft Forward, the three games will expand on the Valiant Hearts, Mighty Quest and Assassin's Creed universes, and will be available exclusively on mobile to Netflix members around the world with no ads or in-app purchases. A new Valiant Hearts game, sequel to Ubisoft’s multi-award-winning game Valiant Hearts: The Great War, is directed by the original core team and will retain the same DNA while featuring a new story. It will be available to Netflix members in January 2023. After the critically acclaimed The Mighty Quest for Epic Loot mobile game, The Mighty Quest will come to Netflix in 2023 with a new game. This time, the game will draw inspiration from the roguelike genre to deliver an experience that celebrates the series’ premiere hack-and-slash combat in a fresh and highly replayable format.And for Assassin’s Creed fans, they will be able to immerse themselves in the Assassin's Creed universe on Netflix in more than one way: in addition to the previously announced live-action series, an all-new mobile game is being developed exclusively for Netflix.“We’re thrilled to work with Ubisoft, whose track record creating memorable worlds for fans is unmatched,” said Mike Verdu, Vice President of Games, Netflix. “This partnership will provide our members with exclusive access to some of the most exciting game franchises as we continue to build a catalog of great mobile games for our members around the world."“As we continue to create great experiences on all platforms, we’re glad to be partnering with such an innovative and creative partner as Netflix,” says Jean-Michel Detoc, Chief Mobile Officer, Ubisoft. “I believe that this partnership will be a great opportunity for Netflix members to further explore our worlds and universes on mobile.”Stay tuned for more details about each game that will be announced at a later date.

Worldwide streaming market achieves double-digit growth in Q2 2022

Conviva, the global streaming analytics platform, released today the results of its quarterly State of Streaming Report, which shows continued growth in the global streaming market, including gains of (14%) in the second quarter of 2022 as compared to Q2 2021. Asia and Latin America saw the most growth – 90% and 70%, respectively – while North America, the most mature streaming market in the world, also grew 5% year over year.As the global streaming industry matures, streaming success is getting more complicated. Device fragmentation is growing, and viewers’ quality expectations continue rising in concert with an ad-supported streaming world. Streaming publishers are challenged to deliver a consistent and positive experience. Whether in Africa using an Android phone or in Texas on a Smart TV – viewers expect a quality picture, instant access to content and zero glitches.“The race is on to see which publishers will meet these expectations, including providing the best experience when it’s most important,” said Keith Zubchevich, President and CEO, Conviva. “Those who do will quickly eclipse the competition. Most importantly, those who make it a priority to obtain real-time actionable insights about their customers’ (real-world experiences) will undoubtedly separate the leaders from the pack,” added Zubchevich. Key FindingsBitrates are RisingConviva found bitrate rose globally in Q2 2022 across all screen types and devices, but often at the expense of other quality metrics. For example, Smart TVs saw the largest increase in bitrate of all screen types, up 15.1% year over year. However, to provide this more high-definition experience, Smart TVs saw noticeable increases in video start failures, video start time and buffering. Conversely, PlayStation and Roku were the only big screen devices to both decrease video start times (down 10.7% and 12% respectively) and increase bitrate (up 4.6% and 12.9% respectively).Big Screens – and Roku – Remain on TopRoku continued to hold the top spot among big screen devices (big screens include connected TVs, smart TVs and gaming consoles) , holding nearly steady at 30.5% of viewing time, down less than one percent as compared to Q2 2021 with Amazon Fire TV coming in second with 16% of big screen viewing time. Samsung TV (13.7%), Android TV (7.8%) and LG TV (7.3%) rounded out the top five devices for big screen viewing time. Chromecast, Xbox and PlayStation all saw a decrease in share as compared to the previous year.Android vs iPhone Streaming ShowdownTo date, the iPhone has been the primary device for mobile streaming, especially in North America. In Q2 2022 the gap closed, with iPhone and Android phones capturing nearly identical global market share, 35.8% vs 33.2% respectively. In addition, Android phones outpaced the iPhone by 10% in YoY growth in streaming viewing hours. In Apple’s favor is its quality — as the iPhone currently beats Android phones in every quality category. As streaming publishers expand into newer, less mature streaming markets outside of North America, optimizing the streaming experience for the android mobile device market will be of increasing importance.MethodologyConviva’s State of Streaming series is the largest cross-platform comparison of streaming data measuring ongoing, real-time, sessionized streaming data at Internet-scale.Data analyzed for the Q2 2022 State of Streaming report was primarily collected from Conviva’s unique proprietary sensor technology. Currently embedded in 3.3 billion streaming video applications, it measures more than 500 million unique viewers watching 180 billion streams per year and nearly 2 trillion real-time transactions per day across more than 180 countries. The Internet-scale census-measurement is deployed from a full-stack censor that is not sampled, but validated, cleaned, enriched, standardized and sessionized. Continuous, real-time monitoring sessionizes streaming events, state timelines and meta data into viewer-led sessions. This more accurately reflects viewers’ real-world experiences.The social media data, collected from the Streaming Publishers leaderboard list within Conviva Social Insights, consists of data from 100 accounts, over 7,500 million posts, and over 30 million engagements across Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, TikTok and YouTube between Q2 2021 and Q2 2022.Year-over-year comparisons were normalized at the customer level for accurate representations of industry growth.

Streaming services struggle to know their evolving customers: Study

Kaltura, the Video Experience Cloud, today released a new report titled “Go With The Stream”, a global survey of 200 streaming service provider executives. As the streaming market becomes hyper-competitive and consumers have more options than ever before, the report delves into how streaming providers are adapting to fast-changing technology and consumer expectations.Consumers today are faced with a dazzling array of choices in video entertainment. Currently, there are over 5,300 streaming services globally and new players continue to enter the market. In such a competitive environment, user experience is increasingly crucial to business viability and media companies are acutely aware of this.When asked how they rate their service’s quality of experience (QoE) and features from a consumer perspective, most executives said their services are “good” (43%) or “acceptable” (33%). Only 20% of executives believed their service to be as good as global streaming giants like Netflix, Disney+, and Amazon Prime Video. 64% of respondents plan to improve their UX in the next three years, with 32% planning to do so this year. The effectiveness of these investments, however, will depend on enhancing the service provider’s understanding of subscribers’ viewing preferences.The report found that streaming services largely still struggle to know their constantly evolving customers. Only 25% of respondents claimed an excellent understanding of their audience and 47% acknowledged their understanding is limited, resulting in a misalignment in priorities across numerous functionalities. While some gaps are to be expected due to differing priorities, for example only 23% of consumers value free trials yet their clear value as a conversion tool makes them a top priority (58%) for streaming providers, others are more problematic. While 46% and 45% of providers ranked having a watch list and favorites sections respectively as a priority, no consumers did. Conversely, 28% of consumers want ways to find new content fast and no providers viewed that as a priority.“Streaming services are dealing with a monumental challenge — keeping up with constantly evolving consumer preferences and a market that becomes more competitive every day,” said Nuno Sanches, Chief Strategy Officer at Kaltura. “For media companies to be successful in the coming years, investing in the right elements, from the quality of experience to marketing and monetization, will prove to be key.”Other key findings in the report include:• Media companies are not going at it alone: 79% rely on 3rd party technology to power their streaming services.• Multi-revenue models are becoming more prevalent: 28% of streaming services employ hybrid business models to achieve their financial goals, ahead of those who rely only on advertising (23%) or subscription-based platforms (20%).• Distribution is the top priority for investment: In both short and long-term plans distribution is the top priority, followed by engagement with content, monetization and advertising technologies, and marketing.• Streaming services are satisfied overall with their video platforms, yet flexibility remains a problem: 24% of providers are not satisfied with the integration of 3rd party solutions, and 22% are not satisfied with the breadth of features available.The full “Go With The Stream” report can be accessed here.

Gulf countries warn Netflix on content

Netflix has been threatened with legal action by a group of Gulf countries, if it continues to stream content that is a contradiction to Islam. In a programme in the Al Ekhbariya TV, the issue was discussed, playing the blurred clips from the animated show Jurassic World Camp Cretaceous, showing two girls in a relationship.The channel also held an interview with a family and educational adviser according to whom the country was facing a censorship crisis and that offensive content was entering in the homes. According to a statement by the General Commission of Audiovisual media, the content was a violation of the media regulations existing in the Gulf Cooperation. A joint statement was issued by the six member Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) and the Saudi media regulator.Oman, Kuwait, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and the United Arab Emirates constitute the Gulf Cooperation Council. The regional authorities have issued a statement, mentioning that it would keep an eye out for what Netflix is showing in the upcoming days, and evaluate its commitment to adhering to regulations in the country.Previously this year, the Walt Disney Pixar’s animated feature film Lightyear was banned by the UAE and other Gulf countries, as it showcased characters who were in same-sex relationship. There has been past disagreements with US film distributors over content especially in films, associated with sexual minorities. Though the UAE is considered as relatively a liberal country in the Gulf region, films displaying adult content are edited or cut commonly.Earlier, Saudi Arabia has asked Disney to remove LGBTQ references in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, the Marvel superhero film. However, Disney did not obey and the film was not screened there. Saudi officials were also seen seizing rainbow-coloured toys and clothing from shops, as a measure of clampdown on homosexuality.

BARB consults on extending reporting to video-sharing platforms

BARB has reported programme audiences for SVOD services such as Disney+ and Netflix, and service-level viewing of video-sharing platforms like TikTok and YouTube, since November 2021. It is now looking to expand this reporting to encompass all television and television-like content on video-sharing platforms.The aim of the consultation is to establish an industry-wide consensus on what is meant by television-like content. As a starting point, BARB has identified three requirements that align with the principles in the EU Audiovisual Media Services Directive and public statements made by advertisers. These requirements are:Videos and channels should be under the editorial control of a professional media services provider.They should operate to industry-agreed standards for brand safety.They can be classified by genre to help advertisers and agencies know the editorial environment in which their ads appear.BARB has appointed Paul Evans as an independent adviser to lead the consultation. Evans is a former advertiser, most recently as Global Head of Media for Vodafone. The consultation will invite practitioners from across the industry – media agencies, advertisers, broadcasters and video-sharing platforms – to help shape the definition of television-like content. Evans will present findings to BARB’s Strategy Board in the autumn.BARB will use these findings to articulate a definition of television-like content that can underpin its specification for establishing a trusted BARB panel measure of this viewing.Justin Sampson, BARB’s Chief Executive, said:“Innovation carried BARB to a significant milestone last year. Since November 2021, we’ve been delivering daily audience data for SVOD and video-sharing services. This enhances what was already the most comprehensive and granular measurement service for all forms of television on all devices.“Now we are ready to specify the next evolution in our industry’s gold-standard measurement of what people watch.”

Murdoch University Dubai partners with PRCA MENA

Murdoch University Dubai is the new university partner member of the Public Relations and Communications Association Middle East & North Africa (PRCA MENA). Murdoch University Dubai is the branch campus of Murdoch University in Perth, Australia, which is one of the 100 top universities in the world as well as PRCA University partner. According to the new partnership, university staff members and the students are entitled to full PRCA membership for the tenure of their employment and undergraduate or postgraduate course. Monika Fourneaux, Head of PRCA EMEA, said: “We feel delighted to welcome Murdoch University Dubai which is recognized globally, to the PRCA EMEA. The institution holds a noteworthy history in education, as well as in the development of talent with a 5 star rating in numerous areas which include employability. We are looking forward to maintain the mission and vision of PRCA, to strengthen the PR industry all over the world and to extend our support via this partnership to the students and the staff.”Dr James Trotter, Academic president and Dean at Murdoch University, Dubai, said: “Students get a number of opportunities for the application of knowledge acquired by them in the classroom, by being exposed to real life experiences at Murdoch University, Dubai. We are partnering with the industry people in order to enable our students for interactions with working professionals in their particular disciplines on a regular basis. We also offer our students internship opportunities. It gives us immense pleasure to partner with one of the globally recognized leading PR association, PRCA, opening the doors to newer opportunities, enabling us to work together to strengthen the experiences of our communications students.”

New streaming service SkyShowtime to launch in Europe on Sept 20

New streaming service SkyShowtime  announced that it will officially launch on 20 September 2022, bringing its premium offering of exclusive and iconic entertainment to millions of homes across Europe for the first time.A joint venture of Comcast (NASDAQ: CMCSA) —parent company of NBCUniversal and Sky— and Paramount Global (NASDAQ: PARA, PARAA), SkyShowtime will launch in Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden on 20 September, before expanding into the Netherlands later this year in Q4. SkyShowtime will continue its roll out across Spain, Portugal, Andorra, and Central & Eastern Europe (CEE) over the coming months and through Q1 2023. CEE markets include Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Hungary, Kosovo, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia and Slovenia. Specific launch dates and pricing in these markets will be announced in the coming months.SkyShowtime brings together the best entertainment from the world’s greatest studios and storytellers. Featuring thousands of hours of quality entertainment for the whole family, the service will be home to a wide selection of the world’s most highly anticipated series and movies.It will feature the exclusive television premieres of first-run theatrical films from Paramount Pictures and Universal Pictures, Hollywood’s two oldest studios and which together account for nearly 50% of Hollywood box office.#YOUTUBE_ujzpT7FTeeY#SkyShowtime will be the home to a selection of new blockbuster films following their theatrical and home entertainment release, including Top Gun: Maverick, Jurassic World Dominion, Minions: The Rise of Gru, The Northman, Sing 2, Sonic the Hedgehog 2, The Lost City, Downton Abbey: A New Era, Nope, Belfast, Ambulance and The Bad Guys.In addition, SkyShowtime features new premium scripted series, kids and family content and a selection of iconic library titles and box sets from Universal Pictures, Paramount Pictures, Nickelodeon, DreamWorks Animation, Paramount+, SHOWTIME®, Sky Studios and Peacock - all streaming in one place. SkyShowtime will also feature local original programming, documentaries and specials from its markets.In the Nordics, as part of the partnership with Paramount, SkyShowtime will replace Paramount+, allowing existing and future customers to watch current Paramount+ favourites such as Halo, Yellowstone, The Offer and Star Trek: Strange New Worlds, as well as SHOWTIME® originals Yellowjackets, Dexter: New Blood, Super Pumped: The Battle for Uber, and The First Lady. And for the first time, subscribers will gain access to even more new and exclusive premium series and movies spanning the best of Universal Pictures, Sky Originals and NBCUniversal.From launch, customers can watch series premieres of highly anticipated SHOWTIME® drama American Gigolo, Sky Originals The Rising, The Fear Index, and The Midwich Cuckoos, as well as Law & Order Season 21 from Peacock. Over the coming months, additional series premieres will include Yellowstone Season 5, Pitch Perfect: Bumper in Berlin, Vampire Academy and SHOWTIME® series Yellowjackets Season 2 and Let The Right One In.SkyShowtime CEO Monty Sarhan said: “It’s time… for SkyShowtime, — the next great streaming service for Europe. Just months after receiving full regulatory approval, SkyShowtime will officially launch on 20 September 2022. We’re excited for our customers to have exclusive access to the latest series and movie premieres from our iconic and world-renowned studios. We look forward to sharing further details about launch dates for our other markets and bringing SkyShowtime to even more people across Europe.”SkyShowtime Regional General Manager for Northern Europe Henriette Skov commented: “We’re thrilled to launch SkyShowtime across the Nordics and look forward to offering our customers the very best selection of global series and movies all in one place.”The service will be available direct-to-consumer via the SkyShowtime app across Apple iOS, tvOS, Android devices, and through the website: SkyShowtime’s monthly price will be €6,99 in Finland, SEK 79 in Sweden, NOK 79 in Norway, and DKK 69 in Denmark.SkyShowtime will also be available through the following distribution partners across its Nordic markets: Allente, RiksTV, Ruutu, Sappa, Strim, Telenor, Tele2, Telia, Telmore and YouSee from Nuuday Group, and TV 2 Play.Powered by the Peacock platform, SkyShowtime was created specifically for Europe and is dedicated to these markets. With regional offices across its territories, SkyShowtime’s customer-centric focus and local market presence informs its approach to partnerships, content, and marketing. Once launched across more than 20 countries, SkyShowtime’s apps and content will be available in 18 different languages.

Survivor will be seen on BBC One and BBC iPlayer in 2023

Survivor, one of the world’s most successful TV formats, is coming to the UK.A new UK adaption of the entertainment phenomenon has been commissioned by BBC One and BBC iPlayer from Banijay UK company Remarkable Entertainment, run by leading entertainment producers Natalka Znak and Claire O’Donohoe.The brand new 16 x 60’ series of the ultimate physical and psychological gameshow promises viewers a compelling test of brains, brawn and betrayal as players compete to outwit, out play and outlast their rivals to be crowned the Ultimate Survivor.20 people, carefully selected from across the UK will be marooned in a tropical location. They will be divided into two tribes, going head-to-head in a range of physical and psychological challenges. Following a number of eliminations that will take place at the iconic tribal council, the tribes will eventually merge before one person takes away a cash prize and proves that they have what it takes to be the Ultimate Survivor.Survivor, a Banijay format created by Charlie Parsons, is one of the most watched reality entertainment formats around the world. Celebrating 25 years this year, (the format was first employed in 1997 in Sweden), the show has gone on to be ranked as the ‘Number 1 Best Reality Show of All Time’ by Variety. 50 versions have been commissioned around the world to date, and the CBS version of the show from the USA will soon be airing its 43rd series.Kate Phillips, Director of Unscripted at the BBC says: “Survivor is a global television hit and to be able to bring one of TV’s most successful formats to audiences in the UK in a uniquely BBC way is a very exciting prospect indeed.”Natalka Znak, CEO Remarkable Entertainment says; “Survivor is ‘the greatest gameshow on earth’ for a reason - it has everything - reality, adventure, drama, and the ultimate game. I can’t wait to be boots on the ground, working with Paul Osborne, Stephen Lovelock and the fantastic team at Remarkable to make this epic series for the BBC.”Broadcast confirmation, presenter information and further casting details for the UK version of Survivor will be announced in due course.Survivor (16 x 60) is a Remarkable Entertainment (a Banijay UK company) production for BBC One and BBC iPlayer and was commissioned by Kate Phillips in her capacity as Director of Entertainment Commissioning. Natalka Znak from Remarkable Entertainment is Executive Producer alongside Claire O’Donohoe, Paul Osborne and Stephen Lovelock. The format was developed for the BBC by Richard Hague. The Commissioning Editor for the BBC is Rachel Ashdown.

The Rings of Power attracts 25m+ viewers on Prime Video

Amazon today announced The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power attracted more than 25 million global viewers on its first day, breaking all previous records, marking the biggest premiere in the history of Prime Video. The series launched exclusively on Prime Video in more than 240 countries and territories worldwide.Jennifer Salke, head of Amazon Studios, said: “It is somehow fitting that Tolkien’s stories - among the most popular of all time, and what many consider to be the true origin of the fantasy genre - have led us to this proud moment. I am so grateful to the Tolkien Estate – and to our showrunners J.D. Payne and Patrick McKay, executive producer Lindsey Weber, cast and crew - for their tireless collaborative efforts and boundless creative energy. And it is the tens of millions of fans watching – clearly as passionate about Middle-earth as we are – who are our true measure of success.”Episodes of The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power will launch weekly through the October 14 season finale on Prime Video.Prime Video’s The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power brings to screens for the very first time the heroic legends of the fabled Second Age of Middle-earth's history. This epic drama is set thousands of years before the events of J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, and will take viewers back to an era in which great powers were forged, kingdoms rose to glory and fell to ruin, unlikely heroes were tested, hope hung by the finest of threads, and one of the greatest villains that ever flowed from Tolkien’s pen threatened to cover all the world in darkness. Beginning in a time of relative peace, the series follows an ensemble cast of characters, both familiar and new, as they confront the long-feared reemergence of evil to Middle-earth. From the darkest depths of the Misty Mountains to the majestic forests of the elf-capital of Lindon, to the breathtaking island kingdom of Númenor, to the farthest reaches of the map, these kingdoms and characters will carve out legacies that live on long after they are gone.The series is led by showrunners and executive producers J.D. Payne & Patrick McKay. They are joined by executive producers Lindsey Weber, Callum Greene, J.A. Bayona, Belén Atienza, Justin Doble, Jason Cahill, Gennifer Hutchison, Bruce Richmond, and Sharon Tal Yguado, and producers Ron Ames and Christopher Newman. Wayne Che Yip is co-executive producer and directs along with J.A. Bayona and Charlotte Brändström.A world-renowned literary work, and winner of the International Fantasy Award and Prometheus Hall of Fame Award, The Lord of the Rings was named Amazon customers’ favorite book of the millennium in 1999 and Britain’s best-loved novel of all time in BBC’s "The Big Read" in 2003.The Lord of the Rings books have been translated into over 38 languages and have sold more than 150 million copies.

Waterfield Advisors advertises on Emirates Airline to empower its ambitions

In a one-of-its-kind initiative, Waterfield Advisors, India’s largest multi-family office and wealth advisory firm, has announced a strategic advertising placement on Emirates Airline to air the brand’s ad film across all Emirates flights, globally, via the in-flight entertainment system. Having pioneered the concept of wealth advisory in India, Waterfield Advisors now aspires to become a global brand with Indian roots. The vision is to become the trusted partner for international HNIs and UHNIs who are looking to invest in India. Through this initiative with Emirates Airline, Waterfield Advisors hopes to reach a discerning audience and narrate its brand philosophy in a premium and captive environment. Expressing his enthusiasm for this initiative, Mr. Yash Bhargava, Head of Marketing and Communications of Waterfield Advisors, said, “This premium media touch is very special for us because it enables us to tell our brand story to a niche, global and affluent audience in a unique format. Having its base in Dubai, Emirates Airline is strategically perfect for an Indian brand with global ambitions in the space of finance and business. The primary objective of the campaign is to increase brand awareness on a global scale and associating with a trusted and luxury brand. We are very excited that international investors flying from 157 cities and 83 countries will watch this ad film!” #YOUTUBE_JRZ31RWeOa8#As the first Wealth Management company in Asia to be a signatory to the United Nations Principles for Responsible Investing (UNPRI), Waterfield Advisors is committed to helping its clients align their investments to positive societal outcomes. India is among the most preferred investment destinations in the emerging world. Waterfield Advisors aims to be the gateway for international business families in their journey to access India’s outsized return-generating opportunities. Established in 2011, Waterfield Advisors today manages over $4.3 billion in assets on behalf of some of the largest and most iconic business families in India, which it serves from its 7 offices across India. Along with winning the client’s trust, Waterfield Advisors has been awarded several major honors by prestigious platforms such as Euromoney, Wealth Briefing Asia, Global Private Banking Awards, The Asset Triple A Private Capital Awards to name a few. Waterfield Advisors is also frequently mentioned in major publications such as Forbes, Fortune, Hubbis and Asia Private Banker.

iCubesWire increases footprint in MENA with Dubai office expansion

iCubesWire, a leading Digital Marketing Ecosystem established in 2010, has strengthened its presence in the MENA region with key hirings and client acquisitions. The company serves 500+ brands across industries, with offices in India, Singapore and Dubai. In addition, the agency is heavily investing in expanding its Dubai office to increase its footprint in the Middle East.Sharing his plans for the future, Mr. SahilChopra, Founder&CEO, iCubesWire, adds, “Our Dubai office and the region is doing exceedingly well, and we look forward to making key acquisitions in the region to strengthen our footprint. We have aggressive plans in the coming months to expand into EMEA and NAM region as well”.After successfully delivering strategy-led campaigns for more than 50+ brands in Middle East, the company israpidly increasing workforcetoadd more brands to its clientele. The company’sDubai office, located in the Media City, is headed by Sanjeeda Khan, Co-founder & Chief Growth Officer, along with DivyankNayal, acting as the Country Head.Danish Ahmed, Online Marketing Manager, Alshaya Group, comments on the news, “Our partnership with iCubesWire has been nothing short of phenomenal. The team keenly understands the business and has delivered successful campaigns with out-of-the-box thinking and seamless execution. We hope to reach greater heights with iCubesWire as our digital partner.”Commenting on the news, George Achkouty,Head of Digital - OMD KSA & Lower Gulf, says, “Our collaborations with iCubesWire for performance marketing campaigns have always proved to be fruitful. The team’s customer-centric approach has led us to consistently meet campaign objectives over the months with the right support, planning and seamless execution.”iCubesWirestrives to capture the market rapidly owing to a comprehensive portfolio including Digital Branding, Media Buying & Planning, Influencer Marketing, Performance Marketing and Video Production. The agency caters to brands across categories and has delivered digital campaigns for brands such as Amazon,, Bloomingdales, Emirates, fnp, Under Armour Sun and Sand Sports, Air Arabia, Gulf Air, and more.

Khaled Ameen, Hussain AlMahdi & Rawan Mahdi star in Netflix’s new Kuwaiti show '

Netflix is bringing a brand new Arabic dramedy series to screens this September, with the launch of 'The Cage'. The light-hearted Kuwaiti show stars several beloved Kuwaiti stars including Khaled Ameen, Hussain AlMahdi, Rawan Mahdi, Lamya Tareq and Hessah AlNabhan, showcasing more stories from the Arab world to global audiences.Khaled Ameen plays a social counselor who is working with a married couple, played by Hussain AlMahdi & Rawan Mahdi, to address their differences and better understand each other’s perspective to save their marriage. While the counselor is helping them reconnect, he’s facing his struggles in his personal life, too. Following the couple and the evolution of their relationship across 10 years, the 8-episode dramedy is a fresh take on tackling marital challenges in Arab drama, in a lighthearted and relatable way.The Cage, which is produced by Abdullah Boushahri and directed by Jasem Almuhanna, will be available on 23rd of September, only on Netflix.The Cage is the next milestone in Netflix’s journey in the region as it continues to invest in amplifying the voices of more Arab storytellers. The Cage is just the beginning for Netflix series in Kuwait, with another high-profile project in the works that promises to deliver a fresh perspective, exciting twists and turns and some beloved, familiar faces.

Amazon Freevee Brings Back The Suze Orman Show With an Exclusive Licensing Deal

Amazon Freevee announced a two-year licensing deal to bring back all 14 seasons of The Suze Orman Show. The deal includes multi-territory streaming rights including the U.S., UK, and Germany—with exclusive on-demand and FAST channel rights to the full library of 592 episodes of the iconic financial advice series. Starting today, 207 episodes will be released, with more episodes of The Suze Orman Show rolling out each month until the end of the year in the U.S. The series will be available on Amazon Freevee in the UK later this year, and in Germany next year. “Suze Orman is one of the most respected and recognized experts in personal finance. As viewers around the world seek answers to their questions about money management and the global economy, we couldn’t think of a better moment to make this show available—or a better partner than Suze,” said Lauren Anderson, head of AVOD Original content and programming at Amazon Studios. “We are honored she chose Amazon Freevee as the new, long-awaited destination to exclusively stream The Suze Orman Show—allowing audiences free access to the evergreen wisdom and practical advice she has shared with millions throughout the years.”“You should be so thrilled that Freevee is bringing back all episodes of The Suze Orman Show, because it gave financial freedom to millions of people,” said Suze Orman. “Freevee is the perfect new home for my show because it’s completely free of charge, so of course YOU ARE APPROVED to watch it!”  The Suze Orman ShowThe Suze Orman Show helps people make the connection between self-worth and net worth. In a format that's fast-paced, down-to-earth, and entertaining, Suze Orman candidly tells her audience the truth about money so viewers can change the course of their financial destiny—to be more and to have more.Amazon Freevee, formerly IMDb TVAmazon Freevee is a free ad-supported streaming video service with thousands of premium movies and TV shows, including Originals and FAST channels, available anytime, for free.Expansive Catalog: Amazon Freevee offers viewers ambitious Originals, including Bosch: Legacy; Emmy-winning court program Judy Justice; reality design series Hollywood Houselift with Jeff Lewis; comedy series Sprung; music documentary Post Malone: Runaway; heist drama Leverage: Redemption; spy thriller Alex Rider; and the sports docuseries UNINTERRUPTED’s Top Class: The Life and Times of the Sierra Canyon Trailblazers. Combined with an always updating library of broadly appealing hit movies and TV shows across a wide selection of genres, and a catalog of more than 100 FAST channels, Freevee delivers customers the content they would expect to see on a paid service.Free: The entire catalog of content on the service is free. No paid subscriptions necessary.Limited Ads: Freevee provides customers highly sought content supported by limited advertising.Instant Access: On Prime Video, Freevee is available within the “Free with Ads” tab, “Live TV” tab, or through the “Popular Movies and TV – Free with Ads” carousel. Freevee is also available as an app on third party devices including Roku, Samsung smart TVs (2017-2021 models), Apple TV 4K, Apple TV HD, Comcast’s Xfinity Flex, Xfinity X1, Chromecast with Google TV, NVIDIA SHIELD and other Android TV devices, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5 consoles, as well as LG Smart TVs (2018-2021 models). The app is also available on iPhone, iPad, and Android mobile devices.To learn more about Amazon Freevee, visit and follow @AmazonFreevee.

beIN SPORTS renews exclusive rights to the Bundesliga across Middle East & North

 beIN SPORTS, the flagship channel of the beIN MEDIA GROUP, has renewed the rights to broadcast the Bundesliga in all 24 countries across the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) in a three-year deal.The German top-flight returns to the beIN SPORTS channels this weekend with fixtures including Borussia Dortmund opening Matchday 5 against TSG Hoffenheim on Friday (kick-off at 21.30 MECCA) and first v second with Julian Nagelsmann’s FC Bayern München as they travel to 1. FC Union Berlin on Saturday (kick-off at 16.30 MECCA).beIN SPORTS has the exclusive rights to all 306 Bundesliga fixtures, as well as the end-of-season relegation play-offs, the German Supercup, and Bundesliga 2 as the league returns to the leading media group in MENA. The deal includes full clip and highlights rights across beIN SPORTS’ digital and social media channels and Bundesliga is home to some of the biggest clubs in Europe, including 31 times champions FC Bayern München and the current UEFA Europa League holders Eintracht Frankfurt. After four weekends of the season, it already promises to be a campaign to remember, with Bayern and Union currently tied at the top. Dortmund are just one point back, and could leapfrog their rivals with a win on Friday night.beIN SPORTS now holds the rights to the Bundesliga in France, Turkey, Australia, New Zealand, and the MENA region, covering 28 global territories in total.Mohammad Al-Subaie, CEO of beIN MENA, said: “We are delighted to welcome the Bundesliga back to beIN SPORTS in the MENA region. As one of the biggest and most significant leagues in world football, we’re proud to give German football fans the best viewing and engagement experiences, while helping German football flourish and grow. From the English Premier League, LaLiga, Ligue 1, UEFA competitions, and an unparalleled multi-sports offering, Bundesliga sits alongside the best sports products in the world, as beIN SPORTS continues to be the ultimate destination for football and sports fans alike.”“We also look forward to the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022, the biggest football showpiece in the world – and featuring a wealth of Bundesliga players – taking place right here in the Middle East, with every match exclusively live on beIN SPORTS. There’s never been a better time to be a beIN SPORTS subscriber.”Robert Klein, CEO of Bundesliga International, said: “With stars such as reigning African Player of the Year Sadio Mane lighting up the league each week, we look forward to working with beIN SPORTS to deliver world-class localised content and showcase the best of the Bundesliga over the next three years to the millions of football fans throughout the region, who can now follow the league as well as their favourite teams and players again.”

This World Water Week, PepsiCo AMESA recognizes key milestones of its Net Water

In observance of World Water Week, PepsiCo AMESA recognized its key water stewardship milestones in progressing towards the vision of becoming net positive by 2030. Guided by pep+, PepsiCo’s strategic end-to-end transformation for driving long-term sustainability, PepsiCo AMESA highlights its multi-pronged approach to watershed management through water-use efficiency on farms and in manufacturing facilities, water replenishment, watershed health improvement and safe water access for communities. Water Stewardship is of topmost priority to PepsiCo’s Positive Value Chain agenda.PepsiCo AMESA has avoided the use of approximately 5 billion litres of water in 2021 compared to 2020 by changing the way farmers irrigate crops, focusing on at-risk locations and improving water-use efficiency.Since 2021, PepsiCo AMESA estimates that it has improved water efficiency by a historic 50% in company-owned high-water risk sites across the region (excluding Pioneer Foods facilities in Sub Saharan Africa).PepsiCo AMESA further estimates that in 2021, it has replenished 2.5 billion litres of water through community partnership projects in 6 high risk watershed areas through with science-based interventions.PepsiCo Foundation in AMESA has invested more than $8 million in safe water access programs, impacting about 27 million people’s daily lives since 2018. “Collaboration with local stakeholders plays a key role in understanding the water circuit and implementing meaningful climate action in the most effective direction. We continue working hard to use water even more efficiently, replenish it in high-risk areas and bring safe water access to people in need. For the latter half of 2022, we look forward to more partnerships and targeted initiatives and look forward to exploring the potential for even more partnerships at COP27,” said Eugene Willemsen, CEO – Africa, Middle East, and South Asia, PepsiCo. “AMESA as a region is a very diverse and culturally rich sector and this demands the need for local solutions. We have been partnering with key regional and local governments to help them in their ambitions to achieve each country’s sustainability goals while using location-specific specialized solutions. Water disparity may look different for each country, however action towards water conservation must be united by one major focus – elevating the value of water and its equitable use by all in the watershed,” said Manali Desai, Sustainability Lead, AMESA, PepsiCo.

Netflix to lose SVOD revenues in Latin America

Latin American SVOD revenues will reach $8.54 billion by 2027; up from $5.01 billion in 2021. Netflix will account for 41% of the 2027 total, down from 72% in 2021. Netflix’s revenues will peak at $3.73 billion in 2023.Simon Murray, Principal Analyst at Digital TV Research, explained: “Netflix will introduce AVOD-SVOD tiers [one for Brazil and another pan-regional one for the Spanish-speaking countries] in 2024, with SVOD revenues and ARPUs falling slowly as some subscribers convert to cheaper packages.”Disney+ is likely to introduce similar tiers in 2024. The platform is expected to follow its US example by converting its current subscription tier to AVOD-SVOD and charging more for SVOD-only. This will push up ARPU.

WARC announcement: The Ad Spend Outlook 2022/23

Global advertising spend is on course to rise by 8.3% – or $67.3bn – to $880.9bn this year, finds WARC, lifted by a positive first half for holding companies and a boost from cyclical events in the second, most notably the US midterm elections and the men’s FIFA World Cup in Qatar this November. Market growth is then set to ease significantly – to 2.6% – in 2023, as investment is inhibited by cooling economic conditions and third-party cookie blocking online.The new projections, based on data from 100 ad markets worldwide, amount to a downgrade of 4.3 percentage points (pp) to 2022 growth and 5.7pp to 2023’s prospects, compared to WARC’s previous global forecast in December 2021. Taken together, the new forecasts represent a reduction of almost $90bn in growth potential for the global advertising market this year and next.Advertising holding companies – which serve many of the world’s biggest brands – have recorded a positive start to 2022, with all major firms upwardly revising forward guidance for the year ahead. Conversely, small to medium-sized businesses (SMBs), who largely buy ad space directly, are bearing the brunt of worsening economic conditions. A slowdown in SMB advertising activity will impact social media companies most – a sector already struggling to grapple with the impact of Apple’s new privacy measures. WARC expects social media ad spend to rise 11.5% this year (compared to +47.1% in 2021) then ease to just 5.2% in 2023 – the slowest rate yet for the sector.Aside from businesses, consumers are also feeling the squeeze of soaring price inflation. This is particularly true among low earners for whom energy and food costs comprise a higher proportion of income. Wealthier consumers, however, have seen the value of their assets appreciate in recent years and are more likely to have received above-inflation pay rises – spending intentions among high earners remain bullishly positive per Deloitte monitoring. Sectors like technology & electronics (+11.5% in 2023), pharma & healthcare (+7.5%) and household & domestic (+6.5%) are expected to post healthy increases in advertising investment to capture any available disposable income.Social media’s $40bn shortfallApple’s move to block third party cookies across its 2bn devices – which are used by 12% of the global population (860m people) – has already had an adverse impact on the social media companies which rely on third party data, most notably Facebook-parent company Meta. WARC believes that Apple’s privacy push – aside Google’s delayed move to block third party cookies from its Chrome browser (66% global market share) – will remove close to $40bn from the bottom line of these social media companies over the course of this year and next. A recent survey of over 1,500 practitioners for WARC’s Marketer’s Toolkit found that only a third (34%) of respondents felt fully prepared for a post-cookie advertising market.Meta recorded its first annual decline in advertising income during Q2 2022 and WARC believes its full year growth will be flat over the forecast period, as the Instagram platform stymies ongoing losses from the core Facebook platform this year and next. TikTok (+41.5%), Snap (+5.8%) and Twitter (+2.7%) are all expected to record growth next year, but at a far slower rate than historically seen, while a number of Chinese platforms are set to record losses. Very few product sectors are cutting advertising investmentOf the 18 product sectors monitored by WARC, all bar automotive are on course to increase advertising spend this year. Only four sectors are expected to cut spend in 2023; transport & tourism (-0.4%), alcoholic drinks (-1.1%), financial services (-4.5%) and automotive (-12.4%).The technology & electronics sector – the third largest of the 18 monitored by WARC – is forecast to lead growth this year and next (+25.0% in 2022 and +11.5% in 2023), culminating in a total spend of $85.1bn by 2023. The pharma & healthcare sector then follows, with expected growth of 11.0% this year and a further 7.5% in 2023, by when investment will have topped $60bn globally. Retail – the largest sector monitored by WARC and which includes Amazon, the world’s largest advertiser by spend – is set to increase advertising investment by 6.8% this year and 3.6% next year despite retailers seeing tighter margins from inflationary pressures. The automotive sector, however, is bedogged by both supply- and demand-side pressures and is the only sector set to cut advertising spend in both 2022 (-5.3%) and 2023 (-12.4%).AVOD market heats up as streaming becomes war of attritionAdvertising spend in the video streaming sector is set to grow faster than the total ad market this year (+8.4%) and next year (+7.0%). Within this, the advertising-funded video on demand (AVOD) sector – which includes the likes of Hulu, Amazon Prime Video and YouTube – is expected to rise 8.0% this year and then a further 7.6% in 2023 to reach a value of almost $65bn.Aside from the social media players, YouTube’s fortunes have also proven vulnerable to privacy changes on Apple devices; WARC believes that YouTube’s advertising revenue will rise 7.3% this year (compared to a 45.9% in 2021), but that its growth will then ease to 5.6% in 2023. This would give the company 39.4% of the global AVOD market, a declining share (down 0.9pp from 2021) as competition heats up with the introduction of advertising to Disney+ and Netflix later this year. There is already evidence of saturation in the streaming market, particularly in the US, with audiences now using seven streaming services on average (compared to the global average of five). Consequently, new entrants are just as likely to be fighting for existing advertising spend as they are for incremental dollars, which could hinder overall growth of streaming operators in the short- medium-term.Streaming services owned by broadcasters (BVOD) are also set to grow their advertising income this year (+9.7%) and next (+5.2%), but from a far lower base (reaching $18.5bn in 2023). Linear TV is set to benefit from cyclic sporting and political events this year, raising advertising investment by 3.6% to $180bn (20.4% of all advertising spend) but the market is then on course to record a 4.5% loss in the absence of these events next year.Summing up, James McDonald, Director of Data, Intelligence & Forecasting, WARC, and author of the research, says: “With the growth rate of global output now set to halve and acute supply-side pressures fanning inflation, the economic slowdown has removed close to $90bn from global ad market growth prospects this year and next. Yet brands are still spending as the Covid recovery continues, and global ad trade remains on course to top $1trn in value by 2025. Platforms with rich sources of first-party data – most notably Amazon, Google and Apple – are well placed to weather future headwinds by offering measured performance in a climate where return on investment becomes paramount.”

PartyNite forays into the Middle East Market with its Dubai Office

In a strategic decision, Gamitronics, creator of PartyNite- India ka Apna Metaverse, today announced the launch of its UAE office in Dubai as part of its expansion plan. The opening is designed to provide support services to its growing client base to largely deal with PartyNite Metaverse and expansion in the space of Crypto and NFTs. Gamitronics has been eyeing the Middle East market for a while now, and the move comes close on the heels of successful big budget events and brand engagements orchestrated in India.Gamitronics is headquartered in Hyderabad, India and has a client base which includes many marquee brands throughout Asia. The company currently plans to employ over 10 full-time staff and will extend its sales, delivery and legal services in the Dubai Office.Rajat Ojha CEO and Founder of Partynite says, “Metaverse is the internet for the upcoming generations and we’re already working with a number of brands and operators who value reliable and engaging ways to reach their customers and we expect to continue to see growth in these markets. We definitely have the first mover advantage in India and our key strengths are strong client relationships, speed to market and full-service offerings. Our new Dubai operations office will provide solutions, product services and legal support for local and global needs overall. Brands today are seeking optimized solutions which makes it critical for service providers like us to develop capabilities to work faster and better.”He added, “Dubai has announced a very ambitious and aggressive Metaverse strategy already which is going to be headed by none other than their crown prince. They were very vocal about how UAEs community and industries can benefit from the endless possibilities of Metaverse and that's where Gamitronics wants to play a big role and are already working closely with the leadership to set the stage and be a part of this big huge moment”.

Anghami sees spike in subscribers

In the initial six months of 2021, the paid subscribers of Anghami, the music streaming platform, have increased by 41% at 1.28 million, in comparison to the same period in the past year. The number of users who were active increased by 46% to 19.5 million, raising revenues in the six months of Anghami to $21.1 million, at a rise of 29% on an annual basis. The streaming platform, the competitor to Spotify in the Arab world, has also made efforts to invest in extending its local Arabic content. It has previously declared a partnership with Amr Diab, the Egyptian superstar who also happens to be the artist who is most listened on the app, with 1.2 billion streams. Deals were also signed by Anghami, with Rotana Music, and Wajeez, the audiobook subscription service showcasing Arabic content.

Publicis Sapient acquires Changi Consulting

Changi Consulting, a provider of cloud solutions and a partner of Salesforce in the MENA area, has been acquired by Publicis Sapient, a company that specialises in digital business transformation. Changi, headquartered in Dubai, began operations in 2010. Changi has been representing Salesforce in the UAE for the past twelve years as its longest-standing partner there. The company's 100% Salesforce-certified professionals are from twelve different nations and are multilingual.Changi develops and offers cloud-based solutions aimed at assisting companies in expediting, automating, and streamlining their operations by using its expertise across all major industries and business functions. STC Bahrain and Alyasra Foods in Kuwait are just two of the more than 120 clients who employ Changi's services in the retail, consumer products, automotive, health, telecommunications, and financial services sectors. Over 400 projects have been successfully completed by Changi throughout the MENA region and the GCC, and the company continues to have a 5-star client rating and 9.89 customer satisfaction score on AppExchange.Nigel Vaz, CEO of Publicis Sapient, said: "We're really impressed by Changi's executive team, extensive depth of cloud expertise and capabilities, and broad relationship with Salesforce Publicis Sapient has acquired Changi as part of a strategic plan. It provides the framework for both the further global expansion of our cooperation with Salesforce and our rapid growth in the MENA area. In addition to having a great reputation within the Salesforce ecosystem, Changi is renowned for its capacity to handle challenging international projects, which continues to strengthen our distributed global delivery strategy”.Ghassan Chkaiban, founder and managing director of Changi Consulting, said: "Trust, enthusiasm, innovation, and a relentless focus on our customers at Changi power our ability to offer cloud-based solutions that assist expedite our clients' growth and create the finest customer experiences. Changi and Publicis Sapient have each partnered with Salesforce for more than ten years, have complementary skill sets across a range of industries, and share a dedication to acting as the go-to partner for digital business transformation for some of the most recognisable brands in the world. Our consumers benefit enormously from the strategic alignment of both teams. We're eager to work together to further improve consumer impact”.

Rusty Beukes joins Red Havas as creative director

Rusty Beukes, a globally recognised editor and creative consultant, has been named creative director of Red Havas Middle East. The new position intends to broaden Red Havas’ creative communications offering for its rapidly expanding portfolio of regional brand partners, with a particular emphasis on fashion, leisure, and beauty. Red Havas Middle East general manager Dana Tahir stated: “In an era where communications agencies face a near-daily redefinition of their identities and scopes of work to tailor those to the modern media landscape, we believe the role of PR is to provide diverse and impeccable service that moves at the pace of today’s lighting speed multimedia landscape. The exciting addition of Rusty to our team further complements and strengthens our merged media model, where our creative output as an agency is central to blending traditional and digital publishing, content and social media.”Rusty has a solid reputation in the area as interim editor-in-chief of GQ Middle East and launch creative director of YUNG, with over 12 years of experience in the publishing and communications business. He gives a unique perspective on the function of brand storytelling in defining and altering culture.Rusty Beukes, creative director, Red Havas Middle East said: “I am deeply honoured to be joining Red Havas and grateful for the opportunity to build on the agency’s success with Dana and the team. Creative storytelling is one of the most powerful tools to connect and identify experiences with the consumer journey. Recently, more and more brands have taken a range of initiatives, bringing to the fore more relatable, engaging and thought-provoking content through creative cultural storytelling. I’m looking forward to creating impactful campaigns with a lot more purpose and service in the region.” Rusty’s responsibility at Red Havas is to collaborate with Dana Tahir and the rest of the communications team to create and lead impactful, culture-shifting work. As such, Rusty will oversee the creative aspects of the Red Havas Middle East PR team and is accountable for the department’s creative philosophy, as well as developing a new offering specifically tailored to clients’ PR needs, with a long-term vision for a diverse team of supporting creatives and writers to deliver creative excellence across the board.

ZEE5 Global partners with LuLu Group in the Middle East for their “India Utsav”

 ZEE5 Global, the world’s largest streaming platform for South Asian content, has partnered with the LuLu Group for their India Utsav celebrations. The announcement was made in a press conference at LuLu Regional Headquarters in Dubai. In the Group’s first ever simultaneous region-wide launch of its celebration of the 75th Indian Independence Day - Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav, the “India Utsav” was launched at the same time across the GCC countries on 15th August 2022, Monday at Al Wahda Mall, Abu Dhabi. The festival was inaugurated by H.E. Sunjay Sudhir Indian Ambassador to the UAE, alongside Mr. Yusuff Ali, Chairman and Managing Director of LuLu Group International, Archana Anand, Chief Business Officer of ZEE5 Global, the official partners of this promotion, and other top officials and government authorities at LuLu Hypermarket Al Wahda Mall, Abu Dhabi. “India Utsav” is a retail festival that brings alive the 3 Cs of the Indian experience at LuLu: Culture, Commerce and Cuisine. It showcases the close commercial ties UAE enjoys with India. In celebration of 75 Years of Indian Independence, the "India Utsav" will present a unique immersive shopping experience at LuLu with regional food trails, celebrity visits organised by ZEE5 Global and amazing promotions & Offers on every category from fresh food to grocery to lifestyle and fashion wear in time for the festive season to follow. ZEE5 GLOBAL PARTNERHSIPThis year, LuLu has partnered with ZEE5 Global, the world’s largest platform for South Asian entertainment. As part of the initiative, ZEE5 will be flying in popular actor Sonali Bendre to meet and greet with fans in the UAE. Shoppers at LuLu Hypermarkets across the GCC will also win a free annual subscription to ZEE5’s for every purchase of AED 1,000 and above; and a free one-month subscription or a 50% discount on yearly subscription for every purchase of AED 100 and above.  Speaking on the occasion H.E. Sunjay Sudhir said, “We are delighted to note that LuLu Group is celebrating the India Utsav across all their stores on the historic occasion of Azadi Ka Amritmahotsav and I thank LuLu Group for always promoting India and Indian products through their hypermarkets. No doubt initiatives such as this will go a long way further promoting the trade ties between India and UAE.” Mr. Yusuff Ali said, “Needless to say, India is very close to my heart and mind emotionally. On the occasion of the 75th Independence Day, I would say that the country is an emerging economic superpower, and the visionary foreign policy of PM Modi has led to stronger India-GCC ties and the UAE is emerging as one of India’s staunch business partners. I believe strongly that the LuLu Group can be a key player in this vision of the future for India.” “Apart from product promotion, India Utsav will also showcase rich cultural diversity of India through many shows, competitions and celebrity visits during the campaign period,” added V. Nandakumar, Director of Marketing & Communications, LuLu Group. Speaking on the occasion, Archana Anand, Chief Business Officer, ZEE5 Global said, “It’s a highly exciting time for ZEE5 Global as we have galloped ahead to become the No.1 streaming platform for South Asian content across multiple global markets, including the Middle East. We now look forward to continuing to build on this success through multiple local initiatives and on the back of our compelling content, further deepening our connection with South-Asian audiences here, we are thrilled to partner with LuLu for their India Utsav celebrations. This marks the continuation of a wonderful and deep relationship with them, and with the region.” Key highlights: Special stalls to promote Indian handicrafts, khadi products, Kashmir products, etc.Indian Food Festival to showcase different state cuisines and snacks.Daily cultural shows and competitions.Free subscriptions of ZEE5. KICKING OFF INDIAN FESTIVALS  “India Utsav” will herald LuLu’s celebration also of India’s busy festival months with a series of celebrations, LuLu India Utsav Deals for Indian Independence Day (from Aug 11th – Aug 17th), Janmashtami Specials (Aug 17th – Aug 18th), Ganesh Chaturthi (Aug 25th – Aug 30th), Onam (Aug 30th to Sept 8th), Navratri – (Sept & Oct), and culminating with Diwali (End of Oct).

New podcasts help drive record number of weekly users on BBC Sounds

It’s… Wagatha Christie was among the hugely popular new podcasts that helped bring a record 4.3 million weekly users to BBC Sounds between April and June this year, with a peak of 4.45 million during the week Coleen Rooney and Rebekah Vardy’s trial went to court.New titles Lady Killers with Lucy Worsley, It’s... Wagatha Christie and The People Vs J. Edgar Hoover were among the most popular podcasts on BBC Sounds this quarter.Returning series’ proved popular among younger listeners with Match Of The Day: Top 10 the most popular podcast for under 35 year olds, and Bad People and You’re Dead To Me once again in the top ten.6 Degrees with Jamie and Spencer had the highest proportion of listeners under 35 with Pressed, Match Of The Day: Top 10 and The Footballer’s Football Podcast among the top ten.New series of The Unbelievable Truth, The News Quiz and Just A Minute were among the most popular on demand radio programmes after The Archers, with Radio 1’s Dance Anthems topping the list for listeners under 35.New music show launched for Back To Back Sounds Everything Is Emo with Hayley Williams was among the most popular music mixes this quarter.The latest data shows there were 392 million plays of all audio on BBC Sounds, with a total of 177 million plays for on-demand radio and podcasts in this quarter.54 percent of overall plays on BBC Sounds were for live content and 65 percent of all listening hours on BBC Sounds were live.On-demand radio programmesThe new series of David Mitchell’s enduringly popular The Unbelievable Truth was the most listened to on-demand radio programme after The Archers for all adults on BBC Sounds this quarter, followed by In Our Time and The News Quiz. They also featured in the top ten most listened to radio programmes for under 35s, which was topped by Radio 1’s Dance Anthems.The Breakfast Show with Greg James had the highest proportion of listeners under 35, followed by Radio 1 Anthems and Kenny Allstar.Podcasts on BBC SoundsNew podcasts that launched this quarter were among the most listened to on BBC Sounds. Lady Killers with Lucy Worsley which uncovers the true stories of Victorian women accused of murder, was the most popular. It’s... Wagatha Christie, launched around the Coleen Rooney and Rebekah Vardy libel case that dominated the headlines, proved popular among all adults and listeners under 35 this quarter.Increasingly popular returning series’ helped drive younger listeners on BBC Sounds this quarter, with Match Of The Day: Top 10 the most popular for listeners under 35. Bad People, the podcast that questions the psychology behind some of the most disturbing cases in modern history, returned with a series of special episodes for pride month, Bi-People, and was once again among the top ten most listened to podcast for under 35 year olds, along with the beloved history podcast You’re Dead To Me.The acclaimed new series The People Vs. J. Edgar Hoover also featured in the top ten most listened to podcasts, along with Newscast, Putin and Ukrainecast following another busy news period.With Hollywood royalty now lining up to be their guests, 6 Degrees with Jamie and Spencer was among the most listened to podcasts by under 35 year olds, as well as the highest proportion of listeners under 35 this quarter. The straight-talking podcast Pressed was also among the podcasts with the highest proportion of listeners under 35, and with the season reaching its climax, Match of the Day Top 10 was the most popular podcast among younger listeners.Music mixesNew music show Everything Is Emo with Paramore’s Hayley Williams launched for Back To Back Sounds, the new music feature on BBC Sounds, was among the most popular music mixes, contributing to a total of 3 million plays of music this quarter.The consistently popular Sounds of the 90s with Fearne Cotton was the most listened to music mix, followed by Radio 1 Happy and the long awaited return of Glastonbury, after the festival’s three year hiatus.BBC podcasts and radio programmes on third party platformsFrom a total of 264 million global podcast downloads across the world during this quarter, Global News Podcast (BBC World Service), The Documentary (BBC World Service) and Woman’s Hour (Radio 4) were the most popular.

Meta receives Rs 13.9 crore in ad revenue from social, political organisations

Meta Ad Library just revealed Rs 13.9 crore in ad expenditure for India in the previous 90 days (May 2, 2022 to July 30, 2022) on social problems, elections, or politics. According to the statistics, spiritual leader Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev and his non-profit organisation Isha Outreach are India's top advertiser on Meta platforms, spending an average of Rs 1.35 lakh per day in the last quarter, followed by micro-blogging platform KOO and OTT operator Voot Select.Furthermore, Sadhguru has spent Rs 99.24 lakh on Facebook advertisements in the last 90 days. The KOO app came in second with Rs 78.44 lakh spent, followed by Voot Select with Rs 61.14 lakh, UNICEF with Rs 47.50 lakh, and Kutumb with Rs 44.11 lakh.Meta, the owner of Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp, openly provides statistics on advertisements related to social topics, elections, and politics.

ThinkAnalytics appoints industry veteran Greg Riker as Chief Revenue Officer

ThinkAnalytics, a global provider of cloud-based personalized content discovery, viewer insight, and targeted advertising solutions, today announced that Greg Riker has joined as Chief Revenue Officer. Greg will lead U.S. business development, sales, and customer success teams for the Think360 viewer engagement platform and ThinkAdvertising for hyper-targeted advertising. Based in the U.S., he will report to ThinkAnalytics Chairman, Eddie Young.Greg has a proven 20-year track record in senior sales leadership roles and C-level customer relationship management in the media and entertainment space. Most recently he led business development and sales, Americas, at Comcast for the Metrological business. Prior to this, until Metrological’s acquisition by Comcast, Greg was Senior Vice President at Metrological responsible for all commercial activity including content acquisition for the Americas. His experience also encompasses 10 years at ARRIS in the U.S. and the Netherlands, culminating in leading the global team responsible for selling the ARRIS cloud distribution platform.“ThinkAnalytics has a pedigree second to none when it comes to anticipating customers’ evolving needs and delivering exceptional results in the market. The company understands that offering a search function is no longer enough and, instead, operators need an ever-evolving combination of behavioral insights, automation, AI, and contextual advertising solutions to optimize viewer engagement,” said Greg Riker, CRO at ThinkAnalytics. “I look forward to joining the talented team and helping more media and video service providers on their journey to tackle subscriber monetization, engagement, and churn with Think360.”Eddie Young, Chairman, ThinkAnalytics, commented, “As media and video service providers tackle increased competition and customer loyalty, ThinkAnalytics is front and center in partnering with over 80 of the world’s leading TV and OTT businesses. Customers now want to move faster and adopt deeper personalization technologies for content discovery and advertising across TV and FAST services. In many cases, internal development teams just do not have the bandwidth, depth of expertise, or experience to implement such AI-driven applications and bring them to market in a timely fashion.“Greg brings exceptional expertise about how streaming providers and pay-TV operators need to adapt to meet fast-changing consumer needs in today’s competitive marketplace. With impressive experience that hits the hot areas such as engagement, content aggregation, and contextual advertising, Greg will provide value add to our customers and team from day one,” added Eddie Young.

Emirati media exec wins global award for outstanding UAE campaigns

Khaled AlShehhi, the UAE's government media officer's executive director of marketing and communication, won this year's World Media Award (WMA) for content leadership and innovation. The award is given by the World Media Group, a London-based publisher alliance that includes well-known media organisations such as The Atlantic, BBC Global News, Bloomberg Media, Reuters, and The New York Times. AlShehhi will be honoured at this year's World Music Awards in London in September.Individuals that produce "exemplary content-driven campaigns that demonstrate brand boldness, originality, and innovation" are given the prize. "Khaled AlShehhi wowed our judges with the sheer range and complexity of the campaigns he has executed," World Media Group CEO Belinda Barker remarked. An Emirati media executive has won a global prize for outstanding UAE advertisements. AlShehhi was a driving force behind numerous major UAE efforts, including the conversion of the Burj Khalifa into the world's largest contribution box, which reached over 4.5 billion people and raised over 1.2 million meals for those affected by the epidemic.Among the media executive's other notable efforts is the "Double Moon" campaign for the UAE's first Mars expedition. The initiative was a "regional first," with the release of a limited-edition passport stamp made of Martian ink for UAE tourists. AlShehhi also worked on a tourist film titled "A winder through my eyes," which featured the UAE as seen through the eyes of a blind person. The advertisement was praised for "breaking typical tourism content limits."The Emirati media executive also assisted in the branding of the UAE media office. “My goal has been to transform the way the UAE Government communicates by producing original innovative and creative content that positively impacts the lives of people locally, regionally and globally, so it’s truly an honour for me – and of course my team – to see our work recognised by our peers,” AlShehhi stated.Fedex's managing director for brand and customer experience design, Kaat Vanderheyde (2021), UBS' chief marketing officer, Johan Jervoe (2020), and Audi AG's worldwide media management, Christine von Hoerde, are previous recipients of the prize (2019).

Jargon Public Relations expands to Dubai

Cheryl King, the founder of King & Co. PR, will act as a consultant to the IT agency's operations in the region. King has spent the previous eight years in Dubai as the regional director of broadcast consultant Markettiers. Jargon's first overseas office has opened in the United Arab Emirates, bringing the agency's total number of operations to four. The others are in London, Manchester, and Reading, where the company is based.“The technology market in the UAE is growing at an incredible rate, with a projected 6.5% increase in IT spend to $8.2 billion between 2020-2023,” King added. “Jargon PR’s international client base and established reputation means the agency is perfectly positioned to take advantage of the market opportunity in the UAE. I’m excited to have the opportunity to support here and to provide some market knowledge to the international focus of the team.”