UAE emerges as AI leader in the Middle East: IBM study

New research from IBM paints a picture of the UAE leading the way in AI adoption across the Middle East. Two major studies - the 2023 Global AI Adoption Index and a consumer study on AI in retail - highlight the UAE's proactive approach to integrating AI into business operations and the growing demand for AI-powered experiences from consumers.The IBM Global AI Adoption Index reveals impressive statistics when it comes to AI adoption in the UAE:65% Faster Rollout: 65% of IT professionals in the UAE report an accelerated implementation of AI in the past two years.42% Active Deployment: The UAE boasts the highest rate of active AI deployment (42%) among companies surveyed, showcasing a commitment to integrating AI into core processes.Strategic Investment: Research and development, alongside workforce upskilling, are priority investments for UAE businesses aiming to sustain AI growth and innovation.Comprehensive Strategies: 34% of UAE companies already have a comprehensive AI strategy in place, with another 30% actively developing one.These findings point towards the UAE's strong leadership in AI adoption within the Middle East region.Consumers Crave AI-Powered Retail Experiences:IBM's separate study on AI in retail reveals a shift in consumer behavior across the Middle East and Africa (MEA):  Dissatisfaction with In-Store Shopping: Only 3% of MEA consumers are satisfied with their current in-store shopping experience.  Mobile Integration: 75% of MEA consumers use mobile applications while shopping, highlighting a desire for a tech-enabled in-store experience.  Openness to AI: 9 in 10 MEA consumers haven't yet used AI for shopping, but are interested in its potential to enhance their experience.  Demand for AI-powered Features: 75% of MEA respondents express interest in AI applications and virtual assistants for shopping.This growing consumer demand for AI-powered experiences underscores the need for retailers to integrate AI technologies and innovate their offerings to meet evolving customer expectations.These studies position the UAE as a forerunner in the region's AI adoption, both from a business and consumer perspective. With businesses embracing AI for efficiency and innovation, and consumers demanding AI-powered experiences, the UAE is poised to be a leader in the future of AI-driven advancements.

BeIN SPORTS to stream UEFA Women’s Champions League on free-to-air

BeIN SPORTS, the leading sports broadcaster in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), has announced that it will be broadcasting all remaining matches of this season’s ongoing UEFA Women’s Champions League 2024™ (UWCL) on its free-to-air beIN SPORTS channel, as well as its official YouTube channel across MENA, as part of its beINSPIRED initiative.beINSPIRED is a global beIN initiative launched in 2019 that gives a bigger platform to under-represented sports and talent, with a particular focus on women in sport, and is the driving force behind the broadcaster’s vast and well-rounded bouquet of women’s sports rights across its 24 MENA markets and beyond.The announcement marks a fourth successive year that beIN is providing free-to-air coverage of the UWCL. With nearly two million viewers tuning in to watch Barcelona win last year’s UWCL final, the increase in interest and popularity of the women’s game across the region is clear. The quarterfinals are scheduled to get underway on 19 March when Ajax host Chelsea and Benfica welcome Lyon, before reigning champions Barcelona travel to Brann and PSG go to Hacken 24 hours later.beIN holds one of the largest portfolios of women’s sports rights in global broadcasting, with Formula 1 ACADEMY, the female-only single-seater racing championship founded by Formula 1, being the latest top tier women’s sports acquisition. beIN also holds the rights to UEFA Women’s EURO and FIFA Women’s World Cup.Additionally, over the coming months, beIN will also champion women’s sports and its top talents competing at this summer’s long-awaited Paris 2024 Olympic Games, AFC Women’s Under-20 Asian Cup Uzbekistan 2024™, FIFA U20 Women’s World Cup Colombia 2024™, FIFA U17 Women’s World Cup Dominican Republic™, three remaining Grand Slam tennis tournaments as well as the Billie Jean King Cup, on top of year-round live coverage of the Premier Padel Tour.

Joseph Karam appointed GM of International Media at The MediaVantage

The MediaVantage has announced the appointment of Joseph Karam as the General Manager of International Media.Bringing a wealth of experience to his new role, Karam is poised to lead media projects and drive strategic growth initiatives at The MediaVantage. With over 15 years of extensive experience garnered from leading agencies such as Magna Global and Mindshare, Karam boasts a stellar track record of working with global clients including Two Four 54, Atlantis the Palm, and Gulf Air.Notably, Karam's recent role in Bahrain overseeing operations for Mindshare underscores his commitment to the region and his adeptness in navigating diverse markets.Regarding the appointment, Manoj Khimji, Managing Director of The MediaVantage, expressed enthusiasm, stating: "We are thrilled to welcome Joseph Karam to The MediaVantage family. Joseph’s considerable expertise and track record of accomplishments make him an ideal candidate to oversee our international media offering. Joseph will play an important role in propelling our growth and delivering great results to our clients."Excited about his new role, Joseph Karam said: "I am very happy to be back in Dubai and thrilled to start this new chapter with The MediaVantage. While I have left the familiar agency life, I am finding myself more than ever involved and connected across the wider spectrum of agencies across the GCC. Having the opportunity to collaborate with our partners and clients to rightly position the Middle East on the global map mirrors a great desire TMV has for excellence and success."

Jumeirah Beach Hotel welcomes Rene Egle as General Manager

Jumeirah Beach Hotel has appointed Rene Egle as the new General Manager. Bringing with him almost four decades of luxury hospitality and hotel operations experience, his appointment commencing 1 April 2024, is set to further strengthen the property’s commitment to excellence, at a time when the Jumeirah brand is evolving as part of its Mission 2030 strategy.In his new role, Rene will lead the property and apply his background of working at some of the world’s best-known hospitality brands in key global markets, to ensure Jumeirah Beach Hotel continues to provide exceptional experiences for its guests.His career highlights include more than 20 years at Shangri-La spanning numerous countries including China, Indonesia, UAE, Maldives, Mauritius, the Philippines, and Oman. During his extensive career, Rene also held leadership positions at Kempinski and Swissotel (A Raffles International Hotel) in Europe, China and South-East Asia.With strong commercial skills that balance the drive for revenue maximisation and expense management, Rene has a strong history of running successful international high-end hotel operations whilst creating unique and innovative guest experiences.Rene holds a Business Degree from the Business School of Vormbruck Freiburg, Germany. Passionate about digital marketing trends with a proven track record of creating innovative content driven campaigns, Rene is also a Graduate of the Google Squared Digital Marketing & Leadership Program 2018. He is an avid writer and published Author including 'Hotel Untold Stories I' and 'Hotel Untold Stories II Food & Beverage Private and Confidential.'Thomas Meier, Interim Chief Executive Officer and Chief Operating Officer of Jumeirah Group said: “We extend a warm welcome to Rene as General Manager at Jumeirah Beach Hotel, our flagship property in Dubai. His vast global experience working with luxury hospitality brands across the world will be invaluable in supporting Jumeirah towards our Mission 2030 goals of elevating the luxury experience in key markets across the region.”Rene Egle said: “It is an honour to join the iconic Jumeirah Beach Hotel as General Manager and I look forward to bringing my global expertise to the role. This appointment represents a remarkable opportunity to contribute to the legacy of one of Jumeirah's most prestigious resorts. As the Jumeirah brand continues to evolve, I am committed to delivering exceptional experiences to our guests.”

Ace Capital partners with Wahter for Dubai real estate ads in India

Pioneering a new dimension in real estate advertising, Ace Capital, a Dubai real estate investment firm, has forged a groundbreaking partnership with Wahter, India's pioneering branded water bottle brand. Under the agreement, Dubai's real estate players represented by ACE Capital will advertise on Wahter's water bottles to showcase their offerings to potential customers in NCR. Recognizing the transformative potential of Wahter's innovative advertising platform, this collaboration seeks to redefine how real estate ventures connect with global audiences.This strategic move comes at a time when Indian investors have taken the lead as the largest contributors to Dubai's real estate market, surpassing British investors who held this position earlier in the year. The continuous growth in Dubai's expat population, a surge of nearly a hundred thousand people in the year leading up to July, and the attraction of 4,500 millionaires to the UAE in 2023 further highlight the buoyant demand in Dubai's real estate market.Ace Capital's Chief Operating Officer, Jasmeet S Anand underscored the significance of this strategic advertising collaboration, "Our partnership with Wahter epitomizes innovation in advertising and investment outreach. By harnessing Wahter's ingenious approach to brand visibility, we are poised to captivate the attention of Indian investors and showcase the unmatched opportunities within Dubai's dynamic real estate landscape." In the first half of 2023, Indian investments in Dubai surged, constituting 62% of the total FDI from the previous year. The residential market witnessed significant contributions, exceeding $4 billion in purchases during 2022. Notably, India emerged as a key contributor to Dubai's growth, investing $335 million in H1 2023, leading with 123 projects.The allure of Dubai's strategic location and tax-friendly policies continues to attract Indian investors, resulting in a notable total FDI of $1.6 billion from 2020 to H1 2023. This upward trajectory aligns with Dubai's economic agenda outlined in D33, demonstrated by the doubling of Indian investments from $541 million in 2020 to $1.6 billion in H1 2023.Echoing this sentiment, Wahter's CEO heralded the partnership as a paradigm shift in marketing dynamics, "Teaming up with Ace Capital enables us to transcend conventional marketing channels prevalent in real estate, Wahter isn't just a sustainable way of quenching thirst but now also becomes a gateway for our consumers to explore the limitless potential of Dubai real estate."This dynamic collaboration heralds a new era of synergy between innovation and investment, as Ace Capital's branding adorns Wahter's ubiquitous water bottles, permeating carts, strollers, and supermarket aisles across India. As the allure of Dubai real estate cascades through Wahter's innovative advertising channels, both Ace Capital and Wahter stand at the forefront of revolutionizing how global investment opportunities are presented and embraced.

Waterfront Market offers unique shopping and culinary experiences for Ramadan

The Waterfront Market in Dubai, the city's premier hub for fresh produce, warmly welcomes both locals and tourists to immerse themselves in the essence of Ramadan. During the holy month, the Waterfront Market will transform into a festive culinary haven, presenting an unparalleled selection of fresh ingredients, offered at unbeatable prices for Ramadan preparations.In the spirit of the season, the Waterfront Market will be adorned with festive décor, both indoors and outdoors, creating an authentic Ramadan atmosphere. The venue’s promenade, a picturesque setting for iftar, will be beautifully illuminated, providing guests with an opportunity to open their fast with breathtaking views of the waterfront. The ambience is designed to enhance the iftar experience, allowing visitors to immerse themselves in the tranquility and reflection that Ramadan embodies.Recognising the importance of convenience for its customers, the Waterfront Market will operate 24/7, just as it does throughout the year, ensuring that everyone can shop for their essentials at any hour, adding to the ease of preparing for iftar and suhoor. From fresh seafood, meat, and poultry to dry goods, spices, and an extensive variety of fruits and vegetables, the market is a one-stop destination catering to all Ramadan culinary needs.Adding to the Ramadan experience, the Waterfront Market invites guests to explore the latest recipe book by Chef Chris, available to download for free on the website. This collection of recipes is designed to inspire and assist in preparing delicious, and proposes delicious home-cooked iftar meals that cater to diverse tastes and preferences.As Dubai’s premier fresh food market, the Waterfront Market is committed to offering a wholesome and enriching shopping experience. It stands as a testament to the vibrant culinary culture of the UAE, inviting everyone to partake in the joy of Ramadan preparations and celebrations.

Dubai Chamber of Commerce Boosts Events and Exhibitions Industry with ATA Carnet

Dubai Chamber of Commerce, one of the three chambers operating under the umbrella of Dubai Chambers, has revealed that record growth was achieved in the value of goods and commodities imported under ATA Carnets during 2023. A total of 5,492 ATA Carnets were issued and received for goods and commodities worth AED 5 billion, representing a remarkable year-over-year growth of 47% in value.This record value reflects strong growth within Dubai’s exhibitions, events, and conferences sector, to which ATA Carnets are closely linked, and underlines the city’s growing status and reputation as a leading global destination for business and events.Data from this year indicates that 1,118 ATA Carnets were issued and received for goods with a value of AED 695 million during January and February alone, highlighting continuing positive momentum within the events and exhibitions sector in the emirate.ATA Carnets are an effective tool in the attraction and organisation of international events and play a vital role by facilitating the duty-free and tax-free temporary importation of goods for up to one year. This contributes significantly to enhancing the smooth movement and transportation of goods and equipment for exhibitions, shows, and other events.His Excellency Mohammad Ali Rashed Lootah, President and CEO of Dubai Chambers, stated that ATA Carnets enhance Dubai's economic flexibility and boost the growth of various business sectors, especially in terms of simplifying customs procedures for the transport of goods and commodities to be used in exhibitions and shows. The ATA Carnet system has emerged as a key driver in positioning Dubai as a global hub for promotional exhibitions, events, and conferences.His Excellency added: “Dubai Chamber of Commerce is the guarantor for the implementation of the ATA Carnet system in the UAE, with impactful collaboration between the chamber and its partners in Dubai Customs, the Federal Customs Authority, and chambers of commerce across the UAE. We are committed to facilitating the movement of goods and commodities to enhance the competitiveness of the emirate and its business environment.”

TikTok launches second season of 'Moving Topics

TikTok launched the second season of 'Moving Topics', an on-the-go automotive mini-series featuring leading automotive figures and marketing experts in the region's automotive scene. In 'Moving Topics', they will host engaging discussions about the innovation, technologies, and trends driving the automotive industry.'Moving Topics', is in line with TikTok’s reputation as an authentic virtual showroom that inspires, informs, and entertains, creating enduring brand equity for both current and future car buyers. It taps into the growing community of automotive enthusiasts on TikTok, where a weekly search for #CarTok in the UAE reveals over 2,000 car-related TikToks generating millions of views. In each episode, experts engage in a "story-time" session to discuss how these brands connect with the growing automotive community in the region to create relatable and meaningful content.Hosted by well-known creators like Suhaib Shashaa, Co-editor end Editor in Chief at ArabGT, and automotive enthusiast and content creator Amir De Leon, this series will span four episodes, with Lara Ayoub Agha, Senior Marketing Manager – Lexus, Al-Futtaim, as the inaugural guest. The following episodes will feature guests, including Roland Zahra, Managing Director – Nissan Middle East, and Assaad Chehade, Senior Marketing Manager – Toyota, Al-Futtaim. Episodes will also feature contributors from the brand creative agencies including Karl ElHitti, Head of Social, Memac Ogilvy, Wassim Abi Salloum, Managing Director, Nissan United at TBWA/RAAD and Alaa Nour, Account Director, Memac Ogilvy, all of whom will provide valuable insight into how these world-class brands connect with today’s consumers.<iframe width="560" height="315" src=";list=PLU_k2e5EavEN-j4ftsbliBYYikwVib2oK" title="YouTube video player" frameborder="0" allow="accelerometer; autoplay; clipboard-write; encrypted-media; gyroscope; picture-in-picture; web-share" allowfullscreen></iframe>Joanne Chehab, Head of Business Partnerships, MENA – Global Business Solutions at TikTok explained, "TikTok is a powerful connector between brands and consumers. More so than ever, digital interactions are becoming an important factor in the purchasing funnel for consumers, especially for car enthusiasts. We’ve seen bands increasingly adopt a creator's mindset to forge meaningful connections within the automotive community. Brands are recognizing the importance of an authentic communication style and leveraging user-generated content (UGC) to create credible material that brings consumers closer to consideration. ‘Moving Topics’ tackles just that, while addressing how automotive giants, manufacturers, and dealers are navigating today’s consumer journey to unite enthusiasts and build brand loyalty through genuine interactions and entertaining experiences.”As the wheels of innovation continue to turn in the automotive industry, 'Moving Topics' aims to drive the conversation, ignite passion, brand loyalty and meaningful conversation among car aficionados. With each episode, users are invited to rev up their engines and join industry leaders on a cruise through a world where innovation meets inspiration, all while building a community that's fuelled by authenticity and driven by shared enthusiasm for the open road.

Money Plant Real Estate appoints Sandstone Media as communications partner

Sandstone Media, a forward-thinking integrated communications firm based in Dubai, recently announced its partnership with Money Plant, Dubai’s premier real estate brokerage, to manage its communications account.The partnership seeks to elevate Money Plant's brand visibility in the region, solidify its position as a thought leader and amplify its presence in the real estate media sphere.Expressing enthusiasm about the partnership, Anand Rai, Founder & Managing Partner for Sandstone Media said, "Sandstone Media is committed to redefining the communications landscape by seamlessly integrating traditional and digital strategies. This partnership represents our commitment to delivering innovative communication solutions to businesses in the UAE.""The Dubai market is known for its fast-paced and dynamic nature. With this partnership, we are excited to establish and expand our presence, leveraging the innovative strategies to not only increase our visibility but showcase our uniqueness to everyone.", said the Money Plant board.This partnership underscores Sandstone Media's dedication to excellence in integrated marketing and its continued growth and success in the communications industry.

VC bias? Lama Yammine-Hocks on empowering women entrepreneurs

Lama Yammine-Hocks, a former banker at Goldman Sachs and Standard Chartered Bank, is now a co-founder of OPTO, a fintech company focused on leveraging AI models to streamline cash management automation. With a track record spanning over 9 years, Lama has excelled in various domains including investment banking, digitizing payments, and corporate finance across the Middle East and Europe. In this interview with Adgully Middle East, Lama talks about the obstacles women face in accessing VC funding, the inherent biases, the significance of female role models in entrepreneurship, etc. Excerpts:What are some of the challenges women entrepreneurs face in accessing venture capital funding?Women entrepreneurs face significant challenges in accessing venture capital funding, primarily due to deep-rooted gender biases and systemic inequalities. Despite remarkable contributions to innovation and meaningful change across diverse industries, women receive a mere 2.3% of global venture capital funding, with Arab women capturing only 0.1% of this portion. This glaring funding gap underscores the urgent need for systemic change to level the playing field for female entrepreneurs.How do societal expectations contribute to gender biases in entrepreneurship?From an early age, societal expectations shape how girls and boys are taught to communicate, behave, and aspire. These differences persist well into adulthood, permeating professional environments where women's contributions are often undervalued and overlooked. In the world of venture capital, male-dominated investment teams tend to favour male-led startups, perpetuating a cycle of gender bias that stifles innovation and limits opportunities for women.What role do caregiving responsibilities play in hindering women entrepreneurs?Women continue to shoulder the lion's share of family and caregiving responsibilities, which present formidable obstacles for female entrepreneurs. Mothers aged 20-44 spend five hours more per day than their partners on household and family care activities, limiting their ability to dedicate themselves fully to their ventures. The lack of affordable childcare further compounds these challenges, particularly for women entering entrepreneurship later in life.How does fear of failure impact women entrepreneurs?Women entrepreneurs grapple with heightened fears of failure and reluctance to borrow funds, citing concerns about financial risk and lack of access to support networks. According to research, 52% of women express worries about failing to start a business, compared to 42% of men. Additionally, women often face barriers in accessing startup training courses and borrowing funds, further exacerbating their challenges in navigating the entrepreneurial landscape.What is the significance of female role models in entrepreneurship?Representation matters in entrepreneurship, yet female role models remain sorely lacking, particularly in mainstream media portrayals. The absence of visible female leaders perpetuates a masculine bias that marginalises women in the business landscape. Elevating and celebrating female entrepreneurial role models is crucial for inspiring the next generation of women leaders and challenging prevailing gender stereotypes.What distinguishes necessity-driven entrepreneurship from opportunity entrepreneurship?Women entrepreneurs are more likely to engage in necessity-driven entrepreneurship, propelled by socioeconomic constraints rather than genuine opportunity. This distinction is particularly pronounced in developing countries, where women face systemic barriers to economic empowerment. Recognising and addressing these systemic inequities is essential to fostering an ecosystem that supports and empowers women-led businesses.What specific challenges do women in the Middle East face when entering the fintech industry, and how can social innovation initiatives help bridge this gap?Given the unique socio-cultural context of the Middle East, women in the region may encounter various challenges when pursuing careers in fintech, such as limited access to education and training, cultural biases, and gender-based discrimination. Social innovation initiatives, like those highlighted in the World Economic Forum's report, have the potential to address these challenges by providing targeted support, fostering entrepreneurship, and promoting inclusive policies within the fintech ecosystem.How can the Middle Eastern fintech sector leverage social innovation and gender parity accelerators to enhance women's economic participation and leadership in the industry?The Global Gender Gap Report 2023 emphasises the importance of collective action and bold initiatives to accelerate progress towards gender parity in economic participation and leadership. Middle Eastern fintech companies can leverage social innovation and gender parity accelerators to implement inclusive hiring practices, provide mentorship opportunities, and support women's advancement into leadership roles. By fostering a culture of diversity and inclusion, the fintech sector can unlock the full potential of women and drive sustainable growth in the region.How are countries in the Middle East progressing in terms of increasing women's participation in leadership roles?Countries in the Middle East, such as Qatar and Bahrain, are making notable strides in promoting women's involvement in leadership positions. Take the United Arab Emirates, particularly Dubai, for example. They've implemented various initiatives aimed at fostering gender equality in leadership roles. The UAE has set ambitious targets, like aiming for women to occupy at least half of the seats in the Federal National Council. Dubai has established the Dubai Women Establishment, focused on enhancing women's participation across different sectors, including leadership. While there are still challenges such as cultural norms and limited opportunities, the UAE's commitment to equality and proactive policies are driving progress. Through investments in education, training, and creating pathways to top positions, the UAE is setting an example for the entire region.

Wego predicts surge air traffic during Eid al Fitr

Eid al Fitr in the UAE this year is expected to witness a jump in outbound air traffic compared to last year's Eid, says Wego, the largest online travel marketplace in the MENA, in its top travel trends for Ramadan 2024 in the UAE.Wego has observed nearly a four-fold increase in flight searches from the UAE for travel during Eid 2024 compared to Eid 2023.Holiday season is just around the corner, and Wego has noted a spike in demand for flight and hotel reservations from the UAE in the lead up to the festive season.According to Wego data, international flight bookings from the UAE for travel in February have surpassed the numbers during the same period last year by 70.1%.The consecutive occurrence of Ramadan, Eid al Fitr, and spring break in 2024 is anticipated to encourage the same YoY leap in bookings for trips scheduled in the coming months.As we enter the holy month of Ramadan, Wego data showed that airfares to some destinations may get even more expensive this year.The average airfare to the Philippines, a favored destination for UAE travelers, is now AED 1,331.93, compared to AED 895.56 in 2023.Meanwhile, YoY average prices for flights to the UK and Germany have risen by 23.88% and 60.42% respectively.Wego anticipates that ticket prices for popular destinations will continue to climb, especially with more families potentially planning getaways during the holidays.Amidst a bustling month teeming with significant events like the Gulfood trade show, Dubai Duty Free tennis championships among others, Dubai has observed an uptick in hotel occupancy rates in February 2024, with bookings on Wego surpassing last year’s figures by 23.2%. Concurrently, the average Dubai hotel room rates have experienced a YoY surge of 20.3%.Dubai hotel occupancy and daily rates may still move in an upward trajectory through the next few months, as Wego’s data indicates that demands for staycations among UAE residents also typically grow during Ramadan weekends and Eid al Fitr holiday.Wego forecasts an even heightened interest later as more UAE travelers finalize their travel arrangements in the weeks or days leading up to the celebration.Based on Wego's data, India, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and Jordan are the most sought-after destinations for travel between March to April 2024. The list of countries may hint at homecoming trips for UAE’s huge expat communities looking to capitalize on the lengthy holidays.

Saatchi & Saatchi appoints Ali Zein as Executive Creative Director

Saatchi & Saatchi has appointed Ali Zein as the Executive Creative Director for the e& account. In this pivotal role, Ali will spearhead the creative endeavours of the brand, driving innovation and forward-thinking strategies to propel e& as a leading global tech player.“Ali's wealth of experience in advertising and deep understanding of e& positions him perfectly for this role. His time with the brand has offered invaluable insights we're excited to leverage. With Ali joining us, we're primed to elevate what we do for the brand and push the envelope of creativity”, said Bassel Kakish, CEO, Publicis Groupe Middle East & Turkey.Ali has joined from Impact BBDO, where he served as regional executive creative director. He first started his career nearly 25 years ago as an Arabic copywriter and evolved his career in advertising working with top brands like Vodafone, Nestle Ice Cream, Lipton, Shell and CIB, Pepsi, Rotana TV, Barclays and EFG Hermes. His work has been recognised on several prestigious stages including Cannes, Clio, One Show, Epica, Effie's and Dubai Lynx.Commenting on his appointment, Ali stated, "I'm thrilled to be joining this fantastic team at Saatchi & Saatchi. I'm particularly drawn to their culture of prioritising employees and tackling the e& account represents a valuable professional challenge and goal”.

Kent Wertime leads Ogilvy One's charge for tailored customer experiences

In the ever-evolving landscape of marketing technology, the global powerhouse Ogilvy is taking a bold step forward with its announcement of new global leadership for Ogilvy One and innovative services aimed at fostering more valuable relationships in the digital age.Kent Wertime, a veteran within the Ogilvy ranks with nearly 25 years of experience, has been appointed as the Global Chief Executive Officer of Ogilvy One. His leadership heralds a new era for the company, emphasizing the fusion of creativity, data, and AI to craft personalized experiences that resonate with consumers on a deeper level.Under Wertime's guidance, Ogilvy One will consolidate its position as the global brand for both current and next-generation customer experience and relationship service offerings. This move signifies Ogilvy's commitment to providing comprehensive solutions for clients seeking to build lasting connections with their customers.Joining Wertime in this endeavor is a seasoned leadership team comprising industry experts such as Roberto Fara, Rajesh Midha, Clare Lawson, Ab Gaur, Mauro Caggiano, Jason Davey, Ravi Pal, and Nate McNabb. Together, they bring a wealth of experience and expertise to drive Ogilvy One's mission forward.Ogilvy One's comprehensive suite of services encompasses customer acquisition, service design, continuous commerce, CRM, and loyalty programs, all underpinned by a unified global technology backbone. This backbone, powered by Verticurl, enables Ogilvy One to deliver seamless and impactful experiences across various touchpoints.Devika Bulchandani, Global CEO of Ogilvy, said: “When David Ogilvy first started talking about direct marketing decades ago, he recognized that some of the most effective marketing isn’t just directed at your target audience, it speaks to them on a personal one-to-one basis. Now we take that to a new level with a fresh leadership team for Ogilvy One and a commitment to designing relationships based on ideas that create enduring value exchanges between consumers and our clients’ brands.”“Over the last decade, companies invested heavily in technology, but that alone is not the solution. In today’s hyper-commoditized world, brands need to design relationships that create differentiation and relevancy with their consumers. That’s where the exponential power of creativity plays a vital role,” Kent Wertime, Global CEO of Ogilvy One, said. “Today's consumers, choose their points of interaction with brands, from discovery to purchase, and dictate more of the relationship. With a deep understanding of brands and full-dimensional view of consumers coupled with award-winning creativity and a strong data and technology backbone, Ogilvy One is uniquely positioned to design valuable relationships for brands that are impactful, relevant, and enduring.”As companies worldwide navigate the complexities of modern marketing, Ogilvy's visionary approach to relationship marketing sets a new standard for the industry. With Kent Wertime at the helm, Ogilvy One is poised to lead the charge in delivering personalized, relevant, and impactful experiences that drive business growth and brand loyalty in the digital age.

Chery debuts in the UAE with flagship Sharjah showroom

Chery, in collaboration with AW Rostamani, has launched its inaugural showroom in the UAE, seizing the opportunity presented by the Ramadan season to enhance customer satisfaction. Positioned on the vibrant Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Road in Sharjah, the showroom introduces a comprehensive selection of cutting-edge, environmentally friendly automotive solutions. Chery UAE is rolling out enticing promotions aimed at enriching the customer journey and inviting patrons to explore its cutting-edge establishment.The introduction of Chery into the Emirates signifies the culmination of a strategic partnership between Chery UAE and AW Rostamani, renowned for their commitment to innovation, excellence, and customer-centric principles. This alliance presents Emirati clientele with an array of exceptional vehicles, including the TIGGO 8 PRO MAX, TIGGO 8 PRO PLUG-IN HYBRID, and TIGGO 7 PRO MAX, all available as part of the latest Ramadan package.Michel Ayat, CEO of AWR Automotive Group, emphasized the significance of this collaboration, stating, "The partnership between Chery UAE and AW Rostamani Group underscores our shared dedication to advancing automotive retail standards. This marks a pivotal moment in our journey, reaffirming our commitment to elevating consumer choices while prioritizing sustainability goals. The evolution of automotive excellence takes center stage in Sharjah."Zaher Sabbagh, Director of Chery UAE, expressed enthusiasm about Chery's debut in the UAE market: "We are excited to introduce Chery to Emirati consumers. Our vehicles epitomize a fusion of luxury, sustainability, and innovation, tailored to meet diverse customer preferences. This milestone underscores our ongoing commitment to carving a niche in this market."The Sharjah showroom boasts an impressive display of seven vehicles, including the aforementioned models, offering visitors an immersive experience of Chery's advanced technology and design. Complementing the remarkable vehicle lineup, the showroom features a comprehensive service facility, ensuring exceptional care for Chery customers throughout their ownership journey.The 'Triple 6' Ramadan campaign for Chery’s TIGGO models encompasses a six-year service package, six years of warranty coverage, and a six-month payment deferment, enabling customers to drive off with the first installment due after six months.Chery UAE's dedication to innovative sustainability and environmental consciousness is exemplified by the TIGGO 8 PRO PLUG-IN HYBRID, showcasing eco-friendly driving technology. This model offers advanced features such as a 540 HD camera, Voice Control, Massage Seat, and Double Silent Glass.The popular TIGGO 8 PRO MAX features luxurious amenities like The Queen's passenger seat, 10 Sony Speakers, Heads-Up Display, 9 airbags, 16 Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) functions, and an electronic step pedal. Meanwhile, the TIGGO 7 PRO MAX offers 14 ADAS functions, 8 Sony Speakers, 360 HD camera, Voice Control, 50W Fast Wireless Charger, and an illuminated rack light.Chery's entry into the Emirati market underscores the country's embrace of quality Chinese products and the shift towards future-oriented mobility solutions. In collaboration with AW Rostamani, Chery UAE is poised to enrich the automotive landscape with a diverse range of vehicles catering to various customer segments.

Royal Boxing and Fitness Club launches in Dubai Palm Jumeirah

 Royal Boxing and Fitness club, an innovative fitness concept based on the unique long-term experience of award winning international specialists, is set to revolutionize the fitness landscape in Dubai with the opening of its first premium sports format space in the Seven Palm Hotel at Dubai Palm Jumeirah. Scheduled to launch next month on April 2024, Royal Boxing and Fitness Club, The Palm is poised to redefine the fitness experience, offering a seamless blend of high-quality sports services, education, and exceptional training. Going beyond the traditional gym model, the fitness club aims to be a destination where fitness enthusiasts can engage in top-notch training, where all members of both genders train together, fostering a sense of unity and collective commitment to training. Although there is separation in the locker rooms, the overall atmosphere promotes Wholeness and shared dedication. Vladimir Zhadan, Founder and CEO of Royal Boxing and Fitness Club, The Palm, who created the concept in the UAE, says: "Our vision is to create a space where individuals can achieve their fitness goals while enjoying the process. We want to make martial arts accessible to everyone—more than just a club, we are a community, a team, and a lifestyle."At Royal Boxing and Fitness Club, The Palm you can unwind in spa amenities, foster a vibrant sense of community, and relish healthy bites at the cafe which prides itself on offering a meticulously curated selection of wholesome menus that are crafted using only the finest and healthiest ingredients. The spa offers a comprehensive range of massage services, such as sports massage, designed to soothe and recover muscles used during strenuous physical activities; traditional Thai massage, known for its holistic approach in balancing the body's energy; relaxing massage, aimed to alleviate stress and promote relaxation; anti-cellulite massage, targeting to break down fat cells and improve skin texture; and regenerative massage that aids in rejuvenating the body and enhancing overall wellbeing. These therapeutic services are available for scheduling subsequent to the training sessions, providing a holistic approach to fitness and wellbeing.What really sets Royal Boxing and Fitness Club The Palm apart is the unique design style developed in collaboration with Dubai Design Group. The aesthetics of the club, characterized by white and gold shades, occupies one floor and includes a 150 sqm training area, a 170 sqm spa and a café.Equipped with custom-designed gear, including specialized boxing bags, a 4.5 by 4.5-meter ring, and interactive stands for precision training, Royal Boxing and Fitness Club, The Palm offers a cutting-edge fitness experience. The club boasts technologically advanced speed run tracks including a Technogym skillrun treadmills - the first-ever treadmill for effective power and cardio conditioning with onboard video-guided routines and specific workouts for athletic training including sled and parachute trainings.The training programs are carefully designed for athletes of all training levels, which provide an authentic and transformative fitness experience for members. An innovative fitness experience combining boxing, kickboxing, Thai boxing, strength training and cardio intervals is available. Members who participate in 45-minute classes that use the latest smart screen technology which is projecting results to the entire class, will be observing progress step by step.The club also offers a unique VR boxing program for a high-intensity interval training workout. The program helps boxers to build their endurance and stamina while allowing their bodies to take a break from the impact of repeatedly hitting a heavy bag or coaching mitts. VR boxing program takes boxers through training exercises for jabs, uppercuts, right and left crosses. Serious fitness-seekers will add those and more to the 12-week VR program, which takes them through multiple workouts each week and gets progressively more challenging. They can track the progress through the program: the VR experience, with the Vive controllers in your hands, tracks your speed and punch intensity, plus the number of calories you burn.There is a pulse tracking technology during classes, which helps to track the effectiveness of each training session. Further adjustments to the program help clients achieve maximum results in training. The Royal Boxing and Fitness Club, The Palm uses heart rate monitors to track not only the progress but to help the client control the safe zones of training.The club provides video recording service for the bouts in the ring, utilizing a range of 4 to 8 cameras. This service allows trainees to capture their matches to enhance their experience. Moreover, this service can be utilized by companies to foster team spirit through recorded matches between their teams; it can be also fun for kids who can have the opportunity to showcase their skills in the ring with a trainer guiding them with light boxing moves. Participants will receive an edited professional recorded video as a cherished memento.Regeneration is a key factor when it comes to achieving training goals in both amateur and professional sport. The MECOTEC cryo:one helps athletes recover from a training session, a competition or a sports injury. Athletes use it to reduce pain in muscles and joints while simultaneously relaxing, and also to regenerate specific areas with anti aging effects. Anyone who counts on performance should also count on cryotherapy. Vladimir adds: "Royal Boxing and Fitness Club is not just a premium martial art club, it is a place that gives people the opportunity to build beautiful bodies, make themselves healthier and happier. Our commitment is to provide a space where individuals can thrive, grow, and become the best version of themselves. We will develop both the spaces themselves and their premium quality through various innovations for the comfort of customers."Members who purchase season tickets will avail the added benefit of complimentary access to the cryotherapy. Additionally, they will be gifted a comprehensive package from the club, which includes a T-shirt, boxing gloves, a bottle cap, towels, and bandages.

SMART ZONES UAE MD Akeel Malik unveils key insights on Dubai business setup

In today's video interaction, we feature Akeel Malik, the Managing Director of SMART ZONES UAE. With SMART ZONES' distinguished reputation as a premier licensing firm in Dubai, Akeel Malik's pivotal contributions have significantly fostered the growth and prosperity of numerous businesses in the region since 2013. Engaging in a dialogue with Adgully ME, Akeel Malik shares his invaluable insights, experiences, and perspectives on the myriad opportunities and challenges inherent in investing in or establishing businesses in the UAE. His profound expertise and unwavering dedication to guiding aspiring entrepreneurs undoubtedly position him as an exemplary leader in this dynamic field.During the conversation, Akeel Malik delves into the practical aspects of initiating a business in Dubai. While acknowledging the myriad legal intricacies involved, he underscores how SMART ZONES' extensive experience substantially streamlines these processes. Furthermore, he sheds light on the unparalleled ease of starting a business in Dubai compared to many other nations, citing the minimal tax burdens and licensing formalities.When prompted about the potential trajectory of ties between India and the UAE following Prime Minister Modi's recent visit, Akeel Malik exudes optimism. He firmly believes that this visit will catalyze a significant enhancement in trade relations between the two nations in the foreseeable future.For further insights into SMART ZONES UAE’s growth, progress, and future endeavors, please check the link<iframe width="560" height="315" src="" title="YouTube video player" frameborder="0" allow="accelerometer; autoplay; clipboard-write; encrypted-media; gyroscope; picture-in-picture; web-share" allowfullscreen></iframe>

Alex Simmons unravels Expo City Dubai's culinary feast

Alex Simmons, Sales and Marketing Director at TGP International, shares how the company is curating world-class F&B experiences at Expo City Dubai, aligning with the vision of creating a unique culinary destination. He says that TGP International aims to transform Expo City Dubai into a world-class destination for lifestyle and culinary experiences. “We are focused on bringing more unique and innovative dining concepts to the UAE, and we want to position Expo City Dubai as an incubator and hub for new F&B startups,” he adds. Excerpts from the interview:Can you tell us about TGP International's role in managing F&B for Expo City Dubai and how it aligns with the vision of creating world-class culinary experiences?TGP International has 22 years of experience in delivering world-class F&B projects across the globe, from new-to-market chef-led concepts to game-changing food halls. Expo City Dubai is one of our most exciting global projects to date.We are responsible for the F&B master planning, concept creation, interior design, brand curation, F&B leasing, and F&B event activations at Expo City Dubai. We are committed to creating memorable and extraordinary experiences for every visitor as part of the longer-term F&B strategy, which is centred around sustainability, innovation, and world-class entertainment.TGP International aims to transform Expo City Dubai into a world-class destination for lifestyle and culinary experiences. We are focused on bringing more unique and innovative dining concepts to the UAE, and we want to position Expo City Dubai as an incubator and hub for new F&B startups.We are proud to master plan the F&B offering here at the city of the future. Our F&B tenants have been hand-selected to offer a wide range of dine-in, and grab-and-go experiences. They span everything from Michelin-star chef-led brands to local home-grown concepts.We are always thinking of new ways to raise the profile of Expo City Dubai as a leading F&B destination, drive footfall across the destination and introduce new concepts with a bang. For instance, Hai Ramadan, Winter City and our other festivals include activities and live performances along with special menus and dining experiences. Our ‘Kids Eat Free’ offer for Eid is another way that we are trying to make Expo City Dubai a more affordable day out for families.Most recently, we delivered 136 F&B offerings during COP28. We served 600,000 guests across both zones, while our sustainability efforts saw us collect 1,783kg of organic waste, and rescue 6,435 meals.The success of COP28 is a testament to our global network, expertise and passion.With over 30 venues participating in Expo City Dubai's Ramadan festivities, how does TGP International ensure a cohesive and seamless marketing strategy to promote the Iftar offerings? Communication is the key. We bring all our F&B tenants together for monthly meetings to share learnings, menus, activations and insights. This has been key to understanding the challenges we face.Our marketing team works hard to ensure that all communication materials and platforms are consistent in their tone of voice and the way that Hai Ramadan is positioned.As always, the customer journey is crucial for us. Our dozens of different iftar options and participating venues are all clearly described on our website. This allows guests to select exactly the right experience that is perfect for them. Every venue and experience has its dedicated landing page, and these lead straight through to the online booking platform. This takes any hassle out of the booking process.What are some unique challenges and opportunities associated with marketing Ramadan iftar experiences compared to regular F&B promotions?The external challenges are certainly the noise in the market and the number of iftar offerings across the whole of Dubai, the internal challenges are ensuring all offerings are aligned and collateral available to promote across the various channels. The opportunities are huge for the entire city, especially the F&B tenants who have the chance to be creative and bring customers together in this special holy month.Could you share insights into the process of coordinating with diverse culinary establishments to showcase their iftar menus during the 'Hai Ramadan' festivities?The iftar menus are curated by the individual restaurants, while Mons Catering, the catering arm of TGP International, created the menus for the Surreal, Oasis and Corporate iftars. Each restaurant leans into its own heritage, culture and cuisine to offer a unique offering. From the sharing Indian cuisine of Michelin-starred chef Rohit Ghai to the Levantine-inspired flavours from Sara Aqel, nobody in Dubai offers such a diverse offering in one place, and with added entertainment.How does TGP International leverage its expertise in F&B master planning and concept development to curate and promote distinctive iftar experiences across Expo City Dubai?TGP International is responsible for some of the world’s top leading brands and concepts, many of which are legacy projects that still trade today.Our success is down to the expertise of our team. TGP offers 360-degree F&B services globally. We boast a team of first-class individuals who are devoted to concept curation.Most recently, we worked closely with Mons Catering, the world-class catering arms of TGP International, to create our upcoming corporate iftar experience.Operated by Mons Catering, the corporate iftar allows organisations to enjoy an unforgettable corporate iftar set within the beautiful and regal ambiance of the Leadership Pavilion at Expo City Dubai. Spanning a diverse selection of carefully crafted Arabic specialties, the set menu showcases the finest traditional dishes and flavours of the Arab world, and the fresh local produce of the UAE.Served in a warm, sharing style format, it features soups, fresh salads and authentic hot and cold mezze, a choice of plant-based options, reimagined traditional main courses such as chicken makluba and slow-roasted leg of lamb with oriental spices, and desserts like fresh, locally grown fruits, homemade baklava, walnut and ashta katayef, and the signature warm Emirati lokaymat.In what ways does TGP International utilize digital platforms, social media, and other marketing channels to reach and engage with potential guests interested in attending Ramadan iftar events at Expo City Dubai?TGP International works closely with the fantastic marcoms and entertainment and events teams at Expo City Dubai, as well as external agencies to ensure the key visual, messaging and content shared is all on brand and lands impactfully across all channels. We also work closely with collaborators and influencers to reach new audiences. This allows our F&B tenants to connect with potential new customers. We are currently bringing to life an exciting new platform EatAtExpoCity that will be launched over Hai Ramadan. It specifically champions F&B at Expo City Dubai.Considering the competitive landscape of Ramadan offerings in Dubai, what strategies does TGP International employ to differentiate Expo City Dubai's iftar experiences and attract a diverse audience?We are very fortunate at Expo City Dubai to be able to bring together a huge array of world-class F&B iftar offerings in one place. We also offer iftars in iconic spaces such as the Surreal water feature and Al Wasl Café in the heart of Al Wasl Dome. Guests can also walk between 30 F&B outlets offering over 10 Iftars, and explore the epic Hai Ramadan event calendar, entertainment and activities for all the family. Expo City Dubai truly offers something for every price point and demographic at Hai Ramadan this holy month.In addition, we created an unforgettable corporate iftar within the Leadership Pavilion at Expo City Dubai.An elegant and exclusive space that has never been open to the public before, the Leadership Pavilion has hosted the world’s most prestigious dignitaries and VIPs, and royal representatives from across every corner of the globe.Providing corporate organisations with an exclusive, first-of-its-kind opportunity to dine within the splendour of the Leadership Pavilion, the corporate iftar by Mons Catering is unique to any other Ramadan celebration in the city.Adorned with gold finishings, crystal chandeliers and shimmering marble flooring, organisations are invited to book out the Pavilion’s grand ballroom exclusively for themselves. Seating between 40 and 200 guests, the one-of-a-kind corporate iftar experience inspired by the great leadership of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum. The set menu showcases the finest traditional dishes and flavours of the Arab world and the fresh local produce of the UAE.

Ramadan campaign has exclusive shopping and memorable experiences for shoppers

As the Holy Month of Ramadan unfolds, Dubai's bustling shopping scene is abuzz with activity, inviting both residents and visitors to immerse themselves in a unique shopping experience filled with joyous moments and unforgettable gifting opportunities. As part of the #RamadanInDubai campaign, shoppers are treated to a myriad of promotions, exclusive discounts, and diverse experiences, presented by leading shopping malls and retail stores across the city.Launched by the Dubai Media Council under the directives of His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Second Deputy Ruler of Dubai and Chairman of the Dubai Media Council (DMC), the #RamadanInDubai campaign brings the public and private sectors together for the first time for a unified celebration of the Holy Month. The initiative aims to create a unique ambience across the city that captures the true essence of Ramadan, reflecting the authentic Emirati customs and traditions that make the occasion truly special.As part of the campaign, the Dubai Festivals & Retail Establishment (DFRE) has brought residents and visitors many ways to come together to experience these memorable shopping experiences. Known over the world as a destination for shopping, Ramadan further enhances Dubai’s exceptional retail landscape by offering elevated experiences for everyone.From discovering special one-off collections by local and global brands, to taking advantage of seasonal offers across the city’s malls, there are plenty of chances to share joy in the city’s diverse shopping districts and vibrant Ramadan markets.Shopping districts transform for Holy MonthThe shopping experience becomes a memorable moment in itself, as the spirit of Ramadan takes over malls and stores around Dubai as they are adorned in enchanting seasonal décor and sparkling light displays. After iftar, roaming entertainment brings additional fun for all visitors to enjoy.From Mall of the Emirates to City Centre Malls across the city, Dubai's top shopping destinations have been transformed into hubs of activity, featuring promotions, themed performances, special events, traditional experiences and exclusive ranges which cannot be found anywhere else. On Fridays to Sundays throughout the month, fireworks will light up the skies for shoppers above Bluewaters and The Beach, JBR at 10pm every weekend.JBR and City Walk are hosting unique artisanal outdoor markets, where visitors and residents can discover one-off pieces and the perfect Ramadan gift, whilst soaking up a welcoming atmosphere and wonderful weather. Live music, entertainment and seasonal décor will further add to the enchanting atmosphere.Dubai Festival City Mall has transformed into a hub of heritage and culture, where visitors can experience traditional food and artisan products at a special Ramadan tent in Festival Bay. Nearby, visitors can choose gifts for friends and family at a vibrant night market at Bay by Social, which also host the city’s favourite food trucks and family friendly entertainment. Adding to the charm, the IMAGINE show, a mesmerising display of lights and water, can be enjoyed every evening. A beloved annual tradition, the Iftar cannon will signal sunset every evening. Customers with the Blue Rewards app who dine at Dubai Festival City Mall restaurants will be able to upload their receipts for a chance to win AED5,000 worth of Blue points weekly, as well as avail special Ramadan offers.Exclusive Ramadan collectionsThose searching for a memorable gift this Ramadan, either for themselves or a loved one, can discover unique brand activations such as Stella McCartney’s limited-edition Rose Capsule Collection in celebration of Ramadan and Eid; and Versace is introducing an exclusive capsule collection of Women’s and Children’s designs exclusive to the Middle East. Other special shopping moments to look out for include Aldo’s anticipated Ramadan collection featuring Myriam Fares; the Guess Ramadan Capsule Collection, which blends tradition with contemporary elegance; and Guess will unveil its Ramadan Capsule Collection, which blends tradition with contemporary elegance. Other special seasonal retail offerings include the Ferragamo Ramadan Collection; Shoemart’s Ramadan Between Two Moons Collection; the CH Carolina Herrera & Jessica Kahawaty campaign, and the FACES Ramadan Rituals campaign. Dune London, Level Shoes,NaturalizerShoppers can also discover offers, bundle deals and themed gifting concepts from Nautica, La Marquise Jewellery, Liverpool FC Store, Arrow, Being Human, Odora, Noha Nabil Beauty, Color Plus,, Mashaykh, EDIT, Matalan, Arabian Oud, Grand Stores, Brooks Brothers, Coral Perfumes and many more.Dubai Jewellery Group is offering a multitude of ways to find beautiful gifts or accessories for Ramadan outfits with its Dazzling City of Gold Deals campaign. Across its Dubai stores, shoppers can enjoy free gifts with certain purchases, buy-one-get-one-free offers, and deals offering half-back on diamonds and pearls.Families can capture the essence of Ramadan at home, with a beautiful choice of décor, accessories and furniture collections available at retailers across the city, helping to create a warm and inviting atmosphere for shared memories. Welcoming loved ones to the home will also be made stress-free with everyday items and groceries conveniently available across the city’s hundreds of stores, all offering special deals and promotions throughout the Holy Month including Bed Quarter, The Red Carpet, Danube Home, Home Box, Chattels & More, Natuzzi, Sophia Home and Western Furniture.A vast selection of delightful food gifting options are also available at stores and food boutiques across the city, offering everything from seasonal sweet treats to gourmet delights, helping to spread the joy of Ramadan.Explore vibrant Ramadan marketsResidents and visitors can embrace the festive spirit of Ramadan as the events calendar unfolds during the day, and the evenings come alive with late-night activities including extended mall opening hours. Ramadan night markets have made a welcome return amid this year’s perfect weather, offering one-of-a-kind open-air evenings in which residents and visitors can discover artisanal products, local specialties, and one-off gifts, while soaking up a warm community atmosphere.Memorable cultural and traditional experiences, family-friendly activities, delicious iftars and suhoors, and a vibrant artisanal market will delight audiences of all ages at Expo City Dubai, as the beloved Hai Ramadan celebrations return for another year.Jumeirah Emirates Towers has set an iconic backdrop for its enchanting Ramadan District night market where friends and families can enjoy an evening in perfect weather under the moonlight. Amid views of the cityscape and Museum of the Future, visitors can explore a selection of local designer shops, creative food offerings, entertainment, and a children’s play area.Al Khawaneej is hosting The Hub Food Festival and market where families and friends can gather to explore vibrant stalls and try cuisine from a diverse selection of food stalls, while soaking up an ambience of community togetherness.A shopping trip around the worldAt Global Village, wonder-filled multicultural experiences await visitors of all ages, who can soak up culture, shopping and entertainment every evening from 6pm until 2am. As well as unforgettable iftar and suhoor offerings featuring flavours from all around the world, visitors can shop for all their seasonal needs at the Ramadan Wonders Souk, an exciting new addition for 2024. Overflowing with an array of unique trinkets from around the world, the souk embodies the essence of a traditional Emirati market, and offer guests a taste of the shopping on offer across the Global Village pavilions.Setting the scene for a Ramadan experience to remember, a variety of musicians will entertain throughout the evening across Global Village, creating a beautiful festive atmosphere. A 30-strong Arabian Orchestra will perform on the Main Stage each evening, while the skies will sparkle in a music and firework display on Fridays and Saturdays at 9pm.The perfect place for making treasured family memories, young guests will be entertained at the Global Village Kids’ Theatre every weekend, where they can enjoy a spectacular Arabic puppet show and a Ramadan-themed take on the Kaleidoscope Show. With so much to explore, visitors can also join the Global Village Step Challenge competition with weekly prizes, including mobile phones and smartwatches, up for grabs for guests who complete 10,000 steps and log them on the Global Village app.

Esports consultancy KALM launches global HQ in Abu Dhabi

KALM, the world’s first sports and esports consultancy focused on player development and performance, has launched its new global headquarters in Abu Dhabi. KALM is set to revolutionise the landscape by offering a unique blend of expertise from both traditional sports and esports, including innovations, technology and academic partnerships to develop first-in-class services for athletes. Powered by Access Abu Dhabi, an initiative by Maven Global Access and supported by the Abu Dhabi Investment Office (ADIO), KALM will provide its services to organisations, global brands and individual athletes in and out of their sporting endeavours.KALM utilises proprietary performance technology from Stanford University to identify key traits and talent of athletes by evaluating perceptive, physical and mental capabilities. It is focused on creating a best-in-class performance centre dedicated to optimising player health and recovery. KALM harnesses data science and AI applications to understand peak player performance and lifestyle factors affecting performance and develops methods to extend the longevity of an athlete’s career. Massimo Falcioni, Chief Competitiveness Officer at ADIO, commented: “Abu Dhabi is steadily emerging as a regional sports and esports centre, and KALM is joining a solid lineup of global players who are setting up their operations in the Emirate. Boasting a positive investment environment, enabling regulations and cutting-edge infrastructure and connectivity, Abu Dhabi continues to be a destination of choice for innovators. We are confident that KALM will drive further growth for a key sector in the Emirate, through offering unique and innovative services.”KALM has established an athlete-centric development model through education, brand-building and commercialisation focused on protecting, managing and leveraging athlete brands. Through its global HQ, the company will engage with government, the private sector, federations, teams and key stakeholders to create, drive and deliver its athlete health and wellbeing strategy. “At KALM, our mission is to put the player at the centre,” said Dr. Melita Moore. “Esports athletes compete at the highest level and their physical, mental and overall well-being deserves the same level of care as traditional athletes. We chose Abu Dhabi as the location for our headquarters because of the incredible support and opportunities offered by this vibrant city. Access Abu Dhabi played a pivotal role in bringing us to the region initially. Abu Dhabi’s strategic location, world-class infrastructure, and unwavering commitment to innovation in the gaming industry made it the ideal choice for KALM to thrive.”Founded by industry veterans and medical experts with over 70 years of combined experience, KALM introduces a powerhouse team of partners.Dr Melita N. Moore, renowned in sports medicine, brings her global leadership from serving as team physician for NBA and WNBA, to a leading role at the Global Esports Federation as a Vice President. Dr. Khizer Khaderi is a visionary in neuro-ophthalmic surgery and technology, with a notable spot in “40 under 40,” contributes expertise in AI, VR and AR. Ali Al Ramahi, a leading sports scientist and performance coach, specialises in developing wellness programmes for esports athletes, while Luke Fedlam, a distinguished sports attorney, shapes the regulatory landscape of sports and esports and provides athlete development and education.KALM’s initiative will elevate the Middle East’s presence in the global sports and esports arena, providing a platform for young aspirants to achieve international acclaim. The timing of the launch aligns with the region’s growing interest in digital sports and entertainment, marking a significant stride in the development of a robust esports ecosystem.

Uzmaa Patel appointed as director of sales & marketing at ME Dubai

 ME Dubai, the luxurious hotel located in Business Bay, is thrilled to announce the appointment of Uzmaa Patel as the new Director of Sales and Marketing. As a seasoned professional with over 13 years of experience in the hospitality industry, she brings with her a wealth of knowledge and rich expertise to ME Dubai.Hailing from London, Uzmaa’s career began in 2009, where she took on pivotal roles in revenue management with Hilton, focusing on the rebranding from a Ramada Jarvis to Doubletree By Hilton. Building on her skillset and her commitment to growing, her career blossomed as she stepped into the roles of Director of Sales at The Tower Hotel London and Dreamhouse Studios before venturing into the UAE, where she served as Director of Sales at Park Inn by Radisson Motor City Dubai and Radisson Dubai Damac Hills. With distinguished specialisations in all aspects of commercial strategy, including sales, revenue management, and marketing within the hospitality sector, her journey then led her to return to the UK, where she served as Director of Sales and Events at the prestigious five-star Nobu Hotel London.Now, in her role as Director of Marketing & Sales at ME Dubai, Uzmaa Patel leverages her extensive experience and strategic insight to drive the hotel's sales and marketing efforts to new heights.“As a woman leading this remarkable hotel, which owes its iconic design to a female architect, my commitment to championing the role of women in our industry is especially close to me. It is with great pleasure that we welcome Uzmaa to the team, bringing with her an impressive background alongside a wealth of experience. I am confident that she will not only excel in her role as Director of Sales & Marketing, but also propel ME Dubai to unparalleled success.” – Elsa Lahoude, General Manager at ME DubaiPairing her leadership skills with her proven track record and innovative approach to marketing and sales, it is no doubt that ME Dubai will continue to be a beacon of excellence and innovation in the competitive Dubai hospitality landscape with Uzmaa Patel’s strategic vision.

Dubai unveils new government logo

Dubai has revitalized its iconic emblem, adopting it as the official logo for the Government of Dubai. This new logo, announced by His Highness Sheikh Hamdan, represents the emirate's journey: visionary leadership, transformative development, and evolution into a future-focused city.While the logo embodies these aspirations, His Highness emphasizes that the true identity of the government lies in its dedicated teams. Their commitment to excellence and service is the foundation of Dubai's success as a global leader and a thriving destination for living and working.Sheikh Hamdan has directed a smooth transition, granting government entities six months to implement the new logo alongside their existing ones, preserving their unique identities.A Look at the Logo's Elements:The Dubai Media Office shared the symbolism behind the logo's five key elements:The Falcon: Soaring high, the falcon represents Dubai's distinct character, its unwavering pride, and its sharp focus on a bright future.The Ghaf Leaves: These national symbols embody Dubai's values: flexibility, agility, tolerance, and peaceful coexistence.The Dhow: The "Sambouq," a traditional Arabic dhow, signifies Dubai's rich history as a center of trade and cultural exchange. It also reflects its current status as a global economic hub.The Flag: Presented as a shield, the flag symbolizes the safety and security enjoyed by all residents and visitors in Dubai.The Palm Tree: Deeply rooted in hospitality, the palm tree reflects Dubai's welcoming nature and generosity towards millions of visitors each year.This new logo serves as a visual representation of Dubai's past, present, and aspirations for the future.

Podeo onboards Saudi Arabian English podcast The Mo Show

Podeo, the leading podcast platform in the Middle East & North Africa, has welcomed The Mo Show onto its hosting, distribution, and monetization platform.The Mo Show offers captivating insights on Saudi Arabian life and culture through its intimate deep-dive interviews, hosted by Mohammed Islam.Powered by Podeo's unique distribution network, The Mo Show now broadcasts far and wide, available on Podeo, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Anghami, YouTube, imo, and wherever listeners get their podcasts.In a strategic move last month, Podeo announced an exclusive partnership with the messaging giant imo, revolutionizing podcast distribution with instant access to over 200 million listeners, a feature exclusive to Podeo. Podeo’s recently announced partnership with Rotana also enables it to maximize audio monetization for creators and publishers.Podeo's mission—to magnify the reach of diverse voices—echoes through The Mo Show, highlighting Saudi Arabia's evolution and triumphs. The podcast has hosted more than 100 luminary guests, such as HRH Princess Reema Bint Bandar, HRH Prince Abdulaziz Bin Turki Al-Faisal, HRH Prince Khalid Bin Al-Waleed, Anas Bukhash, Hala Kazim, and Hassan Jameel, offering listeners authentic narratives of the Kingdom's advancements and its people's inspirational journeys.Stefano Fallaha, CEO & Founder of Podeo, said: "Our core ambition at Podeo is to bring powerful voices to the forefront of global audiences. The alignment of Mohammed's vision with ours creates a perfect harmony. We're thrilled to support The Mo Show's growth and unlock new avenues for audio monetization."Mohammed Islam, the host of The Mo Show, said: "Podeo stands unmatched in empowering creators with its distinctive reach and monetization capabilities. Their vision synchronizes with our aspirations, setting the stage for powerful growth together.

BORK unveils its first Middle East boutique at The Dubai Mall

BORK, a leader in the realm of luxury home accessories, beauty and wellness products, and premium household appliances, has opened its first ever boutique in the Middle East. It launched its flagship store in 2007.Founded in 2001 in Germany by Bork Elektronik GmbH, the name ‘Bork’ refers to the German verb “abborken” which means “debarking”, thus enhancing the brand’s unique vision towards production and putting quality, design, innovation and customer service at the core of its values. With manufacturing facilities located in countries worldwide such as Germany, Italy, France, Japan and Korea, BORK has continuously pushed the boundaries of craftsmanship and design.With a focus on minimalistic design and putting carefully curated materials such as anodized aluminium, stainless steel, American walnut and genuine leather in the forefront, BORK offers a diverse range of more than 50 product categories of home accessories and household appliances — kitchen, beauty and wellness, indoor climate, decor, leisure, outdoor and cruise collection — where each piece is meticulously handcrafted with precision and care, reflecting the brand’s dedication to unparalleled quality and timeless elegance.Furthermore, in the pursuit of creating limited edition products, only the finest and rarest materials are used such as the Peruvian vicuña wool, positioning the company as a symbol of luxury and exclusivity. BORK has also been presented with various prestigious awards, including the RedDot Design Award and iF Design Award.With a history of over two decades, BORK remains at the forefront of the luxurious living, setting new standards for those who aspire to live a comfortable life.

EITC receives licenses from UAE Central Bank to offer fintech services

Emirates Integrated Telecommunications Company (EITC), today announced that it has received licenses from the Central Bank of the UAE to offer new digital financial services. This milestone positions EITC at the forefront of the evolving fintech landscape in the region and supports the UAE's commitment to fostering innovation, competition, and financial inclusion by promoting a cashless society.The licenses granted by the Central Bank of the UAE enable EITC to introduce innovative financial solutions that will contribute to the development of an advanced, modern, future-ready financial ecosystem across the UAE. The licensure will enable du to offer a range of digital financial services that align with the evolving needs and preferences of customers in the digital era.Fahad Al Hassawi, CEO of EITC, said: "The awarding of these licenses underscores the UAE's commitment to creating an environment that nurtures fintech innovation collaboration. We believe that EITC's entry into digital financial services space will further enhance the financial landscape of the UAE through customer-centric solutions that will contribute to its growth and development.”EITC aims to empower individuals and businesses with convenient, secure, and efficient solutions that simplify their financial transactions and meet their diverse needs. EITC’s foray into digital financial services aligns with the UAE's ongoing initiatives to promote financial technology and ensure the country remains at the forefront of global fintech innovation.

Alia Bhatt, Ni Ni, Vittoria Ceretti front Gucci's eyewear campaign

The collaboration between Global Brand Ambassadors Alia Bhatt and Ni Ni, alongside Vittoria Ceretti, in the Gucci Eyewear Spring Summer 2024 campaign, orchestrated by Creative Director Sabato De Sarno, marks a significant stride in the brand's outreach strategy. By aligning with these esteemed personalities, Gucci Eyewear aims to amplify its presence within the fashion realm while establishing a connection with a diverse audience.This campaign endeavors to position Gucci Eyewear as more than just a product but as a symbol of luxury, style, and sophistication that resonates with consumers' aspirations. Through the strategic use of celebrity endorsement, storytelling, and a multichannel approach, the brand endeavors to captivate the attention of specific demographics, particularly fashion-conscious individuals and luxury eyewear enthusiasts.Alia Bhatt's sentiment regarding the collaboration underscores the significance of this partnership, not only as a personal milestone but also as a representation of Gucci's interest in global inclusivity. Alia Bhatt said, “The collaboration felt like a big moment in my life, not just because I am the first Indian global brand ambassador, but because it signified GUCCI’s interest in India. The brand wanted a face that resonated with a demographic interested in fashion, which was a huge moment for me and for India. It happened quickly, with my first appearance and announcement occurring just two months after initial conversations.” Moreover, the deployment of a multichannel strategy, encompassing print, digital platforms, and social media, ensures broad outreach across various touchpoints, maximizing engagement with the target audience. Through this comprehensive approach, Gucci Eyewear aims to solidify its position as a coveted fashion accessory synonymous with elegance and modernity.

Amazon University Esports Thrives in KSA with Over 2,000 Students Engaged

MENATech Entertainment, the Middle East arm of the international gaming company GGTech Entertainment, has announced a remarkable growth in Amazon UNIVERSITY Esports (AUE) tournaments with over 100 teams registering in the KSA and a total of 2,194 students participating, almost a 57% growth from the last season. Amazon UNIVERSITY Esports is a global initiative operating in 26 countries, designed to integrate the diverse needs of the expanding esports industry by hosting competitions for university students. This platform not only fosters community and friendship through online and in-person events but also serves as a gateway for students to gain early professional experiences in various fields such as programming, design, marketing, and law, thus aligning with the industry's demand for a wide range of professionals.In its commitment to expanding participation, AUE welcomed over 10 new universities from the KSA, reflecting its commitment to inclusivity and broadening the talent pool within the esports community. This initiative is a global effort, with AUE impacting over 100,000 students across 26 countries and 2,600 universities. GGTech's engagement further amplifies this reach, boasting over 600,000 registered participants across various competitions. AUE stands out by encouraging collaboration and fostering community among students through diverse games like FIFA, VALORANT, and PUBG Mobile, highlighting the platform's role in enhancing academic and social connections. Last year, the competition solidified strategic support with companies like Shahid and Deliveroo.Hosting 85% of the gaming enthusiasts in the MENA region, AUE has placed an early bet on the KSA as an up-and-coming esports hub. The country is gearing up to solidify its position as the global epicentre of esports by hosting the Esports World Cup in the summer of 2024, and the construction of the megaproject 'Qiddiya City Esports Arena', the first stadium created for the immersive gaming and sports experience. The esports market in KSA, valued at $1 billion in 2021, is on a trajectory to explode to $6.8 billion by 2030. Furthermore, with the rollout of the National Gaming and Esports Strategy, KSA aims to boost its GDP by about 50 billion riyals and create 39,000 new job opportunities by 2030.Mario Perez, CEO of MENA Tech Entertainment, highlights, “With the esports industry projected to reach $1.6 billion in turnover by 2024 and an expected 24.7% increase in worldwide spectatorship, the booming sector mirrors the growth within Amazon UNIVERSITY Esports. As we reflect on the triumphs of this year's tournaments, we're eager to deepen our collaboration with universities and their students in the KSA. The enthusiastic response by both the teams and individual participants reaffirms the increasing influence of AUE within the educational domain, showing a promising future.”In KSA and the surrounding region, the goal remains to sustain growth and extend the reach of GGTech’s endeavours to an increasing number of students for its competitions, training and educational components. Moreover, this year will witness the return of the AUE Masters, an in-person event where students from the region can exhibit their gaming skills and passion, and interact and make connections with fellow gamers, elevating the region’s status as a gaming hub.Amazon UNIVERSITY Esports is made possible thanks to the support of top-level publishers and brands such as Riot Games and Shahid.

AliExpress unveils Ramadan sales and offers

E-commerce platform AliExpress has announced a series of exclusive Ramadan sales and exciting offers for GCC customers. Shengliang Liang, Regional Manager for the GCC at AliExpress, said: "At AliExpress, we are dedicated to providing the best shopping experience for our customers. Our Ramadan sales are designed to offer great value and convenience, ensuring that our customers can celebrate the holy month with joy and savings. We are offering faster deliveries, free shipping, and hassle-free returns and we treat customer satisfaction as our top priority."AliExpress birthday Sales starts with a warm-up phase from 15th March and continues with the sales period from 18th March to 27th March. AliExpress will be offering attractive discounts and competitive prices with deals up to 80% off across a wide range of products, making it the perfect time to stock up on essentials, purchase things for Ramadan and indulge in some retail therapy.During the Ramadan promotion, shoppers from the GCC region can save $4 for every $25 spent (or SAR 16 off for every SAR 100 spent in the KSA) on the platform, up to a maximum deduction of $16 off (or a maximum deduction of SAR 64) per order. Consumers can make the most of this special occasion to shop for their favorite products at unbeatable prices.As a special treat for customers in the GCC, during its Ramadan sales, AliExpress will provide discount codes for further reductions on top of the discounts. With the highest reduction reaching a maximum of $46 (or SAR 180) from these codes, shoppers can enjoy even greater savings on larger orders. Moreover, exclusive surprise products with discounts of up to 99% off will bring an added element of excitement to the shopping experience.AliExpress aims to deliver a seamless shopping experience to its customers, with a focus on faster delivery, extended post-sales customer service, and free returns for all GCC states. Shoppers in the UAE, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, and Bahrain can enjoy free shipping for Choice orders over $40 (or SAR 80 in the KSA) or ship any Choice order for only $1.99. Delivery times range from 3 to 13 working days in the GCC region. AliExpress also provides compensation for late deliveries, refunds for lost/damaged deliveries, and extends post-sales customer service to 90 calendar days.With a wide selection of 72 million products, AliExpress continues to provide shoppers with value for money, a diverse global community of over 300 million shoppers, and safe payment methods preferred by customers all over the world.

Formula E Teams Up with Google Cloud to Drive Championship Growth

Ahead of this Saturday’s race around Sao Paulo’s iconic Sambadrome, Formula E today announced a new multi-year technology partnership with Google Cloud. The partnership will leverage Google Cloud technologies to help drive powerful on-and off-track performance in the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship.The collaboration will involve Formula E harnessing Google Cloud technologies ranging from scalable cloud infrastructure to data and analytics, to generative artificial intelligence (gen AI) tools in the GENBETA Race Car Development Programme to accelerate the growth of the world’s first all-electric motorsport.Formula E and Google Cloud will build on a relationship that began last summer with NEOM McLaren Formula E Team driver, Jake Hughes, setting a new indoor land speed Guinness World Record of 218.7km/h. The record was underpinned by a Google Cloud-developed gen AI ‘DriverBot’ for GENBETA, Formula E’s race car development programme. ‘DriverBot’ harnessed real-time data from the car, alongside historic race data, to help Hughes and his engineers smash the existing indoor land speed world record by more than 50 km/h.Under the multi-year technology partnership announced today, Formula E and Google Cloud will explore three core areas:1. New Technologies in Sporting Development: Harnessing advanced data analytics and generative AI through Google Cloud's data streaming and processing tools in the pioneering GENBETA Programme. 2. Accelerating Fanbase Growth: Using Google Cloud technologies to analyse massive datasets of fan behaviour, preferences, and demographics to create highly tailored marketing campaigns.3. Supporting Formula E's Sustainability Leadership: Scaling access to Formula E’s FIA Girls on Track Programme designed to build pathways into motorsport for young women.Jeff Dodds, CEO, Formula E, said: “Our multi-year technology partnership with Google Cloud is clear evidence of the scale of our ambition in establishing Formula E as the world’s most innovative, exciting, and fastest-accelerating sport. We began our collaboration by setting a world record and are hugely ambitious about what’s next.”Henry Chilcott, Chief Marketing Officer, Formula E, said: “Alongside the pioneering work to harness the power of gen AI to drive performance in our GENBETA programme, the next stage of this partnership will help us unleash a powerful new phase of fanbase growth by putting the full force of Google Cloud technologies behind our marketing efforts.”Laurence Lafont, Vice President, Strategic Industries EMEA, Google Cloud, said: “Google Cloud is excited to partner with Formula E to bring the cutting edge of cloud technologies to the thrilling world of electric racing. Together, we'll accelerate innovation on- and off-track, and build the future of sustainable motorsport.”Season 10 of the ABB FIA Formula E World Championship will see 11 race teams compete in 16 races across 10 iconic cities including debuts for Tokyo, Shanghai, and Misano (Italy). Alongside these new locations the Championship returns to Mexico City, Diriyah, São Paulo, Monaco, Berlin and Portland before the season finale in London on the weekend of 20 and 21 July 2024.

Middle East crypto predictions: Bitcoin to hit $100,000 by Q1 of 2025?

Amidst predictions for Bitcoin to hit the $100,000 mark, the Middle East emerges as an important player on the global crypto scene, in particular, the GCC region, which stands poised to capitalize on recent developments in this sector.According to Ritu Singh, Regional Director of Stone X Group Inc. “The GCC region is primed to emerge as a prominent player in the global crypto landscape, propelled by three pivotal factors: competitive energy rates, crypto-friendly regulations, and access to vital infrastructure components such as rigs, free zones, and governmental support.”On one hand, abundant and cost-effective energy sources bolster the region's potential, particularly in nations like the UAE, Oman, and Saudi Arabia. The accessibility of cheaper energy can notably amplify the benefits derived from the Bitcoin halving event. Reduced operational costs elevate the competitiveness of Bitcoin mining operations, augmenting profitability. Already, the UAE boasts a combined Bitcoin mining capacity of approximately 400 megawatts, constituting 4% of the global hash rate.Singh adds: “Oman emerges as a rising star in the regional crypto mining landscape, exemplified by its endorsement of Exahertz, an Omani mining company. A substantial $1.1 billion investment aims to deploy over 800 megawatts, catalyzing Oman's presence in the Bitcoin mining sector.”In addition to competitive energy rates, the maturation of regulatory frameworks in the region sets the stage for the establishment and trading of regional crypto exchange-traded funds (ETFs), mirroring the precedent set by the SEC's approval in the US.More specifically, Oman and Abu Dhabi seem to be well positioned to expand in the Bitcoin mining sector from a hardware standpoint as they have recently acquired a stake in Crusoe Energy Systems, a US company using stranded natural gas for crypto mining to reduce gas flaring caused by fossil fuel producers. This partnership aims to deploy power generators and mining equipment to capture gas at well sites, contributing to environmental sustainability and promoting digital currency development.Striving to diversify their economies, GCC countries were among the first to join the crypto wave, reflecting their strong belief in a new, digital age. Accordingly, they have been heavily investing in developing, expanding, and upgrading their vital infrastructure components such as rigs and free zones, while offering substantial governmental support to the Crypto ecosystem, with increased interest in Bitcoin (BTC).Despite its volatility, Bitcoin (BTC) remains a highly appealing cryptocurrency in the region. According to Forbes, Bitcoin has jumped from less than $500 in 2013 to more than $64,000 by 2021. It has then dropped below $17,000 in 2022, only to exceed the $69,000 mark this past March 6, 2024. This means that, between January 2014 and January 2024, Bitcoin has witnessed a price increase of approximately 5,150% and an annualized return of more than 135% per year. Over time, Bitcoin seems to be progressing solid, and if the cryptocurrency follows the same price movement as it did during the last decade, it could hit $100,000 in February, 2025.Although no one knows for sure if the Crypto market will continue its expansion in the coming weeks, months, and years or it will start shrinking, but the fact remains that traders see in such currencies a steppingstone into the future of finance.Disclaimer: The information on this web site is not targeted at the general public of any particular country. It is not intended for distribution to residents in any country where such distribution or use would contravene any local law or regulatory requirement. The information and opinions in this report are for general information use only and are not intended as an offer or solicitation with respect to the purchase or sale of any currency or CFD contract. All opinions and information contained in this report are subject to change without notice. This report has been prepared without regard to the specific investment objectives, financial situation and needs of any particular recipient. Any references to historical price movements or levels is informational based on our analysis and we do not represent or warranty that any such movements or levels are likely to reoccur in the future. 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Taj ERS, The Palm, Dubai appoints Nayan Seth as new General Manager

Taj Exotica Resort & Spa, The Palm, Dubai, announces the appointment of Nayan Seth as its new General Manager. With over three decades of experience in the hospitality industry, Nayan brings a wealth of expertise and leadership to his new role. Beginning his career with IHCL at Taj Mahal, New Delhi, Nayan has steadily climbed the ranks, showcasing remarkable dedication and talent. His journey includes pivotal roles at esteemed properties such as the Taj Mahal Palace & Tower, Mumbai, and Taj Lake Palace, Udaipur, India. In Nayan’s most recent assignment, he served as General Manager of the Taj Palace, New Delhi. As the new General Manager of Taj Exotica Resort & Spa, The Palm, Dubai, Nayan Seth is poised to lead the property towards continued excellence. With a focus on strategic direction, operational efficiency, and revenue optimization, Nayan aims to uphold the resort's status as a premier luxury destination in Dubai. Nestled on the iconic Palm Jumeirah, Taj Exotica Resort & Spa, The Palm, Dubai, offers an unparalleled blend of luxury and tranquillity. Boasting breath-taking views of the Arabian Gulf, the resort features opulent accommodations, world-class amenities, and an array of dining options showcasing international flavours and culinary delights. From its pristine private beach to its rejuvenating holistic wellness experiences, Taj Exotica Resort & Spa, The Palm, Dubai, promises an unforgettable retreat for discerning travellers seeking indulgence and relaxation. "Expressing his excitement about his new role, Nayan Seth stated, "I am honoured to join the team at Taj Exotica Resort & Spa, The Palm, Dubai. Along with the team, I am eager to leverage my experience and passion to ensure the sustained success and growth of this magnificent property." As a seasoned hotelier, Nayan is committed to enhancing the guest experience by delivering personalized service with meticulous attention to detail, while creating memorable moments that guests may cherish and reminisce for years to come. In the fiercely competitive landscape of the UAE hospitality industry, Nayan’s goal is to solidify Taj Exotica Resort & Spa, The Palm, Dubai, as the ultimate choice for travellers seeking unparalleled luxury and hospitality. With an ambition of driving revenue, fostering relationships, and spearheading innovative initiatives, Nayan Seth is well-equipped to steer Taj Exotica Resort & Spa, The Palm, Dubai, to unprecedented levels of excellence.

Saddle Al Wasl goes glam with a Sephora takeover this Ramadan

 Saddle, the Emirati-owned food concept, has collaborated with Sephora, the region's premier beauty retailer, for an unforgettable beauty pop-up experience at Al Wasl during this Ramadan.Commencing on March 15th and stationed for two full weekends, a Sephora truck will grace Saddle Al Wasl, offering guests a unique opportunity to immerse themselves in a curated selection of beauty products and cosmetics from renowned brands. Starting from 7PM onwards, guests can explore skincare essentials to makeup must-haves, promising an immersive beauty experience like no other.Sephora's talented crew will treat Saddle patrons to complimentary Henna sessions and on-the-spot makeovers, including trending graphic liner applications. The truck will feature an Instagram-worthy back wall, allowing guests to leave heartfelt messages for their loved ones this Ramadan. To mark this unique collaboration, Saddle is introducing a limited-edition drink, the Vanilla Bean Milkshake, in none other than Sephora's iconic purple hue. To top it off, exclusive discount codes from Sephora will also be available for grabs.Whether you're a beauty enthusiast looking to discover the latest trends or simply seeking to pamper yourself with a luxurious beauty-filled evening, the Sephora pop-up at Saddle Al Wasl is the ultimate event to experience this Ramadan.

Merck Foundation CEO Rasha Kelej awarded on Women’s Day

Dubai: On the occasion of International Women’s Day, Business Executive Group awarded Senator Dr Rasha Kelej, CEO of Merck Foundation, at their Global She Achievers Awards 2024, for her efforts to empower women in STEM, and girls in education, and building healthcare capacity in Africa and beyond. The awards ceremony took place recently in Dubai, UAE.Dr Rasha Kelej said: "Firstly, Happy International Women’s Day to all the women in the world and to the men who support and empower them."It is a great honour to receive The Global She Achievers Award 2024, that too on the very important occasion of International Women’s Day. I extend my heartfelt gratitude to the Business Executive Team for acknowledging our efforts since past 12 years to empower women in STEM, support girl education and transforming public healthcare in Africa and beyond.”Senator Rasha Kelej has been successfully leading the Merck Foundation programmes for the past 12 years and works closely with more than 24 Africa’s First Ladies as Ambassadors of Merck Foundation and Ministries of Health, Education, Information, Communication, Gender, Academia, Media and Art societies in 50 countries.“We at Merck Foundation, together with First Ladies of Africa, are marking the Women’s Day through our "More Than a Mother" campaign, which is a strong and unique movement that aims to empower women living with infertility stigma through access to information, education, change of mindset, and economic empowerment,” added Senator Rasha Kelej.Merck Foundation is contributing to building and advancing fertility care capacity in Africa and Asia, to support childless women and couples. Over 535 of the total 1,730 scholarships provided to doctors from 50 countries in 42 specialties are for doctors in reproductive & sexual health and fertility care capacity with the aim to advance women's health. Interestingly, over 46% of the 1,730 scholarships (780) have been provided to women doctors.She has been recognized as one of 100 Most Influential African Women for five consecutive years from 2019 to 2023. She has also been awarded D.Litt Honoris Causa by Krishna World University, India for her outstanding achievement in the social sciences, justice and reform.

An-Nahar fights for journalists' lives with innovative survival guide

Lebanese newspaper An-Nahar has taken a bold stand against journalist deaths with a unique solution: their daily edition transformed into "The Essential Press Guide From the Middle East." This foldable, pocket-sized guide equips journalists with critical survival skills for dangerous environments.Partnering with IMPACT BBDO, An-Nahar goes beyond the guide. They offer a free online and on-ground curriculum led by experts, fostering a global learning community.By making these resources readily available, An-Nahar promotes accurate reporting and journalist collaboration. This could significantly improve the quality and integrity of journalism, especially in the Middle East.Driven by the 2005 assassination of her father, Editor-in-Chief Nayla Tueni emphasizes the constant threat journalists face. "Today, we give our words to protect those that write them," she declares.“Today, we give our words to protect those that write them. Every single day, journalists in the Middle East and across the world are exposed to threats to their safety and well-being. Too often, they are silenced all together. We know this all too well. Our own editor-in-chief, my father, Gibran Tueni, was assassinated in 2005,” said Nayla Tueni.  The guide isn't just about staying alive. It provides practical knowledge on identifying snipers, treating gunshot wounds, and detecting explosives in vehicles.More than a guide, this initiative is a rallying cry. The newspaper includes an invitation to training sessions with experts like the International Red Cross.An-Nahar demands action from the international community, urging for a legal framework to protect journalists in high-risk situations.With 120 journalist deaths in 2023 (mostly in the Middle East), the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) highlights the urgent need for protection.An-Nahar doesn't just echo the IFJ's call for a binding convention. They amplify it, aiming to spark a global movement.

Chery Automobile appoints Lucy Aziz as Regional Head of PR & Communication

Chery Automobile has announced the appointment of Lucy Aziz as the new Regional Head of Public Relations and Communication for the OMODA & JAECOO brands. Aziz expressed her enthusiasm, stating: "Joining the esteemed Chery team to introduce the region to the world-class O&J brands is a great honor."Her primary goal is to introduce these brands to users in the GCC, showcasing the cutting-edge technology O&J offers to the automotive industry. Chao Qin, CEO of OMODA & JAECOO in the MENA Region, hailed Lucy's appointment as the start of an exciting chapter for the organization in the region. He emphasized her extensive experience and track record of success across diverse sectors, highlighting her crucial role in establishing strategies and expanding the brand's presence in the GCC market.Lucy Aziz brings a wealth of experience and achievements in the technology sector, particularly in public relations and communications. Previously serving as the Head of Public Relations and Communications at OPPO, she developed communication strategies across six countries, managed media relations, and led successful launch campaigns for major OPPO products in the GCC countries. Her contributions to the technology sector were recognized with the Excellence Award for Women in the Technology Sector at the 2022 GBTech Awards, and she was also honoured as the 'Best Communications Pioneer of 2023' at the Gulf Business Awards.

Publicis Groupe Middle East, SCAI partner to drive digital transformation in KSA

Riyadh: Publicis Groupe Middle East, a regional leader in marketing, communications and digital business transformation, has entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Saudi Company for Artificial Intelligence (SCAI), a wholly owned entity of the Public Investment Fund (PIF), aimed at advancing and accelerating transformative solutions across the Kingdom and wider region. To mark this partnership, a signing ceremony took place at LEAP 2024 in the presence of Nigel Vaz, CEO of Publicis Sapient and member of the Directoire+ (Executive Committee) of Publicis Groupe, Bassel Kakish, CEO of Publicis Groupe Middle East, and Abdullah AlJawini, Chief Investment and Partnerships Officer of SCAI.Commenting on the partnership, Nigel Vaz said: “We are very excited to announce Publicis Groupe’s collaboration with the Saudi Company for Artificial Intelligence (SCAI). Artificial intelligence is poised to reshape how we work, how we live, and how we create value. The Kingdom has been on an incredible journey to transform every facet of its society by putting technology at the service of its citizens and businesses. Our partnership with SCAI is the next step at ensuring that transformation has AI at its core, creating new opportunities in KSA and the region.” Bassel Kakish also added: “By combining SCAI's expertise in AI with Publicis Groupe Middle East's capabilities backed by data and technology, we are poised to unlock exciting new opportunities and realise the full potential of AI in transforming the Kingdom. This partnership represents a significant step towards driving meaningful impact and delivering value to our clients and communities.”Abdullah AlJawini, Chief Investment and Partnerships Officer of SCAI, said: "We are thrilled to join forces with Publicis Groupe Middle East to harness the power of AI and drive innovation by combining our expertise. This collaboration represents a key milestone in our unwavering commitment to shaping the future of AI applications in Saudi Arabia."The collaboration between Publicis Groupe Middle East and SCAI represents a pivotal step towards driving digital transformation and unlocking new opportunities that deliver impactful solutions at scale. Through this strategic collaboration, the two entities aim to leverage their combined expertise to drive significant AI-powered advancements across various domains including digital business transformation with Publicis Sapient; and adtech, lifestyle & loyalty with Epsilon’s real identity capabilities.

GoDaddy: 5 Ramadan consumer shifts entrepreneurs need to know

 GoDaddy Inc. shares insight to help empower business owners during the holy month of Ramadan. This guide is designed to assist entrepreneurs in effectively promoting their products and services, acknowledging the shifts in consumer habits that occur during Ramadan. By leveraging these insights, online business owners could foster potential business growth throughout Ramadan.Highlighting the significance of understanding shifts in consumer habits during Ramadan, Selina Bieber, Vice President for International Markets at GoDaddy said: “Understanding consumer changes is crucial as businesses navigate the unique sales opportunities during Ramadan. By tailoring their approach to align with cultural nuances and evolving consumer preferences, businesses have the opportunity to flourish.” Below are 5 consumer changes often seen during Ramadan, and some tips from GoDaddy for entrepreneurs and small business owners to help drive business during Ramadan:Increase in Online Shopping: With shorter working hours during Ramadan, people in the UAE have limited time to reach physical shopping destinations before iftar, the meal that breaks the fast. Thus, online shopping experiences a surge during Ramadan in the UAE. According to a survey by Google in 2022, e-commerce sales in the Middle East increased by 61% during Ramadan, with clothing and electronics being the most popular categories.This offers a great chance for businesses to enhance their online presence by engaging their target audience using storytelling techniques, visually appealing content by using easy content creation tools like GoDaddy Studio, and interactive campaigns on social media platforms. Entrepreneurs can further enhance customer engagement by incorporating interactive competitions, quizzes, or challenges centered around Ramadan themes. Moreover, exploring AI-powered tools, such as GoDaddy's AI prompt library, can fuel their creativity and help generate innovative ideas. Employing this blend of strategies not only can boost brand visibility and encourage sales but can also foster a sense of community engagement.Shift in Timings: Due to changed working hours in Ramadan, consumers are mostly online and shopping between 11 AM and 6 PM and then again from 11 PM to 3 AM, with the highest peak being between 2 PM and 3 PM, which is the time just before people leave their offices. This change in shopping timings provides online businesses with specific timeframes to better target their audiences on social media platforms using visually appealing content and popular hashtags (such as #ramadankareem or #ramadan2024). This strategic approach can significantly enhance brand visibility while driving greater interest in purchasing.Increase in Consumers’ Acceptance of New Products: Consumers are more receptive in Ramadan to trying new products and supporting local businesses. In the Middle East, 78% of respondents express interest in exploring new brands during their Ramadan shopping spree. This is a great opportunity for businesses to present unique products, exclusive Ramadan-themed offers, or even customized Ramadan packages. This approach taps into the festive spirit, encouraging consumers to make timely purchases.Bargain Hunting: Despite the openness to novelty, the most significant factors that influence consumers’ purchasing decisions continue to be price and discounts. TGM 2023 Ramadan Insights in the UAE has shown that an overwhelming majority (95%) of shoppers prioritize affordability during this period, with discounts also playing a crucial role in influencing their buying behavior (93%). Tailored promotions and limited-edition Ramadan collections can attract attention and drive sales, catering to the needs and desires of consumers during this month. Email Marketing is a cost-effective way to communicate your exclusive offers to customers. With GoDaddy’s Email Marketing tools, you can maintain a prominent presence in your audience's minds by crafting personalized email campaigns and compelling content, fostering meaningful connections with your customer base.Socially Conscious Consumption: Ramadan is a month of generosity and giving. This increased focus on charitable giving influences consumer behavior, as people may be more inclined to support businesses that are involved in charitable initiatives or donate a portion of their sales to charitable causes. As a business owner, you should integrate your generous CSR activities into your marketing plan as this can attract a broad sector of the audience.As Ramadan continues to evolve and shape consumer habits, entrepreneurs need to remain agile and responsive to these shifts. By leveraging insights into these five key trends revealed by GoDaddy, entrepreneurs can adapt their strategies to meet the evolving needs and preferences of consumers during this significant time. With proactive planning and a keen understanding of consumer behavior, entrepreneurs can navigate the complexities of Ramadan with confidence, ultimately building stronger connections with their audience and driving sustainable growth in their ventures.

Forbes Middle East reveals the top 100 Arab Family Businesses 2024

Forbes Middle East has unveiled its annual list of the Top 100 Arab Family Businesses for 2024, highlighting the long-standing conglomerates transforming through expansion and investment in the region. To construct this list, Forbes Middle East only considered businesses owned or run by Arab families. The conglomerates were ranked on their size, value, performance, business activity, age, legacy, and extent of the business’ geographic and sector diversification.  GCC families are the most successful in the family business space, with 34 of the 100 firms originating from Saudi Arabia, 28 from the UAE, and seven businesses each from Kuwait and Qatar. Combined, these four Gulf countries constitute 76% of the list.  The Saudi Arabia-headquartered Abdul Latif Jameel reigns in the first place, with the UAE’s Al-Futtaim Group and Egypt’s Mansour Group rounding up the top three. Of the top 10, the billionaire-owned Mansour Group is the only non-GCC-based entry. In May 2023, U.S. Major League Soccer awarded a $500 million franchise to a group led by Mohamed Mansour to launch a football club in San Diego, California, by 2025. Group Chairman Mohamed Mansour, alongside brothers Youssef and Yasseen, had a combined net worth of $5.8 billion as of February 2024, making them the richest Arab family featured on this year’s list.  From traditional real estate to hospitality investments, the family businesses on this list have stood the test of time, with six being established in the 1800s and 26 established before 1950. Just six were established in the 2000s, all of which were formed due to a split or sale of an earlier business or consolidation of pre-existing assets to form a holding group. For instance, Morocco’s O Capital Group was founded in 2021 when Holding Benjelloun Mezian merged with FinanceCom in the same year. In contrast, Oman-based Towell Group is the oldest family business in the ranking, with roots dating back to 1866.  Backing sustainable operations with substantial capital has been a consistent priority for several of the 2024 listees. For example, AlNowais Investments Group has over 1,230MW of clean energy projects in Africa, Burkina Faso, Egypt, Jordan, Morocco, and Togo, either in operation or under construction. Meanwhile, Alfardan Group signed an MoU with Electronics Recycling Factory to develop environmental sustainability and encourage e-waste recycling in June 2023. Similarly, the Safari Group and the Knauf Group agreed in December 2023 to invest in and build a new state-of-the-art plasterboard production facility that will significantly reduce energy and water consumption.

Huawei appoints Derek Hao as President of Huawei's Enterprise Business Group

Huawei, a global leader in ICT solutions, is pleased to announce the appointment of Derek Hao as the President of the Enterprise Business Group (EBG) for the Middle East and Central Asia (ME&CA) Region, effective immediately.In his new role, Hao will be responsible for leading the strategic direction of Huawei's enterprise business in the ME&CA region, driving growth, and fostering digital transformation across various industries. With a wealth of experience in marketing, product and solution sales, and business management, Hao brings a proven track record of success to this key leadership position.Prior to his appointment as EBG President for ME&CA, Hao served as the President of Global Marketing at Huawei Enterprise Business Group, overseeing marketing activities worldwide. His contributions to the success of the enterprise business in the Asia Pacific, Southeast Asia regions have been instrumental in Huawei's global expansion.Steven Yi, President of Huawei Middle East & Central Asia expressed confidence in Hao's ability to lead the Enterprise Business Group in the ME&CA region, saying, "We are thrilled to welcome Derek Hao to this crucial role. His extensive experience, strategic vision, and passion for business transformation make him the ideal leader to drive our enterprise business forward in the Middle East and Central Asia."Hao joined Huawei in 2005. Throughout his career, he has played pivotal roles in Huawei's business development, earning recognition for his outstanding contributions to the company's success.Speaking about his new role, Derek Hao said, "I am honored to take on the role of President of the Enterprise Business Group in the ME&CA region. Huawei's commitment to innovation and intelligent transformation aligns with the evolving needs of businesses in this dynamic region. I look forward to working closely with our partners and customers to create new value together across various industries and further drive the growth of our Enterprise Business Group and contribute to the digitalization of the Middle East and Central Asia."As Huawei continues to focus on bringing digital to every person, home and organization for a fully connected and intelligent world, Hao is poised to spearhead the efforts in embracing new ICT technologies to pursue technological innovation in various domains, fostering collaborations with customers and partners to accelerate industrial intelligence and transform the digital economy into an intelligent one.Today, over 700 cities and 267 Fortune Global 500 companies have chosen Huawei as their digital transformation partner, and Huawei’s EBG now works with more than 38,000 service and operation partners around the world.

How SkyBlue Media revolutionizes luxury brand advertising in Dubai

Authored by Dato' Manikandamurthy Velayoudam, the Group Chairman & MD at SkyBlue Media GroupSkyBlue Media, a leader in transit media advertising in the UAE, has introduced exclusive out-of-home advertising (OOH) concepts, empowering luxury brands to convert brand visibility into moving canvases, thus placing them at the forefront of interactive transit advertising experiences.The affluent population and booming economy of Dubai have made it a center for luxury brands. By offering an impressive skyline and an extravagant lifestyle, Dubai offers luxury brands a lucrative way to reach their target audiences. Located at the crossroads of East and West, Dubai is indeed a strategic location for luxury brands looking to expand globally. To showcase their products, luxury brands tend to choose prime locations like shopping malls, high-profile events, or high-end residential areas. These strategic locations offer potential customers the chance to experience the brand firsthand and provide high visibility for their products.There are, however, fascinating changes taking place in Dubai's luxury market hub. More and more prestigious brands are stepping outside of traditional advertising comfort zones in order to promote their products and services. Drawing inspiration from successful campaigns in Europe, Dubai now stands at the forefront of innovative transit media strategies. In Dubai too, luxury brands are using transit media to showcase their products to broader audiences, as they do in Europe.When it comes to the UAE, every day, travelers in Dubai spend an average of 60 minutes (1 hour) in traffic, providing a prime opportunity for exposure to bus advertising. With a fleet of approximately 1,400 buses city-wide, 90% of the population encounters bus media multiple times a day. Covering an impressive average distance of 610.3 kilometers per day, these buses traverse 82% of the urban areas in Dubai through their extensive routes. These statistics highlight the significant reach and frequency of bus advertising in Dubai, making it a highly effective channel for brands to connect with a diverse and captive audience throughout the city.Bus advertising offers a unique and powerful way to transform buses into moving billboards, significantly increasing brand visibility for all travelers. This dynamic form of outdoor media with its creative and flexible formats captures attention wherever buses go. Whether you are a small startup or a large corporation, the OOH marketing process ensures that bus advertising is accessible to businesses of all sizes, regardless of budget constraints. Moreover, by using specific bus routes, brands can effectively reach their ideal customers while minimizing marketing expenses, making bus advertising a strategic and cost-effective choice for any campaign.The trendsetter driving this transformation is none other than SkyBlue Media, whose buses were seen promoting Hamilton, Rado, Longines & Tissot, part of one of the largest luxury groups in Dubai. The RTA buses, strategically traversing the city's key locations, were moving canvases for the artistic expressions of the Rivoli Group, seamlessly blending with the iconic Dubai skyline as they carried the essence of luxury to every corner of the city.In addition to its local endeavors, SkyBlue Media is in advanced discussions with multiple European agencies, paving the way for cross-continental collaborations and the exchange of best practices in transit media advertising.As Dubai continues to solidify its position as a global hub for luxury and innovation, SkyBlue Media remains committed to pushing boundaries and delivering unparalleled brand experiences in transit spaces.

Du and Samsung announce three-year partnership to expand business and services

du, from Emirates Integrated Telecommunications Company (EITC), today signed a strategic a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Samsung. This collaboration marks a significant milestone in the companies' relationship, allowing for expansion in the business-to-consumer (B2C) and business-to-business (B2B) segments.Commenting on the partnership, Karim Benkirane, Chief Commercial Officer at du, said: "We are thrilled to solidify our partnership with Samsung, this collaboration will allow us to provide our customers with an even wider range of cutting-edge products and services. By combining the strengths of both companies, we are confident that we can meet and exceed the evolving needs of our customers."Under this new agreement, du and Samsung will work together to expand Samsung's digital service business and offerings, such as Samsung Care+, through retail, online, and mobile channels. This move aims to enhance the overall customer experience for both B2C and B2B customers.Fadi Abu Shamat, Head of the Mobile eXperience Division at Samsung Gulf Electronics, said: "This strategic collaboration with du is a testament to our commitment to delivering innovative mobile experience to our customers in the UAE. Through this partnership, we will be able to bring our cutting-edge products and solutions including Galaxy AI- a key enabler for new user experience paradigms, especially when it comes to the tools that empower creative expression, productivity, and barrier-free communications. This is the beginning of the future of mobile AI and we are proud to share this journey with our esteemed partner, du.The partnership between du and Samsung will focus on various business fundamentals and key development pillars. This includes expanding B2C practices to B2B, with an emphasis on the Enterprise Edition portfolio and rugged device offerings. Additionally, du will have exclusive access to Samsung's latest product launches, ensuring customers have access to the most advanced technology available. The companies will also collaborate on reaching the younger generation, with joint participation in events like the Dubai Esports Festival.Another strategic focus of this partnership is the creation of B2B-specific workshops and events to maximize reach. The collaboration aims to provide customers with value-added services (VAS) and monetization opportunities through direct investment and by leveraging the du ecosystem. Furthermore, the companies plan to develop B2B-specific rate plans for the enterprise edition and rugged device portfolio, as well as collaborate on CRM initiatives for local customers in the premium segment offerings.

Trivium Media Group wins digital and social marketing mandate for Pareha

Trivium Media Group, India’s creative, media, digital and PR agency, has announced its newest collaboration with Pareha.In this partnership, the agency will take charge of the overall planning, strategizing and managing of brand and social media marketing and performance marketing for Pareha, the company stated in a press release.The mandate will be managed by the agency’s Pune branch, it added. Additionally, as a part of the mandate; the agency will also prioritise bolstering brand awareness, enhancing brand recall value, and fostering consideration among consumers, the company stated.Mr. O Khan, CEO of Trivium Media Group said, “Our expertise lies in fashion and luxury brands. We excel in achieving desired brand positioning and ROAS, and our strength in performance marketing is unmatched. We are known as a boutique AI agency for fashion and lifestyle brands. Our brand partnership with Pareha is significant, as it enhances our portfolio and the legacy in the lifestyle and fashion sector. With our dedicated and responsible brand management team, we're ready to elevate Pareha in the competitive fashion and lifestyle market.”Mehul Jain, Pareha's Founder, expressed excitement stating, “We're thrilled to partner with Trivium Media Group, knowing their proven success, deep expertise, innovative strategies, and commitment to client’s happiness. With Trivium by our side, we're eager to enhance our brand’s presence and enrich our customer interactions across all platforms. Their effective campaigns have already boosted our offline presence, bringing more shoppers to our store and deepening our connection with customers. Together, we're set for success!"

Lipton and Horizon FCB Dubai brew up a vibrant Ramadan campaign

In a bid to infuse the essence of togetherness into Ramadan, Lipton has partnered with Horizon FCB Dubai to unveil an exhilarating new campaign. This year's initiative revolves around the theme of extended nights and the joy of communal gatherings, epitomizing the spirit of the holy month.Central to the campaign is a captivating film that unfolds the transformative power of a simple cup of Lipton tea. What starts as a tranquil post-iftar moment blossoms into a lively congregation, illustrating how tea can prolong the evening, elevate gatherings, and etch unforgettable memories. With each sip of Lipton tea, the gathering swells as friends and family converge, infusing the house with the vibrancy of Ramadan, from engaging TV shows to spirited card games, until the break of dawn at Suhoor.Horizon FCB Dubai's adept understanding of the Gen Z demographic and profound insights into Saudi culture have been pivotal in shaping the campaign's tagline, "Wanasa Mkamela," which strikes a chord with youthful audiences while honoring Ramadan traditions. The agency's approach ensures the campaign's resonance with a diverse audience, celebrating the spirit of togetherness that Lipton tea embodies.<iframe width="560" height="315" src="" title="YouTube video player" frameborder="0" allow="accelerometer; autoplay; clipboard-write; encrypted-media; gyroscope; picture-in-picture; web-share" allowfullscreen></iframe>Reham Mufleh, Managing Director at Horizon FCB Dubai, expressed the immediate rapport they felt with Lipton, stating, "The connection with Lipton was instant and the collaboration felt like a natural result of the chemistry we had with the client and the understanding we shared on the brand." This sentiment underscores the importance of synergy between agency and client, laying the foundation for a successful partnership.What sets this collaboration apart is its holistic approach. Mufleh emphasizes that their work with Lipton extends beyond mere advertising; it's about cultivating a "Never Finished" space for Lipton within the context of Ramadan. This mindset reflects a commitment to continuous innovation and evolution, ensuring that Lipton remains relevant and impactful in the lives of consumers.Directed by Omar Shawky and produced by the esteemed Good People production company in Egypt, the campaign film exudes authenticity and warmth, infused with a contemporary touch. Together, they weave a narrative that encapsulates the essence of Ramadan and Lipton tea's role in extending these cherished moments.Behind the scenes, Lipton's dedicated team, led by Marketing Director Ozge Onur, Head of Digital Carla Lazkani, and Brand Manager Haris Ali, collaborated closely with Horizon FCB Dubai. The agency's stellar lineup including CEO Mazen Jawad, Executive Creative Director Mohamed Bareche, and Associate Creative Directors Thomas Gheorghiu and Bassam Doss, among others, ensured the seamless execution of the campaign.With its blend of tradition and modernity, Lipton and Horizon FCB Dubai's Ramadan campaign promises to ignite the spirit of togetherness and make this holy month truly unforgettable.

Chinese EV brand Zeekr by Geely launches in the UAE

Chinese automaker Geely's electric vehicle brand, Zeekr, has officially launched in the UAE market. This comes ahead of their delayed IPO listing in the US.AW Rostamani Group (AW Rostamani), a major UAE conglomerate, is Zeekr's official partner for this launch. They'll be introducing two electric vehicles: the Zeekr 001 and the Zeekr X.This launch follows similar moves by other Chinese EV companies. Last month, XPENG announced their expansion into the Middle East, partnering with Ali&Sons for the UAE market.Zeekr's entry into the UAE aligns with their plans for the region. The company previously expressed interest in fundraising from regional investors before their planned US IPO for $1 billion. Zeekr Vice President Chen Yu spoke to the Financial Times in October, confirming their launch in four Middle Eastern countries by 2024, including Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and Bahrain. They aim to compete with established premium car brands like BMW and Audi by offering competitive pricing.

UAE's Haltia.AI credits Dubai for meteoric rise in AI landscape

 Haltia.AI, the UAE's foremost adaptive personal AI, credits Dubai for its significant growth in the AI domain. The company attributes its success directly to Dubai's robust government support system, which distinguishes the city as a prime hub for AI startups. With a blend of opportunities, supportive regulations, a talent-friendly environment, tax incentives, and avenues for global collaboration, the UAE has propelled Haltia.AI from a startup to a global AI influencer. This success story underscores the crucial role of government support in fostering startup growth, driving innovation, and enhancing international competitiveness.At a time when everyone is talking about artificial intelligence (AI) and how it is redefining our lives, startups like Haltia.AI are emerging as the new leaders of innovation. Haltia.AI represents a significant leap forward in how technology can enhance our daily lives and improve our social interactions. However, the journey of AI startups from concept to global influence is fraught with challenges, necessitating a supportive ecosystem that can fuel their growth. Herein lies the importance of government support, a lesson well articulated by the successes of the forward-thinking UAE in fostering a thriving startup ecosystem and illustrated by establishing the first AI ministry in the world back in 2017.The UAE's model of nurturing innovation through comprehensive support mechanisms offers invaluable lessons for countries aiming to bolster their AI sectors. By providing startups with funding opportunities, regulatory frameworks conducive to growth, and platforms for international collaboration, the UAE has positioned itself as a global hub for technological innovation or, as some would call it, the Silicon Valley of the East. This support is not merely about financial backing but encompasses mentorship, access to state-of-the-art facilities, and an environment that encourages experimentation and innovation.Haltia.AI is a prime example of a company reaping the benefits of this supportive ecosystem. The startup's unique proposition of offering a secure and adaptive AI underscores the need for governments to prioritize not just the incubation of technology businesses but also to ensure they operate within a framework that champions security and adaptability. "In an age where data privacy concerns and the need for personalized technology are paramount, and demand will continue to grow, government support can significantly amplify our efforts to create AI solutions that are both innovative and trustworthy," states Talal Thabet, (pictured above), CEO of Haltia.AI. "The UAE's approach to supporting startups like ours through a blend of regulatory guidance, advisory support, access to cutting-edge resources and international networking opportunities is a blueprint that could well serve as a global standard."For governments looking to replicate the UAE's success, the path involves more than just drafting policies. It requires a commitment to understanding the unique challenges and opportunities within the AI sector, fostering partnerships between public and private sectors, and investing in the foundational aspects of technology innovation such as education and research. As Thabet emphasizes, "Talal Thabet. "Support from the government is not just about aiding startups with incorporation services or navigating the labyrinth of corporate taxation but building an ecosystem that nurtures innovation, adapts to the evolving tech landscape, with events, relevant expertise, connecting the social graph, and improving working and living standards."The potential benefits of such support can be illustrated in several interests and requirements of government. For one, it can accelerate the development of groundbreaking technologies that address societal challenges, from healthcare to environmental sustainability. Moreover, by fostering a competitive technology sector, governments can drive economic growth, create high-skilled jobs, and establish their countries as leaders in the digital age.As Haltia.AI and other AI startups navigate the complexities of innovation, the role of government support becomes increasingly critical. The UAE's success story offers a compelling narrative on how such support can catalyze the growth of startups, turning them from local ventures into global pioneers. Talal Thabet concludes by saying, “As the world continues to embrace AI, the synergy between startups pushing the boundaries of technology and providing solutions to further humanity and government support will undoubtedly be a defining factor in shaping the future of the world.”

UM MENAT elevates leadership: Dutton as CPO, Mannaa as KSA CEO

UM MENAT has announced the promotion of James Dutton to Chief Product Officer and Mohammad Mannaa to CEO of KSA. These appointments, part of a strategic move to bolster its leadership team, signify UM MENAT's commitment to driving innovation and growth across the region.James Dutton, who previously served as Regional Director – Digital, will now spearhead UM's product roadmap and delivery initiatives. His focus will be on enhancing client solutions, digital services, and global partnerships to drive client growth. Dutton's remit includes expanding specialist service areas such as international client expansion, gaming, and AI solutions development.Commenting on his new role, James Dutton said: “The media industry is moving faster than ever, and so I’m very excited to be expanding my remit into helping UM and our clients navigate the complex media, data, and technology solutions available in achieving growth goals through the development and expansion of our extensive product solutions. More than ever, we need to look how automation is playing more of a role in media deployment and optimisation, to understand how to make decisions that really matter in media.”   Mohammad Mannaa, formerly the Managing Director of KSA, will now lead UM's growth agenda in the Kingdom, focusing on technology, innovation, and performance across various portfolios. This strategic move aligns with UM MENAT's vision for significant expansion in Saudi Arabia in 2024 and beyond.Mohammad Mannaa highlighted his excitement to lead the talented team in Saudi Arabia. He said: “Together, we are committed to collaborating with clients and partners to deliver impactful campaigns that resonate globally. Our focus is on pushing boundaries, elevating brands, and shaping the future of media through innovative storytelling, while leveraging cutting-edge technology.”Joe Nicolas, CEO of UM MENAT, praised the expertise and leadership demonstrated by James and Mohammad, sharing: “As we navigate the evolving media landscape, we remain steadfast in our mission to not only adapt, but thrive in the face of change. Both James & Mohammed have continuously proven their expertise and leadership in driving innovation and building capabilities. With these newly established roles, we are poised to deliver exceptional value to our clients across the region.”With these strategic promotions, UM MENAT reaffirms its dedication to driving innovation, delivering impactful campaigns, and shaping the future of media in the MENA region and beyond.

Flowwow debuts family card game infused with local artistry

Dubai: This Ramadan, Flowwow, a UAE-based gifting marketplace for local brands, is fostering the spirit of meaningful interactions, unity and togetherness with the launch of a card game: "Ramadan Moments: Family Game for Heart-to-Heart Talks.” Developed in partnership with Emirati digital artist Mariam Alobeidli, this deck of playing cards aims to bring UAE families and friends closer during Iftar evenings while introducing them to the unique local artistry and craftsmanship. The UAE's cultural landscape has evolved significantly in recent years, with a surge in art initiatives, institutions, galleries, and creative spaces. Inspired by the boost of local cultural and artistic flow, Flowwow collaborated with the local artist Mariam Alobeidli to bring a touch of artistic splendor to the Ramadan game and empower local voices in the art industry. On a mission to support local brands, Flowwow shifts to promoting local art, upholding the rich cultural heritage of the Middle East. As Mariam Alobeidli crafted her artwork, she poured her heart and soul into each stroke, infusing her cherished childhood memories with the essence of Ramadan:Takias hold cultural significance, as many traditional living rooms lacked couches or chairs, relying instead on floor seating arrangements;Prayer beads as a sign of importance of prayer during Ramadan, the beads serve as a reminder of the Muslim connection to God during this sacred time;  "Dalla" (tea pot) highlights the cherished family gatherings, representing the warmth and hospitality shared among loved ones;The crescent moon is a nod to the traditional practice of announcing the start of Ramadan upon sighting the crescent moon; "Midfa'a" is the momentous occasion of breaking the fast. The sound of the midfa’a signals the end of the fast and the beginning of the Maghrib prayer. “Each of these elements holds deep cultural significance, not only within Ramadan but also within the broader Emirati heritage. These symbols serve as reminders of our traditions, values, and the importance of community and faith, and I was honored to incorporate them into the game”, added Mariam Alobeidli. The deck includes 30 uniquely designed cards, with each card featuring a profound question for every day of Ramadan. These questions aim to foster deep conversations, create shared moments of joy, and embody core ethical principles during the Iftar evenings.Commenting on the brands’ special launch Slava Bogdan, Flowwow ?EO and co-founder, added: “The holy month of Ramadan often sees an increased emphasis on gifting, reflecting a culture of generosity and celebration within UAE families and communities. As a gifting marketplace it’s our mission to bring the Emirati people something truly unique and meaningful this Ramadan, reflecting the core spiritual values of the sacred month. In response to this demand we decided to create the "Ramadan Moments" card game with a fusion of local artistry. So, our aim in developing this game was to not only provide a thoughtful aesthetic gift option but also to facilitate stronger interpersonal connections during this significant time." Mariam Alobeidli crafted the entire design concept and drew inspiration from the richness and diversity of Emirati culture, tight family values and the long-lasting tradition of gift-giving during the Holy Month.To play the game you have to pick a card daily and sincerely discuss answers, creating a ripple of honesty, integrity, and positivity throughout your home. Amidst conversations filled with love, laughter, and blessings, the “Ramadan Moments” adds a sprinkle of magic to make these occasions truly unforgettable.

COLORS TV Middle East & Africa unveils new 'Colors Food Trail' season

IndiaCast Media Distribution Private Limited has announced the much-anticipated return of its unique culinary show Colors Food Trail, for a captivating fourth season in the Middle East on COLORS TV, the leading entertainment channel from Viacom18. The season launched on 10th March, Sunday at 8 PM UAE / 7 PM KSA, Persil Presents Colors Food Trail, Powered by Lifebuoy promises a vibrant exploration of taste buds and travel memories, making it the most delightful cooking show to grace your screens during Ramadan.This Season features eight renowned social media influencers from the UAE – Saaniya Abass, Maradona Rebello, Sneha Rebecca, Mamta Sachdeva, Siddharth Vohra, Umang Shandliya, Rafeez Ahmed, and Saim Ali. Each episode will feature a different influencer sharing their favourite travel destination and cuisine. The show's resident culinary maestro, Chef Abs Patil, will then rise to the challenge, recreating those unforgettable food experiences right in the studio kitchen.This captivating format promises a delightful blend of nostalgia, travel inspiration, and culinary expertise. Yachana Sharma, joins the show as the host for this season, adding her infectious energy and witty commentary to further elevate the viewing experience.Commenting on the show's return and its innovative format, Govind Shahi, Executive Vice President, and Head of International Business, IndiaCast Media, shared, " Colors Food Trail has captured the hearts of viewers with its innovative format and celebration of diverse culinary experiences. This season promises even more excitement with a fresh set of influencers and their travel-inspired culinary stories, and we are incredibly excited to bring this new season to life and look forward to the audience's enthusiastic response."Colors Food Trail Season 4 is proudly supported by a prestigious lineup of sponsors, including Persil (Title Sponsor), Lifebuoy (Powered By Sponsor), and Associate Sponsors - Jif, Caprisun, Al Osra, PanaNatural, Panadol Extra, Pana Vapour Release, Centrum, Al Baker, Nair, Batiste, Flawless, Haldiram’s, and Pearl Drops.Embark on a flavour-filled adventure with Colors Food Trail Season 4, Every Sunday at 8 PM UAE / 7 PM KSA, only on COLORS TV in the Middle East! Viewers across the globe can also watch the episodes on the official COLORSTVME YouTube page <iframe width="560" height="315" src="" title="YouTube video player" frameborder="0" allow="accelerometer; autoplay; clipboard-write; encrypted-media; gyroscope; picture-in-picture; web-share" allowfullscreen></iframe>

NCTH acquires key Alpha Dhabi Properties for portfolio growth

Alpha Dhabi Holding PJSC (“Alpha Dhabi” or “the Group”), one of the fastest-growing investment holding companies in the MENA region, and National Corporation for Tourism and Hotels (NCTH), the owner and manager of some of Abu Dhabi’s best-known hotels, have completed a strategic transaction which unites 3 of Alpha Dhabi’s hotel businesses within the NCTH portfolio. Alpha Dhabi has a 36.4% shareholding in National Corporation for Tourism & Hotels (NCTH), who have acquired 100% stakes in ADH Hospitality, Murban (BVI) Holding Inc., and Hill View Resorts – Seychelles.  Under the transaction, which is subject to regulatory approvals, NCTH (and Alpha Dhabi) have bolstered their position as value creating businesses within the luxury segment of the hospitality sector through a strong presence in the UAE market as well as a growing footprint into the ultra-luxury segment internationally. The transaction adds St Regis Saadiyat, Al Wathba Luxury Collection, both luxury resorts in Abu Dhabi as well as the ultra-luxury Cheval Blanc in the Maldives and the soon to open Cheval Blanc Seychelles to NCTH’s growing portfolio of hotel assets. The resorts join other leading hotels under the NCTH portfolio. The transaction increases the total managed and owned hotels in the NCTH portfolio to 8 hotels with almost 1,500 total keys.  Eng. Hamad Al Ameri, CEO of Alpha Dhabi Holding, said: “Our growing portfolio of luxury hotels in the UAE, Maldives, and Seychelles reflects the energy and vibrancy of these world-leading tourist destinations. By uniting our hotel brands under the NCTH umbrella, we have substantial direct and indirect investment both here in the UAE and internationally that will serve as an engine of growth and diversification within our existing investment portfolio." Hany Farag, Chief Executive Officer National Corporation for Tourism & Hotels, said: "The hospitality, lifestyle, and tourism sectors show no signs of slowing, offering long-term growth potential for hoteliers. There is also strong demand for luxury brands across the region in exciting markets at highly sought after locations. Through this acquisition we are able to capture these opportunities by consolidating much-loved brands and by adding further depth, diversification, and sophistication to our portfolio. As always, we seek to enrich guests with memorable experiences as well as elevating the local communities at the world-leading destinations where we operate.” Alpha Dhabi acquired a 36.4% shareholding in National Corporation for Tourism and Hotels in May 2023. This acquisition in consideration for shares will increase Alpha Dhabi total shareholding In NCTH. Both Alpha Dhabi and NCTH seek to capture the increasingly strong demand for luxury tourism offerings in the UAE and beyond.

Silicon Valley executive Puneet Arora joins as Global President

Dubai: has announced the appointment of Puneet Arora as Global President , taking yet another step towards driving hypergrowth and bolstering its position as a global leader in omnichannel AI-powered customer experience. In this strategic role, Puneet will lead the Go-to-Market teams across all markets, including North America, the Middle East, India, Asia-Pacific, Europe,, Latin America, and Africa.With a stellar growth trajectory, including a 10X global expansion over the last two years, has reinforced its market leadership in India, the Middle East, and Asia-Pacific. Continuing its expansion across North America, Europe, and Latin America, the company aims for an IPO in the coming years.“When was founded, our vision was to establish a generational company that brings the power of AI-driven customer experience to billions of consumers and global enterprises, thereby leading one of the largest application software markets. Puneet joining us as Global President with experience in taking companies public and scaling global GTM teams in the customer experience market marks the next strategic move along that trajectory,” said Raghu Ravinutala, CEO & Co-founder, “As we lead the way in shaping the future of support with our customer experience automation platform, we are confident in Puneet's leadership and industry insights to scale Global GTM, shape our roadmap, and bolster’s position as a leader and innovator in the industry.”Operating from San Francisco, Puneet will spearhead business growth by leading and scaling Global GTM, overseeing the sales, marketing, partnerships, delivery, support, revenue operations, and customer success teams. In his role, he will drive transformation, foster growth momentum, establish a strong North American market presence, and boost global expansion efforts. Speaking on his appointment, Puneet said, “I am thrilled to be part of the global growth story of Throughout my career, I've thrived by collaborating with teams established in the market but eager for growth, a spirit that embodies. As a frontrunner in customer experience automation, stands at a pivotal moment. Drawing from my experience in scaling businesses globally, I'm eager to cultivate strong partnerships across GTM teams, driving cohesive efforts for sustainable growth and market leadership.”A seasoned professional in the contact center sector, Puneet brings over 25 years of expertise in establishing and expanding high-velocity SaaS organizations. His track record includes pivotal roles at leading organizations including D2L, 8x8, Oracle, Liveperson, and Salesforce. He has proficiently scaled companies to multi-million ARR levels and navigated successful IPO journeys.Puneet’s appointment follows on the heels of recent leadership additions across Engineering and GTM globally: Madhav Chinta as VP Engineering, Henrik Petersen as VP Marketing - International Region, Sulabh Singhal as VP Global Professional Services, and Yeshas Prasad as VP Enterprise Sales, demonstrating the company's commitment to building a seasoned senior leadership team.

Procter & Gamble empowers businesses with women entrepreneurs academy

Dubai: Procter & Gamble (P&G) successfully concluded its third annual Women Entrepreneurs Academy. This initiative aimed to provide business development training for women-owned businesses, enabling them to take their businesses to the next level.The event showcased a comprehensive curriculum covering various topics, including Building Leadership Skills, Aligning and Executing Business Strategy, Empowering Advocacy, Maximizing Impact & Influence, Brand Building Strategy, Leveraging Technology, Making Inroads to MNCs, Financial Business Modeling, and Procurement Processes. Sixteen selected participants attended training sessions and networking opportunities with industry leaders, gaining valuable insights into critical business domains.The highlight of the event was the keynote speech by Her Excellency, Dr. Farah Al Zarooni, Assistant Undersecretary at Ministry of Industry and Advanced Technology (MoIAT), as well as an engaging panel discussion featuring influential figures from P&G and prominent market leaders, including Dr. Sawsan Al Madhi, Founder of Alignneficient; Nadine Mezher, Co-Founder of Sarwa; Halima Jumani, CEO and Co-Founder of Kibsons; Dima Tahtah, P&G Sales Senior Director; and Ihinosen Ebinum, P&G Purchasing Senior Director, moderated by Suad Shamma, P&G Senior Corporate Communications Manager. This diverse panel fostered a dynamic exchange of ideas and perspectives.This initiative is part of P&G’s ongoing commitment to equality and inclusion, empowering women-owned businesses and accelerating progress towards achieving gender equality, a core focus of the UN Sustainable Development Goal #5. To date, the program has benefited over 500 women from 12 countries, enabling them to acquire the essential skills and knowledge needed to initiate and expand their businesses successfully.