Abdul Aziz charts Cyber Cultr Media's course in the UAE's digital landscape

In this interview with Adgully Middle East, Abdul Aziz, the Founder and CEO of Cyber Cultr Media FZE - LLC, outlines the company's strategic direction in the UAE's digital landscape. Emphasizing a holistic approach, Cyber Cultr aims to expand its services, establish specialized verticals, and maintain competitiveness through white-label programmes and all-inclusive packages. The company's market positioning leverages a unique methodology, "The Trifecta," focusing on platform, audience, and content. Cyber Cultr stays ahead through continuous innovation, leveraging technological advancements, strategic partnerships, and client-centric strategies. With a commitment to client satisfaction and robust cybersecurity measures, Cyber Cultr Media aims to thrive as a trusted partner in the evolving digital industry. Excerpts:How do you envision Cyber Cultr Media's strategic direction in the dynamic digital and communications landscape, and what initiatives are in place to maintain competitiveness in the UAE market?At Cyber Cultr Media, we envision our strategic direction as a journey toward becoming an all-encompassing media empire that caters to the diverse needs of brands in the dynamic digital and communications landscape. We are committed to offering comprehensive services ranging from initial brand conceptualization to content production, growth marketing, and beyond. Our goal is to establish multiple specialized verticals under the Cyber Cultr umbrella, each dedicated to fulfilling specific niches and industry requirements.To achieve this vision, we are actively expanding our team with a combination of versatile generalists and specialized experts. This ensures that every project receives a holistic and tailored approach, backed by the precise expertise needed for execution. We aim to create a network of specialized verticals that collectively offer a wide array of services, enabling us to cater to the unique needs of diverse industries and clients.In order to maintain competitiveness in the UAE market, we have initiated several strategic initiatives. One key approach is launching white-label programmes tailored for the B2B agency market. These programmes enable other agencies to leverage our expertise and resources while maintaining their brand identity and client relationships.Additionally, we have introduced all-inclusive packages designed for the B2C market. These packages offer brands the convenience of fulfilling all their marketing requirements through our carefully curated team and trusted network of vendors. By providing end-to-end solutions, we empower brands to focus on their core business objectives while we handle their marketing needs efficiently and effectively.Overall, our strategic direction is driven by a commitment to innovation, collaboration, and client-centricity. We are dedicated to staying ahead of the curve in the ever-evolving digital landscape, while continuously adapting our approach to meet the evolving needs of our clients in the UAE market and beyond. Through establishing specialized verticals, we aim to create a comprehensive media empire offering unparalleled expertise and solutions across various industries and sectors.What is Cyber Cultr Media's market positioning in the UAE, and what unique value proposition or competitive advantage distinguishes the company in comparison to others in the region?Cyber Cultr Media's market positioning in the UAE is rooted in our commitment to transforming businesses into brands through expert brand-building exercises, strategic content creation, targeted paid advertising, and the ability to scale into new markets effectively.While our leadership team boasts experience working with globally renowned brands, we've oriented Cyber Cultr to be the agency of choice for businesses aspiring to elevate their brand presence and market influence.With a portfolio comprising over 60 brands spanning across 25+ industries, we have developed a unique methodology known as "The Trifecta," which serves as the cornerstone of our approach to every client engagement.The Trifecta encapsulates three critical components: Platform, Audience, and Content.The PLATFORM component focuses on selecting the most suitable channels, whether it's out-of-home, social media platforms, Google, or influencer marketing, to maximize reach and engagement.AUDIENCE represents the precise targeting of the campaign towards the intended market segment. Accurate audience definition is paramount, as it directly influences the efficacy of the other two elements.CONTENT encompasses the design and communicational aspects of the campaign. We ensure that our content is not only visually appealing but also resonates with the target audience, thus driving optimal performance across chosen platforms.Our steadfast commitment to implementing The Trifecta methodology in every project gives us a competitive edge by enabling us to approach each brand holistically while maintaining rigorous quality standards for maximum impact and effectiveness.Another competitive advantage lies in our extensive utilization of creative testing in both content creation and advertising. By rigorously analyzing the results of these tests, we continuously refine and optimize every aspect of our campaigns.Backed by over 25 years of local market knowledge and expertise, we possess the agility and insight needed to navigate the nuances of the UAE market landscape, anticipate trends, and capitalize on emerging opportunities. This combination of strategic methodology, creative innovation, and market intelligence positions Cyber Cultr Media as a trusted partner for brands seeking to achieve sustained growth and prominence in the competitive UAE market.In the fast-paced digital and communications industry, how does Cyber Cultr Media stay ahead of technological advancements and foster innovation? Can you provide recent examples of successful adaptations or innovations?At Cyber Cultr Media, we cultivate a culture of continuous learning and exploration within our team, ensuring that every member remains up-to-date with emerging technologies, tools, and trends through ongoing training programmes, industry events, and collaborative knowledge sharing.This commitment enables us to equip our team with the latest insights and skills, allowing us to effectively leverage new opportunities and stay ahead in the fast-paced digital landscape. Moreover, we invest heavily in cutting-edge technological infrastructure and resources, empowering us to deliver innovative solutions to our clients.Whether it's harnessing AI-powered analytics platforms, or gathering accurate marketing intelligence data, our dedication to staying at the forefront of technological advancements ensures that we provide unparalleled value and results to our clients.Our client-centric approach lies at the heart of our innovation strategy. We prioritize understanding our clients' unique challenges, objectives, and target audiences, tailoring our strategies and campaigns accordingly. By fostering close partnerships and maintaining open lines of communication, we anticipate our clients' evolving needs and adapt our strategies proactively to deliver impactful results.A recent example of our commitment to innovation involves the use of expert marketing intelligence tools and AI-powered technologies to improve the quality of insights we generate and increase the efficiency of our efforts. For instance, we recently advised a client on market focus based on data generated through intelligence research and competitor analysis. By analyzing competition and demand, we recommended a shift in strategy to a market with better profitability prospects and expansion opportunities.In addition, our strategic partnerships with leading technology providers, creative agencies, and industry influencers enable us to harness collective expertise and drive innovation. Through collaborative initiatives and joint ventures, we explore new avenues for growth and differentiation in the competitive digital landscape.In essence, Cyber Cultr Media remains committed to pushing the boundaries of innovation and delivering exceptional value to our clients in an ever-evolving digital landscape. Our proactive approach, dedication to excellence, and client success position us as a trusted partner for businesses seeking to thrive in the digital age.How does Cyber Cultr Media ensure client satisfaction and retention in a service-oriented industry? Can you share a specific instance where the company met or exceeded client expectations?At Cyber Cultr Media, ensuring client satisfaction and retention in a service-oriented industry is ingrained in our approach to operations and client management. We prioritize maintaining strict quality control throughout our agency workflow and operational processes by utilizing comprehensive Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs). These SOPs serve as structured frameworks that facilitate smooth workflows, uphold high-quality standards, and ensure consistency in service delivery.Our detailed frameworks and SOPs cover every aspect of our client engagement process, including client outreach and discovery, research, audits, proposals, client onboarding, project management, brand consistency, messaging strategy, copywriting, creative thinking, campaign planning and implementation, optimization, growth, reporting, and analysis. By meticulously documenting processes and procedures for each touchpoint, we guarantee 100% quality assurance for every client while empowering our team to work with accountability and efficiency.A specific instance where Cyber Cultr Media met and exceeded client expectations involves our work with event-centric clients seeking a high volume of event registrations for success. By enforcing our creative testing strategy, we were able to surpass the expected number of event registrations while achieving a lowered cost per lead. This success was attributed to informed decision-making based on the right creative elements, demonstrating our commitment to delivering tangible results that exceed client expectations.How does Cyber Cultr Media foster a positive work culture, and what strategies are employed to invest in the professional development and well-being of employees, contributing to a high-performing team?Fostering a positive work culture is integral to our ethos, as we believe that a supportive and nurturing environment is key to cultivating a high-performing team. We employ various strategies to invest in the professional development and well-being of our employees, ensuring their growth and satisfaction within the organization.One of our core strategies involves regular team training sessions, where we provide opportunities for skill enhancement, knowledge sharing, and staying updated with industry trends. These sessions enable our team members to expand their expertise, collaborate effectively, and stay ahead in the rapidly evolving digital landscape.In addition, we offer an unlimited supply of study materials, resources, and books for self-enrichment and upskilling. By empowering our employees with access to valuable learning resources, we encourage continuous learning and personal development, fostering a culture of curiosity and growth.Furthermore, we embrace an open management style that encourages transparent communication and conflict resolution. Our leadership team is accessible and approachable, ensuring that team members feel heard, valued, and supported in addressing any concerns or challenges they may encounter. This open-door policy promotes trust, collaboration, and a sense of belonging among our employees, contributing to a positive work culture and a cohesive team environment.By prioritizing professional development, providing ample resources for self-enrichment, and fostering open communication and conflict resolution, Cyber Cultr Media is committed to investing in the well-being and growth of our employees. We believe that a happy, motivated, and empowered team is essential for driving innovation, delivering exceptional results, and achieving collective success as an organisation.What measures does Cyber Cultr Media have in place to address potential risks, particularly in terms of cybersecurity, to safeguard client data and internal systems?Safeguarding client data and internal systems against potential risks, including cybersecurity threats, is of paramount importance to us. We have implemented several measures to ensure the security and integrity of our systems and the confidentiality of client information.One key aspect of our cybersecurity strategy is the use of global-standard password protection tools and techniques. We enforce strong password policies and regularly update passwords to mitigate the risk of unauthorized access to our systems and accounts. Additionally, we employ robust encryption protocols to secure sensitive data both in transit and at rest.Furthermore, we have implemented two-factor authentication (2FA) across all our internal accounts and client accounts. This additional layer of security adds an extra barrier against unauthorized access by requiring users to provide two forms of verification before accessing sensitive information or systems.In terms of client data access, we have established a hierarchy-based access control model. Access to client data is strictly controlled and granted based on defined roles and permissions. This ensures that only authorized personnel have access to specific client information, minimizing the risk of data breaches or unauthorized disclosures.Moreover, we have implemented backup security measures to provide redundancy and resilience in our systems. Regular backups of critical data are performed to prevent data loss in the event of system failures, cyberattacks, or other unforeseen incidents.What are the latest trends in the digital industry you have observed? What is the role of AI in shaping up the industry in the days ahead?Several trends have emerged that are reshaping the digital landscape and influencing the way brands engage with their audiences. One notable trend is the increasing consumption of video content across various digital platforms. Video content has become a dominant form of communication, offering brands an engaging and immersive way to connect with their target audiences.Another trend is the rise of marketing automation, which streamlines repetitive tasks, enhances efficiency and enables personalized communication at scale. Demand for integrated marketing systems that seamlessly connect different marketing channels and platforms is also on the rise, allowing brands to deliver consistent and cohesive messaging across various touchpoints.Hyper-personalized messaging is gaining traction as brands seek to deliver tailored experiences that resonate with individual consumers. This trend reflects the growing importance of understanding customer preferences, behaviours, and needs to deliver relevant and meaningful interactions.Furthermore, there is an increasing demand for influencer marketing, chatbots for customer service, less-intrusive advertisements, and CGI-driven content that captivates and engages audiences in unique ways.AI is increasingly playing a pivotal role in shaping the future of the digital industry. AI technologies are being utilized across various domains, including design, data-driven decision-making, predictive analytics, and content enrichment. AI-powered tools and algorithms enable brands to analyze vast amounts of data, identify patterns, and derive actionable insights to inform strategic decision-making.In design, AI-driven platforms facilitate the creation of visually stunning and engaging content, optimizing design elements for maximum impact and relevance. AI-driven data analysis enables brands to make informed decisions based on real-time insights, driving marketing strategies and campaigns that are more targeted and effective.Predictive analytics powered by AI algorithms help brands anticipate customer behaviour and preferences, enabling proactive engagement and personalized recommendations. Additionally, AI-driven content enrichment techniques enhance the quality and relevance of content, improving user experiences and driving engagement.

Plus VC and Tawaref announce strategic partnership

Plus VC (+VC), a leading venture capital firm that invests in early-stage tech and tech-enabled startups in MENA and its diaspora, and the third most active VC by deals in the MENA in Q3, 2023, has announced the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Tawaref, a tech investment community, financing top regional startups and offering entrepreneurial services, to accelerate the incorporation process of portfolio companies under its umbrella in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia via its Saudi Landing program.+VC understands the increasing need for a company such as Tawaref, to accelerate time to market and help tech startups meet the challenges posed by obtaining approvals from multiple government departments and expediting the establishment process in Saudi Arabia. Saudi Landing by Tawaref is a One-Stop Shop solution that coordinates with more than 10 entities in the Kingdom and offers guidance on market entry strategies, regulatory requirements, and local business practices.Commenting on the signing of the MoU, Hasan Haider, Managing Partner of +VC, said, "At +VC, our strategy is to constantly look for new and innovative ways to help our founders thrive. With the majority of our founders keen to expand to Saudi Arabia, the signing of the MoU was key, to demonstrating our commitment to augmenting initiatives that will help our founders accelerate the establishment of commercial operations, explore fundraising opportunities, and expand their investor network. We are delighted to partner with Tawaref, their pivotal role as catalysts, their strong track record, and their highly professional team of experts can help our startups to resolve the complexities of incorporation, and strongly position them for success and scalability.”The MoU between + VC and Tawaref marks a milestone for a new way of cooperation between both parties. Under the terms of the MoU, Tawaref will work with +VC portfolio companies to facilitate the seamless setup of its operations in Saudi via its flagship Saudi Landing program. In addition, both parties jointly will share deals, investment analysis, and market trends to keep updated on regional updates.Saeed Al Ansari, Founder and CEO of Tawaref, said, “We are thrilled to have partnered with +VC which represents some incredible startups. Our vision advances our strategy to assist tech startups from around MENAP and beyond to incorporate their business into Saudi’s vibrant entrepreneurial ecosystem. This strategic collaboration will help us to incorporate the startups and establish us as a robust service provider. With our excellent track record, deep industry knowledge, extensive network, and strong connections in the tech startup ecosystem, we are confident that our dedicated team of experts will be able to provide the best-in-class services to every tech startup under the +VC umbrella. We look forward to working together with the portfolio companies, empowering them to establish their business by adding unmatched value to the founders.”

MoEngage and Kaleyra Team Up for Personalized Omnichannel Experiences

MoEngage, an industry-leading insight-led customer Engagement Platform today announced the expansion of its strategic partnership with Kaleyra to drive highly personalized omnichannel experiences and global customer engagement through channels like WhatsApp and SMS. Kaleyra is part of the MoEngage Catalyst Partner program that aims at helping brands scale with speed. This partnership will help transform how businesses interact with customers, empowering enterprises to craft relevant and personalized engagement, ultimately boosting loyalty and driving revenue.This partnership will also enable brands to utilize Kaleyra’s capabilities as a WhatsApp Business Solution Provider (BSP) through MoEngage’s insights-led engagement platform. The technology platform will make it easier to launch highly personalized WhatsApp campaigns at scale, a challenge many consumer brands face. Precise segmentation and engagement enhance customer satisfaction, thus improving conversion rates across all channels, including in-person. Moreover, brands can analyze the performance of their campaigns, extract valuable insights, and refine their strategies for optimal outcomes. By harnessing AI-enabled technologies, conversational channels like WhatsApp can engage customers meaningfully in a relevant fashion and optimize based on actionable insights to drive business growth.“We're thrilled about this integration that unlocks new opportunities for enterprises to connect with their customers via WhatsApp”, said Sandesh Sarang, MD - APAC & MEA, Kaleyra. “We strongly believe in the power of our combined teams to provide value to enterprises globally.”“Kaleyra’s supreme capabilities as a trusted CPaaS, combined with MoEngage’s AI-powered, insights-led engagement platform, will empower enterprises across industries and geographies to bridge the gap between themselves and their customers. A potent mix of communication channels, actionable insights, and optimization capabilities, not only opens up new avenues in terms of business growth but also creates a host of brand loyalists, impressed by the level of personalized engagement across channels” said Sanjay Kupae, Head Alliances and Partnerships, MoEngage.

Saudi Arabia’s AI economy goals key focus for Oracle at LEAP 2024

Latest cloud innovation that is geared to help Saudi Arabia accelerate its Artificial Intelligence (AI) powered economy will be on display at Oracle’s state of the art exhibit at LEAP 2024. Oracle will this year present a comprehensive portfolio of AI solutions including state of the art cloud applications on a best-in-class AI cloud infrastructure and state-of-the-art generative AI innovations.“Over the last three decades, Oracle has significantly expanded presence in Saudi Arabia to help the Kingdom emerge as a digital economy leader. Our US $1.5 billion investment in Saudi Arabia will play a vital role in expanding local cloud capacity, which will act as the foundation for local organisations to unlock the full potential of latest digital technologies like Artificial Intelligence”, said Reham AlMusa, vice president – Business Applications, and Saudi Arabia Country Leader, Oracle. “AI is seeing incredible adoption in the Kingdom, as businesses look to innovate and grow. PwC estimates that Artificial intelligence is set to contribute $135 billion to the Saudi economy in 2030, making the Kingdom the biggest beneficiary of the technology in the Middle East. Oracle is well positioned to help Saudi organisations leverage this AI opportunity, and LEAP 2024 will be an opportunity for us to demonstrate how our latest AI innovation can help address the most complex business challenges across diverse industries and help drive growth.”Oracle’s presence at LEAP 2024 is headlined with the popular Oracle Red Bull Racing experience. Visitors can once again experience what it’s like to be at the wheels of the championship winning Formula 1 car and learn about the role Oracle Cloud powered real time data plays in helping Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez win.Specially designed AI focused interactive pods across finance, healthcare, human resources, customer experience and many more functions, and Generative AI demo stations operated by Oracle’s AI experts will also be a key feature of Oracle’s presence at LEAP 2024.Oracle will also explain why the likes of J-B, stc, NEOM, TONOMUS, Saudi Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Saudi Tourism Development Fund, Agricultural Development Fund and many more Saudi public and private sector organisations have chosen Oracle Cloud solutions for driving major business transformations.Saudi nationals visiting LEAP can also learn more about the ‘Mostaqbali’ (My Future) initiative that focuses on providing technical training to Saudi youth to equip them for the most in-demand technology-powered jobs of the future. Introduced and deployed in collaboration with Future Work and supervised by Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Human Resources and Social Development, the new program will train and certify 50,000 Saudi nationals in the latest cloud-powered digital technologies, including Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, and the Internet of Things (IoT) by 2027.Oracle has announced plans to open a third public cloud region in Saudi Arabia. Located in Riyadh, the new cloud region will be part of a planned US $1.5 billion investment from Oracle to expand cloud infrastructure capabilities in the Kingdom. The Oracle Cloud Riyadh Region will join the existing Oracle Cloud Jeddah Region and the planned Oracle Cloud Region in the futuristic city of NEOM.

BeIN Sports Hits Record 707.3 Million Viewers for AFC Asian Cup Qatar 2023

beIN SPORTS, the leading sports broadcaster in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), revealed a record-breaking cumulative viewership of 707.3 million for the AFC Asian Cup Qatar 2023™, with the final between Jordan and Qatar alone captivating 69 million fans across the region—making it the most-watched match of the tournament.The unprecedented competition unfolded over four weeks across nine state-of-the-art stadiums, with Lusail hosting the electrifying final that saw Qatar clinch their second consecutive title in a 3-1 victory over Jordan. This year’s fervour was not just confined to the final with the semi-finals, featuring equally nail-biting encounters between Jordan and South Korea, and Iran and Qatar, amassing over one hundred million cumulative views between them. The match between Saudi Arabia and South Korea also stood out, drawing a remarkable viewership of over 39 million and highlighting the competitive spirit and passionate fanbase that characterised the entire tournament.The overall viewership across beIN’s coverage area across MENA for all matches is a 120% increase compared with beIN’s broadcast of the AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019™. Average viewership per match throughout the AFC Asian Cup Qatar 2023™ also saw a significant rise reaching 15.8 million, compared to that of 7 million for 2019’s coverage.Mohammed Al-Bader, Managing Director of beIN’s MENA Channels, reflected on the success, remarking: “We are immensely proud to have brought the AFC Asian Cup Qatar 2023™ to millions of viewers across MENA. This event has risen above the game of football—becoming a true celebration of cultural diversity, athletic excellence, and the unbreakable spirit of competition. We look forward to continuing to offer our viewers the best of world sports, capturing and sharing every thrilling moment as it happens with our loyal fans.”beIN SPORTS broadcast all the tournament’s 51 matches across 21 countries in MENA in both Arabic and English, with over 16-hours live daily coverage across four channels, including three dedicated beIN ASIAN CUP channels. Led by more than 30 leading regional and international commentators, analysts, and presenters, as well as 17 on-the-ground reporters, coverage included pre- and post-match studio analysis, team training sessions and base camps, match press conferences, breaking news, and fan reactions.

Saudi retail lags in digitization despite tech-savvy consumers

Saudi Arabia's retail sector is failing to keep pace with its digitally advanced consumers, according to a new study by Kearney and Snapchat. While internet penetration and mobile usage are skyrocketing, retailers are largely stuck in traditional methods, leading to a disconnect between customer expectations and the shopping experience.Saudi consumers are highly connected and digitally savvy, actively using social media and online platforms for product discovery and purchase. Despite this, only 27% of consumers perceive retail as technologically advanced, lagging behind government services, telecom, and even other retail sectors.Key findings:Hybrid shopping preferred: 46% of consumers favor a hybrid approach, integrating online and in-store experiences, while 38% prefer online shopping exclusively.Digital gap hinders sales: Traditional media and ineffective use of data limit retailers' ability to reach and engage consumers efficiently.Limited post-purchase engagement: While retailers recognize the importance of post-purchase, their efforts are basic, missing opportunities to build customer loyalty.Reasons for the lag:Underinvestment in digital: Retailers are still allocating budgets to traditional media, neglecting newer channels and technologies.Lack of digital skills: Limited expertise in areas like data analytics, online marketing, and e-commerce is hampering progress.Data challenges: Difficulty sharing data between retailers and manufacturers, coupled with global privacy regulations, create obstacles.Opportunities:Embrace digital advertising: Shift investments towards online channels, focusing on performance-based strategies and personalization.Enhance e-commerce: Develop omnichannel experiences, including virtual product visualization, AI-powered recommendations, and seamless checkout.Improve in-store experience: Utilize self-checkout, mobile shopping assistants, and AR/VR tools to elevate customer engagement.Optimize supply chain: Leverage real-time visibility, advanced analytics, and automation to improve efficiency and fulfillment.Build customer loyalty: Utilize post-purchase data to personalize communication, offer relevant promotions, and create a seamless journey.

BPG CEO Avi Bhojani on AI impact, customer experience, ME expansion

In today's video Interaction on Adgully Middle East, we welcome Avi Bhojani, the CEO of BPG Group. With over 40 years of experience in the Middle East industry, particularly in marketing services and media, Bhojani brings a wealth of knowledge about the region's dynamics and opportunities. Since assuming the role of CEO in 1991, he has demonstrated strong leadership and strategic vision, guiding the organisation through various transformations and expansions.During his conversation with Adgully, Bhojani delved into the significant impact of AI on marketing services, recognizing its potential to enhance efficiency and effectiveness while emphasizing the enduring importance of creativity in the industry. He discussed the transition of marketing services to a customer experience-focused function, with technology and digital channels playing a pivotal role in driving growth. Despite the transformative power of AI, Bhojani emphasized the ongoing need for human innovation in the industry.Bhojani also highlighted BPG's 3.0 initiative, which aims to enhance customer experience strategies across multiple markets by prioritizing innovation and client relationships. His emphasis on the role of culture in organisational success reflects a holistic approach to leadership, recognising the importance of collective efforts and values within BPG.The expansion plans into Saudi Arabia demonstrate BPG's strategic ambitions and readiness to capitalize on emerging opportunities in the region. Leveraging its expertise and operational capabilities, BPG aims to deliver high-quality customer experiences in Saudi Arabia, tapping into the country's potential for disruption and growth.For more insights from this industry veteran, watch the video.<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>

Property Finder launches ‘We Opens Doors’ campaign

Property Finder, the leading property portal in the MENA region, has announced the launch of its latest campaign ‘We Open Doors’, recognizing community living as a key driver for property seekers in the UAE. Going beyond conventional ‘home-first’ search styles, ‘We Open Doors’ highlights the growing influence of lifestyles on real estate growth. With recent data indicating a rise in ownership, off-plan investments and foreign interest, ‘We Open Doors’ reveals a new emerging aspect within the nation’s booming property market. Where property seekers can closely explore where they belong and celebrate the nation’s evolving and growing vibrant communities and melting pot of cultures.  Tapping into evolving needs of consumers, ‘We Open Doors’ is inspired by groundbreaking consumer research conducted by Property Finder on common search behavior. According to the recent qualitative study,most consumers are seeking communities that are in line with their desired lifestyles. The study reveals findings related to consumer search journeys when looking to buy, rent or invest in properties across Dubai and Abu Dhabi. It also revealed the contribution of property portals within the UAE’s fast evolving real estate landscape.  Based on the study, quality of life is one of the most highlighted factors strongly inspiring buying decisions in the UAE. Residents in Dubai and Abu Dhabi are most attracted by the country’s high security levels, developed facilities, convenient and accessible services. The UAE is considered a place for good job opportunities with diverse lifestyles for all kinds of property seekers. Peace of mind, comfort, convenience and security are the main drivers of home buying and renting. There is a clear link between lifestyle choices and what a community offers in terms of that lifestyle.  Another key finding of the research reveals that due to the complexity of decision making, most respondents describe home search to be overwhelming and hectic. This is where portals come to picture. Platforms like Property Finder provide an immersive property search journey, powered by 360 degree tools and features like Data Guru for a deeper understanding of their communities, beyond listing specific data. Ultimately, opening doors to the lifestyles they desire and deserve.  “At Property Finder, we are committed to playing our role in prioritizing the needs of homeseeker in order to drive success that aligns with the nation’s wider ambitions. When I started Property Finder, I personally witnessed first hand how evolving and emerging communities helped UAE to push boundaries in terms of new lifestyle and ignite the growth of real estate. The UAE is witnessing one of its biggest and boldest transformations in its history. There has never been a better time to celebrate our vibrant communities, continue to attract foreign investors, and shift mindsets from locations to lifestyles. I can proudly say that communities are part of our founding DNA. Our platform is designed in a way to allow our users to discover and understand different communities thanks to tools such as `Data Guru`. ” said Michael Lahyani, Founder, Property Finder.  “Buying or renting a home is one of the most important decisions of a person's life. As a brand and platform, we understand the complexity and importance of the decision. Our research clearly shows that people don’t just pick homes, they pick lifestyles. Communities give us a sense of identity and belonging. With this campaign, we are aiming to create a meaningful conversation about the amazing communities of UAE to create greater trust and transparency in real estate,” commented Sevgi Gur, Chief Marketing Officer, Property Finder.

Al-Futtaim Automotive launches first podcast series ‘Let’s Talk Mobility’

Al-Futtaim Automotive has launched a new podcast series that celebrates the inspirational journeys of trailblazers driving positive change.The first season of the podcast series called ‘Let’s Talk Mobility’ will feature 12 episodes. The first five episodes were recorded at the recently held COP28 in Dubai, where Al-Futtaim Group played a key role as Strategic E-Mobility Partner of the event.The automotive industry worldwide is facing an unprecedented transformation, primarily steered by the growing calls for emission-free transportation and a rising demand for electric and hybrid vehicles. Now more than ever automotive stakeholders, customers and policymakers are demanding answers, action and clear strategies that will contribute towards a net-zero future. The podcast series aims to dig deep into the remarkable sustainability transitions that global leaders are orchestrating in their respective sector, from automotive to commercial transportation to retail.The series is hosted by Mousub Shashaa, Founder and CEO of ArabGT, with the first five episodes featuring a stellar line-up of industry trailblazers and sustainability pioneers, including:   Thomas Ingenlath, CEO, Polestar  Karin Svensson, Chief Sustainability Officer, Volvo Group  Fredrika Klarén, Head of Sustainability, Polestar  Anders Kärrberg, Head of Sustainability, Volvo Cars & Jonas Otterheim, Head of Climate Action, Volvo Cars  Aravind Mani, Co-Founder & CEO, RiverKatib Belkhodja, Director of Customer Centricity, Al-Futtaim Automotive, said: “As an industry stakeholder and a market leader, we have a primary responsibility of facilitating vital discussions and elevate the customer understanding on crucial topics that impact not only the daily commute but also the future of our planet. 2/3rd of Google UAE searches on EVs are not brand specific, showing that people still have many unanswered questions on electric mobility and there is a real need for more learnings and insights on this topic. Our podcast series aims to address this need through discussions with leading experts and trailblazers. We chose to partner with Mousub Shasaa, a known personality and a leading voice in this category with great reach across audiences within the region.”The first episode is available to listen and watch on Spotify (@al-futtaim-automotive) and YouTube (@alfuttaimautogroup).

‘The Cloud' secures $12mln in Series B funding

The Cloud, a Hub71 food tech startup, has announced the successful first close of its $12 million Series B funding round out of a total $30 million it is raising. The funding round saw participation from a new investor, MENA Moonshots, showcasing confidence in The Cloud's mission to innovate and expand.This milestone, coupled with debt financing from Aluna Partners, and the strategic acquisition of the UK-based food tech startup KBOX, marks a significant stride for The Cloud, founded by Georges Karam, towards redefining the virtual dining landscape in the UAE, the wider GCC region, and Europe.In a move to solidify its position as a homegrown UAE-based startup making significant inroads on the global stage, The Cloud's acquisition of KBOX strategically expands its footprint by 200 locations in the UK. This move underlines the company's commitment to driving innovation and asserting leadership in the food tech sector, setting the stage for expansion across the UK and other GCC and European markets such as Saudi Arabia, Lithuania, Belgium, and Netherlands.The Series B funding, a balanced mix of equity and debt, is a testament to The Cloud's robust business model and its vision. Having initially raised $10 million in the Series A funding, this round brings The Cloud’s total funds raised to $22 million, which highlights the company's capacity to attract strategic partners like MENA Moonshots. The investments extend beyond capital, providing invaluable expertise and access to networks as The Cloud ambitiously eyes new markets and innovative dining solutions.Georges Karam, CEO of The Cloud, shared his enthusiasm for the new developments, stating: “Our Series B funding and the KBOX acquisition reinforce our position as innovators in the global food tech landscape. Having raised a total of $22 million, we are now focused on enhancing our market presence in the UAE and beyond. Our in-house developed technology and proactive acquisition strategy reflect our vision for industry consolidation and our commitment to scaling strong homegrown brands internationally. Looking forward, we continue to actively eye more strategic acquisitions while also seeking to raise further capital.”Stefano Sciacca, Managing Director at Aluna Partners, said, “The online food delivery market is a mega trend that is here to stay. We believe that The Cloud will gain significant market share in the UK market through the acquisition of KBOX. Having looked at many food tech business models, we believe The Cloud is emerging as a global market leader and are excited to support such a fast-growing venture.”The additional capital from the Series B funding will be instrumental in accelerating growth, with a significant portion earmarked for international expansion, enhancing operational capabilities, and further developing The Cloud's proprietary technology platform.With a presence in 7 countries and 91 cities, and ambitions to reach 8,000 locations by the end of 2027, The Cloud is on track for a dual listing in Abu Dhabi and Riyadh, marking a new era of growth for the virtual chain in the EMEA region. As the company advances on this growth trajectory, it remains committed to its mission of transforming the global dining experience, empowering restaurateurs, and setting new benchmarks for quality and innovation in the food tech industry.

GameCentric Receives $1.5M Investment to Boost MENA Gamin

GameCentric the region's newest gaming platform at the forefront of connecting brands with gamers has raised USD 1.5 Million (AED 6 Million) in capital from a Dubai-based Angel Investor, Bilal Merchant. The platform went live on December 1st 2023, right after the funding round.  This strategic capital injection, positions GameCentric to enhance its platform features to extend its footprint beyond the GCC & MENA region, and redefine the gaming experience for players everywhere. Strategic Vision and Meticulous Execution Lead to Angel InvestmentThe opportunity for angel investment arose from GameCentric's clear and compelling vision, executed with precision. Founded by the savvy entrepreneur Saad Khan, a veteran in the gaming industry with a shared passion to transform the industry, GameCentric embarked on its journey in 2023. Saad Khan, CEO of GameCentric, stated, "Crafting a robust vision for our platform, supported by a sound business model and a seasoned management team, resonated with the angel investor, like Bilal Merchant who recognized the immense potential within GameCentric, which drove his decision to invest. Our aspiration is not just to be a gaming platform but a cultural phenomenon transcending borders. Collaboration with industry leaders, community-driven programs and an unwavering commitment to have the best user experience drives all of our future initiatives." Evolution into a WEB3 platform In line with its vision, GameCentric is set to integrate cutting-edge technologies to remain competitive but also create new compelling propositions for brands, game publishers and gamers. In the coming years, GameCentric will transition to be a web3 digitally native platform & bring in digital assets play including cryptocurrencies by 2025. These milestones represent GameCentric's commitment to forging a unique identity in the gaming industry, providing consumers with distinct and unparalleled experiences.  A 3X growth trajectoryAs part of its launch strategy and to deliver an exceptional gaming experience, GameCentric has partnered with POWReSports, renowned for its role in brand activations and influencer management campaigns in KSA to give a boost to its gamer acquisition strategy. This collaboration will help solidify the expansion of GameCentrics’ ecosystem offering across the regional gaming landscape.  The business is currently gearing up for an aggressive growth and market expansion plan over the next two years. During this period, GameCentric aims to triple its user base across the region, with the MENA region projected to touch 88 Million gamers by 2026; and more than double its array of game titles, encompassing both web2 and web3 genres. This initiative not only offers an expanded gaming experience for users but also creates a diverse spectrum of opportunities for brands to pioneer innovative customer engagement tactics.  This initiative is poised to strengthen GameCentric's market position, solidifying the company as a dominant force in the ever-evolving landscapes of gaming and customer loyalty. Stakeholders can expect a compelling value proposition as GameCentric navigates through this thrilling phase of expansion, unlocking unparalleled opportunities for both gamers and collaborating brands. Bilal Merchant, an experienced businessman/investor with a demonstrated history of working in the oil and energy industry, stated “GameCentric’s visionary strategy in seamlessly connecting brands with gamers, coupled with their unwavering commitment to integrating cutting-edge technologies such as crypto and Web3, has left an indelible impression on me. Their innovative approach positions them as disruptors in the gaming landscape, poised to create a distinctive and rewarding experience for players worldwide.”Supporting their big moves, GameCentric has garnered support from industry heavyweights such as LIV, UAE’s first & largest digital bank powered by Emirates NBD. As part of their new brand identity aimed at targeting Generation Now, LIV has recognized the platform's potential to deliver on their banking & financial education objectives through the art of gaming. These endorsements underscore the credibility and innovation that GameCentric brings to the gaming community across the region. The platform is gearing up for strategic enhancements in line with their vision to integrate modern technology. The enhancements will be overseen by expert crypto advisors, with a focus on innovation. The new features will include a dynamic loyalty program centered on a Web3 wallet and GameCentric tokens, aimed at delivering enhanced user value.  GameCentric aims to be a platform where gamers can earn, learn, and engage as part of a diverse global community. As the platform evolves into a Web3 environment, users will have the opportunity to become token owners, marking a significant shift in the gaming experience.Future plans and expansions This strategic angel investment acts as a catalyst for GameCentric's ambitious growth strategy, facilitating future fundraising rounds and establishing the platform as a dominant force in the global gaming scene.  In the near future initiatives will include collaborations with renowned game publishers and the development of community-driven programs to strengthen engagement on the platform. In addition, GameCentric is also focussed on building a strong B2B2C brand engagement play thereby getting brands to create a differentiated customer offering & hence more opportunities for customer engagement that will foster long-term brand loyalty.

Abu Dhabi International Airport renamed Zayed International Airport

His Excellency Sheikh Mohammed bin Hamad bin Tahnoon Al Nahyan, Advisor of Special Affairs at the Presidential Court and Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Airports' Board of Directors, has attended a ceremony to rename Abu Dhabi International Airport as Zayed International Airport, in honour of the UAE’s Founding Father, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan. Paying tribute to Sheikh Zayed’s remarkable legacy and history of accomplishments in introducing the UAE to the world, the new brand encompasses the richness of Emirati culture and Arabian heritage. Designed to provide an innovative and seamless airport experience, the renamed airport meets the highest standards of quality and traveller expectations.His Excellency Sheikh Mohammed bin Hamad bin Tahnoon Al Nahyan said: “We are immensely proud to rename Abu Dhabi’s largest airport in honour of the Founding Father of the UAE. The unsurpassed achievements of the late Sheikh Zayed in connecting our country to nations around the world have inspired our commitment to ensuring that Abu Dhabi further strengthens its position as a world-leading hub for travel, trade, and commerce.I would like to thank His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed for entrusting us with carrying forward the name of the Founding Father, helping to commemorate his unforgettable legacy that impacts us to this day, and will continue to inspire future generations. Opening its gates to the world, Zayed International Airport ushers in a new era for Abu Dhabi’s aviation sector. The airport’s state-of-the-art infrastructure delivers exceptional connectivity, innovation and sustainability for an elevated guest experience while propelling regional tourism, trade, and commerce to new heights.”Abu Dhabi Airports hosted the unveiling of the new name, Zayed International Airport, at an event attended by key stakeholders, including staff and partners. A number of activities for passengers travelling through the airport are also taking place throughout the weekend, including live performances by international artists, digital showcases, personalised travel giveaways and offers and promotions from partners.Elena Sorlini, Managing Director, and Chief Executive Officer at Abu Dhabi Airports said:“Zayed International Airport is a gateway through which we share Abu Dhabi and its heritage with the world, welcoming travellers by articulating the values of connectivity, innovation and sustainability. Thanks to the hard work and dedication of our employees, partners and everyone elseinvolved, 2023 has been an overwhelmingly positive year for Abu Dhabi Airports. I am particularly proud that since its opening, Terminal A‘s operations have been very successful. Passengers are given an authentic, inclusive, and seamless traveler experience rooted in the Emirati heritage of hospitality and powered by state-of-the-art technology. We are excited for what lies ahead for Zayed International Airport as it embarks on the next chapter of its journey under the cherished name of the Founding Father of the nation.” The new brand identity unveiled today as part of the renaming celebrates the emirate of Abu Dhabi through shape and forms inspired by its landscape and history, as well as by the design of the airport itself. A traditional dhow boat, a date palm tree, the desert sun, the Qasr Al Hosn Fort, and Terminal A – the iconic new terminal building – served as creative sources for the new logo, showcasing Abu Dhabi’s unique identity while inviting travellers to write their own story. The launch of Zayed International Airport’s new brand has been accompanied by video highlights of over 1,750 drones coming together in an air display to form the airport’s new logo. With Terminal A, Zayed International Airport features one of the world’s largest terminals, capable of welcoming up to 45 million passengers per year and marking a new era for transport and aviation infrastructure in Abu Dhabi and the UAE. During the first 60 days after Terminal A became fully operational, Zayed International Airport welcomed 4.48 million passengers, with 1.21 million arrivals, 1.22 million departures, two million transfers and more than 24,000 flights. Zayed International Airport served 117 travel destinations in December 2023, an increase of 20% from 100 cities in 2022, due to a rapidly growing airline network of 28 international carriers. With world-leading facilities, including biometric technology to streamline the screening and boarding process, 35,000 square metres of retail and F&B space, and 163 outlets for passengers to shop, dine and enjoy, Terminal A places passenger experience at the heart of operations at Zayed International Airport. Since the terminal’s opening in November 2023, numerous operational milestones were achieved, including delivery of an enhanced level of service for travellers and the attraction of a growing roster of international airlines.  Overall, Abu Dhabi Airports’ passenger traffic results for 2023 show a significant increase in passenger demand. A total of 22,935,316 passengers flew through one of Abu Dhabi's five commercial airports over the period of 1 January to 31 December, marking a 44.5% increase in demand compared to 2022. The year also saw growth in other critical business areas, including Air Traffic Movements (ATMs) across the five airports. The total number of ATMs, referring to the landing or taking-off of an aircraft, reached 226,362, surpassing the 2022 figure of 194,666 and reflecting a 16.3% increase year-on-year. In 2024 and beyond, Abu Dhabi Airports expects further growth in passenger and cargo traffic, with Zayed International Airport’s enhanced aviation offering central to this positive outlook.

The largest edition of Gulfood kicks off today at Dubai World Trade Centre

The largest ever edition of Gulfood, the benchmark event for the global F&B community kicks off today (19 February), at Dubai World Trade Centre, opening its doors to 150,000 attendees from 190 countries. With an estimated USD 12 billion in international trade deals on the table, an exhibition floor spanning 24 event halls packed with displays of cutting-edge products, solutions by a record 5,500+ exhibitors, and interactive features including Top Table and Dubai World Cuisine which will convene over 100 renowned international chefs with 25 Michelin stars between them, expectations are very high for this year’s edition of the world’s largest annual food and beverage sourcing event, which looks set to have a lasting influence on the F&B industry.Attendees will also hear insights from senior policymakers and global industry experts at the Inspire conference, including H.E. Dr. Amna bint Abdullah Al Dahak Al Shamsi, UAE Minister of Climate Change and Environment, who will give the opening keynote address on the first day of the conference. Her Excellency will give her perspectives and vision for the UAE at a time when climate change, geopolitics, and emerging technology are all converging to disrupt global food systems and economies.“At a pivotal moment, the world’s largest F&B event will be the only place to get out ahead of how the global food community, from industry leaders and policy makers to innovators and chefs, are responding. We look forward to welcoming the F&B world as we inspire the future food economy,” commented Trixie LohMirmand, Executive Vice-President, Dubai World Trade Centre.As Gulfood approaches its milestone 30th anniversary in 2025, the global food and beverage (F&B) industry is looking more than ever to a multifaceted future, characterised by greater digitalisation and technological innovation to drive efficiency and cut costs, more circular food systems to reduce food loss and waste, and an ever-greater focus on safety, security and transparency down the supply chain."As Truebell embraces 40 years of excellence, Gulfood stands as our premier stage for global networking, connecting with our partners across 80 countries. We anticipate a robust upswing, positioning Truebell at the forefront of meeting heightened demand for premium produce in the years ahead", commented Bhushant Ghandi, COO of Truebell.At this year’s Gulfood Inspire Conference, over 200 influential figures from the global F&B industry, including food futurists, policymakers, industry leaders, entrepreneurs, and culinary experts will lead a series of dynamic and engaging keynotes, panel discussions, fireside chats, showcases and workshops. A highlight of this year’s Gulfood Inspire Conference, for the first time over 60 leading global food futurists will convene to give invaluable insights into the trends in technology (e.g. personal AI), culture, demographics, lifestyle and flavours that are shaping the future of food. Food futurists slated to speak include: Daniel Levine, Director – Avant Guide Institute; Tom Cheesewright, Applied Futurist; Tony Hunter, Founder - Food Futurist: Future of Food Consulting; and Dr. Morgaine Gaye, Food Futurologist.The future of food systems is a theme that will carry through the Inspire conference, including: how the industry is adapting to emerging consumer trends and lifestyles, evolving science including how generative AI and blockchain can improve food security and the development of novel foods, the benefits of digitisation in R&D, food testing and formulation, new genomic techniques and bio-solutions, implementing sustainable practices in farming; building regenerative/circular food systems; new business models and collaboration opportunities, including public-private and farm-to-table partnerships; how innovative tech such as Big Data can be leveraged by the food industry and regulators, enabling real-time monitoring and better traceability; building resilience and sustainability in the supply chain to mitigate the impact of climate change, economic inequality and conflict; preventing food waste and increasing food packaging recycling; the latest innovative products and ingredients; and many more.Confirmed keynote speakers across the three-day conference include: Ibrokhim Yu. Abdurakhmonov, Minister of Agriculture of the Republic of Uzbekistan; H.E. Laila Mostafa Abdullatif, Director General, Emirates Nature-WWF; His Excellency Mohammad Ali Rashed Lootah, President & CEO, Dubai Chambers; H.E. Alia Abdulla AlMazrouei, CEO of the Khalifa Fund; H.E. Dr. Obaid Saif Hamad Al Zaabi, President of The Arab Authority for Agricultural Investment and Development (AAAID). Other prominent speakers include: Sheikh Mohammed Al Harthy, CEO of Oman Food Investment Holding Co (SAOC), Abdulla Al Hashmi, Chief Operating Officer, Parks and Zones, DP World GCC; Abdulmohsen Salem H Alsalem, Director of Strategic Studies and Innovation The Saudi Authority for Industrial Cities and Technology Zones, MODON, and many more.DUBAI WORLD CUISINE AND TOP TABLE RETURNFollowing last year’s successful debut, the Dubai World Cuisine movement is back, with a series of city-wide dinner and masterclass collaborations between Dubai-based chefs and renowned names from Europe, shaping the cultural identity of Dubai and helping establish it on the world’s culinary map.The initiative will see a series of 4- and 6-hands Michelin star dinners linked to the Top Table masterclasses, which will be cooked by a Dubai World Cuisine chef and an international Michelin-starred chef.

Coach unveils 'Find Your Courage'

Coach, a global fashion house founded in New York in 194, has launched its latest campaign, titled 'Find Your Courage,' which introduces a virtual universe featuring model and digital creator Imma alongside Coach ambassadors Lil Nas X, Camila Mendes, Youngji Lee, K?ki, and Wu Jinyan. This campaign, set against a virtual landscape, serves as a platform to showcase Coach's Spring collection while narrating a story centered around discovering authenticity in one's own unique way. With its theme rooted in 'The Courage to Be Real,' Coach aims to encourage individuals, particularly youth, to embrace their diverse identities, blurring the lines between physical and virtual realms to reflect the evolving concept of authenticity.The campaign unfolds in multiple chapters, with Lil Nas X taking the lead in the initial segment. Subsequent chapters, set for release in March, April, and May, will feature encounters with other Coach ambassadors. Stuart Vevers, the Creative Director, expresses his inspiration for the collection, stating a desire to explore American style archetypes and Coach's legacy through the lens of today's generation. He emphasizes the theme of 'Find Your Courage' as encapsulating the essence of the collection, where heritage serves as a springboard for new avenues of self-expression.Directed by Vallée Duhamel and photographed by Charlie Engman, 'Find Your Courage' utilizes CGI to bring the virtual world to life, enhancing the campaign's immersive experience. Sandeep Seth, Coach's Global Chief Marketing Officer and North America president, explains that the campaign aims to inspire consumers to embrace all possibilities of self-expression despite life's pressures and expectations. Imma, chosen as the campaign's ambassador, symbolizes the challenge to conventional notions of reality. Her journey in the campaign encapsulates a narrative that explores new dimensions of self-expression, pushing boundaries and inspiring viewers along the way.<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>

MERED Opens Official HQ in Dubai Internet City

MERED, an award-winning international real estate developer, has created a visionary space for its headquarters in Dubai, with an immersive atmosphere that seamlessly marries luxury with forward-thinking design. The office showcases how the brand is set to redefine the essence of real estate development in the most captivating way.Located in the heart of Dubai Internet City, the headquarters boasts a design concept that masterfully blends the natural world with the sophistication of Italian craftsmanship, courtesy of Pininfarina. Known as the global standard-bearer of architecture and Italian design since 1930, Pininfarina began its journey over 90 years ago in the automotive sector, collaborating with some of the world’s most iconic car brands. Since then, the Pininfarina brand has evolved into a sought-after architecture and lifestyle design house. It is globally recognized for its exceptional ability to create timeless works that seamlessly embody the values of Technology and Beauty, making a significant Impact.Pininfarina’s influence is evident in every facet of MERED’s office, with each element reflecting its values of purity, elegance, and innovation. These elements blend seamlessly with MERED’s dedication to delivering fresh, superior experiences to all. Dubai's unique blend of innovation, global connectivity, and visionary ambition provides the perfect backdrop for reputed international real estate developers like MERED to create iconic, future-proof destinations.The sales area radiates sophistication and elegance in every detail. From the sculptural counter to the use of natural and artificial lighting that gracefully guides visitors through the space, each feature is meticulously chosen. The lobby, divided by stylish bronze glass partitions, creates a seamless connection with the behind-the-scenes sales area. This harmony is further enhanced by the continuous and dynamic surfaces of the floor and ceiling, which guide visitors through the office, directing their attention to various aspects of the space. Private negotiation rooms and a show flat offer a real-life experience for potential buyers and investors.MERED’s main office area, situated on the same floor and designed in a unique ‘U’ shape, showcases mood boards in classic shades of blue, grey, and brown, featuring a variety of materials such as wood, glass, metal, and leather. Designated areas for various departments, along with glass-enclosed meeting rooms and offices, reflect the brand’s core values of functionality and transparency. The office evokes a sense of home—a warmth that envelops anyone who steps inside, mirroring MERED's commitment to creating spaces that are both extraordinary and welcoming for customers and employees alike.MERED is a collective of world-class industry experts, artisans, and accomplished craftsmen with extensive experience in shaping cities and enhancing people’s lives. Supported by its robust tech infrastructure, cutting-edge management systems, and adherence to the highest building standards, the company is positioned as a benchmark for quality construction and management.MERED has recently announced the launch of its flagship project, “ICONIC Tower”, in Dubai Internet City. This project shapes the future of Dubai's skyline and is a true embodiment of their mission, "Beauty in Harmony... Timeless Value”. Through a strategic partnership with Pininfarina, the tower is set to become the tallest in the area, representing a seamless fusion of MERED's innovative approach to real estate and Pininfarina's renowned design philosophy. A model of the tower will be displayed in the lobby of the sales area. MERED HQ in Dubai transcends the conventional definition of a workplace with a visionary design reflecting MERED’s commitment to excellence. It's a place where innovation and elegance converge—a space where dreams are nurtured, and where the future of real estate development takes tangible form.

DXB smashes targets with 87 million guests in 2023, rising 31.7% from 2022

Dubai International (DXB) has concluded a record-breaking year of achievements and extraordinary growth by welcoming 87 million guests in annual traffic in 2023, surpassing not only Dubai Airports' own yearly forecast but also pre-pandemic levels of traffic. This remarkable performance marks the successful and ahead-of-time completion of DXB’s recovery journey, further solidifying its position as the world's leading airport for international passenger traffic.His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai said: “DXB's spectacular performance in 2023 is a resounding testament to the visionary leadership and determination of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to achieve growth and excellence across sectors, surmounting all challenges along the way. This exceptional performance underscores Dubai's emergence as the world’s most popular tourism destination and its pivotal role in global commerce and trade, facilitated by the unmatched connectivity, aviation capacity and logistics infrastructure that has been built steadily over the years under His Highness’s leadership.”“Dubai is setting new benchmarks in passenger experience with excellence levels and innovative technologies that constantly redefine airport services. Consistent with the goal of the Dubai Economic Agenda D33 to consolidate Dubai’s status as one of the world’s top three cities for tourism and business over the next decade, the city continues to grow rapidly as a global aviation hub and the world’s preferred gateway for international travelers. As we celebrate these accomplishments, we remain committed to further enhancing Dubai's leading position on the global stage.”His Highness noted that Dubai Airports, led by His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, President of Dubai Civil Aviation Authority, Chairman of Dubai Airports, and Chairman and Chief Executive of Emirates Airline and Group, has introduced strategic initiatives and made vital investments in infrastructure, technology, and customer service to place Dubai at the forefront of global aviation growth.Paul Griffiths, CEO of Dubai Airports said, "I am incredibly proud of everyone at Dubai International, for their dedication and relentless pursuit of excellence, which has propelled us to break many of our own records. 2023 was an exceptional year and is a testament to our unwavering commitment to innovation, efficiency and delivering exemplary guest experience.This translated to DXB achieving its highest internal engagement scores – a reflection of our commitment to fostering a collaborative culture, where every contribution is valued and every employee is empowered to their full potential. I want to express my gratitude to our dedicated team, the heartbeat of our organisation, and to our partners whose, collaborative work was instrumental in achieving these milestones. “Looking ahead, we're renewing our commitment to collectively enhance the airport experience for our all our guests by launching a significant project to expand and refurbish facilities at DXB, to fortify our infrastructure for future growth. DXB remains firmly positioned as a global leader, setting the gold standard for exceptional guest experiences and international aviation excellence.”Traffic figures  In 2023, DXB witnessed a surge in guest numbers, reaching a total of 86,994,365, an impressive year-on-year increase of 31.7%. Just under a per cent higher than the guest numbers recorded in 2019 (86.4 million), the numbers were driven by robust growth in the second half of the year during which the airport recorded a total of 45.4 million guests. With 7.8 million guests, December was the busiest month in the fourth quarter during which the airport welcomed a total of 22.4 million guests, a year-on-year growth of 13.8% compared to Q4 of last year. Q3 remained the quarter with highest traffic since 2019 with 23 million guests while August, with 7.9 million guests, was the month with the highest traffic. As of the latest data for 2023, DXB is currently connected to 262 destinations across 104 countries through 102 international carriers.Operational excellence and guest experience  DXB processed an impressive total of 77.5 million bags in 2023, making it the highest volume of bags managed during a calendar year at the airport. Despite 24.6% year-on-year increase in baggage volume, DXB maintained its unmatched success rate of 99.8%, with only 2.4 mishandled bags per 1,000 passengers.More than 95% of guests experienced less than seven minutes of waiting time at departure passport control while the average waiting time at security check on departures was less than four minutes for 97.5% of guests.In ACI World’s globally recognised Airport Service Quality (ASQ) programme, DXB scored 4.5, the highest result achieved by the airport to date, reflecting the hub’s commitment to continuously enhance guest satisfaction, business performance and airport service quality. Top country destinations India claimed the top spot among destination countries with traffic totalling 11.9 million guests, followed by KSA with 6.7 million guests and the UK with 5.9 million guests. Other country markets of note include Pakistan (4.2 million), the US (3.6 million), Russia (2.5 million), and Germany (2.5 million).Top destinationsLondon retained its position as the top destination with 3.7 million guests, followed by Riyadh with 2.6 million guests, Mumbai with 2.5 million guests. Cargo In 2023, DXB handled cargo totalling 1,805,898 tonnes, showing a slight decrease of 4.5% compared to the previous year. Cargo volumes registered a growth of 20.4% year-on-year in the fourth quarter to reach 506,018 tonnes.Flight MovementsThe double-digit increase in guest numbers during the year continued to reflect in flight movements at the hub which totalled 416,405 in 2023, the highest ever total movements recorded at DXB, and up 21.3% year-on-year.  OutlookInitial forecasts indicate that in 2024, DXB is anticipated to receive 88.8 million guests, putting the hub within striking distance of its previous all-time high record of 89.1 million guests set in 2018.è-for-saudi-expansion

BinSulaiman Group's OBS Partners with illy Caffè for Saudi Expansion

BinSulaiman Group – OBS, UAE-headquartered diversified business group, has announcesd a master franchisee agreement with illy Caffe Italy, a renowned global coffee brand, for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA). This strategic move is poised to redefine the coffee industry in KSA), blending illy Caffè’s rich heritage and premium coffee offerings with BinSulaiman Group - OBS’s visionary approach to business.As a conglomerate with diversified interests across key global markets including the Middle East, Africa, Europe, and North America, BinSulaiman Group - OBS has been recognized as the Fastest Growing Company of the year 2023. This accolade underscores the Group’s commitment to excellence and innovation across its operations.Building on the foundation of their successful collaboration in the UAE, BinSulaiman Group - OBS is dedicated to introducing the iconic illy Caffè brand to Saudi Arabia, promising an unparalleled coffee experience that marries tradition with innovation. The collaboration marks a confluence of shared values and aspirations, aimed at elevating the coffee experience for the discerning Saudi market.Dr Omar BinSulaiman, Founder and Chairman of BinSulaiman Group – OBS, shared his vision for the collaboration, saying: “Our partnership with illy Caffè Italy is a testament to our shared dedication to excellence and our passion for coffee. Leveraging our recent achievements in the UAE, we are eager to replicate this success in KSA. This partnership is a cornerstone of our strategy to introduce the unique illy Caffe experience to coffee aficionados in Saudi Arabia and beyond. We aim to cultivate a refined coffee culture that resonates with illy Caffè’s prestigious legacy and meets the sophisticated tastes of our Saudi customers.The partnership will kick off with the launch of multiple illy Caffè outlets across prime locations in KSA, designed as sanctuaries for coffee enthusiasts. These establishments will offer illy’s signature Italian coffee blends and a comprehensive range of illy products, complemented by a curated selection of premium foods and desserts, all set within an elegant and welcoming environment.Abdulla Bin Darwish, Group CEO of BinSulaiman Group – OBS, added: “This venture into KSA with illy Caffè is more than a business expansion. It is a deliberate move into a market known for its deep-rooted coffee culture and connoisseurship. Our goal is to create unforgettable experiences and moments of joy, drawing inspiration from illy Caffe’s Italian heritage while catering to the local market’s refined preferences.”This partnership marks a significant milestone in the coffee industry in KSA, promising to merge a new level of coffee craftsmanship and cultural sophistication in the region.

Abu Dhabi royal family invests in Indian fashion brand Beyoung

 Indian D2C fashion brand Beyoung has announced receiving a strategic investment from The Royal Office of Sheikh Tahnoon Bin Saeed Bin Tahnoon Al Nahyan. The Royal family has made significant investments in the global start-up ecosystem with sectors spanning across Real-estate, retail, genomics and deeptech.This strategic investment marks a pivotal moment in Beyoung’s trajectory, signalling not just an injection of financial support, but a testament to the startup’s global potential and enhancing its omnichannel presence worldwide with ambitious plans to launch over 300 stores globally in the next three years. "We recognize the immense potential within Beyoung, especially in its strategic focus on reaching tier II and tier III cities globally. The Strategic Investment in Beyoung aligns with our long-term vision of supporting the Indian apparel industry and fostering the creation of international brands. We believe in Beyoung's potential to not only excel in the domestic market but also emerge as a global fashion leader,” stated His Excellency Zulfiquar Ghadiyali, Executive Director - Private Office of Highness Sheikh Tahnoon Bin Saeed Bin Tahnoon Al Nahyan. In response, Young Founder & CEO of Beyoung, Shivam Soni, expressed gratitude for the strategic Investment and stated "Coming from a small town, we understand the importance of reaching out to diverse regions. Partnering with the Abu Dhabi royal family opens doors not only to the GCC & MENA regions but also paves the way for a global expansion strategy. This Investment is a substantial backing that will enable us to grow multifolds exponentially, reaching new heights on a domestic as well as international scale." Shivani Soni & Sakshi Soni, Co-founders of Beyoung, asserted in a statement: "We look forward to a future of innovation, expansion in offline stores, and continued success with the invaluable belief of the Abu Dhabi royal family.” Being active in the East African region Hussain Gheewala and Yatish Shrimali stated: “We are thrilled by this partnership as he has seen the great potential of the African market and its capabilities and are very keen to develop business there. This partnership will lead Beyoung to new heights globally, positioning it as a formidable contender in the global fashion industry.” With this strategic investment, Beyoung aims to strengthen its market position, drive innovation in the fashion industry and continue to deliver high-quality affordable clothing to its Beyoungsters. It serves as a testament to the Royal Office's unwavering confidence in Beyoung's visionary approach, poised to redefine the global apparel landscape.

BackLite Media expands its reach to Abu Dhabi with The Landmark Series

Backlite Media, the Dubai-based outdoor advertising company, has expanded The Landmark Series into Abu Dhabi. The Landmark Series in Abu Dhabi will feature a collection of "visually stunning" outdoor advertising structures strategically positioned in key, high-profile locations across the city. In line with this vision, the company has launched the award-winning Triple Crown in the heart of Abu Dhabi. With its impressive scale and strategic placements aimed at targeting Abu Dhabi’s high-net-worth individuals (HNWIs) and Emiratis, The Triple Crown is set to offer advertisers unparalleled visibility and exposure to a diverse audience.The company announced that the Landmark Series presents an exciting opportunity for businesses to engage with consumers in Abu Dhabi in a meaningful and impactful manner.“We are excited to introduce The Landmark Series to Abu Dhabi and expand our presence in the region,” remarked James Bicknell, CEO of BackLite Media. “With the city now recognised as a preferred hub for investments, business and real estate, Abu Dhabi provides the ideal backdrop for our innovative advertising structures. We are confident that The Landmark Series will enhance the city’s advertising landscape and offer premium brands a powerful platform to connect with elite audiences.”Through the integration of cutting-edge technology and creative design, The Landmark Series is poised to deliver unparalleled visibility and engagement for advertisers while enhancing the urban landscape of Abu Dhabi.

House of Uniforms opens latest showroom

Manama: House of Uniforms, the Kingdom's premier provider of high-quality uniforms and workwear solutions, opened its newest showroom in Tala Plaza. on Sunday, marking a significant milestone in the company's journey.The opening ceremony was attended by journalists, industry professionals, and distinguished guests. The event showcased House of Uniforms' longstanding commitment to excellence in craftsmanship and service across a wide range of industries in the Kingdom, including healthcare, hospitality, education and industrial, amongst others.In his welcome speech, Yacoob Yusuf Akbar, General Manager of House of Uniforms, emphasized the company's dedication to providing tailored solutions to meet the unique needs of businesses and professionals in various sectors. Yacoob Yusuf Akbar said: "We are very thrilled to unveil our new showroom here in Tala Plaza. Being a heritage company with nearly four decades of operation, we have a strongly rooted commitment to providing only the best uniforms to our customers throughout the Kingdom. We are constantly working on ways of innovating and expanding our offerings, whether they be for individuals or business, and this new showroom is a testament to that promise."“I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the esteemed guests for joining us on this very important day in the House of Uniforms’ journey. We look forward to providing both our existing and  new clientele with the highest levels of service and quality that we have come to be known for,” he added.

Dubai Holding leads MENA with innovative COP28 climate campaign

Dubai Holding, in collaboration with Magna MENA and Smartifai, has undertaken a pioneering initiative in the MENA region to address climate change and sustainability concerns through innovative advertising techniques. The primary goal was to effectively communicate Dubai Holding’s corporate message regarding COP28 and sustainability to the right audience, ensuring it was not only heard but also felt.Smartifai utilized advanced technology to analyze contextual signals and addressable contexts, identifying and engaging users interested in topics related to COP28, sustainability, and climate change.The campaign focused on targeting precise audiences in the open web ecosystem who were interested in climate change and COP28 topics, minimizing wastage and enhancing campaign efficiency.Various ad formats such as In-Screen and In-Image ads were employed to map users’ context and place them within relevant reading contexts, enhancing the resonance of the message.Smartifai collaborated with Adelaide, a global attention measurement partner, to gauge the level of attention individuals gave to the ad content, ensuring deep resonance with the target audience.The campaign achieved remarkable results, including a doubled display click-through rate (CTR) and a 50% increase in ad interaction rate compared to the benchmark. Additionally, it surpassed the global attention benchmark by 25%.Georges Oneissy from Magna MENA emphasized the innovative approach's success in transforming climate change topics into compelling narratives.Theodora Haddad from Dubai Holding highlighted the campaign's significant contribution to COP28 and sustainability, emphasizing the importance of strategy and approach in captivating audiences. Santadip Roy from Magna MENA highlighted the commitment to excellence and innovation in delivering impactful results for clients.The collaboration between Dubai Holding, Magna MENA, and Smartifai showcases a forward-thinking approach to addressing critical global issues through creative advertising strategies, aligning with Dubai Holding's commitment to sustainable practices and societal impact.

Starcom elevates Louise Peacocke to Chief Client Officer

Louise Peacocke has been promoted to the role of Chief Client Officer at Starcom, a new role in the agency. This marks a significant development within the agency. Previously serving as the Managing Director at PG One, she now assumes a broader scope of responsibilities, including overseeing client relationships across Starcom's portfolio.Reporting directly to Nadine Young, the Chief Executive, and Jayne Roseman, the Global Managing Director for PG One media, Peacocke will play a pivotal role in enhancing client experiences and driving growth for the agency.Peacocke's extensive background in the industry, including her previous tenure at Starcom and her leadership roles at Mediacom, positions her well to excel in her new capacity. With her expertise in media, digital strategy, and client management, she brings a wealth of knowledge to her expanded role. Her experience working with prominent clients such as Procter & Gamble, Direct Line Group, Sky, Kraft Heinz, and Lionsgate underscores her ability to navigate diverse client needs and deliver exceptional results.In her statement, Peacocke expressed her enthusiasm for the opportunity to contribute to Starcom's continued success, emphasizing her commitment to delivering outstanding client service.

Festival X welcomes Martin Honzik as new CEO

Festival X, the pioneering interdisciplinary platform for media arts at the intersection of arts, science, and technology, proudly announces the appointment of Martin Honzik as its new CEO. With an illustrious career spanning over 20 years at Ars Electronica Linz, Martin Honzik brings a wealth of experience and a visionary approach to his new role at Festival X.Festival X, established in 2022, and powered by LINKVIVA, has rapidly emerged as a beacon for innovation and creativity in the UAE and the wider region. Supported by key national stakeholders such as Alserkal Avenue, Dubai Economy and Tourism, Dubai Future Foundation, and PwC Middle East, as well as international partners and collaborators, one of which has been Ars Electronica, amongst other counterparts including the NODE Institute, Creative Robotics, Studio Brüll, and the University for Arts and Design Linz, Festival X has showcased groundbreaking works at the forefront of media arts.Ars Electronica, the worldwide pioneering establishment with over forty years of experience in the field of media arts and innovation, has been a vital part of Festival X’s journey; and is also a reflection of Martin Honzik's expertise and support that has played a pivotal role in Festival X's growth and success, culminating in his appointment as CEO.Reflecting on his decision to join Festival X, Martin Honzik stated:“Festival X is full of ambition, idealism, and vision; Dubai and the region are full of uniqueness, potential, and possibilities. Helping to grow this place a center for digital culture and collaboration, and establishing a stage for media art is an inspiring task with lasting significance. Being part of this team and mission is an honor, motivates, and delights me greatly."Amin Davaei, Co-founder and Director of Festival X, expressed his enthusiasm for Martin's appointment, stating: "Martin's vision and leadership will be instrumental as Festival X enters a transformative phase. Together, we are poised to shape the future of media arts and propel the UAE onto the global stage."As Festival X prepares for its upcoming editions, the appointment of Martin Honzik signals a new chapter in the evolution of media arts in the UAE. With his guidance, Festival X is set to continue pushing boundaries, fostering creativity, and inspiring innovation in the years to come.

Union Insurance Appoints Ramez Abou Zaid as Chief Executive Officer

Union Insurance Company (PJSC), a leading provider of innovative customer-focused insurance solutions to individuals and corporations in the region, is pleased to announce the appointment of Mr. Ramez Abou Zaid as its new Chief Executive Officer effective February 15, 2024 to drive the company’s strategic growth.Mr. Ramez, a seasoned insurance professional, joined Union Insurance in July 2023 as a Board Member and was subsequently appointed as the Acting Chief Executive Officer on December 1, 2023. He brings over three decades of rich insurance experience.Mr. Ramez Abou Zaid said, “I am honored and excited to be appointed as the CEO of Union Insurance. Together with the company’s qualified and dynamic team, I am confident of delivering on our strategic objectives and capitalising on new opportunities. I look forward to achieving significant milestones in the company’s growth journey.”His expertise will be instrumental in driving transformational change and building a stronger Union Insurance team. He is a great advocate to accelerating digitalisation, elevating customer experience and diversifying insurance business.AM Best has recently revised Union Insurance’s outlook to stable which reflects improvements in Union’s regulatory solvency position. The Credit Ratings (ratings) reflect Union's balance sheet strength, which AM Best assesses as strong, as well as its adequate operating performance and marginal enterprise risk management.Prior to joining Union Insurance, Mr. Ramez assumed leadership roles at several insurance companies. He had a remarkable journey at Dubai National Insurance and Reinsurance Company PSC that spanned a period of over 25 years.He was a Board Member in Emirates Insurance Association, Member of High Technical Committee and Chairman of both Motor and Legal Committees.Mr Ramez Abou Zaid has been recognised for his valuable contribution to the industry and received several accolades. He was named one of the Top 10 CEOs in the Gulf and MENA region in 2018 and 2019. He also won an award from the Insurance Authority for his Personal Achievements in developing the insurance industry in 2020 and was honored by Dubai Chamber of Commerce for his contribution in drafting the new insurance law in the UAE.He holds a bachelor’s degree in law and was registered as an Authorised Arbitrator in Sharjah International Commercial Arbitration Center.

Bloomberg, SRMG partner for first-ever power players summit in KSA

Bloomberg Media and SRMG are joining forces to present the inaugural Bloomberg Power Players Summit, taking place on March 7, 2024 at the Jeddah Yacht Club, amidst the excitement of the Formula One Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.Who's Who and What's New:Imagine this – renowned industry leaders like Saudi Arabia's Investment Minister Khalid Al-Falih, McLaren CEO Zak Brown, and esports pioneer Ralf Reichert sharing their insights on the future of sports. This exclusive summit brings together over 150 influential figures to explore critical topics like:The impact of private equity on sports investments.Evolving dynamics in the global football landscape, with a focus on the MENA region.The booming esports sector and its potential for disruption.More Than Just Talks:Expect dynamic discussions hosted by Bloomberg's Business of Sports Chief Correspondent Jason Kelly, alongside networking opportunities with CEOs and decision-makers from leading sports companies. And if you can't be there in person, don't worry! Catch all the action through global coverage on Asharq News, Asharq Business with Bloomberg, and Bloomberg's television, radio, and digital platforms.Karen Saltser, CEO of Bloomberg Media, said: "This summit is a powerful platform for game-changers in sports, entertainment, and business. With Saudi Arabia's growing prominence in the sports world, it's the perfect backdrop for meaningful conversations."Jomana R. Alrashid, CEO of SRMG, said: "This is a chance to share ideas on the future of sports and highlight investment opportunities in a thriving industry. Saudi Arabia's commitment to sports innovation is driving positive change, and we're proud to partner with Bloomberg Media to host this landmark event."Why This Matters:The Bloomberg Power Players Summit marks a significant expansion of the existing partnership between SRMG and Bloomberg Media. This event signifies their shared vision to provide insightful content and foster collaboration within the dynamic sports and entertainment industry, particularly in the MENA region.

TRKKN MENA becomes a Google Cloud platform premier partner

Dubai: TRKKN MENA, the leading analytics, marketing & cloud consultancy part of Omnicom Media Group (OMG), is now a Premier Partner on the Google Cloud Platform, leveraging its expertise both locally and across Europe to provide data and marketing analytics solutions to their clients. This underscores TRKKN MENA's commitment to delivering seamless, end to end customer experiences from the Google Marketing Platform (GMP) to Google Cloud solutions. In doing so, they help their clients derive and apply invaluable customer insights, under-pinned by data, which lead to increased marketing efficiency and ROI. As a Premier Partner, TRKKN MENA joins an elite group of technology firms recognized for their exceptional performance, customer success, and expertise in utilizing Google Cloud products and services. This milestone, which involved technical interviews and assessments, validates TRKKN MENA's dedication to maintaining the highest standards of technical proficiency, customer satisfaction, and product expertise within the Google Cloud ecosystem.TRKKN MENA is recognized for offering marketers in the region enhanced technical expertise, thanks to the deep knowledge and proficiency in Google Cloud technologies of its team of certified experts. This means its clients get tailored solutions that meet their specific business needs and challenges. TRKKN MENA will now enjoy priority access to Google Cloud resources, support, and training, enabling faster resolution of issues and continuous improvement of services. They also enjoy early access to new Google Cloud products, features, and updates, allowing clients to stay ahead of the curve and leverage the latest advancements in cloud technology to drive business innovation. Premier Partners procure a seamless and hassle-free experience for clients, from the initial consultation and deployment to ongoing management and optimization, thanks to end-to-end support throughout the cloud journey.TRKKN is leveraging its successful track record with the Premier Partner status in Europe to offer competitive rates for GCP in MENA. With these, marketers eager to embrace the next big thing can, for example, explore the benefits of the cloud on their digital marketing maturity and the return on their online investments. The consolidation of data across multiple touch points into GCP allows customers to gain a more holistic view and gather invaluable insights into customer journeys. It also helps leverage the built-in ML tools to enable advanced customer segmentation, improve marketing efficiency and personalize customer journeys.“Achieving Premier Partner status on the Google Cloud Platform is a testament of TRKKN MENA's unwavering dedication to excellence, innovation, and customer success. This milestone reflects our ongoing commitment, Working hand in hand with the Google MENA cloud team, we empower businesses in the MENA region with cutting-edge cloud solutions that boost efficiency and drive digital transformation,” declared Vimal Badiani, managing director of TRKKN MENA. “It’s by being best-in-class ourselves that we can propel our clients in that same position in their own industry by deploying cutting-edge marketing and tech solutions. This latest certification by Google is more than a seal of approval, it’s the beacon that guides the choice of a GCP partner.”

ATI to tap the USD-108-million Middle East and Asia apple cider vinegar market

American Trading International, Inc. (ATI), a leading player in the USA-branded food distribution industry, has announced its participation in the 29th edition of Gulfood.As part of its expansion strategy, ATI has successfully established a broad distribution network that caters to diverse markets and ensures an efficient supply chain. ATI has exported to more than 85 countries and markets worldwide including 14 countries in the Middle East, delivering high-quality made-in-USA products. This development aligns with the company's vision to provide high-quality food products to consumers worldwide.Due to the increasing demand for health-oriented products in the Middle East, organic Apple Cider Vinegar has become a popular choice due to its wide application and health benefits. As part of its expansion strategy, ATI has solidified its position as the exclusive exporter of Bragg products in key international markets. It also aims to tap into the growing Middle East and Asia Apple Cider Vinegar market, which is estimated to grow over USD 108 million by 2026 - this is attributed to its growing popularity among Arab, Mediterranean, and Asian cuisines.In addition, ATI will announce the first-ever Bragg Partners Meet at Gulfood - bringing together partners from over 35 countries and celebrating the winners of the 2023 Bragg Race.Imran Mohammed, COO, ATI said: "Our presence at Gulfood reflects our commitment to meet the evolving health-conscious needs of consumers in the Middle East. We have become a trusted provider of premium health food products worldwide and our partnership with Bragg reflects that further. We are excited to showcase our portfolio of premium brands and explore opportunities to expand our distribution channels, furthering our mission of delivering excellence to consumers worldwide."ATI will showcase its extensive range of Bragg offerings, highlighting their exceptional quality and health benefits. Taking place from February 19-23, ATI will be present at the leading F&B exhibition at the USA Pavilion in Sheikh Saeed Hall, Booth # S3-136.

Publicis Groupe unveils Publicis Pro with Octopus Group Integration

Publicis Groupe has launched Publicis Pro, marking a significant step in its commitment to B2B creative services. By integrating Octopus Group and harnessing the expertise of 400 B2B specialists from its global network, Publicis Pro aims to provide comprehensive solutions in B2B strategy, creative, influence, and commerce.Heading Publicis Pro are Jon Lonsdale as Chief Executive and Pete Hendrick as Managing Director. Lonsdale, Co-Founder of Octopus Group, will report to Demet Ikiler, Publicis Groupe's EMEA Chief Executive. The core team of 60 specialists will initially focus on the UK, Germany, and France, with plans for expansion across the EMEA region.The move follows Publicis Groupe's acquisition of Octopus Group in 2021, recognizing B2B as a significant growth area. Octopus Group, known for its expertise in tech, telecoms, financial services, logistics, and manufacturing sectors, brought on board notable clients such as Siemens, Adobe, Logitech, and Rolls-Royce.The integration of Octopus Group into Publicis Groupe's UK creative practice demonstrated a strategic shift towards bolstering B2B capabilities within the agency. This move aligns with Publicis Groupe's aim to become a center of excellence for both B2B and B2B2C clients, leveraging new data and marketing services to drive growth.Publicis Pro's vision includes the development of innovative services tailored to complex B2B audiences, such as AI tools. With Octopus Group's tech-first capabilities and Publicis Groupe's extensive resources, Publicis Pro aims to deliver enhanced value to clients, offering access to talent, technology, and data to drive success in the B2B space.

OpenAI unveils Sora which can create instant videos

OpenAI has unveiled Sora, its text-to-video model. Sora can generate realistic and imaginative scenes from text instructions.The AI model can create videos up to a minute long while maintaining visual quality and adherence to the user’s prompt. OpenAI announced that Sora is able to generate complex scenes with multiple characters, specific types of motion, and accurate details of the subject and background. The model understands not only what the user has asked for in the prompt, but also how those things exist in the physical world. Regarding weakness, the company stated: “Simulating complex interactions between objects and multiple characters is often challenging for the model, sometimes resulting in humorous generations.”“We’ll be engaging policymakers, educators and artists around the world to understand their concerns and to identify positive use cases for this new technology. Despite extensive research and testing, we cannot predict all of the beneficial ways people will use our technology, nor all the ways people will abuse it. That’s why we believe that learning from real-world use is a critical component of creating and releasing increasingly safe AI systems over time,” said OpenAI in a post.The featured image above is the screenshot of this prompt given: A stylish woman walks down a Tokyo street filled with warm glowing neon and animated city signage. She wears a black leather jacket, a long red dress, and black boots, and carries a black purse. She wears sunglasses and red lipstick. She walks confidently and casually. The street is damp and reflective, creating a mirror effect of the colorful lights. Many pedestrians walk about.

Kia announces partnership of FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup in Dubai

Dubai: Kia Corporation has announced its partnership of the 12th edition of the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup 2024TM, solidifying its longstanding partnership with FIFA. The event will take place in Dubai, from February 15 to 25, at Dubai Design District (D3).Kia said it is committed to aligning with the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup 2024TM, a tournament that showcases skill, athleticism, and the spirit of competition. This partnership underscores Kia's dedication to supporting international sports and fostering unity through the shared love for soccer. Kia will also be supporting the tournament operations with an official event fleet of 49 Kia vehicles.The event will feature a dynamic display of Kia's latest award-winning all-electric flagship SUV, Kia EV9 and the Kia EV6. This display invites participants to engage with Kia’s cutting-edge industry-defining all-electric vehicles, offering a firsthand experience of the innovation that defines Kia's automotive excellence.Yaser Shabsogh, Vice President, Commercial Operations at Kia Middle East and Africa, commented: "Kia is delighted to be part of the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup 2024, a continuation of our successful collaboration with FIFA including the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ and the FIFAe Finals 2023, recognized as one of the premier events in the esports industry showcasing the world's top gaming talent. This partnership, continuing until 2030, demonstrates our dedication to global sports, uniting people through shared passion and the thrill of competition."The tournament will feature 16 qualified teams from around the world, promising an exhilarating competition that will captivate soccer fans globally. Participating countries include the host nation UAE, along with Senegal, Egypt, Argentina, Colombia, Tahiti, Belarus, USA, Mexico, Brazil, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Iran, Japan, and Oman.Ahmed Soudodi, Vice President, Product & Marketing at Kia Middle East and Africa, added: "As we showcase our sustainable lineup of vehicles at this prestigious event, we look forward to creating memorable experiences for fans and customers alike. Kia's commitment to innovation and performance aligns seamlessly with the dynamic and thrilling nature of beach soccer."

Hisense strengthens MENA presence, plans Dubai R&D centre

Global home appliance maker Hisense reaffirms its commitment to the MENA region with ambitious expansion plans. The company solidified its position as the No. 2 global TV brand in 2023, witnessing remarkable growth in MENA specifically, with revenue surging by 335% and brand equity by 177% since 2018.MENA in focus:Investing in the region's potential, Hisense plans to establish new production facilities in North Africa and the Levant, fostering local manufacturing and job creation.Flagship stores are planned across GCC and Levant countries, offering customers a premium brand experience.Recognizing unique MENA preferences, Hisense will launch a dedicated R&D Center in Dubai this year, developing products tailored to the region's needs.Celebrating success and deepening sports engagement:Hisense earned over 30 awards at CES 2024 for its innovative TVs, including the ULED X and Laser TVs.As the official sponsor of EURO 2024, Hisense will launch cutting-edge TVs for an immersive viewing experience and deepen its connection with football fans.Jason Ou, President of Hisense Middle East, said: "MENA is a key growth market for us. By establishing local production, opening flagship stores, and launching a dedicated R&D centre, we aim to offer regional consumers innovative, high-quality products that cater to their specific needs and preferences. We are excited to contribute to the region's economic development and create meaningful engagement with our customers."

Inaugural I-Film Festival showcases Abu Dhabi as a global content hub

The I-Film Festival (IFF) concluded at the Yas Creative Hub. This inaugural event highlighted Abu Dhabi's role in fostering innovation and collaboration within the film industry, bringing together professionals, emerging talents, and enthusiasts to strengthen the creative industries ecosystem.The festival showcased Abu Dhabi's evolving status as a global content hub, with significant contributions from the Abu Dhabi Film Commission (ADFC) and Creative Lab (CL).Mohammed Dobay, Acting Director General of the Creative Media Authority, and Sameer Al Jaberi, Head of the Abu Dhabi Film Commission at ADFC, spotlighted the festival's display of Abu Dhabi's advanced infrastructure and the appealing financial incentives available to filmmakers and content creators worldwide.Khalid Khouri, Director of Talent Development at the Creative Media Authority, commented on the festival's impact on talent growth: "The level of engagement and enthusiasm we've seen from emerging talents at the IFF has been remarkable. It underscores Abu Dhabi's capability to cultivate creative careers and establish meaningful industry partnerships."Saravana Prasad, Founder of the Innovative Group, shared his vision for the festival: "The I-Film Festival is more than an event; it's a catalyst for creative innovation and talent development in the region. We are immensely proud of the collaborative spirit and the breakthrough achievements of this inaugural festival. It marks the beginning of a new chapter for the film industry in Abu Dhabi and beyond."Workshops led by celebrated Cinematographer R. Rathnavelu and Manoj Paramahamsa, along with sound designer Resul Pookutty, emphasised the critical role of storytelling in film, providing attendees with invaluable insights into the cinematic arts.The success of the I-Film Festival affirms Abu Dhabi's dedication to creating a thriving environment for the creative industries, further establishing the Emirate as a leading global destination for film and media.

Mubashir and Al Meera Oman forge strategic partnership

Mubashir, a prominent Digital-Out-of-Home (DOOH) company in Oman, has recently announced a strategic partnership with Al Meera Oman, a renowned international retail chain. This collaboration aims to provide enhanced advertising opportunities for brands across key locations in the capital region of Oman.Through this partnership, Mubashir extends its network to include prime positions within high-traffic Al Meera locations in Muscat, including Al Muzn Mall, Panorama Mall, and Al Meera Malls in Athaiba and Al Amerat. The installation of smart DOOH screens in these locations offers brands the flexibility of scheduling and enables them to reach their target audience effectively during peak hours, thereby maximizing the impact of their advertising campaigns.Both Mubashir and Al Meera emphasize that this partnership ensures brands access to highly engaged consumers actively seeking products and services. This collaboration presents a unique opportunity for brands to capture the attention of potential customers and establish deeper connections with them in high-traffic areas around the hypermarket.This strategic partnership between Mubashir and Al Meera Oman signifies a significant advancement in the realm of digital advertising in Oman, providing brands with innovative avenues to engage with their target audience and drive business growth.

TikTok promotes media literacy at MENAT Youth Mental Health Summit

TikTok MENAT recently hosted an enlightening discussion with safety experts from across the region, delving into topics such as youth well-being, media literacy, and critical thinking skills in today's digital landscape. The event, hosted on 13 February at Warehouse 4 in Al Qouz, Dubai moderated by Omar Butti, served as a platform for valuable insights into the influence of digital communities on the mental health of the upcoming generation and strategies to engage with social media content in a meaningful and critical manner.The first panel named "Equipping Young Digital Citizens with Media Literacy and Critical Thinking Skills" attended by Lynn Sutton, TikTok’s Head of Outreach & Partnerships, Trust & Safety EMEA, as well as TikTok’s Safety Advisory Council members Naila Hamdy and Akin Unver. Together, they delved into the significance of media literacy, particularly for younger audiences, emphasizing the need for informed conversations about safety and the ability to respond appropriately to crises.The second panel called "Building Digital Communities for Youth Well-being" welcomed Lynn Sutton along with TikTok's Safety Advisory council member Maitha Mohamed and Lecturer of Educational Psychology, Trainer & Speaker on Leadership and Mental Health Jana Bou Reslan. They explored how digital communities cultivate compassion among users and highlighted the importance of constructive dialogues surrounding mental health, supported by robust content moderation processes, in establishing a nurturing environment for all.TikTok’s Head of Outreach & Partnerships, Trust & Safety EMEA Lynn Sutton shared, “TikTok is constantly striving to make our platform a safer and more welcoming space for everyone, ensuring that all users have the necessary tools and support to engage with content safely and responsibly. Our community guidelines are designed to ensure that the platform remains a positive and inclusive space for everyone. We take action to address potential challenges, and conversations like the ones that took place in TikTok's MENAT Youth Mental Health Summit are critical to ensuring a safe environment for everyone, most importantly youth."Naila Hamdy, Safety Advisory Council (SAC) member, emphasized the importance of media literacy in navigating various types of content, particularly in an age where information spreads rapidly. She stated, "It's crucial to critically assess content and take appropriate action. We encourage young people not only to create content but also to become responsible digital citizens. Parents and educators play a central role in equipping young individuals with media literacy."Jana Bou Reslan, Lecturer of Educational Psychology, Trainer & Speaker on Leadership and Mental Health, also shared, "Engaging parents is paramount to creating safe digital communities for the younger generation. Parents' insights are valuable in not only creating important safety processes, but also in guiding how the youth can interact with digital platforms in a healthy and responsible manner."TikTok is at the forefront of introducing features to help support the community's mental well-being, both on and off the platform. The platform has been proactive in promoting mental health awareness and encouraging users, especially teenagers, taking steps to prevent instances of trolling and bullying, and set daily screen time limits. awarded the “Most Secure Broker” award at “Oman Smart Vision” Summit, the global FinTech and financial services provider for online trading and investing, has been recognized with the award for "Most Secure Broker" during the “Oman Smart Vision” Summit which took place on February 14th and 15th.The event where the global multi-asset broker was featured as Global Sponsor was organized by Smart Vision Group at the esteemed “Sheraton Oman” Hotel in Muscat, Oman.The highlight of the event was being honored with the esteemed "Most Secure Broker" award, a testament to its efforts in prioritizing the security and safety of clients’ funds and information.Expressing excitement and gratitude for the recognition, Mr. Shadi Salloum, the Regional Director of in the MENA region, stated:“We extend our heartfelt gratitude to the remarkable event organizers of “Oman Smart Vision” Summit. It is with immense honor and gratitude that we accept the award for "Most Secure Broker". This award is a testament to our efforts, and we are truly humbled to be recognized among such distinguished peers.”Presenting its cutting-edge products and services at the “Oman Smart Vision” Summit, the’s Global Sponsorship shone a spotlight on its dedication to online investments. In addition, they provided invaluable insights into the latest trends and advancements within the dynamic landscape of the Fintech industry.Dr. Mohammed Elnozamy, Chairman and Managing Director at Smart Vision, Said:“I am thrilled to announce as the "Most Secure Broker" at the first edition of Smart Vision summit in Oman 2024. This award stands as a testament to the efforts of in providing a safe and secure trading environment for traders”.As Global Sponsor, the multi-award winning broker had a prominent presence throughout the “Oman Smart Vision” Summit, where they showcased a comprehensive suite of services and expertise in the Financial Services industry. The Global Market Leader is known for prioritizing the security and safety of clients’ funds and information by continually investing in its infrastructure and implementing advanced security protocols to maintain the highest security standards and safeguard these funds.In addition to its multiple regulations in various jurisdictions around the globe, provides clients with additional insurance protection to cover losses in excess of USD 10,000 and up to USD 5,000,000 against claims against omission, fraud, negligence and other risks that may lead to the financial loss of clients. This Civil Liability Insurance Program is underwritten by Lloyd's of have also invested heavily in its infrastructure and implemented advanced security protocols to ensure that its systems comply with the most stringent global security standards.

MOTAD bags Arabian Farm’s digital, creative & social mandate for SAHA

Motad, a leading Dubai-based creative and digital marketing agency, has secured the digital mandate for Arabian Farms' SAHA brand, known for its fresh and locally produced poultry products. Arabian Farms, boasting over 40 years of excellence, sought a robust digital strategy to reach its health-conscious audience effectively.Motad crafted a targeted campaign highlighting SAHA's commitment to quality and freshness. Targeted campaigns, engaging social media content, and strategic influencer partnerships were meticulously crafted to solidify SAHA's position as a leader in the premium poultry market. By combining impactful messaging with creative materials, MOTAD aims to significantly enhance SAHA's social media presence and solidify its brand recognition across the region.Commenting on the partnership, Engr. Tareq Sallam, CEO of Holding company, Arabian Farms said, "Arabian Farms is dedicated to delivering the freshest poultry in the UAE and KSA. Motad's digital expertise will deepen our connection with the audience, and we believe their data-driven approach will solidify SAHA's position as a leading brand in the region."

Emirates Pride partners with master perfumers to create unique scent

Dubai: Emirates Pride has announced a groundbreaking collaboration with two internationally acclaimed master perfumers, Nathalie Lorson and Olivier Cresp, to create a unique scent, marking a historic moment in the fragrance industry in the UAE. This collaboration captures the essence of creativity and craftsmanship in the world of perfumery for a homegrown UAE fragrance house. Master perfumers play a pivotal role in the creation of fine fragrances, combining various aromatic elements to produce unique compositions. These artisans possess an acute sense of smell, creativity, and extensive knowledge of rare and exotic ingredients. Globally, there are only approximately 500 perfumers recognized by the industry, making this a rare occurrence. With a passion for perfumes and a shared love for Emirates Pride, Nathalie Lorson and Olivier Cresp combined their unparalleled expertise and artistry to craft a fragrance that embodies the harmonious blend of their creativity.The fragrances market in the United Arab Emirates is projected to generate revenue of US$142.60 million in 2024, with an expected annual growth rate of -0.91% (CAGR 2024-2028). This market, catering to an affluent consumer base, is undergoing a shift towards niche and luxury brands.The Middle East fragrances market has experienced substantial growth, driven by a young demographic, rising disposable incomes, and improved standards of living. However, the recent impact of the coronavirus outbreak has affected the personal care and cosmetics industries. Despite challenges, demand for premium and upmarket perfumes in the Middle East remains strong.Emirates Pride takes pride in bringing together two exceptional talents, Nathalie Lorson and Olivier Cresp, to create a fragrance that celebrates the art of perfumery for a homegrown UAE brand. This exceptional scent is not merely a fragrance; it is a piece of art that captures the spirit of the UAE.Olivier Cresp, a Master Perfumer, hails from a long line of fragrance artisans in Grasse, France. With a family legacy dating back to the seventeenth century, he has cultivated a deep understanding of perfumery from an early age. Olivier's work has earned him the title of Perfumer of the Year in 2007 and Master Perfumer in 2006. He continues to mentor young talents in the industry.Nathalie Lorson, known for her generosity and creativity, believes that the exchange of ideas is essential for fragrance creation. Her approach involves expressing and sharing emotions through scent. A prolific Master Perfumer, Nathalie's work speaks for itself, and her ultimate reward is seeing her compositions become a part of people's lives. She believes in the power of simplicity and the art of subtraction in her creations.Antoine de Saint-Exupéry said: "Perfection is achieved not when there is nothing else to add but when there is nothing else to take away." Nathalie Lorson's creations are like pieces of a puzzle, each contributing to her unique identity.Image by andreas N from Pixabay

Erika Doyle on elevating Ramadan with premium non-alcoholic offerings

Drink Dry, the leading non-alcoholic drinks marketplace in the Middle East, curates the finest alcohol-free beverages globally, spearheading the 'No and Low Alcohol' (NOLO) movement. Based in Dubai, the brand is preparing to honor the significance of the upcoming Holy month of Ramadan. Adgully recently interviewed Erika Doyle, the Founder of Drink Dry, to explore their strategies and preparations for Ramadan. Here are the excerpts:How are the brands in the Middle East tailoring their marketing strategies/campaigns to resonate with the cultural nuances and significance of Ramadan?Drink Dry launched a very unique and successful Golden Month campaign last year for the month of Ramadan. Instead of trying to bring something new to Iftar meals we went after the traditions of Ramadan and Iftar meals and made our products fit the traditions, instead of creating something entirely new.Can you discuss specific examples of how you are incorporating traditional elements of Ramadan into your exclusive collections or marketing campaigns?Our most successful Ramadan drink last year was Natureo Vimto Fizz. We took the classic Vimto drink that people enjoy during Iftars and have created a mocktail with a twist – we paired it with one of our best sellers Natureo Muscat Sparkling Grape. It was a perfect combination of classic and new mixed together.In what ways are brands leveraging social media influencers and digital platforms to connect with consumers during Ramadan, while maintaining authenticity and respect for the occasion?I think for Western brands this is always the biggest challenge. The brands have to be incredibly aware of the cultural nuances and make sure the influencers they work with are unique themselves. Drink Dry is a luxury F&B brand, and last year we partnered with female Arab chefs and influencers who are known for hosting dinners and sharing content around the same. We wanted to make sure that we partner with people who focus on tradition and host throughout the year and not just for a month during Ramadan. It must feel natural for the consumer; it can’t be fake or pretentious.What challenges do brands face in balancing commercial objectives with the need to honour the spiritual and cultural aspects of Ramadan, and how are they navigating these challenges?For us, this is very simple: the month of Ramadan is a time to honour our Muslim clientele. We eagerly anticipate making their Holy Month even more beautiful than it already is, showing respect and appreciation for their year-round support. Rather than commercializing our Muslim clients during Ramadan, we focus on gifting and sharing throughout the month. We also collaborate with local brands that share our values.

Dubai Harbour Marinas Achieve Triple Accreditation - A Global First

Dubai Harbour is the proud recipient of three prestigious accreditations from The Yacht Harbour Association, including the coveted Gold Anchor award - a credible measure of marina quality; alongside renowned titles for Clean Marinas and Super Yacht Ready, a first in the region. The region’s largest marina achieved an unprecedented feat of securing all three accreditations, not only on its very first try, but simultaneously, marking a world-first achievement under The Yacht Harbour Association (TYHA) and demonstrating the high standards of marina excellence at Dubai Harbour.The global marina accreditations awarded by The Yacht Harbour Association have been a trusted industry evaluation, based upon the belief that the marina industry needs a customer-centric focus for marina businesses and recreational boating to grow and prosper. To arrive at the accreditation, a marina is evaluated against six key evaluation categories including Ambiance, Customer Service and Environmental, amongst others.The prestigious flags of recognition were presented by Jon White, General Manager of The Yacht Harbour Association to Dubai Harbour in a special ceremony. “When we first conceptualised Dubai Harbour years ago, our aim was to design and deliver a seafront residential district that rekindled Dubai’s connection to the sea and acted as a gateway for extraordinary maritime lifestyle and journeys. With world-class facilities and services, Dubai Harbour Marinas is providing a full home port solution enabling local and international boat owners, passengers and crew to enjoy Dubai’s spectacular cruising grounds. We would like to thank The Yacht Harbour Association for this recognition and our Dubai Harbour Marinas teams for their unwavering commitment to yachting excellence rewarded with these three prestigious accreditations,” said Abdulla Binhabtoor, Chief Portfolio Management Officer at Shamal Holding, Owner and Curator of Dubai Harbour. Jon White, General Manager of The Yacht Harbour Association added; “The 5 Gold Anchor, Superyacht Ready and Clean Marina awards that I am pleased to have presented to the Dubai Harbour Marinas team, are designed to advise and educate with the objective of raising standards within the marina industry and assisting boaters in their choice of marina.To achieve any one of these accreditations represents a significant challenge; to be awarded all three at once is highly impressive. This is a great credit to the Dubai Harbour Marinas team who are strong advocates of such accreditations and long-standing Certified Marina Managers, spearheaded by Director – Marinas Wayne Shepherd (CMM). My congratulations go to all who contributed to this excellent achievement”.Dubai Harbour is the region’s largest marina, featuring close to 700 berths that can accommodate yachts up to 160m in length, in addition to a dedicated superyacht marina. Offering a fuelling station capable of taking vessels up to 50m, as well as providing guests and crew with a full home port solution in one of the world’s most spectacular cruising grounds, Dubai Harbour Marinas enables direct access to the open waters of the Arabian Gulf with ample water depths and no air draught limits.As part of its commitment to offering a premier and multifaceted seafront experience, Dubai Harbour is welcoming a new era of green innovation, recently announcing the introduction of the UAE’s first ever floating waste collector called PixieDrone. Dubai Harbour also has a dedicated sustainability committee, ‘Seaguardians’, who ensure sustainable practices are followed across all operations, educating boat owners on environmentally-friendly initiatives and driving better ESG awareness for the industry.Later this month, Dubai Harbour will host the Dubai International Boat Show for the third consecutive year, taking place from 28th February - 3rd March 2024.

Canon ME & Turkey unveils 'Let There Be Life' promotion

Canon Middle East & Turkey's latest marketing initiative, titled "Let there be life," introduces a compelling narrative that intertwines two fundamental Japanese concepts: Ikigai and Kyosei. These concepts serve as the foundation for showcasing how Canon's products not only enrich individual lives but also foster a meaningful collective impact.At the heart of the campaign is the Japanese principle of 'Ikigai,' which underscores the pursuit of purpose and fulfillment in one's life. Canon correlates this philosophy with its own corporate ethos of 'Kyosei,' which underscores the importance of collective impact and collaborative efforts for the greater good.Canon emphasizes that its diverse array of products, particularly its cameras, plays a pivotal role in capturing life's most precious moments, spanning from intimate personal occasions like weddings to global spectacles such as the Rugby World Cup. However, Canon's influence extends far beyond the realm of photography, encompassing various industries including printing, manufacturing, sports, art, and even semiconductor chip production. Their products find utility in a myriad of settings ranging from film production sets to hospitals to space exploration missions.The campaign endeavors to transcend mere technological innovation, focusing instead on Canon's commitment to creating products imbued with kindness and care. This emphasis is particularly evident in Canon's medical imaging solutions, designed to enhance patient experiences and improve healthcare outcomes.Through this marketing effort, Canon aims to underscore its dedication to enriching lives and making positive contributions to society through the provision of innovative products and services. This narrative aligns with the broader societal trend of seeking purpose-driven brands that prioritize social responsibility and collective well-being.

Yango unveils AI-powered entertainment super App Yango Play

Yango, transforming global technologies into everyday services tailored to local needs, today announced the launch of Yango Play, the first AI-powered entertainment service that combines video streaming, music, and mini-games in one place. Yango Play offers a diverse range of entertainment options, featuring exclusive premieres of both Arabic and international movies and series, personalized music streaming, and interactive mini-games, all enhanced by Yasmina, an AI-based Arabic voice assistant. Now available in the KSA, UAE, and other GCC countries, the service provides subscribers with cross-platform access on smartphones and TVs. The new super app places significant emphasis on upholding authentic content, celebrating regional production studios and artists. The platform not only serves as a launchpad for local talent but also ensures the diversification of the current entertainment landscape by providing its subscribers with a selection of original content that resonates with their cultural identity.  Yasmina: The Arabic-Speaking AI Assistant Yasmina, the bilingual AI assistant integrated into Yango Play, interacts with users in Arabic and English and redefines their entertainment experience. Fluent in Khaleeji and able to understand major Arabic dialects, including Egyptian and Lebanese, Yasmina suggests the songs for listening, chats with you, and answers all kinds of questions — anything from today’s weather to this year’s Ramadan dates. Yasmina guides you through the Yango Play app and makes your experience more enjoayble. Personalized endless music streamCentral to Yango Play's innovation is an AI-powered endless music stream that tailors personalized playlists for users, spotlighting regional gems based on their preferences. This ensures each user's experience is unique and reflects their personal choices. As the product continues to evolve, its recommendation technology will also adapt, ensuring a highly personalized and relevant user experience that resonates with unique preferences and cultural nuances. Commenting on the launch of the super app, Roman Shimansky, MENA Region Business Director at Yango Play, "At Yango Play, we're devoted to crafting a joyful entertainment experience, offering a selection of diverse content that turns every moment into a delightful adventure. Our ever-evolving platform uses AI to provide more seamless and intuitive experiences by understanding your preferences—whether by curating uplifting music for your drive, engaging shows for family time, or quick games for a brief pause in your day. We are deeply committed to enhancing these experiences through our original content and strategic collaborations with regional creatives, ensuring that each choice on our platform is a step towards discovering vibrant new emotions." With titles like the biggest Arabic blockbuster of 2023 ‘Mr. Ex’ and the sequel of the beloved classic ‘Awlad Harim Kareem’ already in its lineup, Yango Play is set to reveal the full catalog with the best acquired and produced films and series in the near future. Upon joining, every user receives a 60-day free subscription, followed by a paid plan (29.99 AED for multiple devices per month in the United Arab Emirates).

Tamkeen launches Young Entrepreneur Program Mashroo3i

The Labour Fund Tamkeen announced the opening of applications for the latest edition of its Young Entrepreneur Program (Mashroo3i), which helps passionate young Bahrainis turn viable creative concepts into sustainable businesses.Individuals aged 18 to 35 with entrepreneurial aspirations or existing startup ventures will benefit from comprehensive guidance and training aimed at bolstering the growth of their projects. They will receive intensive advisory sessions to refine their business concepts, coupled with training sessions tailored for their specific needs. Candidates advancing to the final stages of Mashroo3i will have the chance to secure grants to finance their ideas.“We are delighted by the success of the previous iteration of the program, which saw 11 participants advance to the final stage,” said Ali Hasan, Executive Director of Programs and Partnership Development at Tamkeen.“These talented individuals had the opportunity to showcase their innovative project ideas at the Demo Day, in front of a distinguished audience comprised of investors and experts in a range of fields.”Mashroo3i includes an intensive advisory component by a panel of mentors in various entrepreneurial sectors to support participants’ entry into the market and improve their prospects for growth and business expansion.The program's initial six-week phase includes intense training focused on idea generation to help participants develop and refine their business concepts. The program will subsequently shift towards consultations tailored for emerging enterprises, which will equip participants with the skills they need to accelerate the launch of their ventures and develop product prototypes.“The current edition is a continuation of our efforts to nurture the entrepreneurial spirit among Bahraini youth by supporting them with their initial steps into the business world,” added Ms Mofeez.“It includes diverse mentorship programs in collaboration with entrepreneurs and specialists who bring valuable experience and knowledge to the table. Their expertise helps us optimize our programs and deliver maximum value.“We look forward to another round of successful business models emerging from this program, each making significant contributions to the Kingdom’s business landscape and creating job opportunities for Bahrainis."Participants who advance to the final stage will showcase their revised business models to potential investors during a Demo Day, potentially receiving financial grants to support the launch of their projects.Mashroo3i has played a pivotal role in the development and expansion of numerous ventures by providing participants with the skills they need to succeed in sectors such as the health, and creative and technical industries, and align their projects with prevailing market trends.

Study reveals consumer trends and behavior during 2024 Ramadan & Eid

Dubai: Toluna, in collaboration with MetrixLab, released the findings from their study, "2024 Ramadan and Eid al-Fitr Insights”, providing a comprehensive understanding of consumer behavior in the UAE during the upcoming festive season. As the UAE gears up for the 2024 Ramadan and Eid al-Fitr period, the study offers an extensive analysis of consumer behavior, shedding light on the significant shifts and emerging trends.General Behavior and Perceptions Around Ramadan and Eid:The study highlights shifts in consumer behavior from 2023 to 2024, with heightened enthusiasm for special Ramadan events in stores, Ramadan brand editions, and shopping during the festive season. While special offers and prices continue to be the top two factors influencing shopping destinations, this year there’s a notable surge in residents prioritizing 'hassle-free returns' and 'multiple counters for faster payments.' Specifically, 18% express a preference for easy product returns in 2024 compared to 13% in 2023, and 14% favor multiple billing counters, up from 10% in 2023. Additionally, 48% emphasize the allure of offers and promotions, and 25% value the convenience of free home deliveryImpact of Winter Ramadan on Spending Behavior:The predominant sentiment around Winter Ramadan is of excitement, with 52% stating they are excited due to multiple outdoor options available in Winter during Ramadan. Owing to Winter Ramadan, respondents expect to consume more dates (51%), hot beverages (47%), and chocolates and sweets (46%). As for beauty and personal care products, about one-third plan to use more moisturizers and oral care products compared to Ramadans in the Summer months.Consumer expectations from brands & banksWhen it comes to shopping, consumers in the UAE are enticed by brands that provide discounts (56%), bundle offers (49%), and gifts/services (38%). In terms of banking expectations for the same period, UAE residents are keen on offers related to shopping (55%), signing up for new credit cards (43%), and dining (42%). Notably, there's a substantial increase in the number of individuals seeking advantageous offers on car loans, with 35% expressing heightened interest.Shopping and Activities Planning Around Ramadan & Eid:Residents strategically plan their purchases ahead of Ramadan, covering a range of items including groceries, household cleaning supplies, and home décor. Eid gift shopping is anticipated to span the entire holy month, with specific plans in place. Before Ramadan, 44% intend to purchase bulk groceries, while 50% plan to acquire bulk household cleaning items. Additionally, 24% opt to shop for new outfits for Iftars/Eid, with a consistent 25% planning to do so in the last 10 days. Furthermore, 43% have outlined plans to purchase new home decor for Ramadan/Eid.Social plans are also in the works, as 35% intend to commence inviting friends and relatives throughout the month. Travel aspirations are evident, with 19% planning to book a trip abroad for Eid before Ramadan, while 17% aim to book a staycation. The process of buying Eid gifts will be spread out throughout the season, with 24% planning to start the process, 26% intending to continue throughout the month, and another 26% planning to do so in the last 10 days.Eid Festivities: Consumer EngagementIn 2024, a significant portion of UAE residents expresses heightened interest in diverse cultural activities during the Eid period. The enthusiasm for participation is evident across various activities, with 84% planning to visit relatives and friends, 81% intending to explore shopping malls for retail experiences, 76% opting for fine dining or restaurant visits, 64% engaging in cultural activities, 63% planning visits to theme parks, 57% expressing a desire to travel abroad, and 47% keen on attending concerts, live shows, and events.Spending Plans for Global vs. Local Brands Due to Recent Geo-Political Events:46% of UAE consumers plan to buy the same as before from local and global brands in UAE. However, 47% of UAE residents plan to buy more from local brands mainly groceries (64%), apparel (clothing, footwear, accessories, etc., 50%), fragrances (45%), household cleaning items (42%), dining out -fast food restaurants (41%), and coffee shops (40%).Likely Gifting Behavior During 2024 Eid Al-Fitr:In 2024, a significant majority of UAE residents (92%) are planning to get Eid gifts for their children, spouses, and parents. The breakdown of this total shows a likely heightened demand for children's gifts, with 68% (+4% than in 2023) planning to pamper their kids, while 64% will buy gifts for their spouses, 50% for parents, 46% for friends, and 39% for themselves. In terms of what they are planning to gift, chocolate, dates, and sweets are preferred by 53% of respondents with fragrances a very close second also with 53%. 44% plan to give money, and 37% will go for toys and games. Also of note: there is a substantial increase in the ‘home goods & furniture’ and ‘pre-owned cars’ categories when compared to 2023:The data also shows that UAE residents will spend more on Eid gifts: 53% expressed their intention to spend more than last year. The motivations for this are multi-faceted, ranging from a conscious decision to adopt a more generous approach, as indicated by 39% versus 30% in the previous year. Additionally, the surge in prices compared to the previous year prompts 40% of respondents to acknowledge the necessity of increased expenditure on gifts. Notably, 36% cite personal financial improvements as a factor contributing to their augmented spending plans, while 31% articulate their intent to purchase gifts for a larger circle of individuals this year compared to the norm.Brand Communications and Social Media Engagement:In comparison to the social media habits during Ramadan in 2023, residents are anticipating a reduction in the time spent on specific social media platforms including Telegram (34%) X (previously Twitter) (32%), Instagram (33%), and TikTok (32%). When examining the brand communications expected during the upcoming Ramadan, there is a noticeable increase, with 53% expressing a keen interest in promotions and offers, as opposed to the previous year's figure of 49%. This signals a heightened interest among residents in receiving information on promotions and offers from brands during this period.Commenting on the results, George Akkaoui, Enterprise Accounts Manager and Head of the Middle East and Africa Office at Toluna, stated: “As we delve into the rich insights derived from the 2024 Ramadan & Eid al-Fitr study, a profound narrative of consumer behavior in the UAE unfolds. The data not only unveils the evolving trends but also serves as a compass guiding businesses through the intricate landscape of consumer expectations. You can infer the strategic planning evident in residents' pre-Ramadan purchases, the nuanced shifts in gifting preferences, and the amplified resonance of brand communications in the digital sphere. As Ramadan transitions into the winter months, the study becomes a cornerstone for understanding the subtle dance between tradition and adaptation in consumer choices. These findings underscore the imperative for businesses to not only acknowledge but embrace the evolving consumer mindset, tailoring strategies that resonate with the pulse of the UAE residents during this festive season”.Photo by Jacek Dylag on Unsplash

Valentine’s Day: A hyped yet super successful gimmick!

Authored by Dipankar Zalpuri, President MENA Region, KaizzenI have a question for you. Is Valentine’s Day one of the most successful PR activations or most hyped gimmick, ever? I know what you are thinking, but let me say that for you: It is a hyped gimmick that has been a super success! As a marketer, I strongly believe that B2C brands need to make the most of this global event. Not just to generate sales but also to inch closer to their consumers’ hearts. Importance of campaigns during Valentine’s DayWe all need a reason to celebrate, and Valentine’s Day allows brands to play matchmakers to help consumers find the perfect gift. It might seem superficial considering the grave commercialization over a period of time. But now brands, both brick-and-mortar as well as online, have understood that they need to add value to the process rather than just hard sell their products. Crafting a central campaign that showcases the essence of the brand, thus tapping into the emotional motivations behind purchasing their products, is undoubtedly the cornerstone strategy to initiate with. Remember the tag line: A Diamond is Forever? AI: The new marketing avatar Many brands are now continually using AI for performing trend and sentiment analysis on their previous campaigns and offers. This data mining is allowing them to hyper personalize online campaigns and generate useful offerings in a bouquet of the most ordered products, combining them with slightly lesser preferred items. People prefer personalized gifts and hand-crafted special experiences over generic gifts or greeting cards. And don't forget, Valentine’s Day is not just for lovers anymore. In 2023, consumers spent $7.1B on teachers, friends, classmates, and coworkers. On-ground events are being leveraged to ignite interest among those who enjoy immersing themselves in the "love is in the air" phenomenon. What better approach to engage with individuals who appreciate this type of marketing and crave to feel valued! Every person is included and no one is overlooked!And of course, social media is the new driver of Valentine's marketing stunts with campaigns such as #TweetHeart and Krispy Kreme's Love Roulette having amassed millions of impressions online. But remember not to overdo the excitement as customers do get turned off by over-the-top stuff that does not align with the brand’s messaging.

Valentine's Day blooms in the emirates: A fusion of tradition and modernity

Valentine's Day, once considered a Western tradition, has become increasingly popular in the UAE in recent years. What was once a niche celebration has now transformed into a significant event marked by widespread enthusiasm and commercial activity across the country. This shift reflects evolving cultural attitudes, globalization, and the UAE's status as a melting pot of diverse influences.Western Influence on the global hubIn the UAE, in recent times, there has been a noticeable shift in attitudes towards romance and love, especially among the younger generation. Social media, international travel, and exposure to Western culture have played crucial roles in shaping these changing perceptions.One of the primary factors driving the popularity of Valentine's Day in the UAE is the increasing influence of Western customs and traditions. As the UAE continues to position itself as a global hub for business, tourism, and culture, it has embraced aspects of Western lifestyle, including holidays like Valentine's Day.Retail frenzy and Cultural evolution:Retailers seize this opportunity to capitalize on the festive spirit by offering special promotions, discounts, and themed merchandise, ranging from flowers and chocolates to romantic dinners and luxury gifts.Femique, a Swedish Lingerie brand, approaches Valentine's Day in a way that aligns perfectly with their brand ethos and target audience. By recognizing the unique needs and challenges faced by expectant mothers and individuals with children, they emphasize the importance of self-care and nurturing love in all aspects of life. Their focus on providing stylish and comfortable maternity and nursing lingerie speaks directly to the desires of their customer base, who are likely seeking ways to feel both confident and cared for during a busy and chaotic period in their lives.Miriam Lindholm and Angelique Fihn, co-founders, Femique, say: “Our customer base primarily consists of expectant mothers or individuals with children, which brings about a busy and chaotic period in their lives. Many of our followers face the challenge of striking a harmonious balance between family, friends, their partner, and themselves. As co-founders, this is an ongoing concern that we continuously address and evaluate. Consequently, during this time of year, Valentine's Day serves as a timely reminder for us to prioritize maintaining balance and nurturing love in all aspects of our lives. This entails fostering relationships with us, our significant others, and our loved ones.“ Valentine's Day is a beautiful occasion that prompts us to extend love to all, particularly ourselves, having experienced the transformative journey of parenthood. We observe that during this period, our customers seize the opportunity to indulge in self-care activities they may usually neglect, including treating themselves to our high-quality lingerie. Witnessing the radiance and self-assurance they exude when wearing something both comfortable and beautiful brings us immense joy. Therefore, let us raise a toast to Valentine's Day and the essence it represents—a celebration of love that should be embraced every single day," they add.Velvet Desert, a popular Jewellery brand in Kuwait, has come up with a new range of jewellery on the occasion of Valentine’s Day.<img src='\cc22f16d5ae950d38187caca2e62f191.png' class='content_image'>Fai and Shaima Goudarzi, co-founders, Velvet Desert, say: “We have recently dropped our new collection, and the clients will have a lot more unique and stylish options to choose from. This time, we do not have any special discounts other than signing up and getting 10% off on your first purchase as a new Velvet Desert client.”On the rise in sales during this period, they say: “Sales increase during valentines by around 10%. During Valentine’s there are more of male buyers as compared to female customers”<img src='\1ed1431f0377239282bb110990344fe7.png' class='content_image'>FNP UAE, a well-known gifting and flower gifting brand in the UAE, with many retail outlets and online presence, has witnessed tremendous spike in orders during the Valentine week.“This Valentine's season, we're transforming the essence of love in Dubai, presenting a month filled with romance and surprises," says Vijay Ghadge, Vice President of FNP UAE, enthusiastically."Our collaboration with different brands and the introduction of Valentine kiosks across Dubai's iconic locations are just the beginning. At, our commitment is to spread love and happiness, making every moment of this Valentine's season truly special and memorable for all."<img src='\e862afa5c970bda5e513a15d54fb1ff7.png' class='content_image'>IGP - International Gifts Platform, has curated an exclusive 'Love Redefined' collection, featuring luxurious gifts like majestic bouquets, heart-shaped wonders, delectable cakes, and personalized treasures. This carefully crafted selection offers the perfect expressions of love tailored for every personality.Tarun Joshi, CEO & Founder of IGP, says: “As we expand into the MENA region, drawing from our extensive product range that includes cakes, flowers, and personalized gifts, we’re poised for significant growth, mirroring the remarkable trajectory we’ve seen in other markets. With an impressive 80% growth during the Valentine’s season across our product lines, we’re confident about our prospects in the UAE as we introduce our ‘Love Redefined’ campaign.This collection of over 1500 curated SKUs is a testament to our commitment to delivering heartfelt gifting experiences that transcend borders. From the opulent 365 red roses bouquet to the decadence of our diamond box with secret messages, each product in our Love Redefined collection embodies a unique facet of love.”<img src='\aa7f7e30df8bee4e4550243d7ef20e26.png' class='content_image'>Shift in societal normsIn addition to commercialization and cultural influences, there is a growing emphasis on personal expression and emotional connection in Emirati society. Many young couples view Valentine's Day as an opportunity to express love and affection openly, challenging traditional norms surrounding romance and relationships. This shift is evident in the increasing number of individuals exchanging gifts, organising romantic outings, and publicly declaring their love on social media platforms.Navigating criticism, embracing growthHowever, it's essential to recognize that the celebration of Valentine's Day in the UAE is not without its critics. Some conservative voices argue that the holiday promotes Western values at the expense of traditional Emirati customs and Islamic principles. There are concerns about the commercialization of love and the pressure it places on individuals to conform to societal expectations.Despite these criticisms, the popularity of Valentine's Day in the UAE continues to grow unabated.

M2L Concepts Launches Ramadan District Season 2 at Jumeirah Emirates Towers

M2L Concepts, a leader in entertainment, leisure, and technology, is hosting the second season of Ramadan District, a celebration of the Holy Month of Ramadan. The event will take place at the prestigious Jumeirah Emirates Towers Plaza Terrace from March 15 to April 4, 2024. Visitors are invited to immerse themselves in a diverse array of cultural experiences daily, from 5:00 p.m. to 2:00 a.m. The Ramadan District Season 2 is a 20-day event designed to celebrate the cultural and spiritual significance of Ramadan while fostering community engagement and unity. This year’s theme centres around highlighting the customs, traditions, and spiritual essence of Ramadan, offering attendees an immersive experience filled with vibrant decorations, traditional music, and delicious culinary offerings.The occasion combines traditional elements with modern entertainment. Families can enjoy the fun board games, get in touch with their artistic side with an array of arts and crafts, and feel nostalgic playing arcade games. For the younger guests, the event is packed with engaging activities, including stage performances, face painting, interactive games, and cooking classes, ensuring a memorable experience for all ages. Highlighting the significance of cultural experiences during the Holy Month, M2L Concepts has meticulously designed the district to reflect traditional Middle Eastern aesthetics, including authentic seating and décor that resonate with the region's heritage. Emphasising the beauty of ancient arts, the district will host skilled artists dedicated to producing exquisite henna designs and captivating calligraphy, offering visitors a tangible connection to these enduring cultural traditions. A global staple in the beauty industry, Maybelline will be part of the shopping experience, offering visitors the opportunity to explore the latest beauty trends. Visitors can also explore culinary delights from popular names like PappaRoti, Keventers, Zaroob, and Biryani Pot, among others. Alongside this, retailers such as French luxury brand L’Occitane, Caspian Jewellery, Joyful Candles, Skin Story, and Rewind Apparel, among many others, will be showcasing their exclusive collections, offering a unique shopping experience that blends luxury, craftsmanship, and style. Thomas Gateff, Co-Founder and Managing Partner at M2L Concepts said: "The Holy Month of Ramadan is a deeply revered and culturally rich period in the UAE. Ramadan District Season 2 is all about bringing people together, revelling in communal harmony, and spending quality time with your loved ones. Our goal is to craft experiences that celebrate Ramadan's traditions while fostering a sense of shared joy and community. Building on the success of our previous events like the Ramadan Majlis, FIFA World Cup activities, and Winter District, which drew over 40,000 visitors, we're excited to bring this celebratory spirit back to the iconic Jumeirah Emirates Towers Plaza Terrace.”

Ali Rez honoured as 2024 Advertising Person of the Year by Dubai Lynx

Ali Rez, the Chief Creative Officer at IMPACT BBDO for the MENAP region, has been recognized as the Advertising Person of the Year for 2024 by Dubai Lynx. This prestigious award celebrates individuals who have made significant contributions to the advertising industry in the MENA region in the previous year. Rez's leadership and commitment to elevating creative standards in the region have been widely acknowledged.The presentation of the 2024 Dubai Lynx Advertising Person of the Year, Outstanding Contribution Award will take place during the Dubai Lynx Awards Ceremony at the Emirates Golf Club on Wednesday 6 March.Philip Thomas, Chairman of Dubai Lynx, expressed delight in honoring Rez, highlighting his role as a trailblazer and his dedication to enhancing the region's global reputation for creative excellence. Rez is renowned as the most awarded creative leader in the Middle East. Under his leadership, IMPACT BBDO has achieved remarkable success, including being ranked in the Global Top 10 by both the WARC and World Creative Rankings in the same year.Rez's achievements extend to numerous international awards, totaling close to a thousand accolades throughout his career. His work has contributed significantly to the UAE's recognition as one of the Top 10 Creative Countries in the Cannes Lions rankings. Notably, he has won 23 Grands Prix at Dubai Lynx and two Grands Prix at Cannes Lions. In 2023, he made history as the first Jury President from the Middle East at Cannes Lions.Rez's ambition to propel the UAE to the No.1 Creativity Ranking spot has led to several groundbreaking accomplishments, including winning prestigious awards such as the Glass: The Award for Change at multiple LIONS Festivals. He attributes his success to his exceptional team and acknowledges the support of influential leaders like Dani Richa and David Lubars.éalis-appoints-new-president

AtkinsRéalis appoints new president

AtkinsRéalis avalin Group Inc., a fully integrated professional services and project management company with offices around the world, announces the appointment of Christine Healy, a seasoned global executive, as President for Asia, Middle East and Australia (AMEA), effective February 19, 2024.“We are delighted to welcome Christine to this new leadership role. With her wealth of experience and exposure to diverse regions throughout her career, she brings a distinctive global perspective and background which will enrich our strategic approach,'' said Ian L. Edwards, President and CEO of AtkinsRéalis. “I look forward to working with her to serve our clients in the AMEA region as we continue our journey to provide solutions to meet the most pressing global challenges of our time.”Ms. Healy’s primary focus will be on advancing AtkinsRéalis’ engineering services offering, spanning infrastructure, transportation, and clean energy segments. She will report to the President and CEO and will also be a member of the Executive Committee.AtkinsRéalis has a strong presence in the Asia Pacific and Middle East and its involvement in projects in these regions include Neom’s THE LINE; the Hong Kong - Shenzhen Western Rail Link and the International Airport; the Sydney Metro – Western Sydney Airport project; the Dubai opera; the Landmark 81 building, named one of the World's Top 10 Skyscrapers in 2019, in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam and the Riyadh Metro. Last December, AtkinsRéalis was appointed to support the design of the New Murabba masterplan, the world’s largest modern downtown in Riyadh, and the Mukaab, an immersive destination that will revolutionize the way in which people experience hospitality, retail and leisure.

SOCIALEYEZ expands client portfolio with the fifth edition of Gov Games

For the second consecutive year and after its success at the 8th Annual Global Shorty Impact Awards for its outstanding performance at Gov Games, digital agency SOCIALEYEZ has announced its client win with the 5th edition of Gov Games. Taking place from 29th February – 3rd March, Gov Games, which falls under Sheikh Hamdan’s Office (The Executive Council), is a series of physical and mental challenges that bring together people from the UAE and beyond.As part of this partnership, SOCIALEYEZ is offering a wealth of expertise including social media management, event coverage, hero and teaser video production, and an overall campaign strategy. Additionally, SOCIALEYEZ is committed to delivering an all-inclusive campaign creative direction.This year, SOCIALEYEZ has been entrusted with a two-year contract, highlighting the agency's continued dedication to delivering outstanding results. Handling the creative campaign, social media management, and event coverage reflects the agency's deep understanding of Gov Games' vision and goals.Tarek Esper, Managing Director at SOCIALEYEZ, said: "We are thrilled to welcome Gov Games for the second consecutive year. As we embark on this journey for another year, we look forward to capturing the essence of Gov Games, delivering an unforgettable experience and amplifying the event's impact across digital platforms. It's not just a collaboration; it's a testament to the strong synergy between SOCIALEYEZ and Gov Games, and yet again we are committed to exceeding expectations and creating lasting memories."Known for pioneering innovative digital marketing strategies and its ability to foster meaningful engagements across diverse social media platforms, SOCIALEYEZ's partnership with Gov Games represents a significant milestone, further cementing its position as the trusted partner for businesses seeking to leave a mark in the digital field.

GoDaddy launches new email automation for Saudi entrepreneurs

Small businesses in Saudi Arabia today have a lot of competition when it comes to getting and keeping the attention of their customers. Entrepreneurs are always looking for ways to stand out and according to a recent survey, 55% of consumers say email is their preferred digital channel for business communication. To help small business Saudi owners enhance their email marketing efforts, GoDaddy, the company that helps entrepreneurs thrive, launched Email Automation for websites and marketing.This powerful new tool allows businesses to customize, schedule and trigger email communication automatically using intuitive templates, freeing up time to allow entrepreneurs to focus on growing their business. A few of these email templates include: Welcome emails for email subscribers, members, and new customers.  Commerce emails for order confirmations, order shipments and order cancellations.Appointment booking confirmations and appointment reminders.Abandoned cart emails to prompt customers to complete their check out. With each template completely customizable, entrepreneurs can ensure their brand’s color scheme, imagery and tone of voice are clearly reflected in all emails. Plus, entrepreneurs can personalize these automated emails to include the recipient's name, phone, email, and other personal details, so their customers feel seen and valued. “Sending the right message at the right time to the right audience is key to standing out in your customers inbox” said Eric Johnson, senior product manager for GoDaddy. “GoDaddy’s Email Automation streamlines the customer communication process, giving small businesses a more professional touch and adding value to their customers experience.”  To start using Email Automation, existing Websites + Marketing customers can login to their GoDaddy account, locate the “Connections” option in the dashboard and then click “Automations”.

Nearly a quarter of online daters experience digital stalking: Kaspersky

A new survey, commissioned by Kaspersky of 21000 people worldwide, reveals shocking data about the extent of digital abuse. Almost a quarter of respondents (23%) had experienced some form of online stalking from a person they were newly dating. A third (34%) of respondents believe that Googling/checking social media accounts of a person you had started dating as a form of due diligence is acceptable and 41% admitted to doing so when they started dating someone.According to the study – which interviewed 1000 people in 21 countries around the world – online daters are keen to take steps to protect themselves in the quest for love. However, people are still vulnerable to an alarming rise in stalking and abuse this Valentine’s day from risks posed by location settings, data privacy and more broadly, oversharing.The types of abuse are varied, with well over a third (39%) of respondents having reported some form of violence or abuse from a current or previous partner: 16% of respondents had been sent unwanted emails or messages and perhaps most concerningly, 13% had been filmed or photographed without their consent. A further 10% admitted they had had their location tracked, 10% that their social media accounts or emails had been hacked, and worryingly, 7% having had stalkerware installed on their devices without their consent.Proportionally more female respondents had experienced some form of violence or abuse compared to male respondents (42% versus 36%). More of those currently dating had experienced violence or abuse compared to those in a long-term relationship (48% versus 37%). In fact, 34% of respondents said they worried about the prospect of being stalked online, and female respondents being slightly more concerned at the prospect than males (36% were worried compared to 31% of male respondents).“The Internet of things, or connected world is brilliant and offers a myriad of possibilities. But with opportunity comes threats and one of those threats of a connected world is the ease of access to traceable data which leaves us vulnerable to abuse”, commented David Emm, Principal Security Researcher at Kaspersky. “Whilst the blame for these horrific behaviours never lies with stalking victims, unfortunately there is still a burden upon them to take steps to minimise risks. I think it’s great that people are taking steps to verify identities online, but would encourage people to just stop and do a quick sense check on any information, passwords or data they share, to just think through how that information could be used in nefarious hands.”Kaspersky has gathered some top tips for staying safe whilst dating online below, for more details, please take a look at our safe dating guide or for further ways to stay safe from Stalkerware, visit passwords to yourself and make sure they are complex and uniqueIf it seems too good to be true, it might just be – if in doubt check!Take a moment to check your own digital privacyThink before you share – the internet has long memory and sharing too much too soon can leave you vulnerableCreate a ‘safe plan’ if you move from digital to real worldsKaspersky works with experts and organizations in the field of domestic violence, ranging from victim support services and perpetrator programs through to research and government agencies, to share knowledge and support both professionals and victims. Kaspersky is one of the co-founders of the Coalition Against Stalkerware, an international group dedicated to tackling stalkerware and combating domestic violence. Since 2021, Kaspersky has been a consortium partner of the EU project DeStalk, co-funded by the Rights, Equality, and Citizenship Program of the European Union. Kaspersky has also launched and maintains TinyCheck, a free, safe and easy-to-use tool to check devices for stalkerware and monitoring apps.Survey DetailsIn January 2024 Arlington Research, on behalf of Kaspersky conducted 21,000 online interviews, 1,000 in each of the following 21 countries: The UK, Germany, Spain, Serbia, Portugal, The Netherlands, Italy, France and Greece, the USA, Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Peru, Colombia and Mexico, Asia-Pacific: China, Singapore, Russia, India and Malaysia. Respondents were aged 16 years and over. All were either in a long-term relationship (62% of the sample), dating someone (16%) or not currently dating/in a relationship but had been in the past (21%).