Stirring success: Qadreya Al Awadhi's journey from stocks to Bumblebee Food

At just 16 years old, Qadreya Al Awadhi embarked on her journey into the world of stock investing, guided by her father's wisdom. Recognizing the accessibility and potential for lucrative returns in the stock market, she utilized her earnings of 150K AED to sow the seeds of her entrepreneurial dreams. Now, after more than a decade later, Qadreya stands as a testament to perseverance and innovation, having cultivated her initial investment into the flourishing enterprise known as Bumblebee. Specializing in ready-made frozen meal plans tailored for infants and toddlers, her company has not only garnered commercial success but has also earned the esteemed recognition of the United Nations Women'sQadreya's vision for Bumblebee was inspired by her desire to provide nutritious and delectable meals, fostering a healthy and sustainable relationship with food for the youngest members of society.Hailing from Dubai, Qadreya pursued her academic career in finance at Zayed University before obtaining a Master's degree in International Business from The University of Wollongong. Despite her entrepreneurial pursuits, she also maintains a full-time position at one of the world's largest financial institutions, showcasing her dedication and versatility. Acknowledging her lack of experience in the food and beverage industry, Qadreya pursued culinary education to grasp the fundamental principles of nutrition, ensuring informed decision-making in meal composition. Additionally, she enlisted the expertise of Yasmin Haddad, a seasoned pediatric nutritionist and chef to curate menus tailored to meet the nutritional needs of growing children.In this interview with Adgully Middle East, Qadreya Al Awadhi, the founder of Bumblebee Food, delves into the innovative marketing strategies adopted by brands during the Holy month of Ramadan, underscoring her commitment to continuous growth and adaptation in the ever-evolving landscape of entrepreneurship.How are the brands in the Middle East tailoring their marketing strategies/campaigns to resonate with the cultural nuances and significance of Ramadan?Numerous brands utilize social media as a key component of their marketing strategy. For instance, some highlight families coming together for iftar and using their products. To provide further context, certain food and beverage retailers incorporate dishes featuring dates and employ Islamic-themed packaging, while restaurants may offer iftar and suhoor buffets. Furniture retailers would offer decorations with crescents, lights, Arabic calligraphy, and such. Events hosted during the month usually have a segment focusing on Ramadan’s importance and impact.  Can you discuss specific examples of how you are incorporating traditional elements of Ramadan into your exclusive collections or marketing campaigns?As a kids’ food business, we are focused on the health of children during this month. Many mothers, especially working mothers, do not have the time to cook multiple meals when they are fasting so this is when Bumblebee helps. With Bumblebee, the meals are packed with nutrition that your child needs, and it only takes minutes to prepare. Of course, we also incorporate some dates into our dishes as well such as date pudding, date brownies and date cookies. Our marketing campaign specifically targets easing the mealtime preparation burden for mothers during this month. 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?Brands use social media influencers to advertise their products and host Suhoor Nights where the venue is usually a majlis. The influencers usually wear traditional dresses and post content promoting the brand to their followers. This allows brands to continue their marketing efforts while still respecting the religious month.  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?It is important to remember that Ramadan is a religious month where concepts such as donations, helping the needy, and strengthening spiritual and family bonds all encouraged. Brands could incorporate donations and help the needy as part of their CSR activities. Some brands focus too much on the aesthetics of Ramadan rather than making an impactful change. For instance, brands could donate food to the needy, join the government’s philanthropic campaigns, or even allocate a certain percentage of sales to charities that align with their own company objectives.

Starcom ME ranks #1 MENA Agency in the WARC Media 100

Starcom ME, a leading media agency under Publicis Groupe ME, has topped the charts in the WARC Media 100 as the #1 media agency in MENA. No other media agency in the region has featured in this prestigious list, underscoring the level of commitment and work it takes to earn a rank on this list. The WARC Media 100 is a ranking of the world’s most awarded campaigns and companies for media. It tracks the results of media award shows around the world, and acts as a benchmark for media excellence, allowing agencies and brands to compare their performance with that of their peers.Commenting on this feat, Tony Wazen, CEO of Publicis Media ME said, “Coming out as #1 in the WARC Media 100 is the culmination of a tremendously successful year for Starcom ME. To be included amongst the world’s best is a feat unmatched by any other media agency in MENA, and this only strengthens our resolve to push the limits of media excellence and innovation across all our media agency brands.”Ramez Zeineddine, CEO of Starcom ME added, “We’re immensely proud to continue our record of industry leadership in the WARC Media 100. Having our work consistently recognised by the industry is collectively owed to the brilliant work of our talents, and the ambition of our clients. We look forward to continuing this path of excellence throughout the year.” In the past year, Starcom ME’s performance has been recognised with a string of accolades including #1 Media Agency of the Year at Dubai Lynx and Media Agency of the Decade at Athar Saudi Festival of Creativity – both in 2023.

RTS Group partners with Marriott International for Dubai Hotel

RTS Investments Group has announced a partnership with Marriott International to operate its Business Bay Hotel in Dubai. The hotel will undergo a rebranding and join the prestigious Renaissance Hotels portfolio as the Renaissance Business Bay Hotel, Dubai. The transition is expected to be completed in Q2 2024, with the hotel remaining fully operational throughout the process."We are thrilled to bring the Renaissance Hotels brand to our property in Dubai's vibrant Business Bay district," said Andrea Strim, General Manager of the Business Bay Hotel on behalf of RTS Investments Group. "The Renaissance brand is known for its sophisticated experience and focus on cultural exploration, which perfectly aligns with our vision for the hotel. This partnership with Marriott International allows us to continue delivering exceptional hospitality with a renewed focus on bespoke experiences for our guests."Following the rebranding, the hotel will cater to curious travelers seeking a deeper connection with the city. The Renaissance philosophy emphasizes providing guests with unique and enriching local experiences, seamlessly linking them to the heart of the Business Bay neighborhood. The redesigned hotel will embody the brand's commitment to discovery and curated design."We are delighted to welcome the Renaissance Business Bay Hotel, Dubai to our portfolio," said Sandeep Walia, Chief Operating Officer – Middle East, Marriott International. "Business Bay is a rapidly growing commercial and residential hub, and this new hotel strengthens our presence within the district. We look forward to working with RTS Investments Group to introduce the Renaissance brand's design, engaging service, and signature rituals to the neighborhood."RTS Investments Group also extends its sincere gratitude to Millennium and Copthorne Middle East Holdings Limited for their valuable collaboration and support in operating the hotel. The existing partnership with Millennium continues for their second property in Barsha Heights, which will remain under the Millennium brand umbrella.

Interactive CTV campaigns drive higher engagement for advertisers: Innovid

Advertisers leveraging the biggest screen in the house are seeing interactive CTV campaigns achieve engagement rates 4.6x higher than mobile video and 10.3x higher than desktop video. When compared to standard pre-roll, interactive CTV video formats, inclusive of choice- and non-choice-based ads, also generate more than 600% lift in engagement. These insights are according to a new CTV insights report released today by Innovid (NYSE:CTV), an independent software platform for the creation, delivery, measurement, and optimization of advertising across connected TV (CTV), linear, and digital.Innovid has an unparalleled, unbiased view of the CTV universe. Every day, Innovid processes approximately 1.3 billion video impressions and collects more than 6 billion data points.In “The CTV Advertising Insights Report 2024: Your Data-Driven Source for CTV Performance Trends,” Innovid analyzed nearly 380 billion global video ad impressions served on its platform in 2023. The report provides a holistic view of video advertising and the ways in which marketers are adapting media, creative, and measurement strategies for streaming. Key findings reflect an industry speeding toward a 100% digital TV future, including: CTV growth continues to surge: CTV accounted for 53% of video impressions – up 12% compared to the year prior. Additionally, the average CTV campaign reach in 2023 more than doubled compared to two years prior. Frequency is rising, but it’s a double-edged sword: The average frequency delivered has increased by almost 80% – up from 4.08 to 7.40 – over the past two years. While it’s important for marketers to have their ads viewed multiple times for awareness, recall, and engagement, it’s also critical to find the right balance before hitting the point of oversaturation. Viewers spend time with advanced creatives: Audiences expect relevant, 1:1 content – even with ad experiences – and it shows with the amount of time they spend with advanced creatives. Interactive ads had an average of 92 additional seconds of time earned vs. standard pre-roll video. Dynamic ads, those personalized to the viewer, generated more than 38 seconds of additional time earned.    “Advertisers are realizing the true power behind the measurable, impactful, and innovative ad experiences that only CTV can provide,” said Dani Cushion, CMO, Innovid. “As TV rapidly shifts to a 100% digital future, the time is now for advertisers to optimize every aspect of their campaigns for streaming. The opportunities for reach, engagement, and ROI are unparalleled.”

Talabat UAE enables users to donate to Mothers’ Endowment campaign via app

Talabat UAE, the region’s leading platform for everyday deliveries, announced its support of the Mothers’ Endowment campaign, launched by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to honor mothers by establishing a AED 1 billion endowment fund to support the education of millions around the world.talabat enables its app users to donate starting from AED 10, AED 50, AED 100, AED 300 or AED 500 towards the campaign, supporting its efforts to empower underprivileged individuals by providing education and training to help improve their quality of life and stability.Donation to the Mothers’ Endowment campaign can be done by downloading the talabat app from Google Play store, Apple’s App Store or Huawei’s AppGallery, and typing “Mothers’ Endowment” in the search bar. Alternatively, those wishing to contribute can click the “Give Back” button on the app’s main page, then choose “Mothers’ Endowment”.Organized by the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives and coinciding with the holy month of Ramadan, the campaign allows contributors to make donations in their mothers’ names to honor them, highlighting the role of mothers in supporting their children’s education. The campaign also establishes the values of honoring parents, kindness, compassion and solidarity, while solidifying the UAE’s humanitarian role.Simonida Subotic, Vice President and Managing Director, talabat UAE said: “We are proud to contribute to the success of this inspiring initiative dedicated to mothers. Our participation strengthens the ongoing partnership with Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives, now in its third year.”“Supporting the Mothers’ Endowment campaign reflects talabat’s commitment to social responsibility and advancing the UAE’s humanitarian initiatives,” she added.

Aramex delivers a call to peace with Ramadan video campaign

Aramex, a leading global provider of comprehensive logistics and transportation solutions, has launched a special video campaign for Ramadan centered around an undelivered parcel destined for Gaza. This campaign highlights a message of peace and togetherness as part of Aramex’s commitment to promoting global harmony.Focused on the word Salam or peace in Arabic, the campaign video depicts a parcel that is being sent by a Palestinian citizen living abroad to his family back home in Gaza, which is held back in a storage room midway through its journey, until either a ceasefire or peace agreement is in place, or the borders are opened up and parcels can be delivered to Gaza.The moving film is directed at people from all over the world who wish for peace in the world, and ends with a call to action to send a message of peace via the website On this dedicated site, people can record a short video message and say the word ‘Salam’ – in solidarity with the campaign’s theme of promoting peace and harmony in Gaza and around the world.Commenting on the initiative, Mike Rich, Group CMO at Aramex, said: "We were struck by a poignant question: What do you do when you cannot deliver a parcel to places like Gaza, especially in the holy month of Ramadan? The answer that resonated deeply was 'Salam' or 'Peace'—a message that transcends borders and speaks to the heart, provides reassurance to all communities, and holds out hope for the future. At the center of our complex and ever-growing operations at Aramex is our pursuit of Delivering Good and helping communities. Social responsibility has always been a vital part of our strategic focus, and we are proud to launch this campaign and demonstrate the power of one word—peace—that can truly make a difference to our collective future. This is a campaign that is very close to our hearts and driven by Aramex’s mission to deliver a better future to all communities, and I am confident that this will resonate in the hearts and minds of people across geographies."The Ramadan video campaign underpins Aramex's keenness to leverage its market-leading reach and goodwill within the region and beyond to support local and global efforts in promoting messages of peace.

ACUD sponsors Egypt Capital Football Cup

Cairo: ACUD announced the sponsorship of Capital Cup tournament first edition, which will be held at Egypt’s International Olympic City Stadium in the New Administrative Capital. The International Football Federation (FIFA) has also announced the inclusion of this tournament in its international events series. The tournament's events are scheduled to take place from 22nd to 26th of March, following its announcement as part of the trials conducted by FIFA to develop global football. This was announced in an official statement issued by FIFA through its website and official social media pages.Engineer Khaled Abbas, Chairman and Managing Director of Administrative Capital for Urban Development, stated: “The importance of the tournament, and its role in enhancing Egypt’s sport scene spotlight on emerging New Administrative Capital on a global scale.  He emphasized the pride in supporting diverse community initiatives spanning sports, culture, and education, recognizing them as crucial pillars of development”.Eng. Abbas added, "We are committed to provide all available resources to ensure the success of the tournament, and forward to see remarkable performances from all teams.In addition, Eng. Abbas confirmed that the Croatian national team would arrive to Cairo on March 21st to participate in the tournament, confirming that the matches would be live on FIFA's official channels.Eng. Abbas emphasized the significant responsibility of ACUD to highlight the sports development in the New Administrative Capital and opening ceremony that matches the exceptional tournament, he pointed out that the support of the tournament comes within the framework of ACUD’s commitment to enhancing social responsibility. He expressed his hope that this tournament would contribute healthy spirit during this important football tournament.Noteworthy, the tournament is consisted of four matches, the Egyptian national team will start against New Zealand on the 22nd of March and the second match will be according the winner or the loser of the other match against the Egyptian national team .

Monroe Capital Taps Waleed Noor for ME Leadership, Eyes Abu Dhabi Office

Monroe Capital LLC (“Monroe”) today announced it has expanded its platform to the Middle East with the appointment of Waleed Noor as Managing Director and Head of Middle East Distribution. Monroe is in the process of opening an office in Abu Dhabi. Mr. Noor will be based in Abu Dhabi and be responsible for representing Monroe throughout the region.Prior to Monroe, Mr. Noor was a Managing Director, Head of Structured Solutions Sales (MEA Region) at Commerzbank AG, where he was responsible for sales and distribution of credit solutions, secured funding, origination and distribution of Emerging and Developed Market credit risk. Mr. Noor has more than 15 years of experience in alternative investments and fixed income. Prior to Commerzbank AG, he was a Director, Cross Asset Sales (MENA Region) at Credit Agricole CIB where he was responsible for institutional sales of investment products and hedging solutions. He also held positions at Goldman Sachs (MENA Region), Credit Agricole CIB (MENA Region), and Banque Saudi Fransi in Riyadh. Mr. Noor earned his M.A., Risk Management with Honours from Nottingham University Business School, UK, and his B.A. in Finance with Honours from Durham University, UK.“We are very excited to add Waleed to the Monroe Capital team. We look forward to our continued strategic growth and expansion in the Middle East,” said Ted Koenig, Chairman and CEO of Monroe Capital. “Over the last few years, we have seen more interest and appreciation of the Monroe platform and the private credit asset class from Middle East investors. We have a tremendous opportunity to expand our footprint in this region.”

LG advances B2B ventures with cutting-edge Lighthouse Factory expertise

LG Electronics (LG) is expanding its B2B business area and making significant strides into the global smart factory market by capitalizing on its expertise in constructing and operating intelligent autonomous factories.Earlier this year, LG established the Smart Factory Business Division within its Production engineering Research Institute (PRI) and initiated the commercialization of its intangible assets, including smart factory construction technology and operational solutions. These innovations will be highlighted at MODEX 2024, the premier supply chain experience trade show, held in Atlanta, Georgia, USA.LG’s smart factory business not only delivers production automation solutions but also incorporates AI-driven production planning, operations and the Digital Twin solution. The company aims to enhance customers’ manufacturing competitiveness by offering optimal solutions across all stages, from factory planning and design to construction and operation. Additionally, continuous improvement consulting services for factory upgrades will be available.Aligned with LG’s vision of achieving a revenue of KRW 100 trillion by 2030, with the B2B sector targeting revenue exceeding KRW 40 trillion, the smart factory business serves as a cornerstone for LG’s B2B expansion. This endeavor is part of LG’s strategic focus on three key areas for future growth: accelerating non-hardware business models, expanding B2B businesses and developing new business domains.Experienced in various aspects of the smart factory business, LG boasts extensive manufacturing expertise across diverse sectors such as home appliances, air solutions, TVs, vehicle components and robotics. What’s more, the company provides cutting-edge equipment and communication technologies, including big data-enabled integrated monitoring systems and predictive quality evaluation systems.In addition to its manufacturing prowess, LG has secured essential digital technologies for building automated processes, including AI, big data and the Internet of Things (IoT). The company has also developed an intelligent production system where deep learning-enabled robots execute tasks guided by the company’s Digital Twin solution. This solution simulates actual machinery, equipment and logistics systems in a virtual environment, facilitating smooth integration and optimization of manufacturing processes.These accomplishments have earned LG recognition for possessing world-class smart factory technology, encompassing hardware, software and automation solutions. Notably, the LG Smart Park in Changwon and the Tennessee factory in the USA were selected as Lighthouse Factories by the World Economic Forum.With these capabilities, LG strengthens collaboration with various partners to expand the smart factory ecosystem. Following the signing of an MOU with LS ELECTRIC for the “Establishment of Smart Factory Business Cooperation System and Mutual Benefit Enhancement,” LG is forming unions with numerous global partners to advance smart factory technology through cloud and data analysis.“In light of LG’s robust portfolio of smart factory solutions, we are committed to partnering with customers throughout their manufacturing journey by delivering optimal solutions across all stages, from planning and design to construction and operation,” stated Song Shi-yong, head of LG Electronics’ Smart Factory Business Division. He further elaborated on plans to introduce a Total Factory Offering System, which will provide a comprehensive solution in collaboration with LG and its global partners.

Homzmart partners with MoEngage to engage with Customers

Cairo-based online furniture marketplace Homzmart has partnered with MoEngage, a marketing automation and customer engagement platform, to drive engagement at the right time and place for the right customers.Founded in 2020, the E-commerce platform sells home furniture, home décor, lighting, and home supplies through a visualized community. It will leverage various capabilities of MoEngage, like segmentation, analytics, and omnichannel communication orchestration. With MoEngage, the brand plans to overcome challenges like manual efforts, creating onboarding and cart abandonment journeys. Most importantly, they will use MoEngage to build journeys for “anonymous to known users”.“Our partnership with MoEngage is a significant step forward in achieving our customer-centric vision," says Karim Ahmed, Group CMO at Homzmart. "By leveraging MoEngage's powerful engagement platform, we'll gain deeper customer insights and deliver the personalized experiences our customers are expecting.”Additionally, for real-time customer engagement and 1:1 personalization, the brand plans to leverage the website personalization capabilities of MoEngage. Furthermore, to reduce its manual efforts, Homzmart will explore the AI capabilities of MoEngage for deep segmentation and personalization.Overall, from this partnership, the online furniture brand plans to uplift its metrics like user engagement, customer lifetime value and increase in RoI. The online furniture brand explored and compared various vendors, but they chose MoEngage as the platform based on the depth of segmentation, transparency, and flexibility of the platform.Another factor that helped them narrow down the list was the local expertise that MoEngage inherited and an understanding of regional nuances and challenges.“We are excited to partner with one of the leading players in the online furniture and home decor space. Homzmart has remained laser-focused on customer engagement with personalization and we are happy to assist them in this steadfast endeavor to unlock the next phase of engagement with insights-led personalization,” said Kunal Badiani, Regional VP Sales at MoEngage.Homzmart joins the growing list of 1500+ global companies across 35 countries, such as Azadea Group, Commercial Bank of Dubai, Landmark Group, Sympl, Apparel Group, Airtel, Ola, Nexta, Oyo, Orcas, and Mashreq, that trust MoEngage to deliver a consistent experience across multiple devices and touchpoints.

GoDaddy honors Saudi Arabian Mothers' entrepreneurial spirit this Mother's Day

As Mother's Day approaches, GoDaddy, the largest services platform for entrepreneurs, is shining a spotlight on the remarkable resilience and achievements of women and mother entrepreneurs – mompreneurs, in the Kingdom. Through its commitment to providing essential tools and support, GoDaddy aims to empower mothers in business to succeed in the ever-evolving online landscape.Recent data from GoDaddy's 2024 Global Entrepreneurship Survey reveals a surge in mompreneurs in Saudi Arabia, with 69% of entrepreneurs many of whom proudly carry the title of Mompreneurs, reporting that they have embraced the entrepreneurial journey, with a further overwhelming 98% attesting that "life is better after becoming an entrepreneur."Selina Bieber, Vice President for International Markets at GoDaddy, expressed, "Mothers bring their own unique perspective and skill set to entrepreneurship. By focusing on harnessing digital tools, GoDaddy aims to equip mompreneurs with tools resources for their online journey.” She added, “While GoDaddy celebrates the resilience and accomplishments of mompreneurs, we want to help ensure they have the resources to flourish and empower them to grow their businesses successfully."In addition, according to GoDaddy's 2024 Global Entrepreneurship Survey, 59% of respondents identified marketing their business online as one of the biggest obstacles during their early entrepreneurial journey, reflecting challenges faced by entrepreneurs in the Kingdom. Here are five tips to help you take your business online as a mompreneur:Elevate Your Online Presence with a Domain Name:Invest in a distinctive and memorable domain name for your business. Utilize services like GoDaddy’s domain services to secure a personalized web address. Owning your digital space is important for brand recognition and business credibility.Be the Face of Your Brand on Social Media:Take charge of your online presence by actively engaging with your audience on social media platforms. Share your journey, celebrate achievements, and showcase the human side of your business.Build Your Website with User-Friendly Tools:Empower yourself by creating and managing your website using user-friendly tools. Explore platforms like GoDaddy’s website builder to easily design and update your site, showcasing your products and services, without the need for extensive technical knowledge.Support and Collaborate with Fellow Mompreneurs:Foster a sense of community by connecting with and supporting other mompreneurs. Collaborate on projects, share insights, and cross-promote each other's businesses.Professionalize Your Communication with Custom Email:Elevate your business communication by setting up a professional, custom email address through services like GoDaddy’s personalized email. A personalized email enhances your professional image and your brand's credibility.Harness the Power of AI for Content Creation:Embrace the efficiency of AI-powered content creation using tools like GoDaddy's AI prompt library. Generate engaging and relevant content for your website, social media, and marketing materials by leveraging artificial intelligence tools to help streamline content creation processes.On this Mother's Day, GoDaddy reaffirms its commitment to supporting women entrepreneurs, providing essential tools, expert guidance, and unwavering support to help them achieve their business milestones and turn their visions into reality.

NVIDIA digital human technologies bring AI characters to life

NVIDIA announced today that leading AI application developers across a wide range of industries are using NVIDIA digital human technologies to create lifelike avatars for commercial applications and dynamic game characters. The results are on display at GTC, the global AI conference held this week in San Jose, California, and can be seen in technology demonstrations from Hippocratic AI, Inworld AI, UneeQ and more.NVIDIA Avatar Cloud Engine (ACE) for speech and animation, NVIDIA NeMo for language, and NVIDIA RTX for ray-traced rendering are the building blocks that enable developers to create digital humans capable of AI-powered natural language interactions, making conversations more realistic and engaging.“NVIDIA offers developers a world-class set of AI-powered technologies for digital human creation,” said John Spitzer, vice president of developer and performance technologies at NVIDIA. “These technologies may power the complex animations and conversational speech required to make digital interactions feel real.”World-Class Digital Human TechnologiesThe digital human technologies suite includes language, speech, animation and graphics powered by AI:? NVIDIA ACE — technologies that help developers bring digital humans to life with facial animation powered by NVIDIA Audio2Face and speech powered by NVIDIA Riva automatic speech recognition (ASR) and text-to-speech (TTS). ACE microservices are flexible in allowing models to run across cloudand PC depending on the local GPU capabilities to help ensure the user receives the best experience.? NVIDIA NeMo — an end-to-end platform that enables developers to deliver enterprise-ready generative AI models with precise data curation, cutting-edge customization, retrieval-augmented generation and accelerated performance.? NVIDIA RTX — a collection of rendering technologies, such as RTX Global Illumination (RTXGI) and DLSS 3.5, that enable real-time path tracing in games and applications.Building Blocks for Digital Humans and Virtual AssistantsTo showcase the new capabilities of its digital human technologies, NVIDIA worked across industries with leading developers, such as Hippocratic AI, Inworld AI and UneeQ, on a series of new demonstrations.Hippocratic AI has created a safety-focused, LLM-powered, task-specific Healthcare Agent. The agent calls patients on the phone, follows up on care coordination tasks, delivers preoperative instructions, performs post-discharge management and much more. For GTC, NVIDIA collaborated with Hippocratic AI to extend its solution to use NVIDIA ACE microservices, NVIDIA Audio2Face along with NVIDIA Animation graph and NVIDIA Omniverse Streamer Client to show the potential of a generative AI healthcare agent avatar.“Our digital assistants provide helpful, timely and accurate information to patients worldwide,” said Munjal Shah, cofounder and CEO of Hippocratic AI. “NVIDIA ACE technologies bring them to life with cutting-edge visuals and realistic animations that help better connect to patients.”UneeQ is an autonomous digital human platform specialized in creating AI-powered avatars for customer service and interactive applications. Its digital humans represent brands online, communicating with customers in real time to give them confidence in their purchases. UneeQ integrated the NVIDIA Audio2Face microservice into its platform and combined it with Synanim ML to create highly realistic avatars for a better customer experience and engagement.“UneeQ combines NVIDIA animation AI with our own Synanim ML synthetic animation technology to deliver real-time digital human interactions that are emotionally responsive and deliver dynamic experiences powered by conversational AI,” said Danny Tomsett, founder and CEO of UneeQ.Bringing Dynamic Non-Playable Characters to GamesNVIDIA ACE is a suite of technologies designed to bring game characters to life. Covert Protocol is a new technology demonstration, created by Inworld AI in partnership with NVIDIA, that pushes the boundary of what character interactions in games can be. Inworld’s AI engine has integrated NVIDIA Riva for accurate speech-to-text and NVIDIA Audio2Face to deliver lifelike facial performances.Inworld’s AI engine takes a multimodal approach to the performance of non-playable characters (NPCs), bringing together cognition, perception and behavior systems for an immersive narrative with stunning RTX-rendered characters set in a beautifully crafted environment.“The combination of NVIDIA ACE microservices and the Inworld Engine enables developers to create digital characters that can drive dynamic narratives, opening new possibilities for how gamers can decipher, deduce and play,” said Kylan Gibbs, CEO of Inworld AI.Game publishers worldwide are evaluating how NVIDIA ACE can improve the gaming experience.Developers Across Healthcare, Gaming, Financial Services, Media & Entertainment and Retail Embrace ACETop game and digital human developers are pioneering ways ACE and generative AI technologies can be used to transform interactions between players and NPCs in games and applications.Developers and platforms embracing ACE include Convai, Cyber Agent, Data Monsters, Deloitte, Hippocratic AI, IGOODI, Inworld AI, Media.Monks, miHoYo, NetEase Games, Perfect World, Openstream, OurPalm, Quantiphi, Rakuten Securities, Slalom, SoftServe, Tencent, Top Health Tech, Ubisoft, UneeQ and Unions Avatars.More information on NVIDIA ACE is available at Platform developers can incorporate the full suite of digital human technologies or individual microservices into their product offerings.Developers can start their journey on NVIDIA ACE by applying for the early access program to get in-development AI models. To explore available models, developers can evaluate and access NVIDIA NIM, a set of easy-to-use microservices designed to accelerate the deployment of generative AI, for Riva and Audio2Face on today.

Emirates wishes customers a happy Holi

Emirates will be celebrating the most colourful festival in the world, wishing customers a happy Holi onboard select flights to India with refreshing Thandai drinks and sweet Holi treats.Emirates’ customers travelling to and from seven destinations in India – Ahmedabad, Bengaluru, Chennai, Delhi, Hyderabad, Kolkata, and Mumbai, will enjoy the much-loved Indian sweet Kesar Gujiya, alongside their meal for breakfast, lunch or dinner. The deep-fried dumpling stuffed with solidified milk and dried fruits will be served in a specially designed box, reminiscent of the colourful festival of Holi. First and Business Class customers will be warmly welcomed with cold Thandai – a festive drink made from milk and nuts, flavoured with fragrant saffron and rose petals.Customers can get into the holiday spirit with hundreds of classic Bollywood movies in the world-class ice entertainment library with up to 260 Indian movies including new titles, classic Bollywood and regional Indian movies. Movies include box office hits like Pathaan, The Great Indian Family, Gaslight and many more. There is also a special collection of Yash Raj Films, Bollywood’s ‘father of romance.’ Customers can also enjoy music videos from Yash Raj in Indian TV, plus over 30 albums and playlists of Indian music, including a special music video compilation called Holi Hai!Emirates' celebration of Holi underscores the airline's enduring connection with India, spanning 37 years of shared history and cultural affinity. Serving nine destinations in India with 170 weekly flights, Emirates connects millions of customers travelling to India from Dubai and from across its global network each year.

Wizz Air Abu Dhabi offers a 20% flash sale on tickets this Ramadan

Wizz Air Abu Dhabi, the ultra-low-fare national airline of the UAE, is celebrating Ramadan with an unmissable promotion on selected routes for travel lovers looking to discover must-see destinations. The flash promotion is applicable for bookings made on 20 March, with travel dates to destinations, including vibrant cities and natural paradises across its ever-expanding network, available until 30 June 2024*.The selected routes are now available on and the WIZZ mobile app, both accessible in Arabic. With Wizz Air, ultra-low-fares are just a few clicks away!The second largest airline in Abu Dhabi is allowing travellers to book a well-deserved vacation to discover hidden gems, savour delicious dishes from nearby spots and explore the history of charming neighbourhoods. The exciting promotion during the busy travel period offers travellers affordable, hassle-free travel opportunities and incredible value for money.Johan Eidhagen, Managing Director of Wizz Air Abu Dhabi, said: “As the flagbearer for ultra-low-cost travel in the region, we are delighted to celebrate the holy month of Ramadan with an extraordinary promotion that enables an exhilarating adventure for all ages. We are committed to spontaneous travel during the busy travel period and beyond as we continue to foster connectivity and create unmissable travel experiences. We strongly encourage all adventurous travellers to secure their bookings early to enjoy the lowest fares to a plethora of incredible destinations. We look forward to welcoming you on board our aircraft soon.”Passengers can book tickets with confidence, thanks to WIZZ Flex. With WIZZ Flex, passengers can change their flight up to three hours before departure without any fee and receive 100% of the fare immediately reimbursed in airline credit.Strategically located in the UAE, Wizz Air Abu Dhabi provides ultra-low-fares and efficient travel options to Alexandria (Egypt), Almaty (Kazakhstan), Amman (Jordan), Ankara (Turkey), Aqaba (Jordan), Athens (Greece), Baku (Azerbaijan), Belgrade (Serbia), Bishkek (Kyrgyzstan), Cairo (Egypt) and Dammam (Saudi Arabia). As well as routes to Kuwait City (Kuwait), Kutaisi (Georgia), Larnaca (Cyprus), Male (Maldives), Madinah (Saudi Arabia), Muscat (Oman), Nur Sultan (Kazakhstan), Salalah (Oman), Santorini (Greece), Samarkand (Uzbekistan), Sarajevo (Bosnia), Sohag (Egypt), Tashkent (Uzbekistan), Turkistan (Kazakhstan), Tirana (Albania) and Yerevan (Armenia) among others.*One-way price, including administration fee. One carry-on bag (max: 40x30x20cm) is included. Trolley bag and each piece of checked-in baggage is subject to additional fees. The price applies only to bookings made on and the WIZZ mobile app. Number of seats at indicated prices are limited.

Sunny Yang on how TCL blends Ramadan spirit with marketing magic

In this interview with Adgully Middle East, Sunny Yang, General Manager for Middle East and Africa at TCL, discusses how the company tailors its marketing strategies for electronic appliances to resonate with the unique cultural and religious significance of Ramadan in the Middle East. Excerpts from the interview:How does TCL leverage the unique cultural and religious significance of Ramadan in the Middle East to tailor its marketing strategies for electronic appliances?Our marketing campaigns are specifically tailored to the region with a focus on Ramadan. Given that Ramadan is synonymous with generosity, we actively engage in Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives to contribute to the well-being of the country and its people. Many of our past campaigns have featured significant giveaways, emphasizing our commitment to giving back to consumers, the community, and the nation.Can you share specific examples of successful marketing campaigns or initiatives TCL has executed during the Ramadan seasons in the Middle East? How do you think these campaigns will resonate with the local audience?It has been our standard approach to craft campaigns specifically for Ramadan, aligning with the sentiments of the local audience, which also happens to be our target demographic. We have previously executed successful Ramadan campaigns, including a Ramadan makeover where a fortunate consumer received a complete TCL home upgrade with electronics and appliances, a well-received Ramadan TVC that garnered excellent results across the region, and a CSR initiative involving Ramadan community fridges.What consumer insights or market research does TCL rely on to inform its Ramadan marketing strategies for electronic appliances in the Middle East?TCL consistently utilizes independent survey firms such as GFK to obtain market insights and understand consumer demand trends. Additionally, we collaborate with our business partners to stay updated on the latest consumer behaviours and preferences, ensuring that our Ramadan marketing and promotions are effectively aligned.How does TCL adapt its product offerings or promotional activities to align with the purchasing behaviour and preferences of consumers during Ramadan in the Middle East?We align our product offerings with both consumer demand and our company strategy by gathering feedback from our business partners. This ensures that our product selection remains in tune with market needs and our overall objectives.In a competitive market landscape, what differentiation strategies does TCL employ to stand out and capture consumer attention during Ramadan in the Middle East?Our standout approach involves aggressive promotional offers, both online and offline, coupled with a strong emphasis on showcasing the latest technological product features such as QLED, Mini LED, local dimming, and Gaming TVs. This strategy distinguishes us from other competitors in the market.With the rise of digital and social media platforms, how does TCL integrate online channels into its Ramadan marketing efforts for electronic appliances in the Middle East? Can you elaborate on any successful digital marketing initiatives?As we solidify our presence in this region, digital and social media play a crucial role. Our emphasis on Ramadan campaigns has consistently leaned towards these channels. The primary goal of our Ramadan TVC was to enhance the digital and social outreach specifically targeting the local audience.Last year, for the TCL Ramadan Makeover, we extensively promoted it on our social media platforms through boosted posts, resulting in a tenfold increase in audience reach on our social channels.This year, our Ramadan e-commerce campaign stands as a significant event, given that consumers are actively seeking to upgrade their appliances and electronics during this season. TCL actively participates in these campaigns, offering its products and engaging with consumers to meet their needs and expectations.

GO Sport and Baked collaborate for a thrilling multi-category brand campaign

In a bid to ignite the spirit of adventure and inspire individuals to push their limits, GO Sport has joined forces with Baked to unveil a groundbreaking multi-category brand campaign across GO Sport’s primary international markets.The collaboration capitalizes on the strengths of both entities, crafting a campaign aimed at fostering a ‘go further’ mindset among consumers. Emphasizing the pivotal role of sports in modern life, the campaign champions the essence of athleticism and fitness in everyday routines.By tapping into various categories, the campaign aspires to resonate with a diverse audience, encouraging them to excel in different facets of life encompassing sports, fitness, and personal growth. From running to training, team sports to swimming, the campaign encompasses a spectrum of activities, ensuring there's something for everyone regardless of their background or preferences.Filmed across picturesque locales in Dubai, the campaign captures the essence of the city's vibrant fitness culture. Through a cinematic experience, viewers are immersed in the mindset and dedication of athletes, inspiring them to embark on their own journeys of self-improvement. <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>As the campaign unfolds, it aims to ignite a spark of motivation in individuals worldwide, urging them to embrace the challenge, push boundaries, and go further in their pursuit of excellence. With GO Sport and Baked at the helm, the journey promises to be nothing short of exhilarating.Kirsten Pugsley, Head of Marketing at GO Sport, expressed her excitement about the international launch of the brand campaign, marking a significant milestone in GO Sport's journey. She emphasized the campaign's alignment with the brand's ethos of empowering individuals to strive for greatness in their pursuits.The creative endeavor was brought to life by the collaborative efforts of Baked, under the strategic leadership of Dan Bulman. Production was helmed by Kill Club, with Molly Bolton serving as producer, and Knockout Production overseeing service production in Dubai.

LLMs increasingly used to create chatbots: Snowflake study

Dubai: Large language models (LLMs) are increasingly being used to create chatbots, according to Data Cloud company Snowflake. As generative AI continues to revolutionize the industry, chatbots have grown from being approximately 18 percent of the total LLM apps available, to now encompassing 46 percent as of May 2023 — and that metric is only climbing. In addition, after surveying Streamlit’s developer community, it was found that nearly 65 percent of respondents noted that their LLM projects were for work purposes, signaling a shift in the importance of harnessing generative AI to improve workforce productivity, efficiency, and insights.These results are based on usage data from more than 9,000 Snowflake customers, and summarized in Snowflake’s new "Data Trends 2024" report. The report focuses on how global enterprise business and technology leaders are leveraging resources such as AI to build their data foundation and transform future business operations. The new data shows a shift from LLM applications with text-based input (2023: 82%, 2024: 54%) to chatbots with iterative text input, offering the ability to have a natural conversation."Conversational apps are on the rise, because that’s the way humans are programmed to interact. And now it is even easier to interact conversationally with an application,” explains Jennifer Belissent, Principal Data Strategist at Snowflake. “‘We expect to see this trend continue as it becomes easier to build and deploy conversational LLM applications, particularly knowing that the underlying data remains well governed and protected. With that peace of mind, these new interactive and highly versatile chatbots will meet both business needs and user expectations."Over 33,000 LLM Applications in Nine MonthsThe report also shows that 20,076 developers from Snowflake's Streamlit community of developers have built over 33,143 LLM apps in the past nine months. When it comes to developing AI projects, Python is the programming language of choice due to its ease of use, active community of developers, and vast ecosystem of libraries and frameworks. In Snowpark, which enables developers to build apps quickly and cost-effectively, the use of Python grew significantly faster than that of Java and Scala (in the past year)— Python grew by 571 percent, Scala by 387 percent, and Java by 131 percent. With Python, developers can work faster, accelerating prototyping and experimentation—and therefore overall learnings as developer teams make early forays into cutting-edge AI projects.In terms of where application development is taking place, the trend is towards programming LLM applications directly on the platform on which the data is also managed. This is indicated by a 311 percent increase in Snowflake Native Apps – which enables the development of apps directly on Snowflake’s platform – between July 2023 and January 2024. Developing applications on a single data platform eliminates the need to export data copies to third-party technologies, helping develop and deploy applications faster, while reducing operational maintenance costs.Data Governance in Companies is Growing in ImportanceWith the adoption of AI, companies are increasing analysis and processing of their unstructured data. This is enabling companies to discover untapped data sources, making a modern approach to data governance more crucial than ever to protect sensitive and private data. The report found that enterprises have increased the processing of unstructured data by 123 percent in the past year. IDC estimates that up to 90 percent of the world's data is unstructured video, images, and documents. Clean data gives language models a head start, so unlocking this untapped 90 percent opens up a number of business benefits.“Data governance is not about locking down data, but ultimately about unlocking the value of data,” said Belissent. “We break governance into three pillars: knowing data, securing data and using data to deliver that value. Our customers are using new features to tag and classify data so that the appropriate access and usage policies can be applied. The use of all data governance functions has increased by 70 to 100 percent. As a result, the number of queries of protected objects has increased by 142 percent. When the data is protected, it can be used securely. That delivers peace of mind.”"Taken individually, each of these trends is a single data point that shows how organizations across the globe are dealing with different challenges. When considered together, they tell a larger story about how CIOs, CTOs, and CDOs are modernizing their organizations, tackling AI experiments, and solving data problems — all necessary steps to take advantage of the opportunities presented by advanced AI," says Belissent. "The important thing to understand is that the era of generative AI does not require a fundamental change in data strategy. It does, however, require accelerated execution of that strategy. It requires breaking down data silos even faster and opening up access to data sources, wherever they may be in the company or across a broader data ecosystem."

Netflix Announces New Sports Series 'Receiver'

Receiver to be Produced by NFL Films, Omaha Productions and 2PM Productions, the Team Behind Hit Series QuarterbackToday, Netflix announced its newest sports series that follows pass catchers during the NFL 2023-24 season: Davante Adams (Las Vegas Raiders), Justin Jefferson (Minnesota Vikings), George Kittle (San Francisco 49ers), Deebo Samuel (San Francisco 49ers), and Amon-Ra St. Brown (Detroit Lions).Logline: It’s been said that there’s no more difficult position in the NFL than the quarterback. But throwing the pass is only half the story. Receiver follows five of the NFL’s best pass catchers throughout the 2023 season on and off the field: Davante Adams, Justin Jefferson, George Kittle, Deebo Samuel and Amon-Ra St. Brown.Receiver is set to premiere in Summer 2024 as a continuation of Netflix’s partnership with the NFL that first began with Quarterback, which hit the Netflix Global Top 10 for three weeks.Production Company: NFL Films, Omaha Productions and 2PM ProductionsFormat: 8 x 45 minute episodesExecutive Producers: Peyton Manning and Jamie Horowitz for Omaha Productions; Ross Ketover, Pat Kelleher and Keith Cossrow for NFL Films; Patrick Mahomes and Jacquelyn Dahl from 2PM Productions. “The natural progression is from a pass to a catch, so we’re excited to dive into the Receiver world after the success of our Quarterback series,” said Gabe Spitzer, Vice President, Nonfiction Sports, Netflix. “NFL Films, Omaha Productions and 2PM Productions have delivered again in finding unique and dynamic athletes who will further highlight the drama of this sport on and off the field.” “We were thrilled last summer to see audiences all over the world diving into the lives of NFL quarterbacks,” said Joe Zucco, NFL Films Supervising Producer. “We believe the extraordinary skills, dedication and passion of the NFL’s great wide receivers – and one tight end – will make a perfect follow-up.”“We are excited to be working again with Netflix and NFL Films to give fans unprecedented access to what it’s like to play receiver at the highest level,” said Peyton Manning. “As we did with Quarterback, we look forward to telling the stories of five incredible receivers, each with their unique personality, skillset, and motivation for what drives them to be the best.” Netflix is the premier home for great sports stories as these series join Netflix's lineup of sports programming, including recent releases like Quarterback, Formula 1: Drive To Survive, Full Swing, NASCAR: Full Speed, Untold, Tour de France: Unchained, Under Pressure: The U.S. Women’s World Cup Team, Six Nations: Full Contact and more. Netflix has partnered with sports leagues including Formula 1, National Football League (NFL), the PGA TOUR, Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP), Women's Tennis Association (WTA), Fédération internationale de football association (FIFA), World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) and more.

Sony Group Becomes Founding Partner of Esports World Cup

The Esports World Cup Foundation ("EWCF") and Sony Group Corporation ("Sony") have signed a multi-year partnership agreement to collaborate on initiatives for the Esports World Cup. The collaboration leverages Sony's acclaimed gaming products and entertainment expertise alongside the EWC's vision to unite the global gaming and esports communities across the most popular games, and underscores a shared ambition to broaden the appeal of gaming and esports to players and fans worldwide. The inaugural Esports World Cup 2024 is slated to take place this summer in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.As part of this agreement, Sony Pictures Entertainment will create a behind-the-scenes documentary series showcasing the players and games of the Esports World Cup. Sony, together with Sony Interactive Entertainment, will also look to exploring additional opportunities to support promising creators and talent in the region. Sony Music Entertainment will produce the music Anthem of the Esports World Cup 2024."Sony is the perfect partner for the Esports World Cup," said Ralf Reichert, CEO, Esports World Cup Foundation. "Our goal is to establish a global platform for esports and gaming that sets new standards for live esports events. Sony's experience in creating stunning visuals, engaging music, compelling storytelling, and state-of-the-art technology will be a game-changer for the Esports World Cup. The EWC aims to take esports to the next level, and we are thrilled to count on Sony's world class expertise in this endeavor.""We're excited to make the Esports World Cup more fun and engaging for fans globally by harnessing the creativity and technology from across our diverse businesses." said Toshimoto Mitomo, Executive Deputy President and CSO, Sony Group Corporation. "Sony has been enhancing the esports experience especially with Sony Interactive Entertainment's initiatives such as PlayStation Tournaments and the annual EVO fighting game series. We look forward to further catering to this growing, global community of players and fans with the Esports World Cup."With the Esports World Cup, EWCF has created an unprecedented celebration of competitive gaming and esports fandom. This summer, top esports organizations will face off in Riyadh, to compete in a unique cross-game structure for the largest prize pool in esports history. Recently, the EWC has announced the addition of ten popular titles - Dota 2, Counter-Strike 2, Mobile Legends: Bang Bang, Honor of Kings, PUBG, PUBG Mobile, Overwatch, Free Fire, Rocket League, Fortnite and Rainbow Six Siege - as participating games. More games will be announced soon.

Amazon UNIVERSITY Esports to host exciting lineup of gaming & esports events

During the holy month of Ramadan, Amazon UNIVERSITY Esports, the leading esports competition for university students, will be hosting a series of engaging activities to foster community connections and allow students to interact with influencers and content creators while enjoying their favourite games. In its commitment to expanding participation, Amazon UNIVERSITY Esports welcomed participants from 10 new universities in the UAE, reflecting its commitment to inclusivity and broadening the talent pool within the esports community. The tournaments saw remarkable growth with over 120+ teams registering in the UAE and a total of 1,433 from the UAE participating, a 45% growth from the last season. This initiative is part of a global effort, with AUE impacting over 100,000 students across 26 countries and 2,600 universities. GGTech's engagement further amplifies this reach, boasting over 600,000 registered participants across various competitions. Layali Ramadan with Amazon UNIVERSITY Esports"Layali Ramadan" will bring special nights to Amazon UNIVERSITY Esports channels once a week throughout Ramadan. This innovative concept will feature multiple streamers playing together, showcasing popular games such as League of Legends, VALORANT, Among Us, and Pummel Party. Audiences can expect lively gameplay commentary and interaction with streamers and fellow viewers via chat.Ramadan CUP TournamentThe Ramadan CUP Tournament will unite students from four countries in the MENA region, focusing on games like TFT and Clash Royale. This tournament not only connects students with global gaming activities but also provides an opportunity to engage with influencers and showcase their skills on a broader platform.Fawazer Ramadan"Fawazer Ramadan" introduces an interactive online event, "Share your Clip and Let the World Guess Your Rank," during the holy month of Ramadan. Participants are invited to submit short gameplay clips from popular titles such as League of Legends or VALORANT. These clips will be showcased on dedicated platforms or social media channels, allowing viewers worldwide to guess the player's rank based on their gameplay skills and strategies."With the esports industry projected to reach $1.6 billion in turnover by 2024, we're excited to bring together students from diverse backgrounds to commemorate the holy month of Ramadan, fostering a promising gaming community," said Mario Pérez, CEO at MENA Tech, the project’s organiser. "These activities aim to create memorable experiences and foster connections among students, influencers, and gaming enthusiasts alike."AUE and MENA Tech have recognised the burgeoning potential within the UAE's gaming and esports market. Despite global trends, the MENA region's gaming revenue saw a 6% increase in 2022, reaching $6.8 billion. This growth is largely attributed to the Middle East's youthful demographic, with the UAE standing out for its gaming enthusiasm: 90% of adults are gamers, the highest percentage worldwide, and 23% game for more than 11 hours each week. Initiatives like Abu Dhabi's ADGaming bolster this boom, with the city already being home to over 70 game developers and esports teams, and poised for further expansion.For more information on Amazon UNIVERSITY Esports and its Ramadan activities, please visit UNIVERSITY Esports is made possible thanks to the support of top-level publishers and brands such as Riot Games and Shahid.

LG makes strategic investment in bear robotics

 LG Electronics (LG) is making a strategic investment move to expedite the advancement of its capabilities in service robotics, a key new business area of the company.LG has executed a stock purchase agreement to acquire a stake in Bear Robotics, a prominent Silicon Valley-based startup specializing in AI-driven autonomous service robots, through an investment of USD 60 million.Rather than seeking short-term returns, this strategic investment is aimed at bolstering LG’s portfolio for long-term growth. Upon closing the stock purchase, the company will hold the largest portion of shares in Bear Robotics on a single-shareholder basis.At CES 2024, LG’s CEO William Cho had discussed such potential equity investments, stating, “In the service robotics market, we’re focusing primarily on areas such as delivery and logistics. However, we are carefully considering future directions, keeping open the possibility of equity investments or mergers and acquisitions.”Founded in 2017 under the leadership of CEO John Ha, a former Senior Software Engineer and Technical Lead at Google, Bear Robotics has gained recognition for its AI-powered indoor delivery robots catering to markets in the United States, South Korea and Japan. The company boasts a team of skilled engineers, including its co-founder and CTO, with backgrounds in prominent tech companies. Notably, Bear Robotics is drawing attention for its expertise in platformizing service robotics software, robot fleet management technology and cloud-based control solutions.Leading the Shift to Software-defined Robotics and Enhancing Synergy in Robot BusinessLG is preparing for a transition towards Software-defined Robotics (SDR), a shift from hardware to software emphasis, similar to what has been observed in the mobility industry. In anticipation of future growth, the company is committed to developing scalable service robots on an open architecture software platform so that it may cater to a variety of environments, recognizing the critical importance of standardizing AI-based autonomous robot platforms. With this understanding, LG views this strategic investment as a pivotal opportunity to propel its robot business capabilities.With years of experience in the robot business, LG has accumulated expertise in deploying robot solutions across various commercial spaces such as airports, hotels, restaurants, hospitals, retail stores, museums, smart warehouses and golf courses. LG operates a facility dedicated to the production of service robots at the LG Future Park in Gumi and boasts world-class capabilities in management of quality, supply chain and customer services.By combining Bear Robotics’ world-class R&D talents and software platform expertise with its own strengths, LG aims to spearhead efforts in standardizing robot platforms to significantly reduce market-entry costs, thereby enhancing operational efficiency and fostering synergies. “Just as Android revolutionized the smartphone era, standardized open platforms are essential for the activation of the robot market,” remarked Bear Robotics CEO John Ha.Charting a Course for Future Growth in the Service Robotics MarketIn recent years, LG has strategically reallocated resources towards high-growth sectors for the future, aligning with market dynamics and the strategic significance of its business models. The investment in Bear Robotics epitomizes LG’s dedication in accelerating the advancement of its service robot sector, a pivotal component of its future growth strategy.LG has been nurturing its robot business as one of its future core pillars. From the deployment of guide robots at Incheon International Airport in 2017, it has progressively introduced tailored solutions for diverse commercial settings, encompassing delivery and disinfection functionalities. Since the preceding year, LG has actively pursued expansion into international markets including the United States, Japan and Southeast Asia.The service robotics market is expected to experience rapid growth, propelled by the rapid advancement of technologies such as AI and communication. On a global scale, the market is anticipated to grow from 36.2 billion USD in 2021 to 103.3 billion USD by 2026.Last year, LG unveiled its Future Vision 2030, outlining its goal of evolving into a Smart Life Solution Company that can seamlessly connect and expand customer experiences across various domains, including home, commercial, mobility and virtual spaces. Aligned with this vision, LG aims to achieve the ‘Triple Seven’ goal: an average growth rate and operating profit of seven percent or more, alongside an enterprise value translating into an EBITDA ratio of seven.“As the service robot market enters a period of growth, this equity investment will significantly contribute to securing a ‘Winning Competitive-edge’ for the company,” emphasized Lee Sam-soo, Chief Strategy Officer of LG Electronics. “From a mid- to long-term perspective, we will seek to develop our robot business into a new growth engine, exploring various opportunities through the integration of cutting-edge technologies such as Embodied AI and robotic manipulation.”

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

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

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

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

Joseph Karam appointed GM of International Media at The MediaVantage

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

Jumeirah Beach Hotel welcomes Rene Egle as General Manager

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

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

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

Waterfront Market offers unique shopping and culinary experiences for Ramadan

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

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

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

TikTok launches second season of 'Moving Topics

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

Money Plant Real Estate appoints Sandstone Media as communications partner

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

VC bias? Lama Yammine-Hocks on empowering women entrepreneurs

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

Wego predicts surge air traffic during Eid al Fitr

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

Saatchi & Saatchi appoints Ali Zein as Executive Creative Director

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

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

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

Chery debuts in the UAE with flagship Sharjah showroom

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

Royal Boxing and Fitness Club launches in Dubai Palm Jumeirah

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

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

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

Alex Simmons unravels Expo City Dubai's culinary feast

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

Ramadan campaign has exclusive shopping and memorable experiences for shoppers

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

Esports consultancy KALM launches global HQ in Abu Dhabi

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

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

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

Dubai unveils new government logo

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

Podeo onboards Saudi Arabian English podcast The Mo Show

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

BORK unveils its first Middle East boutique at The Dubai Mall

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

EITC receives licenses from UAE Central Bank to offer fintech services

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

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

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

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

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

AliExpress unveils Ramadan sales and offers

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

Formula E Teams Up with Google Cloud to Drive Championship Growth

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

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

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