UAE consumer spending to hit US$200bn by 2017

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Dubai / Emirates Business

Virtual kiosks, interactive mirrors, and hologram advertisements are among the many ways that GCC retailers are leapfrogging Europe in enhancing the customer experience, industry experts announced.
Boosted by strong tourism growth, new and expanded malls and theme parks, and mega-events such as World Expo 2020 and 2022 FIFA World Cup Qatar, GCC retail sales are set to reach US$285 billion by 2018, according to a recent report by Alpen Capital.
“Immersive technology such as digital signage, interactive kiosks, hologram ads, and audio and lighting are now the competitive advantage for GCC retailers to attract and retain shoppers,” said David Macadam, Chief Executive Officer at the Middle East Council of Shopping Centers, the industry trade body that helps to facilitate and promote the MENA region’s shopping center development.
“In order to meet the demands of highly-connected shoppers, GCC retailers can leapfrog many European retailers in using professional audiovisual technology to bring innovations and online technology into the in-store experience,” added David Macadam.
The Middle East Council of Shopping Centers will be one of the key partners of InfoComm Middle East and Africa 2016, the region’s largest and most prominent pro-AV events. The Council will join hundreds of leading global professional audiovisual (pro-AV) manufacturers, suppliers, and systems integrators participating inInfoComm MEA 2016, which will be held under the theme of “Audiovisual Communications in a Hyperconnected World.”
Demonstrating the market potential, the Middle East is one of the world’s fastest-growing pro-AV markets, with 72 percent growth from 2012 to 2016, reaching USD 2.8 billion. The wider Middle East and Africa market is also posting 64 percent growth, according to a report by the event’s over-arching trade association InfoComm International.

UAE One of world’s most important retail destinations
One of the world’s top tourist and retail destinations, Dubai and the UAE are attracting tens of millions of visitors to large and luxurious malls, theme parks that are rapidly opening, and an increasing number of cultural events with the opening of the Dubai Opera and concert venues.
Tourists to the UAE are attracted by world-class infrastructure and luxury retail venues, which will be boosted by World Expo 2020 set to host 25 million visitors. The Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry predicts UAE consumer spending will reach US$200 billion by 2017.
“Innovation is part of the UAE’s DNA – and retailers here are increasingly deploying innovations such as interactive wayfinding and shopping screens, and virtual mirrors that allow customers to try on different outfits, accessories, and cosmetics. As audiovisual technology advances, we’re seeing strong demand for qualified professionals who know how to use it,” said Steve Scorse, Vice President – EMEA at SiliconCore Technology Inc, a UK-based manufacturer of LED displays and laser diode controls.
“Fine pitch, high resolution, and low-energy LED displays are at the forefront of retail branding, especially for premium retailers looking to create the ultimate impact,” added Steve Scorse. As a result, the UAE has become the region’s pro-AV hub, with the country’s market set to grow by 71 percent from 2012 to reach US$1.2 billion in 2016. Retail, venues, and events will top a combined USD 146 million in value by 2016, according to InfoComm International.

Richer visitor experience
Supporting the Middle East and Africa’s pro-AV growth, the 6thInfoComm MEA will debut as a standalone show from December 6-8 at the Dubai World Trade Centre.
“InfoComm MEA has graduated to a standalone show in response to exhibitor feedback. This will allow us to provide a more targeted audience of decision-makers across industry verticals, deeper engagement with interactive talks by and for C-suite executives, and more convenient access,” said David Lim, Project Director of InfoCommAsia Pte Ltd., the event’s co-organizers.
At the event’s Summit conference program, attendees will be able to share wisdom, strengths, and challenges with many of the world’s leading professional audiovisual experts.
Helping retailers, and pro-AV and IT companies to deliver world-class standards and reach new markets, InfoComm MEA partners include Association of Professional Interior Designers and the Middle East Council of Shopping Centers.

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