GITEX “Vital” to Middle East ICT Success

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GITEX

Partnerships, Launches and International Deals
Main Features as Region’s Most Successful ICT Event Comes to an End

Dubai, United Arab Emirates – As GITEX TECHNOLOGY WEEK, one of the world’s top ICT eventsenters its final day (THURSDAY 13 OCTOBER), exhibitors and participants have spoken of an unprecedented number of new products and an increase in quality buyers that has led to major deals being struck.

“The Middle East is one of the most exciting and lucrative ICT markets and GITEX is the lynchpin for bringing global and regional technology companies together to form new partnerships and conduct new business,” said Helal Saeed Almarri, CEO of Dubai World Trade Centre, organiser of the event.

“This year’s GITEX exemplifies how the region has grown in terms of attracting many of the world’s biggest players in the technology sector. Business leaders recognise the benefits of face-to-face interaction with clients, and this is one of the many reasons GITEX continues to offer participants unsurpassed value,” he added.

Featuring more than 3,500 companies from 57 countries, GITEX 2011 drew many of the ICT industry leaders to Dubai to unveil an unsurpassed number of launches to a targeted audience of Middle East and international decision–makers.

Launches included Microsoft Gulf, who chose GITEX to announce that Office 365 will be available for trials across the region, Etisalat’s Mobile Workforce Management Solution, du’s Emirati Plan — a new mobile service designed exclusively for UAE nationals and Panasonic’s Home Energy Management System along with many others.

Microsoft’s Office 365 is aimed at targeting Middle East businesses, particularly many SMEs, which do not have the time or resources to use cloud computing to its full potential. Samer Abu-Ltaif, Regional General Manager, Microsoft Gulf, there is no better event to introduce such a high-profile product.

“For us, GITEX is the natural choice to launch 365 – it is the most strategic event for us in the region and the launches are a testament of its importance across the industry as a whole”

Anthony Peter, Director, Direct Communication and Customer Care Group, Panasonic Middle East said that GITEX 2011 had been an extraordinary success: “I would say that business conducted has been up by around 50% this year and by the end of the second day, we recorded and increase in footfall of around 130% on last year. It is vital for the industry and an excellent platform for Panasonic to launch and showcase our latest world class products to a discerning and influential audience.”
Abdul Rahman Al Thehaiban, Vice President, Oracle Middle East and Africa, agreed: “GITEX is a good cross-industry, regional platform for Oracle and the event’s conference programming – Global Leaders Summit and Cloud Confex – has attracted high calibre, C-level attendees. Additionally, our stand traffic has been consistently high enabling us to showcase our latest innovations and demonstrate how our complete hardware and software stack can help transform business across the region.”

The volume of new business between international and regional partners has also been one of the driving forces of GITEX.

Among several first time partnerships, a new agreement between the UAE Telecom Regulatory Authority (TRA) and Silicon Valley-based ICANN (International Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers). Rod Beckstrom, CEO and President of ICANN and a speaker at the GITEX Global Leaders Summit said: “For a Middle East market this is a great step forward in terms of being able to use Arabic and increase internet use and penetration in what is already a rapidly evolving Internet region.”

netcetera, one of Switzerland’s leading IT providers, says GITEX is vital for their continued expansion in the Middle East. “This is only the second time we have exhibited at GITEX, ” said Dr. Andrej Vckovski, CEO of netcetera. “We have already won a contract from the Health Authority in Abu Dhabi and plan to expand to Qatar.”

Several first-time exhibitors have also found that meeting potential clients at GITEX can be as valuable as deals that have been struck. Alex Filocca is Middle East Director of Marketing for Citrix, who are making their GITEX debut. “We had extremely high expectations when we started the week and they have all been surpassed,” he said. “The quality of visitors has been superb, and to meet this level of decision-makers in terms of sheer numbers would take a lot of years and a lot of flights.”

Adding to the draw of local, regional and global participants at GITEX is the addition of brand new initiatives in Cyber Security, Digital Marketing, and Card Technology, along with a dedicated Telecoms Symposium and full conference schedule including world class ICT industry leaders.

Abdullah Al Samahi, IT General Manager, General Organization for Military Industries, Ministry of Defence and Aviation, Saudi Arabia, was a delegate at several of the conferences – he has been to every single GITEX since it was founded in 1981. He said: “The conferences give everyone an opportunity to meet with industry leaders from all around the world and keep abreast of the latest technology developments. I have never missed a year and more and more I see how vital GITEX is to the ICT industry.”

As one of the three largest ICT exhibitions in the world, the show connects more than 130,000 industry professionals from five continents with over 3,500 suppliers, and is seen as one of the most influential and high-profile events in the global ICT sector.

GITEX TECHNOLOGY WEEK is open today from 11am – 5pm.

About GITEX Technology Week 2011
Redefine the Future:
GITEX Technology Week delivers the ultimate platform for the international ICT industry to meet and conduct business. The event is a definitive gateway not just to the Middle East market but to the wider region.
GITEX Technology Week hosts thousands of key suppliers and market innovators across three core disciplines:
GITEX Business Solutions: The leading international ICT trade event for enterprise solutions and SMBs for the MENASA region.
GULFCOMMS: The largest international telecommunications trade event for mobile, fixed IP and satellite.
Consumer Technology: The MENASA region’s premier international trade event for consumer technology, entertainment, IT systems, components and peripherals.

New to 2011 – GITEX Card Technology:
GITEX expands its portfolio to incorporate this rapidly emerging sector as the Middle East embraces the latest trends, challenges and related products and services in this sector.
New to 2011 – GITEX Digital Media and Marketing:
GITEX Digital Media and Marketing embraces the world of the digital era by bringing together a combination of e-commerce, social marketing and e-marketing in an innovative, multi-dimensional platform, focused on bringing digital opportunities to the forefront.
New to 2011 -CyberSecurity @ GITEX
CyberSecurity @ GITEX edutainment will offer presentations on cybercrime awareness and how to avoid falling into traps including web phishing site, mobile phones credit card scanning and cloning, and identity theft among many more.

About Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC)
Website: www.dwtc.com
As the organiser of GITEX Technology Week, Dubai World Trade Centre offers more than 32 years’ experience of delivering world-class events in the Middle East, providing local, regional and international exhibitors with unmatched expertise and in-depth market knowledge.

Our team organises 18 of the largest and most successful international and regional shows in Middle East, providing an ideal platform for business development in the region. Our commitment to ongoing innovation within the exhibition industry has supported the rapid growth and development of a wide range of business-to-business and business-to-consumer shows, and delivered consistent satisfaction to exhibitors and visitors.

Author Bio

Samer Marzouq

Digital Media Superhero, Online Marketing Pro, Mad-Men Fellow, Tech Junkie, Advertising Whiz, Chief-Blogging-Officer, Bilingual Copywriter, Amateur Photographer