Campaign Middle East - May 2022

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April 25, 2022




2022 Creative





April 25, 2022


Publicis Groupe appoints Tahaab Rais as chief strategy officer for region Publicis Groupe has announced the appointment of Tahaab Rais as its first regional chief strategy officer working across Publicis Groupe agencies for the Middle East & Turkey region. Rais is one of the most awarded creative effectiveness leaders in the world, consistently leading agencies to top-10 rankings in the Global Effective Index and WARC Effective 100. In his new role, Rais will be responsible for driving the Groupe’s ‘Power of One’ strategy, as well as leading integrated strategy across creative, digital, media and consultancy disciplines. Bassel Kakish, chief executive officer of Publicis Groupe Middle East & Turkey, said: “Having successfully established the Power of One model in this region, now is the time to build and scale even more extraordinary solutions for global and regional brands, and Tahaab has the perfect creative, data and strategy credentials to do so. As our first regional chief strategy officer, he will bring our best talent together, across agencies and across the region. These multi-disciplinary teams will unlock new opportunities for Publicis Groupe and our clients as we continue to chart our course in the Middle East and Turkey region.” The Power of One approach consolidates all market expertise within one holding group, forming optimal teams across Saatchi & Saatchi, Leo Burnett, Publicis Worldwide, Digitas, MSL, Prodigious, Sapient, Epsilon and Publicis Media. Leveraging this strategy, Rais will work in close collaboration with leadership teams across the business to further upgrade the product, create value and drive long-term growth for clients.

Rais said: “I’ve always respected Publicis Groupe’s interconnectedness, so the opportunity to build on the Power of One vision was too good to pass up. The role I hope to play is that of a ‘connector’. There are so many opportunities that can be unlocked by bringing people together across such diverse companies, disciplines and skillsets, and Publicis Groupe is the only network in the region with the scale and depth of resources to allow this. I am very grateful to be a part of it all with Bassel and everyone

across the region. Together, we will achieve even more meaningfulness, effectiveness and fame for Publicis Groupe’s clients, both current and future.” Rais joins Publicis Groupe from FP7 McCann and McCann Worldgroup, where he served as regional strategy head and was on the global strategy executive committe, leading the company’s strategy, effectiveness and data practices. Prior to that, Rais served as regional strategy director at J. Walter Thompson.

MENA youth to go to Cannes Lions

MERCEDES-BENZ ROAD TO MECCA On the occasion of the Holy Month of Ramadan, luxury automotive brand Mercedes-Benz Cars Middle East has launched the ‘Road to Mecca’ – a four-part docuseries that ventures through 5000 years of heritage, history and the present-day simultaneously. The campaign focuses on the journey of Nabil Al Rostamani, a successful commercial aviation pilot, and his journey of self-discovery as he leaves behind his pilot wings to retrace the historic pilgrimage routes by road, from the United Arab Emirates to Saudi Arabia. The agencies behind the campaign are Leo Burnett and Publicis Emil Dubai.

The 19th edition of the UAE Young Lions Digital Competition, hosted by Motivate Media Group and Motivate Val Morgan, took place on the March 26, 2022. This year’s competition took place online, with Rebecca Ann Menezes and Eduardo Cesar from Saatchi & Saatchi Middle East winning Gold. The pair will move on to represent the UAE at the International Young Lions Digital Competition. The winners will also receive a full-week delegate pass each and an allexpense-paid trip to attend the in-person Cannes Lions. Also representing the UAE, at the Cannes Lions Roger Hatchuel Academy 2022, an advertising learning programme that takes place over the week of the Lions in France, is Fatma AlSuwaidi, a third-year visual communication student majoring in advertising at the American University in Dubai.


April 25, 2022

Publicis Groupe wins creative brief for e&, formerly Etisalat Group The brand formerly known as Etisalat Group, now ‘e&’, has announced the appointment of Publicis Groupe as its creative partner. The Etisalat account had been with Omnicom Group’s Impact BBDO since 2016. Publicis said in a statement: “Utilising its robust UAE and global presence, Publicis Groupe will provide creative services for all e& business pillars in support of their transformation journey.” In February, e& had announced its transformation from a giant telco with digitalisation capabilities into a global technology and investment conglomerate. Backed by strong financial performance and business results in markets where it operates, the group is well-placed to steer its global digitalisation leadership that will shape a brighter digital future, said Publicis: “Through its progressive business model and specialist business pillars, e& has refocused its efforts on investing in breakthrough technologies, capitalising on solid ventures and accelerating in-depth market penetration regionally and worldwide. Such progress is underpinned by the commitment to

deliver outstanding customer experiences, unlock more value for shareholders and make a difference in the communities where it operates.” “At Publicis Group, we believe in the power of bold vision coupled with unconventional thinking and action to tackle the growing technological disruption taking place across industries. We are happy to partner with clients who are ready to take the leap forward to create greater consumer and business value while making a ripple impact in the communities,” said Bassel Kakish, Publicis Groupe CEO, ME & Turkey. “Our futures are connected”, he said. “We know that the transformational strategy of e& will enhance customer experiences through innovative and breakthrough technologies across all segments. We also know how important it is to chart the course of success through such transformation. It is because Publicis Groupe did the same five years ago as we transformed our client approach through the ‘Power of One’. We consciously revitalised our capabilities and talent to better help our clients win in a platform world. It

is our shared value to impact the lives that will drive our team to deliver purpose-driven creativity.” Publicis Groupe’s operation, led by Saatchi & Saatchi, draws on creativity, strategy and talent from across the Groupe. As the creative agency of record, it will create “far-reaching and dynamic” campaigns for e&, driving global awareness across a variety of different verticals. This will aim to “add differentiated value to the brand as a global technology conglomerate that creates an environment with limitless possibilities built on solid

foundations, smart connectivity and fruitful collaborative opportunities”. “We are delighted to be appointed as creative partner of e& as it begins an exciting chapter of transformation, and for this opportunity to offer industrydefining creativity, backed with data-rich insights and forwardlooking strategy,” said Ramzi Sleiman, regional managing director at Saatchi & Saatchi ME. Etisalat was recently named the world’s strongest telecom brand by Brand Finance, becoming the first brand in the region to achieve this.



MG Motor Egypt partnered with DDB Egypt for a campaign around its latest SUV. The MG HS will give you the wrong first impression – from the outside it’s a cool-looking SUV, with the right ground clearance and boot space, yet the moment you step inside, that’s when you are truly flabbergasted. To show these features, the commercial takes on a funny note, and during a description of all the car’s characteristics, the narrator’s mother goes on an adrenaline-filled ride around town to communicate the car’s power.

In Dubai, during Ramadan, people have spotted empty plates on cars driving down streets and parked in malls, as well as in parking lots across the city. The reason is to raise awareness about the millions of empty plates that often go unnoticed. The Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives has launched the ‘1 Billion Meals’ campaign, to get that number of meals to underprivileged families across the Middle East, Africa and South Asia. The insight behind the idea was based on how people in the UAE love having unique numbers on their car plates.

Creative agency DDB Egypt Directors Hamba & Doss Production company The Talkies Agency Saatchi & Saatchi – Publicis Groupe

April 25, 2022

MenaTech launches new Arabic tech and business magazine Dubai-based Arabic language technology and business media portal, MenaTech recently published the first edition of MenaTech Magazine, a specialised Arabic magazine focusing on advanced technology and business topics that are not usually explored in detail by Arabic media. MenaTech is a sister company to Campaign Middle East and is no stranger to the technology and business scene in the region. It boasts more than 10 years of experience creating world-class Arabic content in the fields of technology and business, reaching millions. The brand occupies a position that enables it to publish a high-end, dynamic magazine that will act as a reliable formal channel of communication for regional brands. MenaTech founder and CEO Amjad Bassam said: “As the world of technology and business in the MENA region continues to bloom and prosper, in-depth media coverage and dialogue around these intricate topics remain insufficient in Arabic. To address this issue, we launched MenaTech Magazine, a dependable Arabic source of the latest topics in technology, and a hub of innovation for the Arab tech community.” Bassam added: “As a leading media brand in technology and business, the magazine will grant us a greater presence in the world of printed and

The first issue of MenaTech Magazine is devoted to fintech

digital magazines. We aspire to gather enterprises, start-ups, decision makers and professionals showcasing their achievements and solutions to support the future of the industry.” Anthony Milne, chief commercial officer of Motivate Media Group, said: “The launch of the MenaTech Magazine shows that the appetite for print is growing in the region. The magazine will allow for greater insights into the world of technology

for an audience that is craving information that is easily digestible in Arabic”. The first edition of MenaTech Magazine covers all aspects of financial technology (fintech). Initially published on a quarterly basis, the first edition was published in March and has already reached more than 15,000 readers. For more info visit


Motivate Social takes shape Motivate Media Group has recently expanded its social media offering, adding a broad range of social media management services to its Motivate Social division. This expansion will complement the existing influencer marketing services offered through Vamp, providing clients with holistic social media strategies. Led by Hebah Ikhlief, the newly appointed social media director, who has worked with some of the biggest regional brands during her 10 year career, Motivate Social will offer innovative and effective social media strategies for clients. Ikhlief’s expertise in digital marketing allows her to harvest the power of data, consumer insights and lifestyle trends to create effective, smart and creative content for clients. Ian Fairservice, Motivate Media Group managing partner and group editor-in-chief, said: “this natural extension of our social media offering continues to demonstrate the diversity of Motivate’s portfolio as we adapt to the ever-changing media landscape. This expansion builds on the foundations laid by our leading business and lifestyle brands in creating platforms with huge audience engagement while complementing our influencer marketing services offered by Vamp.”



From the creative minds of the multi-awarded director Malcolm Green, in partnership with Memac Ogilvy and Joy Films, a series of videos came to life to celebrate intelligence, innovation, and experience that invites people to join the making of a new world. Expo 2020’s six-episode campaign, hosted by Emirati celebrity DJ Bliss and creative director Peyman Al Awadhi is set against the buzz of Expo 2020. Filmed in an on-the-ground, high-energy, and elevated docutainment style, the films celebrate what Expo was all about.

Reebok MENA has debuted its bold new brand proposition, ‘Life is Not a Spectator Sport’. Tapping into its archives, the fitness brand has refreshed its legendary 80s tagline, ‘Because life is not a spectator sport’, which still rings true today. The campaign highlights unique and intergenerational talent who foster authenticity, creativity and individuality. Front and centre is Reebok’s iconic Classic Leather, a product story that celebrates the timeless and versatile design that will expand its legacy this Spring/Summer ‘22 season. Supporting the global brand campaign is a range of global and local talent including Amna Al Qubaisi, Shahad Salman and Sandra Sahi.

Agency Memac Ogilvy Chief creative officer Till Hohmann Production house Joy Films Director Malcolm Green Cast Peyman Al Awadhi and DJ Bliss

Agency Impact BBDO Dubai Creative director Johannes De Beer Producer Alexandre Bianchin


April 25, 2022

Stay relevant VMLY&R’s global CEO Jon Cook tells Austyn Allison about breaking things, bringing things together and why trust trumps timesheets


ohn Cook, CEO of VMLY&R, was recently in Dubai for several days of meetings with his regional EMEA management team, about 50 people in total. This is his first time in the Middle East as until his digitally led agency, VML, merged with 95-year-old creative shop Y&R in 2018, it didn’t have a presence in the Middle East. Both agencies were part of WPP, and VMLY&R is still part of the holding company. VMLY&R is now in MENA, as is VMLY&R Commerce, which was previously Geometry and traditionally answered to the Ogilvy network. Global Team Blue (GTB) , the unit within WPP dedicated to servicing the Ford Motor Company, is also strong in the region and has also been folded in under VMLY&R. “With all three of those things coming together here, this becomes kind of a living laboratory of what we’re doing globally, of the connection between commerce and advertising and technology,” says Cook. “On a smaller scale, but a growing scale, it’s a nice overall view of what we’re doing.” He adds: “It’s a living lab because it’s

evolving. We’re fluid with what we’re doing. We are constantly experimenting.” VMLY&R was formed by the merger of two agencies owned by London-based holding group WPP. Those two agencies were digital shop VML, which is based in Kansas City, Missouri – Cook’s base – and New York’s Young and Rubicam (Y&R). Then WPP folded in other agencies, including Geometry, which is now VMLY&R Commerce, and GTB. VMLY&R may be home to a lot of acronyms, but it has a clear identity, says Cook. “The overall VMLY&R proposition is about being connected, and it connects customer experience with brand experience, all united by commerce.” Cook admits that he was apprehensive ahead of the merger. “I expected it to go well,” he says, “But I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t a little bit nervous." Commerce is quite central to VMLY&R’s offerings, which Cook says is unusual. Clients don’t normally expect their ad agencies to have the selling chops that VMLY&R does. “People think [commerce] comes from big

technology firms, comes from the consultants,” he says. “They would think that commerce gets delivered through big commerce software.” He admits he might be paranoid on the subject, but adds: “I do think people would perceive an ad agency to be lighter-weight on commerce; I think they would think they’d have a commerce person, but not global depth like we do.” Although it sits under Cook, and shares an acronym with his network, VMLY&R Commerce is still a distinct offering, but Cook hints it may become even more integrated. He says: “We have some decisions to make about it. We had two distinct offerings, they’re in different real estate, different places in some parts of the world. They’re 100 per cent together in terms of the capability in the offering, but yet still in two different places physically. Leadership sits in two separate spaces. So I think you’ll see us talk more and more about how that comes together.” In previous interviews, Cook has said that he wants to run the best agency on Earth, and Fast Company magazine has called

April 25, 2022

VMLY&R, one of the most innovative companies in the world. Cook says that accolade means he’s been doing the right thing, and the overall quest for best is about striving for relevance – of which innovation is a significant ingredient. “I think sometimes people forget that it’s not just an automatic thing that a client and an agency are together,” says Cook. “Human beings, with their reputation on the line, have to choose agencies. To be relevant means we’re the ones that are choosing. And then to stay relevant, that’s the other thing: to evolve.” That evolution needn’t be about what VMLY&R offers, but sometimes about how it offers it. During Covid-19, many clients cut their ad spend. So VMLY&R pivoted into more of a customer experience role. Cook gives the example of a US client of the network, paint manufacturer Sherwin-Williams. “We just really pivoted the entire way we could make an impact to the customer experience, the way that contractors and professionals bought paint online, the way they had it delivered to them, the way they had shipments delivered to their job sites,” he says. The agency is still talking to the same people within companies, but those people are themselves dealing with people deeper within their own organisations. “The nice thing is our client reference point stayed the same,” says Cook. “I think a lot of the chief marketing officers, the chief technology officers that we work with, the CEOs we work with, they stayed in the mix. The people they would have us work with, or the resources we needed to go to in order to get work executed changed dramatically. “All of a sudden we were closer to the sales force, we were closer to infrastructure, we were closer to operations to execute some of the marketing ideas. It was getting into deeper levels of the operations of a company to make those things happen.” Of client-side leaders, Cook says: “They were needing to be different in their roles. They were pivoting at the same time we pivoted. We were there for them and with them on that journey.” With change comes destruction, says Cook. But that’s the way things work. “Just when you’ve changed and you’ve gotten relevant, that’s when you have to start being breaking things,” he says. “The way it works in an agency is when you change your capability, or you evolve to be more relevant, you do that first and foremost in your capability with your clients. But there’s a wake that happens on the backside of that, which is internal. Your talent changes, your systems change, the infrastructure changes, and the agency has to then catch up with the capability that you’ve prioritised to your clients.” The cycle is: “We work a couple of years to be the most relevant, forward-thinking thing. We get there, and then half of our company continues to find the next point of relevance, while the other half starts cleaning up the mess we created on the backside of breaking things in our own company – on systems and processes and everything.” As well as heading VMLY&R, Cook is also on the executive committee of WPP, a

committee formed when Mark Read took over from Sir Martin Sorrell at the helm of the holding company in 2018. It was under Read that mergers began to happen. VMLY&R was the first, then J. Walter Thompson merged with Wunderman, then Grey with AKQA. Cook says WPP is working towards being “the most creative company on the planet”. This means having fewer agencies that deserve more attention. WPP’s role is to support and connect those agencies. The strategy was under way before the pandemic hit, but Covid-19 heightened it. “In the last couple years we’ve seen more and more focus on the way we think about data and the way we interact with data, the way we think about technology, the simplification with our brands, making them much easier to access,” says Cook. WPP won a bid to become Coca-Cola’s ‘global

‘‘WHEN YOU’RE TRYING TO DO SOMETHING BIG THAT’S A SECRET, YOU HAVE TO DETERMINE HOW MANY PEOPLE YOU CAN TELL AND BRING INTO THAT SECRET TO DO IT.’’ marketing network partner’ during the pandemic, taking the lion’s share of that brand’s $4bn business, and Cook says this is proof that the strategy is working. Cook says he “could write books” about the process of going through a merger, and has been helping other WPP colleagues as they follow in his footsteps. One of the first things he tells them about making massive changes is understanding that secrecy can be tough, as can deciding when to break cover. “When you’re trying to do something big that’s a secret, you have to determine how many people you can tell and bring into that secret to do it,” he says. The VML-Y&R merger was first tabled in the summer of 2018, and announced in early October of that year. “One thing we did that I would advise is that, before we had every single thing figured out, we announced we were going to do it with (I’m making up the number) 40 per cent of it figured out. But we also announced in October that we were going to launch on January 1 to start the new year.”


He continues: “This gave us a good excuse not to have everything figured out. We could have sat around for years till we had it all perfect, but we would have missed the opportunity and it would have leaked. It also allowed us to then bring more people into the collaboration. That would be impossible if we were trying to keep it a secret. By admitting we didn’t have everything figured out and inviting the entire now new-formed merger to participate, that helped give everybody some ownership of what we were going to do.” Another piece of advice is to make tough decisions and stand by them. Cook avoided having duplicated roles at the new agency. Often such positions are kept on for political reasons, to be nice or to avoid hurting people’s feelings. “One of things we did best – and I would continue to advise – is to have those decisions made and just stand behind them. You won’t get them all right, but I would rather get nine out of 10 right and be confident and decisive about it than to have 10 out of 10 right and have it take two years to figure out.” The challenge of combining two cultures is often overlooked, says Cook. But mastering that mixture is key to getting the other stuff right. He says: “Our strategy for that was that if there’s perhaps 10 things we’ve got to do, we only have time to do five first. The five things we chose to do first all had to do with getting to know each other. We prioritised people knowing each other and developing community and developing introductions and developing trust.” This came at a cost. He continues: “We sacrificed for that, because there’s things we had to leave behind. We sacrificed immediately figuring out our timesheet system, our financial system or our operations, with the theory that we can only pick five things to do right off the bat. If we pick the ones that are people-first, the other five will be easier to get to in the next year because we have connectivity with one another.” This goes against the textbook steps of conducting a merger – systems first, and then ‘softer’ things – but Cook says: “We did it the opposite way, and I would never look back. It was the right way to do it.” His final piece of advice is: “You can get so lost in putting two things together that you forget that what you’re actually doing is creating something new. Keeping that vision is hard, but realise that we’re not just slamming things together, we’re birthing some new animal here, and we have the chance to do it exactly like we’d like to do it.” As for his next plans, Cook says: “We are right now in the middle of thinking about what’s next, and building everything we broke in the last two years internally to make ourselves relevant.” This same interview with VMLY&R CEO Jon Cook is the subject of our latest On the Record with Campaign Middle East podcast. Find it on Anghami to hear more about commerce, strategy, mergers and all things advertising.


April 25, 2022


t’s going to be an exciting challenge” was my first instinct when I was tasked with transforming Initiative in MENAT. Definitely there were concerns on my mind; however, the adrenaline rush I experienced overtook any feelings of hesitation. Naturally, my mind was running a hundred miles an hour and my inner voice was pushing me to take lots of urgent decisions, but I quickly thought to myself: “How often does one get an opportunity to transform an agency?” I needed to reflect and think before taking major actions or making major decisions. In the meantime, the idea was to end each day having taken a couple of good decisions and prevented a couple of bad ones until I had full clarity on what needed to be done, and how. Perhaps the most immediate thoughts on my mind revolved around the notion of value, and most importantly the role of the media agency within its industry value chain. In a simplified media planning and buying industry value chain, media agencies sit between the media representatives or sales houses and advertisers or clients, interacting primarily with both these parties. Having said that, we also know that the role of media is to affect consumer behaviours. Therefore, the crux of what we do at media agencies has a direct impact on behaviours of the end consumer. There have been multiple developments fuelled by changing consumer behaviour and the impact of data and technology, which are disrupting this industry value chain and adding external pressure on the media agencies. Two developments worth highlighting are: Consolidation of the supply chain: With the advent of biddable and programmatic media, media owners and reps are now well equipped to sell ad space directly to advertisers.

TAKING THE INITIATIVE Initiative Media MENAT CEO Bassem Massoud lays out how he has led his agency’s digital transformation since he assumed his current role in 2020

April 25, 2022

Content creation is everywhere: Content is being created by multiple players – from traditional creators all the way to usergenerated content (UGC) triggered by brands and end consumers. Entertaining these thoughts for a couple of days, and with some quick investigation paired with extensive analysis, it became clear that the biggest challenge is: If agencies cannot create enough value within the industry value chain, how will they be entitled to capture value and grow their business? In theory, the task became clearer: rebuild an optimised agency to enable value creation that facilitates value capture. Sounds great, but how do we measure value creation? We look at two important parameters: willingness to pay (WTP) and supplier opportunity cost (SOC). To be able to create higher value, Initiative should be able to increase the customers’ WTP and reduce the company’s SOC. So, all decisions needed to be taken to affect at least one of these two parameters, and ideally affect both where possible. Before actioning any big decisions, I looked at the industry’s competitive forces, which showed significant pressure affecting margins negatively, and continues to do so: Very high intensity of rivalry due to a large number of well-established competitors. Very high threat of new entrants, since the barriers for entry within our industry are very low – all you need is one big client to start an agency. Moderate threat of substitutes, most of which are a result of the advancements in data and technology, the increase in media consultancy firms and the establishment of clients’ in-house media teams. Very high bargaining power of customers, especially given that part of the media industry is a commodity business, and several agencies are in survival mode today. This means agencies are willing to go very aggressive on commercials to win clients’ contracts. Moderate bargaining power of suppliers, driven by the difference in the agency’s room for negotiation with suppliers based on what tier they belong to in the ecosystem and the media platforms they represent. It was also clear that this downward trend of margins will continue, so value creation is even more difficult unless the agency can differentiate itself by creating a sustainable competitive advantage in the market through a series of activities, resources and capabilities. THE TRANSFORMATION The transformation journey started with my rockstar team crafting a clear vision for Initiative in MENAT, along with putting together a dynamic and actionable plan to achieve this vision. The 360-degree revamp focused on the six Ps: people, product, partners, process, performance (financials) and profile (PR/

‘‘PEOPLE ARE THE MOST IMPORTANT ASSETS OF ANY COMPANY IN THE SERVICE BUSINESS. HOWEVER, THEY’RE ALSO THE BIGGEST CHALLENGE.’’ reputation). Perhaps most exciting to talk about here are the first three: people, product and partners. PEOPLE An organisation is an amalgamation of the people who work there. Therefore, people are the most important assets of any company in the service business, especially media agencies. However, they’re also the biggest challenge for agencies, and Initiative was no exception. A typical agency in the MENA region faces challenges around platform-agnostic talents, irrelevant business structures, limited talent growth and remuneration, and restrictive agility in spirit and behaviour. That is a long list, so I’ll take a step back and break it down. The challenges stem from resources and structures that have been previously built to answer outdated requirements. The rise of digital media, coupled with the evolution of the data and tech landscape, has transformed the way consumers interact with brands. As a result, clients require channel-agnostic talent at media agencies. The limitation further lies in the traditionally unrewarding remuneration models of agencies, and their rigidity in constraining entrepreneurial spirits within the corporate world. So, why would the best talents come or stay? This is a challenge I continuously hope to solve. After careful assessment, the amount of change that was required on this front was massive yet necessary, so we have restructured deeply, including all agency market leaders and all regional leaders across functions (management, strategy, digital, planning, etc.). To ensure that we mitigate the challenges above, we carefully selected talents based on a five-C framework. I strongly believe that each of these is extremely important: 1. Charisma: strong character and confidence. 2. Capability: the ability to deliver strong


results (here comes the skill). 3. Commitment: an entrepreneurial spirit with dedication to take ownership (here comes the will). 4. Connections: the awareness and ability to build and maintain healthy, genuine stakeholder relationships. 5. Carefrontation: enough maturity and transparency to strike a proper balance between care and confrontation. As such, our talent base is growing very fast. In addition to our extremely talented and strong existing talents at Initiative, we have already attracted more than 60 new, talented people with diversified skill sets at different levels of seniority and expertise. Not only this, but we are also currently in the process of adding 25 additional members to our team. We’re proud to say we are the only agency in the region that has grown its talent pool by 85 people in the past 18 months. PRODUCT On the product front, the most important aspect was cascading ‘Velocity Planning’, our global planning framework, into our region. Our route to activating this for brands tracks two complementary tasks: planning media and ideas that adapt to evolving cultural trends; and interpreting and responding to data signals to optimise media delivery. We had constant training sessions at all levels to ensure that not only our integrated planners, but everyone working at Initiative MENAT is proficient when it comes to applying Velocity Planning, and the bespoke toolkit that supports the delivery of the planning process. We are very happy with the results, and the best acid test has been the recent pitches we participated in, when we had the highest technical scores against competing agencies. PARTNERS At Initiative, we are extremely proud to have some of the most trailblazing brands within each industry as our client partners. We have had an impressive record of retaining existing client partnerships, with 58 new partners added to our portfolio in the past 18 months. We are highly committed to further strengthening and growing these partnerships. Our promises to our partners and potential partners are fivefold: 1. A superior team, with unmatched talent in terms of quality and dedication. 2. A unique combination of global expertise and regional media and consumer understanding. 3. Distinctive proprietary tools that power informed decisions. 4. Optimised and transparent trading, prioritising and securing our clients’ interests. 5. A tried and tested growth partner that is equally responsible with the marketing teams to drive business growth. As we always like to say, Initiative is not just a media agency, we’re a growth partner. We’re here and ready to support your business’s growth.


April 25, 2022

CONCENTRIC CIRCLES Change can start at the centre of an agency before spreading out through the organisation, its clients and wider society, says Apco founder Margery Kraus. By Austyn Allison


argery Kraus, the founder and executive chairwoman of Washington-based PR agency Apco Worldwide, was recently in Dubai and keen to talk about her network’s Apco Impact practice. “One thing that I spent all of last year pulling together is that we formed this practice called Apco Impact,” she says. “Some of this we had been doing for a number of years, but what was interesting about this is we pulled these practices together in an integrated way: climate, gender, justice, diversity and inclusion, ESG [environmental, social and governance], purpose. All of those things that companies have been moving towards that are (I don’t want to say less financially focused, because they end up affecting the bottom line) the softer things about a company and about its culture and what it stands for.” She says that companies have had a tendency to look at their doing-good efforts in silos, often unrelated to one another. The practice will not stand alone at Apco. It is designed to permeate through the agency, from a central team outwards. “We did hire people with specific skills, but if you think about it as concentric circles, the core has to be people who are knowledgeable, experienced and technically competent to be able to give advice internally as well as externally. The next people around them are the people who are going to support that core. Then, when you get to the outer rings of those circles, you have the rest of the company, and they also will be able to do this.” The process mirrors the way Apco once introduced technology competencies into its offering. Kraus says it is often multinationals, particularly “the more progressive ones”, that are keen to embrace the sort of thinking that Apco Impact provides. For example, manufacturers that use a lot of water or a lot of packaging might be keen to act – and be seen to act – in a more sustainable way. She says: “What people are realising (and the markets aren’t all there yet because they are still looking at quarterly earnings and stuff) is that, in the long run, companies that care about their employees, that care about the communities in which they live, not only do a better job but end up being more profitable.” Firms are being “prodded into

‘‘THE CORE HAS TO BE PEOPLE WHO ARE KNOWLEDGEABLE, EXPERIENCED AND COMPETENT.” submission”. These prods are coming from clients, from customers, from staff and from the forces of raw capitalism. Black Rock, the world’s largest asset manager, is taking climate seriously, for example. CEO Larry Fink wrote in his letter to investors back in January 2020 that: “Climate risk is investment risk”. He added: “Sooner than most anticipate, there will be a significant reallocation of capital. We believe that sustainable investing is the strongest foundation for client portfolios, going forward.” (He re-emphasised this assertion in this year’s letter, saying we have seen a “tectonic shift of capital” in the past two years.)

In recent years, companies have been focusing more on their purpose, and Kraus says it can be a journey to discover what that means for them. Purpose, she says, is “how [companies] express why they are in business and what they care about”. She admits that a purpose proposition, even if morally right, still needs to allow a firm to be profitable: “We’re not saying that companies shouldn’t make money,” she says. “And I don’t think society is saying that, because nothing is sustainable if the companies aren’t making money.” Nor can purpose be introduced overnight. When it comes to inclusivity, says Kraus, “you can’t just flip a switch”. In order to bring about meaningful change at scale, everyone needs to work together. “What we found is that the problems today are so big that no one sector can handle them,” says Kraus. “Governments can’t by themselves; businesses can’t by themselves. We have a lot of governments where the leadership changes and they are not necessarily fit for purpose, so there is a lot more trust in the fact that businesses are good at coming up with solutions and that they are looking to business to perhaps think of some problems in a different way.” She gives the example of Ikea, an Apco client. The furniture store uses a lot of natural and sustainable practices. She also mentions the work that Paul Polman did as CEO of Unilever, leading a drive for sustainable packaging, responsible sourcing and other initiatives. “There’s no such thing as a successful company in a failed world,” says Kraus. Private companies, especially family ones, in the MENA region can take longer to evolve, she says. “The biggest difference here is that you have a lot of private companies, and a lot of companies related to government. They’re not as independent, and with private companies sometimes it especially takes generational ownership time to get on board. That’s a bit of a challenge, to have these companies understand that operating in the public interest is the best thing to do.” However, with Apco and its clients spreading the word, more people will be encouraged to do the right thing – and agencies, clients, governments and individuals can make an impact together.


April 25, 2022

A reel legacy to be told

Al Masaood’s Marwa Kaabour explains how the Abu Dhabi conglomerate’s half century coincided with the UAE’s and how it produced a stunning film to celebrate twin ongoing journeys By Marwa Kaabour, group marketing and corporate communications manager, Al Masaood


he UAE’s National Day has long been celebrated with immense fervour and lots of pride by Emiratis and expats alike. After all, this nation tells a great story of human ambition, conviction and resilience. 2021 marked 50 years of the UAE – a herculean landmark occasion and, coincidentally, 50 years for Al Masaood. The oldest family conglomerate in Abu Dhabi had to celebrate its golden jubilee with the nation. Al Masaood’s success can be attributed to the UAE and its insatiable striving for progress; one can almost say the company depicted the country’s agenda for growth and perseverance. The marketing team had to find a way to celebrate the company and the nation at the same time. Since the core of our business is industrial, logistical and transport, a lot of what we did was intertwined with the foundation of the UAE’s economy. Through a short, documentary-style film, we captured the shared journey of progress by contrasting monuments and developments in the UAE with those of the industries we operate in; mainly transport, energy and construction. And because we did not want a reel that turns into beautiful footage of industries and landmarks, we brought in the human element in the form of different types of audiences we serve, young and mature Emiratis and expats.


As the first step towards building the right communication direction for the campaign, we took the initiative of hosting an ideation session to sharpen the brand persona. The ideation session was intended to produce fruitful insights and a deeper understanding of the brand. The session brought together different groups and perspectives. What was most amazing about the brainstorm was how old the company was perceived as a person. Our founders may have passed away, but the youngest segment of our audiences – the automotive crowd – is mostly aged between 20 and 35 years of age. We needed to celebrate 50 years having the look not of a wise old man, but a young, aspiring Emirati, one who matches the persona of our customers, and one to match our drive and energy towards further future growth. The second consideration was to tell a story that covers all our market segments and offerings. As a highly diversified business, we needed to tie in the industrial segments, such as energy, power and logistics with the customer segment such as automotive and business services under one main theme.


Tying together all these strands into one uniform, nicely flowing story was the challenge we took to the market. We

quickly worked on putting together a tender for an advertising and production partner to crystallise all our thoughts, directions and desired persona into one strong brand film that tells it all. An intense two-month period followed with briefings, meetings, questions and clarifications to get the ball rolling on this project. At this point we were still just as the proposal level.


Winning our hearts and approval with their proposition, the tender was awarded to Cheil, who in turn partnered with Bazooka Films to creatively tell our story. True to their purpose, and with creative director Simon at the helm, the team devised a plan that creatively connected the Al Masaood brand with its array of businesses and global principals to the people of this nation, its history, journey and proudful grandeur.


The final product of this grand plan saw a strong brand film where Al Masaood is depicted as a young, male, Emirati character (our protagonist), ambitious and energetic as we desired our organisation to be perceived. The labour of five full days of shooting in 18 different locations, the brand film showcased the Group’s different businesses, linking the industrial side of the city to the more illustrious, the cultural to the more cosmopolitan, thereby portraying all the groundwork and development that the capital has undergone, rendering it as the perfect mix of past and present. The journey of Al Masaood has seen its fair share of trials, and as this video was shot post the pandemic (being on its own one of the most unprecedented tests to the world), we resorted to strong words like ‘challenges’ and ‘setbacks’ in our story line to indicate that it was never a well-paved road along the journey. Also, to depict the perseverance and resilience taken to carve our position in the market, we opted for words like ‘fortitude’ and ‘grit’. In terms of audio-visual effects, we opted for a bed of classical music and implemented a technique of alternating between black-and-white, in an effort to showcase the historical milestones on our journey, and then swiftly returning back to full-colour visual tone and atmosphere to showcase our vibrant present. Finally, closing with the question, ‘What more can be done together as one?’ holds true to the promise that our journey still continues. We have not reached our destination as we keep forging forward, connecting our trail of growth and development to that of our nation.

“We needed to celebrate 50 years having the look not of a wise old man, but a young, aspiring Emirati.”




April 25, 2022

Signs of the future As Viola Outdoor upgrades its static properties to state-of-theart digital, CEO Ammar Sharaf explains what DOOH means for his clients, the public and the UAE’s capital



most significant benefits associated with DOOH advertising is our ability to take advantage of geo-location data for accurate attribution, segment targeting and measured evaluation, and content carried within digital formats can be tailored to specifics. For example, we can remotely update data related to time-sensitive activities, the weather, and even traffic conditions. With better analytics applied to location and time data, advertisers have the ability to track consumer movement while reaching larger audiences. Digital signage reaches consumers when they are outside and not looking at their mobile phones or being distracted by other advertisers. An additional benefit to the public of our two-sided LED screens is that the side facing pedestrians can be used for community messaging or more in-depth content. All of these facets combine to create a system today that embraces the future thinking of digital technology and how it can contribute to enhancing sustainability and the green economy.


At the moment, we are assessing our options on the roll-out plans of our digital products in collaboration with our partners in the Abu Dhabi Department of

Municipalities and Transport. I have been involved in the revised thinking about OOH in Abu Dhabi since the very beginning, and my experience has given me the privilege of being part of the team that studied DOOH and how it will re-engineer the urban infrastructure. After two and a half years of consultations and planning, I concluded that the future of OOH will be built on digital ‘on-ground’ foundations, allowing us to develop our ambitious plans for a roadmap for the industry literally from the bottom up. We will introduce our range of products in phases, the first of which should be complete within a few short weeks, and will comprise a variety of digital displays that fit the fabric of Abu Dhabi’s urban landscape.


I think the keyword here is flexibility. Investing in traditional advertising can be problematic because to grab a customer’s attention, messages must be simple, so you put a limited amount of information in one place. With DOOH, you can display several messages on one product; a retailer can display a countdown to a special offer over Eid to encourage sales. However, a different range of goods may see better consumer interest, so we quickly change the content to reflect that. Also unique to digital is the possibility of adding elements of motion to a campaign, making the content more versatile – and with two-sided LED products, the screen facing pedestrians can communicate directly with passers-by on community-specific, targeted messaging or dynamic

“Also unique to digital is the possibility of adding elements of motion to a campaign, making the content more versatile”

interactive content that engages pedestrians. It is this fantastic flexibility that will revolutionise creativity within the industry.


Absolutely. For 20 years we have provided useful data for advertisers to work with, like our unique daily effective circulation statistics, and this is enhanced with DOOH as the data is more specific and quantifiable. Based on our deep Abu Dhabi knowledge and industry experience, we provide advertisers with a range of data on location, target audience and product, which gives us a greater return on specifics like visitor demographics, accurate statistics and campaign results. This way, advertisers can accurately track their campaign effectiveness and message recall. Companies can access so-called ‘big data’ to find out exactly what their customers want, who their best customers are and, most importantly, why people choose different products, and more, because the more a company knows about its customers, the more competitive it becomes.


With new innovations and ideas arriving almost daily, the one thing we can be sure of is that change is inevitable. I think that Viola’s focus in the short-term future is on digitising more OOH spaces, researching how to make DOOH even more responsive and flexible, and building an effective digitised network of products that can deliver certifiable results. For the longer term, we have developed a series of plans that will transform the digital landscape in Abu Dhabi, opening the doors to a new era of partnerships with our clients. These will include iconic bespoke architecturally original devices that will add distinguished elegance and artistic taste as landmark installations, upgrading and enhancing the out-ofhome market. Viola Digital Outdoor’s goal is to contribute to Abu Dhabi’s digital evolution. As a long-standing Abu Dhabi based agency that understands the city as no one else does, we are ideally situated to make that happen.

DESIRABLE BY LOCATION Our goal is to drive digital innovation in the UAE. Through the development of architectural and aesthetically superior locations. With the foundation of independent credible data, our medium is now more accountable than ever. We will strive to deliver dynamic, relevant and engaging content to enable our clients to stand-out.

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April 25, 2022







e’ve got an overflowing bundle of young talent in this year’s Agency Faces to Watch. And it’s a mixed bag. Not in terms of their talent – you can read the glowing reviews their managers have given them – but in their backgrounds, skillsets and occupations. While we haven’t let in anyone who is strictly clientside (their time will come in our June-end Marketing Faces to Watch issue), we stretched the ‘agency’ part of the title to allow in some young talent working at media reps, digital platforms and production houses. Silos continue to crumble, and the young men and women on the following pages are often the most agile players in their agencies, able to make niche roles their own. You will find digital specialists in the media section, PR people in the creative section and media specialists working in creative agencies. And of course ur Faces to Watch are Generation Z, all digitally native. There’s a lot of Faces to Watch listed here. We try not to limit ourselves to ‘30 under 30’ and instead go on the





recommendations of regional agencies’ management. Not all of them followed the three-nominations-peragency rule, but when was the last time you saw an agency stick to the brief? If you want to find out more about what the Faces’ management said about them, do check our website, where we will be uploading all the people listed here, and with further details about them – their professional biographies, their side-hustles, their guiding principles and more. Just bear with us over the next month; it might take a little time. In the meantime, feast your eyes here on the talent that will shape the industry’s future. And join me in congratulating them. Not only have four people won partial scholarships and one has won a full scholarship to a master’s degree in digital marketing at Heriot-Watt University’s Edinburgh Business School (you can join me in being genuinely jealous too), but the Faces to Watch are all young, talented, appreciated by their bosses and have bright futures ahead of them. Well done.






April 25, 2022


Heriot Watt University Dubai’s Edinburgh Business School Announces Scholarship Winners from Campaign’s Faces to Watch 2021 IN ASSOCIATION WITH


ampaign Middle East’s annual Agency Faces to Watch are the region’s most sought-after awards in the creative world. For young professionals, these awards are a great way to showcase their creative excellence, build their industry reputation and help them progress in their careers. They also help employers identify the brightest upcoming talent.

PROGRAMME AND COURSES: With the Middle East having some of the highest internet penetration rates and social media use around the world, a degree in Digital Marketing is growing in relevance. Several reports released last year have also shown that ad spend is at an all-time high in the region with Dr. Paul Hopkinson is associate ripe potential for expansion. The Master’s Degree in Digital Marketing head of Edinburgh Business School from Heriot-Watt University Dubai’s Edinburgh Business School (EBS) at Heriot-Watt University Dubai is designed to position students as marketing professionals through its market relevance and concentration of concepts and techniques. The programme is specifically tailored to develop professional career readiness and include collaborative projects with industry partners. In addition, it offers students the flexibility required to cater to their interests within the field. Students have the option to match their interests and career pathways by selecting two course options, one each semester. The courses reflect both digital marketing skills such as social media management, database design and website development, and management competencies including strategy, entrepreneurship, consumer psychology, legal aspects and project management. Through addressing gaps in the use and application of digital technologies and marketing, the programme reflects the University’s keenness to promote leadership in the marketing field and ensure the next generation of leaders are equipped with the relevant and necessary digital and soft skills to succeed in marketing. REASON FOR COLLABORATION WITH CAMPAIGN: With Campaign Middle East representing young marketing and communications professionals in the region and being a prominent voice for the field, Heriot-Watt University Dubai found a great match between the objectives of the award and the University’s programmes. Since both seek to support young talents in furthering their career amidst an exciting and rapidly transforming field, Heriot-Watt University Dubai is therefore pleased to partner with Campaign for the second time to run this competition for ambitious professionals in the region. Professor Paul Hopkinson, Associate Head of Edinburgh Business School at Heriot-Watt University Dubai and Academic Lead for Heriot-Watt Online, said: “I’m pleased with our renewed collaboration with Campaign on the annual ‘Agency Faces to Watch’ awards, hosted by Campaign and sponsored by Heriot-Watt University Dubai. “I’m delighted to announce our five winners including four winners – one in each category (Creative, Digital, Media and PR), who will each be awarded a 30 per cent scholarship, as well as an overall winner who will be awarded a 100 per cent scholarship to Edinburgh Business School’s M.Sc. in Digital Marketing. “The choice was undoubtedly challenging as we were presented with several high-quality submissions. After much consideration, our winners this year are as follows:”



YASMINA RAYDAN Strategic planner, Leo Burnett

Yasmina displayed a strong combination of passion for her profession. Her desire to give back to society, which strongly aligns with Heriot-Watt University’s values, has made her a natural choice for the 100 per cent scholarship. She clearly articulated her motivations for wanting to study for the MSc degree and how she would use the knowledge and skills gained to the benefit of her clients, her team and the community at large. Yasmina showed an appreciation of the dynamic and complex environment in which digital marketers operate and showed a strong desire to be a force for positive change.

April 25, 2022





Creative director, Precise Communications Design

Senior media executive, Havas Media Middle East

Senior planning manager, PHD

Aarushi displays a real passion for the creative side of marketing, instilled at young age, which she has channelled into multiple avenues, including her own business. It was the combination of creative talent and entrepreneurial spirit, strongly aligned with HWU’s mission, which, in the end, swayed the judges. We have no doubt she will make a positive contribution to the programme and the University.

Jana showed strong passion and clear recognition of key trends and developments within the industry in the spheres of analytics and experiential marketing. She presented a strong justification for how she will apply her learning from the MSc programme to enhance her client relationships. Combined with Jana’s awareness of key trends, which is a key skill within a rapidly growing field such as digital marketing, as well as her passion to contribute to development within these areas, we are certain that Jana will make valuable contributions to the programme.

Sara presented an eloquently written submission that addressed the tension between performance marketing and brand building and the need for hybrid approach. A desire to resolve this tension and be an agent for change supported by the knowledge and skills acquired from the degree convinced the judges to award the scholarship. We are pleased to congratulate Sara and we are excited to be part of her journey in being an agent of change.


Account director, Atteline Bianca displayed enthusiasm in abundance. What struck the judges was Bianca’s strong desire and commitment to use the knowledge and skills gains through the degree to contribute to the development of future professionals through her current professional body and educational connections. The judges were left in no doubt that Bianca will use the scholarship to positive effect, both in terms of her career and those of others.




April 25, 2022

CREATIVE FACES TO WATCH AARUSHI MITTAL, 25 Creative director, Precise Communications Design

Gopal Aswani, managing director, Precise Communications Design: Aarushi exemplifies the essence of our creative strategy in a rapidly changing business environment. Her ability to consistently exceed the expectations of internal and external stakeholders since taking on a challenging role at Precise has been commendable. Apart from conceptualising creative solutions for our clients, Aarushi has excelled in imparting insights to a rapidly growing team that is thriving under her leadership.


Graphic designer, VMLY&R Commerce MENA Leila Katrib, creative director, VMLY&R Commerce MENA: Mazen the Great is how he is known to the teams. His wonderful character, can-do attitude, ability to add value to every brief and piece of design output, and willingness to chip in and help at every turn make Mazen a superstar in every way. He is dedicated, ultra-talented and extremely hard-working, bringing a sense of calm and on-point delivery to every brief. His talents don’t just stop at being a brilliant graphic designer. He animates and can bring even the most boring of visuals to life with a flair unlike any other.


Senior social executive, AKQA Ahmed El-Sadek, social director, AKQA: Shane has a permanent finger on the pulse of the Social world. Ask him on any given day and he will tell you what’s trending, why it’s trending and how to make the most of it. Furthermore, he is naturally tapped into the local culture and has an innate understanding of what’s happening around him, empowering him to craft outstanding ideas and weave relevant narratives.


Account manager, Precise Communications Vivek Kukreti, general manager – social, PR and experiences, Precise Communications: A creative and critical thinker, Mrunmayee has an eye for things that blend in, that are meant to stand out. From campaign briefs to creative taglines, Mrunmayee dedicates every ounce of creativity she has to everything that she does, including her workstation. As someone who can be distinguished by the continuously changing vibrant colour of her hair, Mrunmayee’s commitment, thinking and creativity have continuously broken through tough briefs, writing blocks and complex digital problems.



Rami Hmadeh, managing partner, Serviceplan Experience: Abdalla is one of the most ambitious client servicing talents we have. He joined us 18 months ago to focus on growing our healthcare footprint with his previous experience in this domain, especially in the digital field. Despite the fact the Covid-19 crisis was at its peak and that he has been working remotely from Egypt, he showed the highest sense of ownership over his projects, which gives you a huge sense of confidence in him.

Cynthia Chammas, executive producer, Truffle Film: Mary joined us to head our post-production department. She’s a hard-working person and a creative senior post-production producer. Her input is always valid and appreciated by our clients. She leads the postproduction communications with our different clients and can adapt her way to fit the needs of every one of them. Mary is capable of handling several projects simultaneously while giving the right attention to each of them. She is one of our pillars.

Senior account manager, Serviceplan Experience

Senior post producer, Truffle Film


Creative strategist, Imagination Middle East Adel Noueihed, regional managing director, Imagination Middle East: There is a reason I hired Junior almost immediately after first meeting him. There is also a reason I put him forward and subsequently rehired him again after I moved agencies. Junior has a natural tenacity for cross-platform thinking, research and finding unique strategic insights. Coming from a design background means he also understands how to turn those insights into a creative narrative and strategy that allows the wider design teams to understand it.

April 25, 2022




Account manager, Impact BBDO Dubai Bridget Weber, business unit director, Impact BBDO Dubai: Nouran is spearheading some of our highest-profile clients, delivering best-in-class work while maintaining a cool, calm presence within the agency. Her leadership skills, project management and creative thinking have seen her progress from agency intern to account manager within the span of three years. Nouran speaks four languages – Arabic, English, French and Spanish – which helps our global clients deliver work for multiple markets.


Account manager – social media, Isobar MENA

RACHA GHALAYINI, 26 Social media manager, Havas Creative Middle East

Alessandro Candotti, social media director, Havas Creative Middle East: In an industry that celebrates razzle dazzle, Racha simply gets things done. She is methodical and relentless, oiling the gears of operations at Havas Middle East. Her no-nonsense approach has won her the trust of the agency leadership and the respect of her clients and colleagues at a very young age. A measure of true talent is who you’d want beside you in a crisis. I would pick Racha every time.

SANA PANJWANI, 27 Senior english copywriter, Create Group

Omar Roan, head of copy, Create Group: Sana’s a star. She brings a fresh perspective and bags of ideas to every account, whether she’s the creative lead or just parachuting in for a brainstorm. Within her first few months at Create Group, Sana delivered on two major projects and forced us to rethink our approach on a dozen others. She’s single-minded, self-critical and always in control. I trust her completely.

Serge Selwan, strategy & innovation lead, Isobar MENA: Rawad joined Isobar MENA more than two years ago and has proven to be an asset to the company, clients and team ever since. Rawad is well-read in the digital and social world; he follows the latest trends and is always ready to adjust his strategic approach to different clients to make sure they are all riding the latest hypes. This and his attention to details, his dedication to his work and his excellent communication skills help win the trust of his clients and challenge them to explore more and get outside their comfort zone.


Digital account executive, FP7 McCann Claude Abboud, general manager, FP7 McCann: Suheil has shown excellent skills and knowledge of the business. Despite his short period, he became the go-to person for the client. Combining his industry knowledge, his ability to learn and interpersonal skills, Suheil is destined for success.


Account manager, Saatchi & Saatchi


Warda Amrani, account director, Saatchi & Saatchi: Within only a few years of kicking off her career, Stephanie has managed to demonstrate true drive and ambition. With her experience across two continents, representing global brands in multiple markets, Stephanie has continuously impressed her team and clients with elevating a brand’s digital presence and showing true results. She has the ability to seamlessly and single-handedly orchestrate ambitious projects and strategies, cross functionally and with maturity and meticulousness. Her inquisitive nature and resourcefulness are without doubt key skills that will continue to impress us as she grows. She is absolutely a force to reckon with in the digital world and we look forward to seeing what is yet to come – she is just getting started.

Youmna El Asmar, planning lead, Leo Burnett: Yasmina is a great strategist and digital expert. She can lead on complex projects and high-profile clients and always delivers great work. She has recently become a planner, and her diverse background – in technology, digital and operations – brings a lot of richness to her work.

Strategic planner, Leo Burnett



April 25, 2022



Creative strategist, AKQA

Content creator, Havas Creative Middle East

Vylan Dalmaida, strategy lead, AKQA: Chirag is one of the faces to watch for the next decade. An account person turned strategist, his ability to galvanise people around him, coupled with his strategic resourcefulness, makes one wonder if he’s really under the age of 30. This has been proven in his contributions to winning new business and being praised by senior clients. He channels his passion for problem-solving into the insights he uncovers and the strategies he creates. For me, Chirag is an industry leader in the making.

Fabio Silveira, general manager, Havas Creative Middle East: Ahmed showed talent during his first hour at the agency. On the production set of an important campaign – that won many awards regionally and globally – for one of our key clients, the ‘rookie’ took the lead on the final production meeting, with clients, creative teams and production houses, giving direction to producers, guiding drone operators, discussing how to fast-track post-prod, etc. Many people in that position would be nervous, but all Ahmed showed was confidence. Which he continues to do time and again on every project he works on.


Senior arabic copywriter, VMLY&R Commerce MENA

Leila Katrib, creative director, VMLY&R Commerce MENA: Ahmed is the heart and soul of the agency. He is annoyingly one of those people who has a multitude of creative talents to make anyone jealous. Not only is he a fantastic bilingual copywriter but he brings great conceptual thinking, an energy and passion like no other (he can sell anything and even make canned foul look cool). To top it off, you need a song for your campaign? No problem: Ahmed the singer-songwriter can give you a new Anghami hit in minute. Check out Jumia’s Black Friday and Americana’s Ramadan campaigns, to name a few.


Account executive, VMLY&R Commerce MENA Gregory Mardikian, managing partner, VMLY&R Commerce MENA: Jawan joined us early in her career and we have never looked back. She’s passionate, dedicated, clear, concise, consistent; she has a point of view, she builds strong relationships with clients and peers and is the go-to person for almost everyone in the agency when we need a safe pair of hands. She’s what every account leader looks for in an account executive/manager. No matter the demands or stresses, Jawan is always smiling and able to deliver to the highest standard. Her attitude to learning and development to build her career is an ambition that is infectious. Every team needs a Jawan.


Account manager, Precise Communications Vivek Kukreti, general manager – social media, PR and experiences, Precise Communications: Fatima comes in like a ‘pleasant storm’; she is quieter than most and soft-spoken, but she states facts and is always on the point. Fatima has a knack for constructing campaigns that will do well, from the creative to its mechanics. She reads into the finer details and is able to address every brief as it would be perceived by the target. She is a strategical and critical thinker, making her relationship with clients valued.


Senior creative copywriter, Create Group Omar Roan, head of copy, Create Group: David’s the glue that binds the copy team at Create. His ability to get people to open up and think out loud has kept us consistently creative despite the intensity of the last 12 months. You can see his creative leadership on accounts like the Year of the 50th, which has put out some of the best social content this year.


Multimedia designer, Leo Burnett Dubai Marwan Chahine, creative director, Leo Burnett Dubai: A talented designer with an incredible appetite to do great creative work and keep pushing her craft and her skills, and add to all that her incredible positive can-do attitude. In a short period of time, Deandra managed to successfully contribute to some of our best campaigns while exploring, learning and growing.

April 25, 2022



Associate creative director, Create Group Vincent Drevet, creative director, Create Group: Creative, organised, hard working, simple and humble are qualities Jyotika has by nature. If you are looking for someone you can trust to deliver on time with the highest quality, she’s your woman. Being the witness of her rise from art director to associate creative director in our team is a privilege and she has the potential to become one of the top creative directors in the region.



Art director, Saatchi & Saatchi MEA

Art director, Elevate Marketing Agency Shadi AL-Asmar, managing director, Elevate Marketing Agency: I’ve seen Issam grow from a junior creative designer to a creative art director, placing minimalist creativeness at the core of his direction. He made that huge leap successfully because of his intolerance for normal or average work. With his multimedia skills, he has been able to direct and execute creative projects across video editing and graphic design for digital and offline channels.

Mirko Arico-Torreno, associate creative director, Saatchi & Saatchi MEA: I nominate Lina as she is one of the most talented creatives in my team and agency. With an incredible eye not only for detail but for crafting striking visuals, Lina also brings an agile conceptual mind. A mind in tune with current trends and platforms, as illustrated by her achieving Bronze at Young Lions in 2021. A wicked sense of humour, coupled with a problem-solving, left-field attitude, gives Lina confidence to take on bigger and more challenging projects with ease. A rare and amazing rockstar in the making.


Communication executive, AGA ADK Joy Sahyoun, group general manager, AGA ADK: Lea’s hunger and passion for marketing communication has seen her quickly shift from a social-mediaonly role into a more strategic place with the brand partners she manages, to better integrate advertising efforts. Her analytical background coupled with her creativity have allowed her to use social listening to understand social conversations and transform them into actionable insights that are driving creative communication.


Account manager, Face to Face


Senior copywriter, Saatchi & Saatchi Anika Marya, associate creative director, Saatchi & Saatchi: Before she joined us a few months ago, Katie was given a warning about the low ceilings in our office – she walked in tall, with an equal amount to say. And say she did, very, very well. A creative who has craft down to a T, she’s strategic and has a way with words even when it seems impossible to find some. Her thinking is fresh, with strong ideation skills, and she’s quickly become a pillar on our brands as well as a mentor to younger creatives. Her energy is contagious; she brightens up even the most high-pressure situations.


Integrated digital account manager, Serviceplan Middle East Vineeta Pulkit Vasisht, group account director, Serviceplan Middle East: Laith joined us from Jordan, and in no time he settled in, built strong connections with his colleagues and established strong relationships with his clients, based on trust. He’s a very mature account manager, handles stressful situations perfectly well and brings joy to everyone around him. He’s a hustler – we have watched him grow from a social media executive to an integrated account manager at Serviceplan. He learns quickly, asks the right questions and demonstrates an extreme passion for continued learning and development.

Christopher Bell, CEO and partner, Face to Face: When I received a call from McGarryBowen Bangalore telling me that they had a “truly outstanding account exec looking to relocate to the UAE” and asking me if I would be willing to meet her, I accepted – but more from a perspective of doing them a favour than anything else. Little did I know that they were the ones doing us a favour, as we finished up recruiting one of the best account people that has walked through the doors of the agency. Clear, composed, measured, insightful, unfailingly hard-working and incredibly smart, Krishna really does have it all.




April 25, 2022



Communications director, Leo Burnett Dubai Haytham Dayeh, business lead, Leo Burnett Dubai: A true hybrid ‘suit’, Mahmoud can talk business but also think creativity and strategy. He has that unique ability to get under the skin of both client and colleagues to drive a brand forward and that combination of leadership and ownership comes across loud and clear. His constant focus on the agency product, from the thinking to the creative idea, and finally ensuring the right craft in the integrated output, is unrelenting. The knowledge and passion for what he does makes him truly stand out among his peers and regularly wins him the respect of those around him.

Founder, The Amanqi Consultancy Amani Waqi, founder, The Amanqi Consultancy: As co-founder of The Amanqi Consultancy, I have watched the way Manal has dedicated the majority of her time and energy into ensuring that value is created for every client. Manal is constantly working towards bettering herself as a professional and thinking about ways in which the brands we work with can maximise their potential and achieve their objectives in the most cost-effective ways. She is an easy leader to work with, encouraging flexible schedules for all employees.

NIDAL BOU GHANEM, 28 Motion designer/animator, Acorn Strategy

Suha Hamid, art director, Acorn Strategy: Nidal is Acorn Strategy’s motion designer, but that really is an understatement of the skill, curiosity, integrity, attention to detail and sheer genius he deploys in every task. He takes communication and truly brings it to life through motion design. Not only is Nidal an exceptionally talented motion designer, he’s also never content to rest on his laurels. Instead, he constantly seeks out new methods to help come up with creative videos and eye-catching animations.


Managing director, Brodmann10 Amir Antoun, business director, Brodmann10: We have been working with Noor across many clients over the past seven years and were able to clearly spot the value she has to add to the business. It hasn’t been an easy journey, nor is it an easy task to handle, especially for a women born, raised and living in Iraq. Having such a large geography, working in Iraq requires being in 18 governorates at once and understanding the wide spectrum of diversity the market has to offer. We have seen this in every meeting we had together with clients.

MARIO EL HELOU, 30 Senior English/Arabic copywriter, AGA-ADK

MARIA TANNOUS, 25 Senior account manager, Livingroom

Ramsey Shantouf, chief client service officer, Livingroom: Maria has proved adept at handling a wide range of our clients. She’s not afraid to speak her mind and have an opinion. She is a fiery character who doesn’t give up without a fight.

Walid Nehme, creative director, AGA-ADK: Perseverant, wordsmith, and fast like a jaguar. I’ve worked with Mario for almost a year now on several projects and he never failed in demonstrating his great conceptualisation potential and team spirit. Mario is also a strategic thinker who keeps himself up-to-date and living in the now.

RAMY LEWIS, 28 Planner, Rain Creative

Kavita Ramrakhiani, head of planning, Rain Creative: Ramy’s expertise prior to Rain was his ability to develop brand strategy basis data and quantitative analysis. I was pleasantly surprised when, throughout his interview for Rain, the conversation was all about his interest in understanding people, his ability to grasp nuances of the Arab culture and its impact on consumer decision-making.

OMAR MOHAMED, 22 Content creator, Socialize

Amr Younis, creative director, Socialize: I have worked with Omar for three years, I consider him a pioneer to this industry. While I am 18 years older than him, I have learned from him more than I have taught him. I am always fascinated with his speed of self-learning, truly mastering tools in the fastest manner I have ever seen.

April 25, 2022





Social media manager, TBWA\RAAD Emad Doughan, head of digital, TBWA\RAAD: Tamanna is born to be a leader. She worked with us initially as an intern during her senior year at university, and we were instantly impressed by how fast she consumes information, applies logic and consumer behaviour analysis to her work, and performs her tasks with utmost creativity. Therefore, we offered her a job prior her graduation.


Strategic planner, MCH Global Saheba Sodhi, head of strategy, MCH Global: Yoana is an integral part of the MCH Global team. She joined as an intern and quickly became an essential cog in the wheel of producing high-quality pitches and projects as a strategic planner. She is a natural at what she does and has an ability to transform objectives and challenges into adaptive and responsive strategy. Her understanding of the evolving experiential landscape, her desire to learn, her penchant for cultural shifts and a collaborative yet analytical nature allow her to grow and establish a strong position in a demanding environment. I am proud and grateful to have her on board.

Integration director, Leo Burnett Samer Shoueiry, CEO, Publicis Communications: Renée is on top of her game yet always ready to take on new challenges. She strives for the best and continues to raise the bar in her relationship with clients as well as cultivating great results with the team. Her passion for creativity and drive in challenging the status quo make her a great partner pushing the product to new heights.


Creative producer, Chain Reaction Haneen Al Hassan, deputy general manager, Chain Reaction: There are those who colour outside the lines and then there is Rasha, who redefines those lines and what they mean every single day. She is passionate, crazy, creative and a true story teller. This means that she spends endless hours watching content online under the umbrella of “research and inspiration” but, truth be told, this is exactly why she is a bank of ideas and references for every single brief that comes her way.


Managing director, Elevate Marketing Agency Rami AL-Asmar, CEO, Elevate Marketing Agency: It really takes a lot to be an MD at 25. Shadi’s passion and commitment to excellence can’t be described. With his self-learned experience in brand strategy and creative communication, along with his highly organisational and execution skills, Shadi has contributed heavily to the bottom line of our clients and the business goals of our agency.



Sima El Amine, social media director, Saatchi & Saatchi Dubai: Yasmeen is very dependable and has a way about her that makes everyone working with her thrive through her detailed and clear understanding of brands she leads on. In two years, I saw Yasmeen grow from a social media executive to most recently get promoted to social media manager. She is young and passionate and leading comes naturally to her through her extensive knowledge and constant development.

Vincent Drevet, creative director, Create Group: Shermidh is one of the most talented people I have ever worked with. Design, animation, conception, he has it. His humility and dedication, his curiosity for every single new approach of art, are key qualities for becoming a rising star in the creative market of the region.

Senior social media executive, Saatchi & Saatchi Dubai

Art director, Create Group



April 25, 2022


Senior social media executive, Create Group Dana Al Azem, group account director, Create Group: Caroline is brilliant with social media and continues to impress us every day. She is a great communicator, a quick learner and is completely on top of the latest trends. Her grasp of the interactive space, particularly social media, is amazing.

ANASTASIA GUSHCHINA, 28 Media manager, Havas Media Middle East

Naveen Chacko Mathews, head of business unit, Havas Media Middle East: Anastasia is unique in the way she delivers results and makes a statement every single time. A mix of a shock and awe strategy, she truly drives the business forward for the clients she works with.


Account executive, Isobar Sara Rabie, brand experience strategy director, Isobar: I have supervised Habiba for almost two years, during which time she has been a key member in our team. As a stand-out leader on a team full of high-functioning staff, Habiba seamlessly blends international standards of proficient management with a deep well of local cultural knowledge.


Account director, Merkle Andreas Frangeskides, head of data & analytics, Merkle: Although I’ve only worked with Jad for a small amount of time, I can sincerely say that he is an exceptional operator worthy of this recognition. His diligence in managing clients and media campaigns is second to none, always employing an academic but human work ethic to everything he puts his mind to.


Senior communiations executive, Viola Communications Rama Abdulhadi, account director, Viola Communications: Cxyza is a shining star that brings great ideas and energy to the team, the agency and her clients. Her creativity has been a great addition to our team and she is truly knowledgeable and on the ball when it comes to the digital landscape specifically, and communications in general.


Senior executive, biddable media, PHD Vittorio Barraja, senior director, biddable media, PHD: As head of PHD MENA’s digital division, I have seen Mohamad join the company and transform the way the technical agency team operates with automotive and luxury clients. Mohamad works tirelessly to update his knowledge of our products – and of the market’s products as well. As senior executive, Mohamad has been able to maximise both clients’ and internal team happiness. His work ethic and competence are well known in the organisation and inspire colleagues and partners. Mohamad’s technical knowledge makes him a pillar in the team that everyone relies on.


Media manager, Havas Media Middle East Naveen Chacko Mathews, head of business unit, Havas Media Middle East: Issam embodies the right balance of soft client-servicing skills with in-depth media planning and buying knowledge – a rarity in this day and age where people talk numbers more than how those numbers create an impact. Issam is always calm and his ability to anticipate and tackle problems head-on ensures things always run seamlessly.

April 25, 2022




Influencers marketing manager, Starfish Influencers Agency Amer Massimi, strategy director, Starfish Influencers Agency: Maria is a marvelous young person. She joined Starfish Agency as a junior and in no time proved herself beyond any doubt. Her dedication and fast learning are unmatched. Maria carries influencer marketing campaigns smoothly (although it is a lot of work) and maintains brilliant relationships with her clients and colleagues.


Account manager, Isobar MENA Salma El Bashary, account director, Isobar MENA: As Maha’s direct manager for almost two years now, I’m very proud to have her on my team. Maha has never disappointed me once. She is a very reliable, hard worker that I can depend on and trust even with the toughest tasks.


Social, content & experiences manager, PHD Media Dalia Nasser, associate director – social media, PHD Media: Dedicated and reliable, Abby always brings fresh ideas to the table. She puts her heart into what she does, and this shows in the quality of her work and in her relationships with peers. The growth shown in the last three years in the business is testament to the passion she has for her tasks and her customer-centric work ethic.


Tech & measurement executive, PHD David Barnes, director – digital data & measurement, PHD: Harsh is passionate and enthusiastic in delivering advanced, futureproofed tech solutions for his clients. He approaches every client brief with a smile on his face, and his enjoyment in using his technological skills to not only meet the brief but to surpass it is always clear. He is constantly learning new skills and applying these to his work to ensure that our clients are at the forefront of technology. Harsh’s drive for full automation is benefitting not only our clients but also every corner of the agency.


Senior media executive, Havas Media Middle East


Sales executive, DMS – Choueiri Group Ramy Kassis, sales director, DMS: Jad has spent a considerable amount of time building up his expertise, while working on some of DMS’ most dynamic and successful regional FMCG clients. A firm believer in creativity, he is always up for taking on new challenges and assisting others, and is eager to learn and grow alongside his clients and their businesses. An extremely likable and approachable personality, Jad is passionate about his job, the communications industry in general, and the ever-evolving future of digital.

David Do Rosario, head of digital specialities, Havas Media Middle East: Passion is probably the best word to describe Jana Amache. Passionate about her work, eager to learn, at the forefront of innovation and ready to activate the latest betas to implement, Jana manages a portfolio of ecommerce clients – which, in my opinion, is the most demanding industry – where she wears multiple hats: digital expert on paid media channels, consultant on the offering/ SKUs to push, and educating her clients on the latest trends. Her passion enables her to provide an edge to her clients by challenging them and anticipating trends and opportunities.


Senior social media executive, Create Group Dana Al Azem, group account director, Create Group: Maryam is an excellent communicator and knows how to manage social media to its best advantage. She is smart, confident and extremely knowledgeable about social media management, content production and the tools to use. She is also very quick on the uptake with regards to social media and community management and is always the first to identify new trends and opportunities.



April 25, 2022


Senior manager, data planning, Jellyfish Shanil Jagatia, MENA managing director, Jellyfish: Neeti has, within a short space of time, established herself as a trusted, reliable and results-oriented practitioner for all-things analytics over the past year at Jellyfish. Her ambition is to successfully increase the digital maturity of clients through better use of data, innovation and cross-platform insights so that they become more successful in today’s ever-changing complex landscape.


Executive, performance, OMD Egypt Islam Raslan, digital performance head, OMD Egypt: Omnia has been with OMD since January 2021, and we saw how quickly she has risen to the top of the digital scene. She put her enthusiasm to work on multidisciplinary initiatives that have been driving human-centric marketing transformation experiences throughout the last year.


Senior integrated manager, Leo Burnett Samer Shoueiry, CEO, Publicis Communications: Since Sarah joined, she has always been eager to learn and do more. She continues to display a hunger and curiosity to expand her knowledge and field of interests beyond her role and responsibilities, which makes her an exceptional team member and client partner, and with her positive attitude, contagious to her peers.


Senior performance manager, Chain Reaction Ahmed Romoh, head of performance marketing, Chain Reaction: Ghalayini owns an amazing experience in performance marketing, from the comprehensive technical knowledge to the analytical mindset and strategic thinking, contributing to excellent business growth across his portfolio of clients.


Account manager, Blue Barracuda

Dina Saadeh, general manager, Blue Barracuda: Mira joined less than one year ago, and the positive impact she’s made on the team is still being felt. She was able to take the strategic thinking of a number of our brands to the next level and has exceeded client expectations in her role, positioning herself as a value-add to the client and their extended team. She has also championed the Blue Barracuda brand. Mira has far exceeded expectations across the board. She is a rising star whose shine will not dim.


Manager, digital programmatic & performance media, PHD Media Group Egypt Islam Raslan, digital performance head, PHD Media Group: I’ve been observing Mina for over four years now, since he joined then MCN. I’ve witnessed him go from knowing just one part of digital to understanding the whole spectrum after joining the PHD Digital Team. The desire he takes with him every day to motivate his colleagues is admirable.

Senior account executive, Viola Communications Qais Rousan, integrated client servicing director, Viola Communications: Rhidima is a very responsive team member who is extremely proactive and always goes that extra mile. A creative thinker, she has developed immensely since joining Viola Communications. Rhidima has managed several projects almost entirely on her own and has a really positive attitude, making her always eager to take on new challenges.

April 25, 2022



Senior digital executive, Artefact James Kaye, VP digital activation, Artefact: Whilst Alia only joined Artefact a year ago, she has already made a huge impact on both the team and her clients. A natural creative thinker, she always embraces challenges and always works collaboratively with others to both create and deploy solutions. In addition to her already strong knowledge of digital, Alia is always pushing herself to learn more and develop both her skills and professional career.


Account executive, Chain Reaction


Junior SEO account manager, Bruce Clay MENA Neal Patel, managing director, Bruce Clay MENA: Shaun is an emerging talent at Bruce Clay MENA with huge potential. He’s a great team player, highly adaptable, and extremely supportive of his teammates. Shaun has excellent SEO and overall digital skills. He is highly skilled in working on large projects, reliable on timely delivery, and committed to success.

Haneen Al Hassan, deputy general manager, Chain Reaction: Since joining Chain Reaction, Bea’s hard work, motivation and dedication have stood out. During her time with us, she has been able to build her way up from working on small brands to managing the accounts of some of the most important entertainment destinations in Dubai.


Senior associate, Merkle MENA Beth Williams, head of performance media, Merkle MENA: From the first interview with Sohail, it was clear that he was very driven and has ambitious career goals. Sohail currently works as part of two of our biggest client teams and I’m looking forward to continuing to see him grow in his career.


Senior SEO manager, EMEA, Jellyfish MENA Shanil Jagatia, MENA managing director, Jellyfish: Charlie is one of those superheroes who moved over from the UK Jellyfish office on a mission to bring the global SEO specialism into the MENA market. His abilities to absorb complex technical information and articulate this into actionable strategies were critical in securing work with one of the region’s largest telcos. Charlie has an extremely sharp mind, and his value is beyond SEO, often adding value across multiple capabilities.


Effectiveness manager, Leo Burnett UAE Aakriti Goel, strategy lead, Leo Burnett UAE: Over the last six years, Ahmed has played a pivotal role in the strategy and data department of the agency. His superb analytical brain, incredible work ethic and a great attitude have made him the go-to person for colleagues and clients alike.

CHRISTINA CHOUCAIR, 28 Senior executive, media, Starcom

Sylvia Shohdi, business lead, media, Starcom: An insatiable appetite to learn and a tenacious desire to succeed; these are just two of the characteristics that come to mind when thinking of Christina. Consistently pushing the bar and inspiring her teammates around her, Christina has become an invaluable asset to the team.




April 25, 2022

FARAH RASHAD, 26 Media executive, Wavemaker Egypt

Raeif Hassan, integrated media director, Wavemaker Egypt: She is a passionate, hardworking and dedicated team player. What sets her aside is how quickly she managed to grasp everything within her role as a junior media executive, and also filled the senior and manager roles smoothly till I built a full business unit and hired an entire team.


Media executive, Havas Media Middle East


Social media executive, Netizency Walid Sanjad, social media director, Netizency: Farah went from intern to full-time in no time. Hiring her was a no-brainer, and she’s proven it every step of the way throughout her time with us. Her dedicated attitude, eagerness to help and grow, and her independence have been fundamental to her team’s success. Farah possesses the exceedingly rare quality of simplifying things that others typically overcomplicate, allowing her to manage a workload across some of our biggest and most challenging accounts.


Social media executive, Hashtag Social Media Agency John Karam, social media manager, Hashtag Social Media Agency: Dalia has shown consistent dedication and resilience in every task that she takes on, whether small or big. She is an eager person who is continuously asking questions and exploring new ideas and concepts. That mix of hard work and curiosity has lead Dalia to grow personally and professionally since she joined this role, which makes us look forward to seeing what she will continue to achieve in the future.

Head of paid social, Merkle ME

Vimal Badiani, VP and managing director, Merkle ME: Igor has been a standout performer ever since joining the team, driving paid social best practice, innovation and team development, whilst simultaneously leading across some of our largest accounts. His knowledge, expertise and calmness under pressure instil confidence across the team and help support clients with best-in-class execution across performance media channels.

Naveen Chacko Mathews, head of business unit, Havas Media Middle East: For everyone who says interns need a lot of time to learn, they haven’t met Jana. She has grown from a fresh intern to an executive that is an integral part of the Du telecom team. A true rock star who, in a short span of time, has learned to champion client conversations to the point that clients feel they have been working with her for years. She is organised and has the right can-do attitude. It’s an absolute pleasure working with Jana and you can trust her to get things done every single time without missing a beat.


Senior executive, media, Starcom Eli Gebrael, associate business director, media, Starcom: From handling a client without supervision to orchestrating efforts with the client to drive digital transformation and full message communication, Elio’s achievements include overhauling the client’s search strategy, working on a dynamic testing environment to help with planning, and automating different processes to help his team achieve effectiveness.

April 25, 2022



LEEROY STEFAN, 30 Manager, performance marketing, Starcom

Manager, biddable media, PHD Media

Vittorio Barraja, senior director, biddable media, PHD Media: Mridula is one of those future leaders who will be able to ensure growth of brands while nurturing a team around herself. It’s important to mention the huge technical knowledge Mridula developed over the years, making her both a technical and human future leader of the MENA martech space.


Senior influencer relations executive, Gambit Communications Jamal Almawed, founder & managing director, Gambit Communications: We were one of the first comms agencies in this region to create a dedicated influencer relations role, and while on paper it was innovative, it still needed the right person to make it work. Judy came in and made the role her own, with maturity beyond her years that has allowed her to lead on big-budget influencer campaigns for multinational clients almost singlehandedly. She brings a rare combination of style, substance, creativity and control that gives clients, teammates and the influencers themselves peace-of-mind.


LAYAL AKIKI, 29 Motion graphics designer, Netizency

Mher Krikorian, head of content, Netizency: Layal is a creative thinker. She is involved with different creative projects across different industries and is always up for a new challenge. Akiki can handle projects under minimal supervision and always takes the lead. She always goes the extra mile and adds her touch, coming up with great ideas. Her confidence is inspiring and her bubbly personality makes working with her pure joy.

Aneesha Hingorani, business director, media, Starcom: Performance media lead for the Samsung Gulf client business, Leeroy is a star talent who is on the relentless pursuit of the highest performance media results and quality standards for his client. Through these challenging times when clients are heavily focused on greater levels of accountability, Leeroy and his team propelled his client’s performance media returns across the business. Leeroy is always keen on leading with an innovation-first mindset, believing there is no reward without calculated risk. Commended by his clients and colleagues, Leeroy is certain to have a bright future ahead of him.


New business and growth director, Bruce Clay MENA Neal Patel, managing director, Bruce Clay MENA: Lea has recently become our growth and new business director. She joined us about five years back, fresh out of university. Fast-forward and here she is. She has been a key factor in our growth to date. She had previously been a social exec, manager and director, before leading our inbound growth strategies. Most recently, she has overseen a number of key wins for the agency, including Talabat and Jumeirah Hotels. I look forward to her growing further with the agency and, in turn, the agency supporting her career progression.

JAD HAIDAR, 26 Senior account manager, Create Group

Vanessa Miranda, business director, Create Group: Throughout his time with Create Group, Jad has proved himself to be hard-working, motivated, ambitious, charismatic, and a reliable team player. Jad is extremely passionate about creating seamless digital journeys and is constantly looking to provide the best solutions for brands like Dragon Mart, DP World and Cafu.

JAY VINCENT MORTEL, 29 Graphic designer, Bruce Clay

Tom Bawler-Williams, creative director, Bruce Clay: I wish there were more creatives like Jay. A designer who has a great work ethic, an ever-expanding technical ability, but someone who leaves the ego at the door. Despite his apparent talent and ambition, Jay is humble and hungry for opportunities to learn and further develop his craft.



April 25, 2022


Social media executive, Netizency Tamara Habib, chief operating officer, Netizency: Nada came to Netizency as a young grad, with a couple of internships and a lot of determination under her belt. Under her quiet demeanour there lies a creative, strategic, and passionate individual who has shown that she can handle anything – including 120+ days of daily, on-ground coverage at Expo 2020 Dubai, and all the challenges that entails.


Senior performance media specialist, Socialize Agency Brittany Wickerson, global head of media, Socialize Agency: Omar consistently demonstrates a highly strategic approach to paid media that integrates the clients’ needs and business objectives with campaign concepts and platform realities. He leads on our largest consumer packaged goods accounts, improving performance year-on-year through in-depth analysis, innovative thinking and a test-and-learn mindset. This has enabled him to rapidly take advantage of platforms like TikTok and new placements like Reels, ahead of our clients’ competitors. By working closely with strategy and creative teams, he has unlocked community growth on TikTok, helping to grow the client’s followers at a rate of 15 per cent.


Digital account manager, Artefact James Kaye, VP digital activation, Artefact: Omar combines a deep level of digital and data knowledge with a real roll-up-your-sleeves work ethic that always sees him go the extra mile to support his team and clients. In my time working with Omar, he has never been intimidated by the unknown, he always embraces opportunities and is constantly looking both to learn and to lift up the people around him.


Senior executive, biddable media, Hearts & Science Aisha Ali, head of growth strategy & innovation, Hearts & Science: To say that Ramy goes the extra mile in everything that he does would be an understatement. He has the attitude of a go-getter and is always striving to upskill himself to broaden his expertise. He has a solutions-led approach and loves to solve a challenge, which makes working with him very interesting. He also takes the time to proactively come up with initiatives to work on company culture, and one of his great traits is that he acts as a glue to join everyone together, which makes him unique.


Social media manager, Chain Reaction Haneen Al Hassan, deputy general manager, Chain Reaction: Since joining Chain Reaction, Reem has been making big moves for herself, her clients and her team. In a very short time, she was able to work on many successful campaigns that were driven by passion and executed carefully, achieving great results. It is one thing to be a good manager, but with Reem, she takes it to the next level; she is very reliable, proactive and self driven.


Junior account executive, LEVA Marketing Management Anmar Theeb, managing director, LEVA Marketing Management: It’s my absolute pleasure to recommend Rakshit to be on Campaign’s Agency Faces to Watch 2022. Rakshit was a great addition to my team; his creative and out-of-the-box ideas have always led us to achieve more than what the clients have expected. Along with Rakshit’s undeniable talent, he has always been an absolute joy to work with.

April 25, 2022



Senior account executive, Viola Communications Qais Rousan, integrated client-servicing director, Viola Communications: Omar is a quick learner who is always up for a new challenge. He is eager to learn and adapt to any potential opportunities, and he is the one who generates ideas. Omar is a proactive team player who maintains great relationships and responds quickly to client requests.


Social media manager, Blue Barracuda Digital Agency Dina Saadeh, general manager, Blue Barracuda Digital Agency: Shahira has been a huge asset to Blue Barracuda, far exceeding the expectations of the role. Shahira is a chameleon, able to thrive with any industry she’s given to work on, because she takes the time to fully digest it, understand it, become it. She is a creator, a copywriter, a strategic thinker, and the list goes on. I am excited to watch Shahira’s career grow. The sky is the limit for her.



Social media manager, Hashtag Social Media Agency Amer Massimi, CEO, Hashtag Social Media Agency: I believe actions speak louder than words, and Rola embodies this saying in an impressive way, handling some of our biggest clients, such as Amazon in KSA. Rola kept delivering on the demanding scope of this account and was successful in taking it to the ideal scenario we were seeking. Additionally, she carries around a sense of humour and all Hashtagers love working with her.


Junior key account manager, Gamned MEA Yves-Michel Gabay, managing director, Gamned MEA: I have known Susie since she was at high school. In 2015 she did her first internship in my previous company. She impressed me with her thirst for learning and curiosity for new technologies. Since then, she has perfected her marketing and business education in reputed institutions and got her first digital experiences before coming back to Dubai to join Gamned MEA.


Senior account executive, Katch International Fadi Tayem, art director, Katch International: Susan brings so much creativity to her work and always goes over and beyond. Her ability to bring storytelling to digital platforms is impeccable.


Digital marketing manager, TikTok Bytedance Fahad Osman, head of global business marketing, TikTok Bytedance: I believe that Sara is what they call a talent to watch and grow. Ever since she joined the B2B marketing team, she has been a vital part of the business drivers at TikTok. She is definitely one of the best talents we have.


Senior social media manager, Create Group Dana Al Azem, group account director, Create Group: Sabine is one of the best social media account managers anyone can ask for. She is a very motivational speaker who knows the ins and outs about social media from a practical, get-it-done standpoint.



April 25, 2022

TAROOJ ANWAR, 26 Senior analyst, Create


Matt Fortune, social & integration director, Create: Simply put, Tarooj makes us all better. Putting data at the forefront of our decisionmaking has been fundamental to the success of the agency. Further to the results he delivers, though, is the way in which he communicates upwards, downwards and sideways, making the data points relatable to all those who have the privilege of listening to his extensive reports.

Vittorio Barraja, senior director, biddable media, PHD: Santiago’s ambitions, intelligence and accomplishments precisely complement the stellar community of Omnicom Group and make him highly deserving of the honour and opportunity bestowed by Campaign magazine. Santiago will surely become a prominent name in the media space and his thought leadership will help Omnicom to grow its presence in MENA ever further.

Biddable manager, PHD


Senior multimedia manager, Netizency

Mher Krikorian, head of content, Netizency: Tarek is a rare talent, with his sharp eye for details, knowledge, experience in the industry, and leadership skills. He is truly the engine of the content department. Sometimes I wonder if Tarek is a superhero because he can manage his projects and lead the team of animators to deliver the best they can all at the same time. He is always eager to push the boundaries, which motivates and brings positive energy to the team.


Junior content creator, Leva Marketing Management Anmar Theeb, managing director, Leva Marketing Management: As a junior content creator, Thomas has been working for six months here at Leva Marketing. Thomas has proven himself to be creative, dedicated and personable. He is more than capable of assimilating and performing new tasks.


Digital media manager, Lemon Adverts Mohammed Naheemuddin, director of innovation and operations, Lemon Adverts: Vinay has been an integral part of our team and has proved to be an outstanding and trustworthy digital specialist. He will always go an extra mile researching the category and consumer insights, resulting in delivering a high-impact strategy and remarkable value for our clients. An avid and keen learner, he has always kept an open eye to the latest tech and is the first to propose.


Social media junior account manager, Bruce Clay MENA


Communications manager, Saatchi & Saatchi May Chaker, communications director, Saatchi & Saatchi: I’m not sure how to write about Line without sounding like I’m gushing. I have had the distinct privilege of watching this young lady grow and dazzle since hiring her as a junior comms executive. She now leads her very own regional account and has garnered the respect of senior clients despite her very young age. Not only is Line a prime strategic talent, but she is also socially and digitally native, can develop content better than any creative, understands data and implements it in her strategies and campaigns, and does it all with a creative flair.

Neal Patel, managing director, Bruce Clay MENA: I simply enjoy working with Zoya. She is always eager to learn, while doing an excellent job of delivering the best innovative and creative ideas to our clients. Zoya’s focus, determination, organization skills, teamwork, and ideas will take her places, and that’s for sure.

April 25, 2022




Account director, Atteline Sophie Simpson, MD, Atteline: Bianca is one of the most hardworking and talented people I have ever had the pleasure of meeting and working alongside. I have joked that she is an idea factory as her mind is swimming with new and innovative ways to approach team culture, client work and the business growth at Atteline. Furthermore, she is a very supportive person, always there to help where needed. This may seem a trivial comment amongst her many accolades but it takes a truly inspiring and authentic leader to be the anchor professionally and personally to her colleagues – the person we all, without exception, turn to in celebration and when in need.


PR & social media manager, Matrix Public Relations Dubai Namita Thakkar, PR director, Matrix Public Relations Dubai: Krishika has been an asset to Matrix PR since the time she joined the organisation almost six years ago. Her positive attitude, openness to learn and a high degree of diligence have empowered her growth from an intern to an account manager.


Comms executive, Active DMC Rebeca Pop, account director, Active DMC: Carine is a valuable team member and a gifted marketer within not only traditional PR but also digital and overall creative media. Think of her as the communications executive who never fails to deliver, no matter how much you throw at her. I imagine her to be at director level by the age of 29.


Project management analyst, Ipsos Market Research Company


Ahmad Issa, senior operations manager, Ipsos Market Research Company: Lamia has shown great performance and is a very professional employee. She understands all tasks assigned to her by her direct manager, understands the project life cycle and follows the process. Lamia is engaged with multiple teams and different departments, coordinating with stakeholders for each project.

Associate account director, Apco Worldwide Imad Lahd, managing director, Dubai, Apco Worldwide: Khaled is one of the most impressive up-and-coming talents in the industry. He’s been instrumental in a number of Apco’s most challenging and high-profile assignments, demonstrating calmness, commendable aptitude, deft clienthandling skills and the ability to deliver. He is fiercely dedicated to his clients and teams, wise beyond his years, a joy to work with and a communications powerhouse in the making.


Influencer marketing executive, White Label Media


Account executive, Golin MENA Joshua Mathias, director, Golin MENA: Lyan is an exceptional talent with a positive attitude and an impeccable work ethic. She has demonstrated maturity and independence in handling numerous projects from small activations to large scale events with multiple stakeholders. Her enthusiasm to learn and go above-and-beyond for her clients and team is always valued and appreciated. Lyan is one of the most talented PR professionals I’ve worked with and I’m very proud of what she’s achieved in such a short period.

Shraddha Barot Amariei, founder & CEO, White Label Media: Iman is truly one of the young talents that I am so proud to have hired, she is quiet and calm; however, her work is impeccable. She has picked up and mastered the game of influencer marketing so very well, starting from ground to now heading all our campaigns; it’s been very impressive to see her growth.



April 25, 2022



Senior communications executive, Red Havas Middle East

PR director, Atteline

Sophie Simpson, managing director, Atteline: Her panache and poise may catch your eye, but Malaika has ambition and skill that demands much more notice. Malaika represents a new era of industry leadership. Her quick career progression and success today cements that she makes not just her clients but those around her a priority.

Razan Karim, communications director, Red Havas Middle East: It is my pleasure to recommend Sandra, who has worked within my team at Red Havas at Havas Middle East for more than three years. Sandra has played a critical role in delivering quality work and results for a portfolio of global clients, spanning various industries from fashion and lifestyle to F&B.


Associate account manager, Golin MENA Amjad Saqer, senior account manager, Golin MENA: Ranin’s ambition and appetite to explore the unknown are what struck me the most. She is young, full of life, creates a positive ambience around her and is definitely one who thrives through challenges. Her mentoring skills to the junior members of the team are an example that all organisations need leaders, not just managers. Her quest to deliver exceptional service for all her clients is further strengthened by her natural ability, strategic thinking, diligent research and interpersonal skills. All of these traits enable her to be a highly skilled communications professional, a valued member of our team and an asset who is truly valued and appreciated by all our clients.



Senior PR & social media executive, Matrix Public Relations Dubai

Senior communications executive, Red Havas Middle East

Namita Thakkar, PR director, Matrix Public Relations Dubai: Shirin joined Matrix as an intern in 2019. She has since advanced to now hold the position of senior PR executive. There is no doubt that her zeal to learn and her cheerful personality set her apart.

Nermeen Salama, communications director, Red Havas Middle East: Nicole is a truly unique person in the way she delivers results and puts a smile on everyone’s face every single day. She never fails to amaze her clients and colleagues, and has grown from an intern to a senior communications executive in a short time span.


Consultant, Instinctif Partners


Amel Osman, associate partner, Instinctif Partners: Zena is a multitalented individual adept at corporate and crisis communications. She can always bring a creative and insightful approach to the work she does, with a sharp and critical eye that helps her anticipate and provide holistic solutions to the needs of the clients.

Namita Thakkar, PR director, Matrix Public Relations Dubai: It is truly a feeling of pride to see Rojina’s learning curve at Matrix PR over the last one year. Her proactiveness and willingness to learn are indeed very impressive. Whether it is her relationships with the Arabic media, her inputs on projects and campaigns or her quick turnaround on media requests, Rojina has been instrumental in the success of the Arabic PR division at Matrix PR.

Public relations executive, Matrix Public Relations Dubai

April 25, 2022




Communication Manager, Leo Burnett UAE Karim Fattal, group communication director, Leo Burnett UAE: Farah joined us in October of 2021 and immediately, from the first week, we knew that we had a star joining the team. I believe it’s a mix of her strong personality coupled with the passion for building brands that shaped her into the person she is today.


Account executive, Katch International Huda Ismail, engagement director, Katch International: At young age, Alankrita brings so much of her high work ethics and grit. She shows up every day, no matter what. She has grown so much in a very short period of time and her sense of team work and spirit is commendable. Alankrita’s humour is superb, as well as the work she delivers to her clients.


Senior account executive (‘a journalist’s best friend’), GolinMENA Suzanne Kanianthra, director, GolinMENA: A true media champion, Adnan understands what the media needs and what the audience wants. Leveraging his extensive networking relationships and staying up to date with the latest trends and topics, he is an expert at consistently securing quality coverage for his clients.


Senior associate, Integrated Media, Weber Shandwick MENAT Tina Varghese, director, client experience, Weber Shandwick MENAT: Having joined as an associate on the technology and B2B team at Weber Shandwick in the UAE in September 2019, Dana was quickly able to play an instrumental role within the team and the wider agency. She easily developed an in-depth understanding of very technical subject matter for her clients and adapted their communications programmes in response to the Covid-19 pandemic.


Senior communications manager, Action Global Communications


Associate account manager, Weber Shandwick Nada El Barshoumi, associate director, Weber Shandwick: A trusted consultant to her clients and an inspiration to her peers, Evita’s bold, no-nonsense sensibility and keen eye for communications make her a cut above the rest. She exercises a high level of creativity and innovation in her work and is never afraid to challenge conventional norms. Having worked her way up to a managerial post, Evita never hesitates to support her junior teammates, and is always there to lend a helping hand and help coach young talent.


Senior campaign executive, Tales & Heads Margaret Flanagan & Lisa King, co-founders, Tales & Heads: Aya is a rare talent. Since joining as our first team member at Tales & Heads less than a year ago, she has grown in ability and confidence, honing her existing skills and developing new ones. Smart and strategic, with great instincts, Aya is also committed and caring with a moral compass that means she will do the right thing even if it’s not the easy thing. It’s these qualities that engender trust and loyalty from those around her. If that wasn’t enough, Aya also makes us laugh and plays the piano like a maestro.

Euan Megson, managing director, Action Global Communications: As her role and remit expand with each passing year, Diksha continues to thrive. I find it hard to believe she is still only 27, considering her tenure with the agency and the experience she now possesses. Without doubt, she’s one of the finest in the business for her age and experience – an example of the progressive culture and development pathways we foster at Action.



April 25, 2022



Account manager, Atteline

Senior communications executive, Catch Communications

Bianca Riley, account director, Atteline: Hanine is a dedicated PR manager who I’ve watched grow and thrive throughout her career. It has been my honour and privilege to work alongside her. She constantly teaches me how to be a better person and I can’t wait to see the new heights she will reach in the coming years.

Injeel Moti, managing firector, Catch Communications: Joudat has been with us since April of 2021 and has shown tremendous potential for growth during his tenure. Someone with a keen passion to learn and evolve within the communications space, his stand-out feature has to be his work ethic and loyalty to his role, colleagues and clients alike.

JASHMEH BHAGWAGAR, 26 Senior account executive, Apco Worldwide


Imad Lahd, managing director, Dubai, Apco Worldwide: Jashmeh is a true leader and role model for others. Her confidence, empathy and resilience in the face of myriad challenges and opportunities continue to impress us. She has continued to build exemplary relationships with clients, media and other stakeholders built on trust, empathy and common understanding.

Senior account executive, Gambit Communications Jamal Almawed, founder & managing director, Gambit Communications: Ihab has three standout qualities that are hard to replicate, which make him so important to our team. He has character, a quality that is becoming rarer and rarer in the new generation of PR professionals. He’s self-built, having overcome many challenges to get to where he is today, and that has given him an amazing resolve in his approach to work. And he brings charm to his client servicing, a much-needed trait in our high-pressure industry where that level of personability can be the difference between a client trusting you or not.


Communication manager, Leo Burnett Mohieddine Mneimneh, group account director, Leo Burnett: Harsh is one of the highly motivated communication managers who doesn’t take no for an answer. He makes the impossible possible. Harsh’s commitment and passion for his work and partners make him stand out in today’s era of communication.


Engagement executive, Katch International Petra B Spanko, regional director, Katch International: Hollie has made great progress and shows great potential. She is great at what she does and always goes over and beyond for her clients. Hollie is great with influencers and media outreach, and she is results driven.


Consultant, Instinctif Partners Amel Osman, associate partner, Instinctif Partners: Joann is autonomous and employs a proactive approach to her work. She understands that her performance is representative not only of her but also of her team and the organisation, and always works to put the best foot forward. She is trustworthy and dependable. If Joann is on an account, you can trust her to drive things forward, mitigating any issues and driving results. She is a breath of fresh air, making her a valuable addition to any team with her positive outlook, despite the most challenging times.

LANA MAKHZOUMI, 28 Senior account manager, Apco Worldwide

Imad Lahd, managing director, Dubai, Apco Worldwide: Lana embodies our values of boldness, inclusivity, curiosity and empathy. She has incredible energy and brings extraordinary ideas and insights to Apco, her colleagues and clients. She is a next-generation leader in the communication industry – and we are thrilled to see her grow, excel and thrive.

April 25, 2022




Social media manager, Action Global Communications Euan Megson, managing director, Action Global Communications: Mawada, or Mady, brings a full locker of skills to our rapidly expanding social media team. Handed a pivotal leadership role in the agency’s youngest department per capita, Mady is a champion of what youth can deliver when given the right chances. A hard worker and a dutiful mother, Mady brings assured maturity to client work, and untold warmth to Action’s physical and digital spaces through her character and creativity.

MARIYA MOUSSALLI, 28 Account executive, Golin MENA

Joshua Mathias, director, Golin MENA: It has been a privilege to watch Mariya continuously evolve from being an account executive into one of the most talented and capable PR professionals in the industry. Intelligent, dedicated and hardworking, Mariya is committed to always add value to her clients’ business.

LAVINA NARWANI, 22 Account executive, Atteline

Malaika Fernandes, PR director, Atteline: Lavina is immensely passionate and driven, a natural collaborator whose fresh ideas and Gen Z perspectives are highly appreciated by our clients. Her expertise with media and influencer engagement sets her apart, along with her ability to think ahead and find solutions to challenging situations.

LISA WEBBER, 28 Consultant, Instinctif Partners

Mohamed Zein, partner, instinctif partners: Lisa boasts a strong work ethic, a can-do approach and a willingness to learn and advance. These are typically some of the features we look for in team members, and she ticked all marks. On the job, she shows a sense of responsibility and commercial understanding. She is not afraid to take on tasks in areas that she is unfamiliar with, demonstrating a keen ability to adapt. In crunch times, she shows resilience by successfully multitasking and delivering on time, with the outcome being of high quality.


Arabic PR executive & social media maestro, Sociate Rabab Hussain, strategic director of communications & agency whisperer, Sociate: Malek is the agency’s Energizer bunny. His go-getter attitude will surely take him to greater heights. What sets Malek apart is that he thrives on feedback – whether it is positive or constructive criticism. He takes it all in his stride and constantly aims to excel in PR. In addition, his charming personality makes it natural for the clients to like him, the media to be friends with him and his colleagues to always be on his side.


Associate director, Weber Shandwick MENAT Megan Treacher-Evans, director – head of consumer and corporate practice, Weber Shandwick MENAT: Millie truly understands the power of communications to achieve impactful, objective-reaching and awardwinning campaigns. Her work delivers real value and ROI for her portfolio of high-profile international and regional clients. Possessing an insight-driven and integrated communications mindset, she effortlessly dissects her clients’ business objectives to translate them into creative methods of communicating and connecting with regional audiences in a way that is most meaningful to them. Innately positive and visionary, Millie is a natural leader, mentor and strategic adviser, and also a wonderful human, who is deeply valued and trusted by both the Weber Shandwick team and her clients.


Account executive, Acorn Strategy Ghina Said, group account director, Acorn Strategy: Mariam Douss joined the account management team over six months ago and it’s been an absolute pleasure working with her. I see Mariam as an invaluable asset to the team. Her positivity, honesty and ambition, along with her ability to see a project through from conceptualisation to realisation are of great benefit to our team.



April 25, 2022



Rebeca Pop, account director, Active DMC: Krisha is to date one of the most hard-working people I have interacted with. Her work and life ethic are admirable and don’t go unnoticed, either by her team or clients. Think of her as the strategist who comes in to set up your project and make sure everyone understands the logical flow of the challenge at hand.

Mohamed Zein, partner – capital markets and investor relations, Instinctif Partners: Muhammad is a professional who is passionate about investor relations and the capital markets sector. He shows eagerness to regularly learn about not only the industries he is directly involved in, but also the wider macro-environment in the Middle East and globally. His financial skills and attention to detail have allowed him to evolve and advance his skills.

Communications executive, Active DMC

Investor relations, Instinctif Partners


Senior PR executive, Katch International Georgie Woollams, managing director, Katch International: At a very young age, Natasha managed to showcase so much in a short period of time. Her dedication towards her clients and her colleagues is outstanding. She continues to overachieve at every single task, and improves her skills along the way.

MUNEIRA AL ADWANI, 29 Account manager, Hill+Knowlton Strategies


Iman Issa, managing director, Hill+Knowlton Strategies: Muneira is the future of the Middle East communications industry because she has a skillset of tomorrow. Her unwavering obsession with finding answers to client challenges and audience behaviour has transformed her into a communication professional with range. She has a perfect blend of skillsets, ensuring campaigns are rooted in insight that drives strategy, shapes creativity and informs campaigns as they are rolled out.

Director, Action Studios (part of Action Global Communication) Euan Megson, managing director, Action Global Communication: At the forefront of our agency’s muti-faceted video work, Rayan possesses everything one requires in a department head. He battles in the trenches while commanding from the general’s tent. He extracts tremendous creative and physical effort from his team by constantly acting as the pacemaker. A creative filmmaker driven by a desire to create, he displays similar solution-centric thinking in budgeting and cost tracking.



Lucy O’Brien, general manager & partner, FleishmanHillard Middle East: Ronak drives himself to improve outcomes for his clients and to make relationships better. He excels at making connections and thinking laterally, bringing clients together for conversations of shared value. He has an unusual combination of creativity and business acumen and is able to suggest creative ideas to clients that show an unmatched awareness of their business.

Haytham Dayeh, business lead, Leo Burnett Dubai: While Miral is one of the ‘younger’ generation in the industry and brings that youthful perspective to her work she is also an old soul. She understands the importance of winning trust of those around her though the positive energy and ownership she puts into her everyday.

Account director, FleishmanHillard Middle East

Communication manager, Leo Burnett Dubai

April 25, 2022





Senior account executive (account management superstar), GolinMENA

Account executive, Atteline Sophie Simpson, managing director, Atteline: Tala possesses the ultimate can-do attitude, taking on all tasks with positive energy and a smile. Her upbeat personality and engaging personal style have seen her win over both clients and her colleagues. When that is coupled with her evergrowing arsenal of PR know-how, technical knowledge and industry insight, Tala is a face to watch out for.

Suzanne Kanianthra, director, GolinMENA: Taief plays a pivotal role in tactical implementation and strategic direction. Daily, she will be engrossed in the account, monitoring, analysing, and communicating results and outcomes for all clients in her portfolio. Taief has an excellent feel for anticipating challenges and involving senior counsel early on to mitigate any issue and drive measurable results.


Communications manager, Saatchi & Saatchi May Chaker, communications director, Saatchi & Saatchi: Ibrahim is the one person I turn to, no matter what I need. Not only is he an expert on his brand, his client, his industry and his craft, he is one of the most dedicated and driven individuals I have had the pleasure to work with. While I did not hire Ibrahim myself, I would hire him in this life and the next. To make a long story short, I could not do my job on Cadillac without Ibrahim, and neither could any of the other team members.


Senior account manager, content & publishing, sports & entertainment, Hill+Knowlton Strategies Kirsty O’Connor, director, content, data & digital, MENA, Hill+Knowlton Strategies: In my almost six years of line-managing Yara, she’s grown from a digital account executive into an integrated senior account manager and mother of one. Her unique route into the PR industry, starting in digital first before learning traditional, sees her automatically thinking digital first. When she’s not creating content, she is deep in performance analytics to understand and perfect her craft and her process.


Senior communications executive, Red Havas Middle East Mathilde Montel, communications director, Red Havas Middle East: Rusol joined Red Havas at Havas Middle East over a year ago and is now an integral part of the corporate PR team. She is highly reliable, collaborative and PRsavvy. Once she takes the lead on a project, she is very results-driven, acts quickly and makes sure to cover every aspect with her diligence and touch of creativity.

Junior account manager, Gambit Communications Kathleen Burbridge, senior account director, Gambit Communications: The convention is that people tend to move from agency side to client side, but Sarah was brave enough to make the move in the opposite direction, despite flying high on the client side, because she wanted to test herself in a more challenging environment. That speaks volumes about her tenacity and drive, which have been clear in her outstanding work on Ferrari’s regional PR.


Senior account manager, Weber Shandwick MENAT Megan Treacher-Evans, head of consumer & corporate practice; director, client experience, Weber Shandwick MENAT: Tania’s tenacity is what fuels her ambition to continuously strive for greatness – both for her clients and for the team. She has naturally stepped into a mentorship role, investing invaluable time into growing team members as well as university students through industry workshops. Commercially minded, Tania seeks to deliver high value, quality, and ROI for her clients.



April 25, 2022


Data scientist, Reprise Media

Riddhi Dasgupta, data science and analytics director, Reprise Media: Aruna has proven to be our asset ever since she joined Reprise’s data science team. With a solid academic background of marketing data science, Aruna has made sure at a very early stage to champion all the data-driven solutions within Reprise. This is clubbed with her great ability to understand the business needs and stitch them back to the data science solutions.


Integrated media planner, UM Dina El Houssainy, media director, UM: Cathreen proved to be a people person from the day she joined UM. She has one-of-a-kind communication and social skills, which allowed her to build solid and trustworthy relationships with her team and her clients.



Strategic analytics manager, MBC Media Solutions

Account manager, Create Group Vanessa Miranda, business director, Create Group: Laila has grown tremendously over the years and has swiftly become one of the most valuable team players within the agency, supporting the digital transformation of key accounts within the DP World portfolio of brands. Her honesty, dependability, confidence and capability to work in high-pressure environments have been consistently applauded by clients and senior team members.

Nadim Samara, COO, MBC Media Solutions: Jamil is one of these rare talents who comfortably navigates across disciplines in our industry – with the ability to practically and theoretically master several topics at the same time, and find an empirical way to drive value. His sense of motivation, responsibility and attention to detail is second to none. I look forward to seeing how he helps shape our industry as it continues to morph in the near future.


Senior strategy executive, Havas Media Middle East Mary Anne He (Mengyin), head of data and insights, Havas Media Middle East: Laman is a truly hybrid talent who has proven herself capable both as a strategist and as an analyst. Combining these diverse skillsets has helped Laman deliver outstanding strategies for some of Havas Middle East’s biggest clients as well as for key new business wins. Additionally, she is authoring thought-leadership pieces published both internally and externally, as well as conducting various trainings.


Senior sales executive, Digital Media Services Floriane Kawkabani, associate director, Digital Media Services: As a natural go-getter, Elie faces challenges with a natural sense of determination and handles any tough situation you can throw at him. Consistently curious and eager to learn, Elie always manages to find solutions and is never out of touch with the coolest and latest updates to share. Despite having a soft spot for working on luxury brands, he has welcomed the FMCG sector into his portfolio with equal excitement.

LAMA EL KHAMY, 25 Executive – integrated media planning, OMD Egypt

Ahmed ElNaggar, integrated director, OMD Egypt: We’ve joined our hands in the same business unit, and Lama is one of the best people I’ve had the privilege to work with. She is one of the most dedicated people I have met and worked with, and her ability to adapt and persist with a smile on her face is remarkable. Simply, Lama is a main building block of any team and an upcoming media star.

April 25, 2022




Senior media planner, Carat Alexandra de Smet, digital director, Carat: Marilyne is a true force to be reckoned with. Having her on my team for the past two years has been truly great and I look forward to continuing to assist her with her growth, as well as learning from her. The growth that has come from her dedication and positive attitude towards work make her the perfect candidate for this nomination

MOHAMMAD ABDELKARIM, 23 Data analyst, adtech, Havas Media Middle East


Media executive – integrated planning, OMD Egypt Malak Effat, associate director, OMD Egypt: Mahmoud is one of our rising star talents in OMD who is always pushing for the best quality across all his clients. His ability to seamlessly navigate challenging situations with the clients with a positive mindset is always inspiring to everyone around him. Working on various strategic accounts, such as McDonald’s, Oppo and Banque Misr, he has propelled his clients’ businesses forward and has seen many of his campaigns featured globally and shortlisted in the Effies.

Kamal El Agha, head of data and tech, Havas Media Middle East: Mohammad Abdelkarim (affectionately – and mysteriously – known as MG to everyone at Havas) is a very smart and personable individual who has become a key member of the data, analytics and technology department since joining the Havas Middle East internship programme in September 2021. MG has progressed at such a pace that he was promoted ahead of the standard timeline to executive.


Digital manager, Seven Media Joanne Walker, director of digital department, Seven Media: Mariam is a driving force behind the accounts she is handling, keeping everyone on schedule (including the client, where possible) and delivering to the agreed deadlines. Mariam has strong organisational skills, is driven in achieving her goals and strives to continuously improve herself. She balances this with her genuine interest in people, her empathy and kind nature, all in all making her a pleasure to work with, as well as a colleague and team member that you can rely on.


Media executive, Universal Media

MARIA JOSE IBRAHIM, 23 Performance executive, UM

Dina El Houssainy, media director, UM: Jose is a one-of-a-kind talent; responsible, eager to learn, sociable and with amazing communication skills. She spreads positivity everywhere and she has proved to be up to every new challenge you hand over to her.

Aya Moneb, deputy GM, Universal Media: Mohamed Ossama joined the media industry a year ago, where he has shown great potential and interest in growing more. Learning new digital solutions and all updates in the digital field, he was able to convince clients to expand and grow their digital investments in areas such as e-commerce, which is very difficult in a developing market like Egypt. We have been seeing a lot of effort and hard work (even after working hours) by Ossama, seeking digital training and seminars to learn more and to be able to provide added value and better performance to digital campaigns.


Associate media director, PHD Egypt Mariam Ezz, business unit director, PHD: If I could describe Mai in one sentence it would be quite simple actually: When you mix humanity with ambition and intellect, you get what I would call the crème de la crème of people. In the short time since she joined PHD, her dedication, forward thinking and people-first approach have won her the respect of our biggest client, her team and everyone who has had the pleasure of working with her.



April 25, 2022


Digital director, Mindshare Cairo Yasmine Hussein, general manager, Mindshare Cairo: Since Sarah joined Mindshare Egypt, she has proven to be a pivotal asset to the agency and its partners. As Mindshare’s digital lead, Sarah works closely with our strategic partners to accelerate their digital presence and build solutions to future-proof their business. In addition to consulting key clients, Sarah is playing a leading role in building the digital capability within the agency and is at the forefront of digital integration. Sarah has the right spirit and positive attitude that make her highly respected and trusted by her partners and peers


Senior programmatic executive, Publicis Media


Farah Salameh, manager, Publicis Media: Sara’s dedication and commitment brought trust between the brand team, suppliers and the client. She is highly independent, ensuring timely delivery on all her tasks and objectives. Moreover, she is a quick learner and a focused individual capable of smoothly rolling out new products and complex campaign structures on time.

Senior planning manager, PHD Roxane Magbanua, executive business director, PHD: In my 15+ years of managing teams both in APAC and the Middle East, I’ve never met someone as sharp, focused and driven as Sara Fares. She is ahead of the curve in so many ways. She has strategic clarity and agility, is able to navigate very well in different environments, and has the sensibility to pursue what is meaningful. Her maturity is beyond her years, as she is strong in managing upwards and downwards. She possesses a growth mindset, always finding ways to deliver better, consistently. A true PHDer, she demonstrates the values of collaboration, courage and openness.


Senior account manager, Skyscale Media Services Ajay John, business head, Skyscale Media Services: Mohammed has a wealth of knowledge and experience in the media space. He drives the sales strategy as well as managing all key relationships with media owners and clients.


Media manager, UM Egypt

Aya Moneb, deputy GM, UM Egypt: Sohaila comes from a digital background where she has worked on one of the most challenging categories (carbonated soft drinks), where she has learned how to come up with creative digital solutions to reach all her client’s desired KPIs. She has also started expanding her knowledge to learn other mediums such as TV, which has the highest media penetration in Egypt. With her intensive knowledge on both digital and TV, she can add great value to her client’s media outputs.


Senior executive, integrated planning, Initiative Media Ali Berjawi, business director, media, Initiative Media: Raneem’s energy has been evident from the very first day she joined the agency. Despite being onboarded while working from home, Raneem stood out from her peers by the positive interaction and hunger to learn and advance as swiftly as possible. Her positive energy became contagious once she started working from the office; it was obvious that she would quickly become a favourite team member to many of us at the agency.


Senior media planner, Universal Media Oussama Yaghi, media director, Universal Media: Rana embodies the key qualities we seek in all media planners, always going the extra mile and striving for better outcomes. Her curiosity always pushes her to develop her knowledge and innovate, making no task or obstacle too difficult for her to accomplish, while her meticulousness and dedication ensure that she constantly delivers against the highest standards.

April 25, 2022



Executive , integrated planning, Magna Global


Senior integrated media executive, Wavemaker


Senior media executive, Havas Middle East – Havas Media Makram Abou Fakher, business unit director, Havas Middle East – Havas Media: Yara was able to fully fill the position she was hired for in no time. She showed dedication and support from day one, and enhanced deliveries across the different accounts that she handles, on which the numbers have been constantly increasing in double digits.

Jyotishree Pandey, account director, Wavemaker: Anjali has been an invaluable asset to the team. Her positive attitude is an inspiration. From the time she joined the team, she has taken up multiple roles and stepped up to tackle bigger responsibilities even in tough times. In a very short span of time, she absorbed the role of managing social media campaigns.

ELIAS CHEDID, 24 Senior performance executive, Hearts & Science

Aisha Ali, head of growth strategy & innovation, Hearts & Science: Elias Chedid has played an instrumental role in scaling Hearts’ performance capabilities across all clients with his strong skillsets and command of performance marketing. Not only is he excellent at what he does, he brings in a lot of good energy and adds in his own unique flair to Hearts’ culture, which is something very close to our company ethos.

ALIAA ABDELSALAM, 28 Senior manager, planning, OMD UAE

Hossam Sherif, senior director, OMD UAE: Aliaa is a hustler at heart with a protagonist mindset that has been remarkable from day one. She has been a key pillar to rely on across different functions, and is never too shy to challenge the status quo, which has led to many key successes throughout her journey. With Aliaa’s ownership and hunger to learn she has grown to become a valued consultant to all her clients.


Senior account manager, Create Matt Fortune, social & integration director, Create: It’s not so much that Aarti is a firefighter, more she is totally fireproof, bringing admirable structure and solidity to ensure that, no matter how fierce the client, no-one ever gets burned. As a senior account manager, she runs her account with all the maturity of someone with twice her age and experience. Through expert organisation, Aarti has the capability to foresee problems before they arise and can manage the expectations of clients and colleagues calmly, and always with that most valuable of approaches: coming with solutions.

Firas Hariz, media manager, Magna Global: Alaa impressed us with his quick learning skills and devotion, despite coming from an entirely different background. His thirst for knowledge and positive attitude enabled him to adapt, understand the GCC market and form strong bonds with his clients. Alaa’s calm personality is matched by his ability to seamlessly manage clients’ requirements. He is absolutely driven and motivated, and that’s what makes working with him so rewarding.


Executive, media, Starcom Ralph Al Adaimy, associate business director, media, Starcom: Dedicated, innovative, accountable and always embracing change – her achievements on the account have been very pivotal in driving impactful business results over the past year. Arwa’s relentless drive to consistently deliver with excellence while extracting efficiencies under pressure stands out in the environment she operates in.




April 25, 2022



Copywriter, Radix Media MENA

Senior executive, Media, Starcom

Rajat Kaura, head of creative strategy, Radix Media MENA: Fantastic Farah, as she is famously known in the office, is an absolute delight to have on the team. Her joie de vivre is only surpassed by her sense of responsibility. She is as prompt as she is proper. Her idiosyncrasies include knowing almost every detail of every movie to win at the Oscars (and I don’t mean this year), as well as putting together a perfect cup of tea.

Elie Gebrael, associate business director, media, Starcom: Instrumental in driving reach, effectiveness, and efficiency learnings, Maya’s singlepoint-of-contact status on social for the portfolio has helped drive increased innovation and learnings within the agency of record. Embodying the spirit of the team, Maya’s resilient attitude and her drive towards achieving excellence have proven pivotal in ensuring client satisfaction is achieved maintained.


e-commerce executive, Omnicom Media Group

Stefanie Cunningham, general manager, Transact: Farah is a future agency leader, evident from her success with PepsiCo and SCJohnson clients, where she advises senior leaders on business growth by developing best-in-class e-commerce strategies that unlock ROI and revenue, which is a priority from all brands in the current climate.



Senior executive, integrated planning, Initiative Media Middle East

Social media manager, OMD Claire Fletcher, head of OMD Experience: Empathy and a people-first culture is at the heart of everything we do at OMD, and Elsie embodies all of these traits. She is curious, and hungry to learn and grow, but operates every day with the most helpful, flexible and easy-towork-with approach. Her passion to grow and connect with her teams and brands is to be commended. She pivots to any changes that will lead to better outcomes, and can so easily be placed across different clients, verticals and disciplines, which makes her one of our OMD Experience stars.

Bijal Pathak, business director, Initiative Media Middle East: Ihab Thebian is positivity personified. Relentless curiosity coupled with sound work ethics make Ihab stand out from his peers. Quick on the uptake and with a never-say-no attitude, Ihab has managed to plan and implement multiple integrated campaigns with very limited supervision.



Ahmed ElNaggar, integrated director, OMD Egypt: In a challenging field like media, where clients are focused on accountability, reliability and efficiency, Ibrahim is the manifestation of OMD’s DNA. He is always seeking better decisions faster. He has done this by truly championing client management and advancing his digital skills and capabilities. Ibrahim’s approaches are always new and innovative, and he has led on the internal transformation in the PepsiCo business unit.

Chetan Nirban, senior manager, Publicis Media: Farah has played a significant role in helping with education for our brands on programmatic buying across Publicis Groupe ME. She’s been committed to driving the best performances as well as strategically planning to ensure her brands are delivering best-in-class results, always going the extra mile to educate her brands on programmatic knowledge where necessary to ensure her clients understand the key role programmatic advertising plays in driving results.

Manager, integrated media planning, OMD Egypt

Programmatic manager, Precision, Publicis Media

April 25, 2022





Charbel Jreijiri, general manager, Mediaplus Middle East: In the short period of time that Jaafar has been with Mediaplus, through his initiatives, passion and drive to go above and beyond the call of duty, he has proven to be an essential part of the team. In less than 12 months, he has managed to develop his skillset and quickly raise his profile from a data executive, responsible for gathering data, into the world of data analytics and data visualisation.

Nawal Nasreddine, executive business director, PHD: A mentor to others with true leadership skills. Michael is proactive, agile and resilient. Nothing is seen as a negative, only a learning opportunity. He keeps the team grounded and his positivity is infectious.

Data executive, Mediaplus Middle East

Senior manager, planning, PHD


Senior executive, performance marketing, Starcom Aneesha Hingorani, business director, media, Starcom: ‘Passionate’, ‘knowledgeable’ and ‘driven’ are just a few words that describe Leon. Leon’s knowledge and seemingly natural ability to understand the modernday consumer, accompanied with his deep performance marketing expertise and hunger for innovation-led growth have resulted in his being recognised by his clients and colleagues as a genuine trailblazer.



Jad Daou, business director, UM MENA: Within a span of six months, Lea has fully embodied UM’s DNA for achieving better outcomes. Her biggest project was leading the McDonald’s 2022 strategy, where she went back to the drawing board and built the entire strategy from the ground up, taking into consideration consumer-centricity and amplifying dynamic creative optimisation (DCO) in a bigger way.

Reine Hammoud, client leadership director, Mindshare KSA: Leena is undoubtably one of our true stars. We had high expectations, given she was on the dean’s list at her college, and she has exceeded every single one. Since joining Mindshare, Leena has challenged herself, and bringing her business mindset into the media world positioned her as an expert in driving business success for our clients.

Associate director, UM MENA

Senior media executive, Mindshare KSA


Strategy and planning executive, Boopin Since joining the agency in January, Martina has been on a trajectory of growth. Her can-do attitude and drive for perfection continuously push her to deliver outstanding work. Over a period of six months, she has been able to grow professionally and take on a lot of responsibilities. Martina has an eye for perfection and always loves to ensure that her work is research-backed. She has the ability to convert research and insights into impactful marketing strategies with creative ideas and executions.



April 25, 2022


Media manager, UM Menat Nagham Maaboud, media director, UM Menat: A jack of all trades, master of many, Radhika has managed to acquire a wealth of multidiscipline cross-border experience across various industries. But what I think gives Radhika her true edge is her undying curiosity and drive to constantly push the boundaries of what can be done.


Strategic marketing investments manager, OMD UAE Kareem El Dabbagh, regional senior director, OMD: The most common comment about Noor is how she manages all her work, with so little time, and does it always with a smile on her face. Noor has been an indispensable part of the OMD team, delivering on the agency’s legacy clients like Jumeirah Group, and etching her name in history by delivering the greatest show on Earth, in Expo 2020 Dubai.


Senior executive, media, Starcom Elie Gebrael, associate business director, media, Starcom: Nour’s input in piloting and delivering best in class activations for digital video on a portfolio level secured her seat on the Test and Learn council within the agency.


Senior media planner, Mindshare MENA Jair Carlo Sanchez, client leadership director, Mindshare MENA: Omar is one of those star talents you would fight to keep on your team. Hardworking, team-oriented and results-driven, he is passionate about his craft and has risen to every challenge.


Senior account executive, Radix Media MENA Alefiya Patharia Kapadia, group account director, Radix Media MENA: In the last two and a half years since Rand has been with Radix Media, she has become an integral part of our team. As an integrated planner, she champions the art of delivering campaigns successfully across the FMCG, banking and finance, and automobile categories. She has been instrumental in converting top-line strategies into KPI-driven media plans, which has further helped her clients go beyond their intended goals.


Senior executive, performance media, Magna Global Prasad Sawant, senior manager, performance, Magna Global: Pia has only been a part of the Magna family for a short time, but she has already shown herself to be a valuable member of the team. She is highly trusted by her coworkers and is always willing to go the additional mile. Since joining, Pia has accepted all of the challenges we put her up to and has pushed Magna’s quality standards forward.

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April 25, 2022


Senior executive, planning, OMD UAE


Performance manager, Wavemaker

Rim Darazi, senior director, planning, OMD UAE: Tatiana joined OMD Dubai a year ago, after hitting performance records and showing great potential while working at OMD Core Lebanon. In a very short period, she was able to build great relationships with her clients and become the main point of contact for all the businesses she handles. Tatiana received the rising star award at Omnicom MENA’s annual awards ceremony in February 2022.


Integrated media planner, Magna MENA Firas Hariz, integrated media manager, Magna MENA: Shadie has only been a part of the Magna family for a short time, but he has rapidly established himself as a valuable member of the team. He possesses all the qualifications necessary to continue climbing the media ladder.

Julien Trad, group account director, Wavemaker: In a very short period, Sumit managed to win everyone’s trust. He oversaw always-on campaigns in more than 12 market, and we all know the complexity, level of attention and daily optimisation that comes along with that. He overachieved targets and beat benchmarks.


Senior planning manager, PHD Media Egypt


Senior account executive, group TV accounts, leading on commercial, MBC Group Sara AlHajjaj, manager, MBC DMCS account management, MBC Group: Sally is passionate and always striving to learn and achieve more in her career. Her management skills are efficient yet empathetic, whereas her intellectual skills, emotional intelligence and leadership skills allow her to navigate comfortably across various disciplines in our industry.

Mariam Ezz, business unit director, PHD Media: The mind that never stops thinking, always questioning always striving for a better way. She is the complete opposite of ‘if it’s not broken don’t fix it’. Continuously looking for solutions, opportunities, and the space to develop our product further. A teacher but always the student.


Biddable performance executive, Equation Media, Dubai Joy Sahyoun, group general manager, Equation Media: An analytical person at heart, Tracy has taken her deep understanding of data and performance to the next level, having shifted from an e-commerce background into an agency role. With a core challenge focused on optimising investments and managing performance, Tracy has allowed the brands she is working with to see an improved ROI across all parameters.

April 25, 2022





Ali Aboukhreibe, strategy director, Boopin: Martina has quickly become my right hand as she quickly absorbed the role responsibilities and started delivering. She has a bright future lined up for her in the industry.

Gwen Povo, retail media lead, Dentsu X: Demonstrating passion and dedication towards every project is one of Karma’s key strengths and is valued by her colleagues and the client. Karma’s fresh perspective, coupled with a forward-thinking approach, has been invaluable in identifying innovative opportunities for the business. She always has a can-do attitude and goes the extra mile to ensure a task is completed.

Social media account manager, Boopin

Senior media planner, Dentsu X

ZAID SWEIDAN, 25 Media specialist, Boopin

Zaid has been working in the digital industry for more than three years with a knack for media-buying strategies across programmatic, social and search. Driven by a passion for performance marketing, with a love for client servicing, Zaid has worked with a variety of clients across automotive, forex, government, apps, news outlets and education.


Junior executive, programmatic, OMD Egypt Islam Raslan, digital performance head, OMD Egypt: Waleed has been a vital part of the programmatic team here at OMD since joining us in October 2021. He is instrumental in driving the day-to-day activities across some of the world’s largest brands, including Ulker, McDonald’s, Philips and Nissan.

VIOLETTA TOHME, 25 Senior programmatic executive, Precision, Publicis Media

Mustafa Temsah, senior manager, Precision, Publicis Media: In a short span of time, Violetta managed to create transformational results on the LVMH account through her programmatic expertise that is second to none. Violetta’s energy, work ethics and positivity cannot be missed when entering the room.


Senior integrated media executive, Initiative Media Ali Berjawi, business director, Initiative Media: Yara’s ability to focus and deliver flawless quality of work is a scarce talent within our industry. Her commitment to her tasks at hand will inevitably feed into a successful career ahead, where she will strive to conquer every challenge that she might face.

We’ll go wherever the story takes us CNN International’s flagship news program live from Abu Dhabi and hosted by Becky Anderson.

Tune in Monday-Friday at 18h UAE / 16h Berlin / 15h London / 10h New York TM

CNN name, logo and all associated elements & © 2021 Cable News Network. A WarnerMedia Company. All rights reserved.







April 25, 2022

Motion approved Dailymotion’s Bichoi Bastha explains how the platform is changing and what MENA means to its strategy proposition By Bichoi Bastha, chief revenue and business officer at Dailymotion


ow is Dailymotion Advertising positioned today, especially in MENA?

Over more than 17 years, Dailymotion has grown to become one of the few European technology platforms that commands a global presence. In July 2015, Dailymotion was acquired by Vivendi, with the strategic aim of increasing the reach and footprint of our video platform. As a result, we completely overhauled the user and partner experience (new player, new mobile app, new website, new content and updates and a new data protection system). These innovations enabled Dailymotion Advertising (the advertising sales house for the Dailymotion video platform) to emerge with brand new value propositions, offers and solutions, which meet and exceed the growing expectations of brands and advertisers today. During this time, Dailymotion has developed the user experience and video editorial proposition of its platform and expanded its footprint in alignment with the largest international media platforms. We have also developed a proprietary adtech stack to improve campaign performance and are now communicating our brand-new positioning, which expresses our intent as a video marketing platform (also driven by the ambitions and synergies created by Vivendi). We are confident that we have now reached a true state of maturity. Our transformation

has been gradual, and we have taken the time to develop very solid fundamentals and to employ innovation across the entire value chain. Today, Dailymotion Advertising is looked upon as the specialist in in-stream formats, which are less intrusive for the user and enable brands to obtain excellent media performance. Delivering a brand-safe environment to advertisers running high-performance, transparent video advertising campaigns, Dailymotion Advertising relies on the strength of its four fundamental pillars: The editorial network First-party data (video interests) The integrated creative studio, Nroll The insights department These four value propositions are interoperable and complement each other. Today, MENA serves as one of our most strategic markets and we are committed, together with our local partners, including Choueiri Group, to optimise our offers and solutions on a daily basis and to propose and work on the most suitable content for our audiences. Our goal is to continue to develop our network of publishers, always offering the most premium content to our 29 million-plus monthly users.

What are the challenges today for the MENA region?

Regional and local relevancy are paramount in MENA. Whereas Arabic content is essential for connecting with regional audiences, it is not enough. With every country having its own dialects and social paradigms, we need to be more specific, yet broad, in the publishing partners we recruit – both to be on and to use the Dailymotion player on their own platforms. As such, finding the right partners has been our primary focus. Starting with DMS’ portfolio of premium publishers (,, Webteb. com), and more recently expanding even further (Khaleej Times, Hurriyet). Another struggle in this region is the sensitivity around certain topics that is not as present in Europe. Through tech partnerships (such as the one with IAS) and curated whitelists (which ensure maximum relevancy and reach), we can

satisfy advertisers’ understandable benchmarks for brand safety across all their campaigns.

What future projects do you have in development? We have ambitions to continue to expand our network of publishers across all our territories, especially the MENA region, as we want to offer the most premium content possible to our users. We already have a wide range of publisher partners but would like to further strengthen our presence in some Middle Eastern countries and seize upcoming growth opportunities in markets that are constantly showing demand for new content.

“The Dailymotion proposition uniquely synergises a world-class, brand-safe environment for premium video content, which extends truly global reach for regional players. As the world’s leading premium video technology service, Dailymotion’s commitment to tech innovation, its global scale, the depth, and diversity of its content, in addition to the platform’s unrivalled contextual capabilities, all come together to give publishers and advertisers a definitive winning edge.” Ziad Khammar, COO, DMS



April 25, 2022


ew technologies have had a huge impact on many areas over the past decades, and have caused many changes to our daily lives. Such innovations have caused cultural shifts in the way that people consume media, and one of the main areas that has been affected is television. However, the rise of the internet and other technologies has had a major impact on television viewership. People over the age of 50 watch about 50 hours of television per week, but the hours have dropped with younger demographics. One major reason some people have been watching TV less than before is that many people have got more used to watching what they want, when they want. They would rather watch a show when it is most convenient for them, instead of working around a TV schedule and waiting to see a certain programme.

and discussed by friends or family on social media. Over the past decade, new innovations in technology have caused dramatic shifts in our daily lives; how we consume media has been one of the most impacted areas. People prefer short-form content over long-format. They prefer to consume content in local dialect and language. Hence, brands and production houses globally are investing in producing content across different social platforms as people in the MENA region spend a lot of time on digital platforms, averaging about 3.5 hours a day, across platforms. Also, many OTT players make content consumption an uninterrupted experience, unlike TV. The personalised viewing experience and the availability of skipping ads and browsing through content is a challenge for TV to capture a younger audience that is used to having

advertising spends also. There has been a notable shift in advertising spends from TV to digital. Some advertisers clearly find their desired target audiences online or prefer the youth of digital platforms versus traditional mediums. So now digital advertising is a key priority for every brand that is catering to the audiences in this region. There has been a major shift from TV to OTT, from radio to music apps and from newspapers and magazines to websites and news apps. But the story with cinemas is different; viewers still opt to enjoy cinemas when compared to viewing the same on OTT. To conclude, technology is helping boost content consumption, but at the same time affecting content consumption via traditional mediums. By PRASAD AMIN, deputy CEO, IAS Media

CULTURAL SHIFTS IAS Media’s Prasad Amin examines the changes new technologies have made to our TV viewing habits

This shift has a huge negative impact on the ratings. Years ago, the only option was to watch a show on television when it first aired or wait for a rerun. But now people can also choose to binge watch an entire series whenever they feel like it, on whatever device is most convenient for them, such as their computer or tablet, instead of waiting a week to see the next episode on TV. Often, alternatives to television either do not have commercials or they offer a way to remove advertisements, usually with a paid membership, while TV normally does not provide this option. Technology has provided audiences the comfort of viewing at one’s ease when compared with appointment viewing. TV faces more competition now than ever. In addition to enabling viewers to binge entire seasons of shows available on Netflix at once, new shows are specifically being created for Netflix and the platform has also revived shows that had been cancelled by TV networks. YouTube is another source of competition. Social media has also had an impact on television, which I feel is somewhat positive. People can discuss what they’ve seen on TV in real time instead of reading about it in the newspaper or TV guide. This often increases interest in a programme, as people are more likely to be interested in a show recommended

‘‘TECHNOLOGY HAS PROVIDED THE COMFORT OF VIEWING AT ONE’S EASE, COMPARED WITH APPOINTMENT VIEWING.” full control of when, where and how they consume media. As a result, brand integrations and advertiser-funded programming (AFP) have become a huge deal in the digital content industry. The television was never intended to be an interactive medium. For years, we sat and watched the TV, until social media came along. Social media has made the world a much smaller place; people not only watch but also discuss their points of view on multiple social media platforms. Similar trends are visible in


April 25, 2022


ELIAS WAKIM General manager, Promofix


Globally, investments in TV are still growing, and it remains one the best tools to build brand awareness and an emotional link with users. Brands must now use it as a catalyst to go beyond the product and extend their ideas into other areas, mainly creative ideas leveraging the strength of TV to increase engagement with brands TV is still the best media to drive a positive relationship with the viewer and the brand

HOW IS TECHNOLOGY AFFECTING TV ADVERTISING? As technology evolves, so does advertising on TV. Technology is

contributing to converting TV from a great reach medium to a more audience-targeting one using addressable TV and being able to reach the right person at the right time and in their comfort zone. High-definition TV and 4K have improved the deliveries of brand messages. Connected TV technology is another way that improved TV advertising has enabled brands to reach their target audience using the big screen and avoiding wastage.


Since it was launched 60 years ago, TV was always considered as a top-of-the funnel tool that reaches a maximum number of consumers, but in marketers’ brains it was used as a tool to build desire and demand, positioning it as a mid- funnel tool. Because the measurement tools were not available in the past, it was positioned as top of the funnel for lack of measurement, but with the new innovation across the multiscreen universe, data and technology now enable sophisticated audience-based TV and digital video strategies that combine the targeting and

measurement capabilities of digital with the reach and impact of TV.


Live sporting events provide the most loyal audiences on TV, with more than 40 million viewers tuning in to watch live events in the MENA region at least once a month, a figure that is projected to rise over the coming years.

“Sports channels were always perceived as male-dominant but we have seen significant growth in the female category.” Sports channels were always perceived as male-dominant channels but recently we have witnesed significant growth in the female category. Women are engaging as strongly as male audiences with the events, making live events on TV a preferred family activity. Having said that, we see that there is a shift in the advertisers’ category on TV from being exclusively a male-targeting medium to include more categories, mainly technology, e-commerce, automotive and retail.


Sports and news are the only verticals that people continue to watch live on TV, the others are having a scattered viewership between TV and OTT. Brands have realised that, and also saw the close ties between brands on sports channels and viewers. That they are trying to find ways to leverage this corelation and be visible enough on the big screen without being intrusive like some channels are doing


At beIN the most important element is to maintain the best user experience. For that, huge investments have been made around improving the viewing experience and what kind of effective ties audiences can build with brands. A sports channel network should not be approached as a TV channel but mainly as an essential platform that has an engaged and loyal audience who can follow their preferred games either on TV or OTT, but simultaneously, and always live. For that, it is very important how the advertising content is placed, to build the desired bonding with the users.


One of the most important elements of broadcasting is the proximity of the event, to create attention and involvement. An event like the World Cup, which has more than 150 million unique viewers in the MENA, is happening in the region and we expect users to spend much more time watching all the matches. For that, beIN has invested a lot in the viewing experience, mainly introducing the 4K channels with at least five-times clearer pictures than regular HD. It has improved the OTT experience, mirroring with the TV channels, and has developed television on demand (TOD) that is a general entertainment platform, where matches will be broadcast simultaneously.


With the studies and insights that are being done today, we are able to have an objective estimate of the number of people watching any game and give a proper forecast on the number of viewers, which is translated into cost per point. Coupling this with the digital approach and the TV sync technology, we are able to convert the TV from a midfunnel tool to a lower-funnel and a conversion product to generate leads, downloads and sales, so we have succeeded in giving the advertiser the ability to really measure the effect of his ad on a sports channel and to know how many transactions it will produce.


April 25, 2022


ENTERTAINMENT Emirates celebrates three decades of a screen for every seat. A lot has changed, says the man in charge. By Austyn Allison


ubai-based airline Emirates is celebrating 30 years since it first installed television screens in all seats, in all cabin classes, throughout its fleet. It now has so much content on its ICE (Information, Communication, Entertainment) on-demand system that a passenger would have to fly from Dubai to Sydney more than 500 times to consume the whole library. The accumulated volume of content includes more than 3,900 hours of movies and television, and more than 3,300 hours of music and podcasts. “When Emirates introduced personal screens on every seat back in 1992, it was considered a massive industry innovation,” says Patrick Brannelly, Emirates’ senior vice-president of retail, IFE (inflight entertainment) and connectivity. Brannelly had been recruited from the UK to manage inflight entertainment at the start. “Other airlines questioned the sense of this huge investment, estimated at about $15,000 a seat at the time,” he says. That $15,000 was spent on a system that had six channels. Brannelly’s team had three months to design the system, license all the content and produce videos. He says it was “a very exciting period”. Emirates was the first airline to put screens in every seat. “You have to remember, no customers were asking for personal TVs; they were happy with the overhead monitors, where everyone was watching the same movie,” says Brannelly. He further explains: “The huge investment was tough to justify using traditional business methods. If the personal TVs were to drive loyalty, how can you measure that accurately? Especially in 1992, which was preinternet.” But there are other measures of success, and Brannelly says: “I recall seeing a memo in mid-1992, from our then group managing director Maurice Flanagan, to the Emirates leadership team, basically saying: ‘We may have


struggled to formally justify the investment in TVs on board, but as I stood at the back of the Economy cabin on a flight the other day and saw everyone watching TV, I realised we had made the right decision.’” Emirates upgraded to ICE in 2003, when it launched video on demand and a more interactive system. “There was a convergence happening in the digital world, where entertainment, news and information and creativity were coming together,” says Brannelly. “Some called it ‘the new ice age’, and that was my inspiration for what we needed to do on Emirates. Before that, our system didn’t really have a name.” The magazine listing the inflight entertainment had been called simply TV & Radio. Emirates went from licensing 10 to 15 films a month to well over 100 a month today. The modern systems can cost more than $10m per aircraft to install – and that’s before the cost of connectivity, interactive software and content licensing fees are taken into account. Emirates licenses content from more

than 40 countries. Brannelly says Hollywood movies are a perennial favourite, and that binge-watching TV show box-sets has grown “massively” in recent years. The content viewed varies according to the route and passenger demographics on each flight. “Emirates has been a market leader in inflight entertainment for most of the past 30 years, and we intend to remain so,” says Brannelly. He admits that being a first-adopter can be tough, since other airlines may wait to buy the next generation of entertainment to leapfrog Emirates. “But we do not wait long to reinvest,” he adds. More innovations will be rolled out with the introduction of new aircraft from 2024 onwards. Emirates has said in a statement: “Large, ultra-high-definition 4k screens, with faster and improved wifi connectivity, are among the exciting developments Emirates has planned for its new-generation IFE systems that will be delivered with its future fleet on order, as the airline continues to improve its inflight offering.”

April 25, 2022


n my lifetime the world has been through various resets that have had global cultural and geo-political impact. These include the fall of the Berlin Wall, 9/11 and the financial crash of the late 2000s. Now, in 2022, we are on the cusp of another reset. The pandemic had already altered the world in ways previously unimagined, and now a war in Ukraine with potentially far-reaching consequences adds to the realisation that we are at a departure point from ‘what went before’. This relates to a wide range of areas – from changing cultural norms, new methods of communication and accelerated use of technology through the pandemic, through to humanitarian concerns, a redrawing of geopolitics and changing dynamics around energy supply and usage, food security, supply chains and much more due to what is happening in Ukraine. As with everything in life, there must be light as well as shade. In times of chaos, people look to brightness for inspiration. What gives me hope right now is that the Middle East can be the nexus for positive change that will come with a reset. Just look at what is being achieved across the region right now and you’ll see that the energy and forward movement are palpable. The UAE has just held an historic World Expo that exceeded all expectations, hosting more than 32,000 events and with more than 20 million visits during its six months; Qatar is putting the finishing touches to being the stage for the region’s most high-profile sporting spectacle with the FIFA World Cup; Egypt is making great strides in economic progress and meeting sustainable development goals; Saudi Arabia’s youth continue to be a source of inspiration and progress. The list could go on. People around the world are seeking information and insight into both the drivers for the great reset as well as the solutions and progress being made to rise to the challenge of the new era. The answer to disseminating this knowledge at a global level lies with the news brands that people know and trust. In last year’s Campaign Middle East TV issue, I wrote about the way that TV news has changed (the way it is now produced, distributed and consumed is way beyond how it was originally conceived) and yet how it has stayed the same (it continues to be built on the same values of facts and credibility). CNN – a company dear to my heart, and that I have had the honour to work with for two decades – exemplifies this progress as it continues to deliver essential news and information, while at the same time innovating in the way it reaches audiences. The last year has seen innovation across all platforms, including: an increased audio slate; the expansion of CNN’s newsletter offering (including one coming soon about the Middle East); an increased focus on female empowerment and Arab youth in the digital output in CNN Arabic’s 20th


MIS Gulf’s Marwan Kai examines the role of TV news in documenting the massive changes going on around the world


anniversary year; the launch of subscription services in both the US and the UK; and even the availability of digital collectibles, or ‘Moments’, from CNN’s archives, minted as NFTs using blockchain technology. It is through the power of TV news and its extended reach across digital platforms that audiences will engage with the seismic shifts happening right now. This hunger for information, the trusted nature of the news brand and the vast audience reach combine to have great impact. Consequently, we know that when a story or a campaign runs on CNN it has a capacity to reach the more-than 800 million people who consume content on CNN directly itself, but that story also goes far beyond through a ripple effect. This effect manifests itself through CNN storytelling driving real-life and online social conversations, setting the agenda for other media as well as shaping opinions and causing action to be taken by political leaders, people of influence, business executives and everyday global citizens. As media fragmentation continues, there are very few global media brands that can claim such access, reputation and reach to deliver on this promise. But the enduring power of TV news to shine a light on an important story, elevate it to global status and generate true interest amongst a worldwide audience remains unique. This pertains to the news agenda, of course, but must also be seized upon by brands and public-sector bodies across the Middle East as part of their communication strategies if they truly want to be part of the global conversation. Our region has often been misunderstood, misrepresented and mischaracterised by other parts of the world. Only by being bold in the way we communicate our successes – from the Dubai Expo to the Qatar FIFA World Cup – can nations, people and businesses from here in the Middle East capitalise on the role we will play in this new era that the world is entering. By Marwan Kai, CEO of MIS Gulf



April 25, 2022



Abu Dhabi Sports

PARENT COMPANY: Abu Dhabi Media HEADQUARTERED: Abu Dhabi FOUNDED:1969 LANGUAGE: Arabic & English +971 2 445 5555 Abu Dhabi Sports is one of the most-watched sports channels in the Arab world, covering world-class sport and competition across its four-channel network. Established in 1998, and characterised by its innovative and high-quality coverage, Abu Dhabi Sports covers international sport and events to the highest standards and has embraced digital content through live streaming on its website, on the ADSPORTS application (available on Apple Store and Google Play) and through social media, IPTV services and Apple TV. FLAGSHIP COVERAGE: UAE League – ADNOC Pro League; UAE President’s Cup; UAE League Cup; 2022 FIFA World Cup Asian Qualifiers Final Round; AFC Champions League; AFC Asian Cup 2023 Final Tournament; AFC Cup 2022 and other AFC competition; UFC, combat sports and motorsport REACH: MENA

Al Aan TV

PARENT COMPANY: Tower Media Middle East HEADQUARTERED: Dubai FOUNDED: 2006 Committed to covering the news objectively and accurately, Al Aan TV gives voice to the voiceless and broadcasts purpose-oriented entertainment to enrich viewers’ experience. It also aims to build partnerships with various institutions to empower younger generations and equip them with skills necessary to have successful careers, especially in content creation and media. Al Aan TV seeks to spread hope and optimism throughout the Arab world, story-by-story. Founded in 2006 in Dubai, Al Aan TV broadcasts the news via satellite and the internet. It is the first independent, pan-Arab, multi-channel digital news publisher for young adults. The channel’s unique mobile-first, long-form story-telling format is designed to reach and engage young adults. With informative and enjoyable stories, it puts viewers on the frontlines to raise their awareness and understanding of what’s going on. Because the world changes very quickly. The story belongs to everyone.

Al Arabiya

PARENT COMPANY: Middle East Broadcasting Center HEADQUARTERED: Riyadh (based in Egypt) FOUNDED: 2003 LANGUAGE: Arabic GENRE: Politics sports, business, lifestyle shows and current affairs REACH: MENA In an age where information is being delivered at an ever-increasing pace and where the need to form an opinion is becoming more challenging; Al Arabiya Network remains the Arab world’s leading source of news. With round-the-clock core news bulletins complemented by a dynamic mix of the latest business, sports current affairs and lifestyle shows, Al Arabiya network is where globally minded viewers tune in for the latest from within and beyond their national borders. VIEWERSHIP: 4.4 million viewers daily reach in KSA DEMOGRAPHICS: males 53 per cent; females 47 per cent MEDIA REP: MBC Media Solutions;; +971 4 391 9999

Al Emarat Abu Dhabi TV

PARENT COMPANY: Abu Dhabi Media HEADQUARTERED: Abu Dhabi FOUNDED:1969 LANGUAGE: Arabic +971 2 445 5555 The channel showcases a diverse selection of series including drama, entertainment and premiere TV shows that address different tastes in an innovative, interactive and family-oriented manner, along with a wide range of programmes that tackle women’s interests and lifestyle trends. Abu Dhabi TV, one of Abu Dhabi Media’s leading television channels, is a public entertainment channel that appeals to the preferences of Arab youth and families in the MENA region. The channel focuses on promoting its content on various digital platforms on social media and OTT through VOD services and live streaming on ADtv application available on Apple TV, Android TV, LG, HUAWEI , Roku TV, Apple and Android App Stores, and website REACH: GCC and MENA and Europe AVAILABLE: Nile Sat 7 West and Hot Bird; Du and Etisalat FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: ZAK show, Yalla Social, The Beauty Challenge, Selfie Challenge, Win the Crowd , Code Talks, Ala al tareek, Lel Seha Eenwan

PARENT COMPANY: Abu Dhabi Media HEADQUARTERED: Abu Dhabi FOUNDED: 1974 LANGUAGE: Arabic +971 2 445 5555 Al Emarat TV serves as the United Arab Emirates state channel, through a wide variety of programmes that appeal to viewers of all ages in the UAE and GCC region, Al Emarat encourages family enrichment and the development of national talents in the media industry. In addition, Al Emarat focuses on promoting the Emirati national identity to ensure the actual application of the national concept within the diverse and multi-ethnic Emirati community. This is achieved through fostering a sense of national identity and preserving the Emirati cultural heritage for coming generations, which is clearly reflected through the channel’s various social and economic development, government and environmental affairs programmes. The channel works in line with the UAE media strategy, adapting with the future trends and the development process in the UAE to achieve UAE’s Vision 2021, Mars 2117, Abu Dhabi 2030 Plan and UAE Centennial 2071. REACH: GCC and MENA FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: Al Shara, Omr Jadid, Gallery, +971, Al Mughared, Ain Al Theeb, Saee Al Bareed, Hayat Al Rouh, Bayn Eydek

April 25, 2022

Al Ekhbariya PARENT COMPANY: Saudi Broadcast Authority HEADQUARTERED: Saudi Arabia YEAR FOUNDED: 2004 LANGUAGE: Arabic GENRE: News REACH: Worldwide AVAILABILITY: OSN, Arabsat, Nilesat, Etisalat, Hotbird, Asia-sat, Galaxy 19, Hipasat, UHF, Du, YouTube, Terrestrial broadcast, YouTube. VIEWERSHIP: 865,000 (Saudis 15+); 70% males; 61% 35+ FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: AlRaseed; Huna AlRiyadh; Tabaa Mushahed; AlMuntasef. MEDIA REP: Saudi Media Company:; +971 4 425 4285 (Dubai); +966 11 271 6909 (Riyadh); +966 12 657 2323 (Jeddah)


Al Jazeera Documentary

FOUNDED: 2007 PARENT COMPANY: Al Jazeera Media Network HEADQUARTERED: Doha LANGUAGE: Arabic Al Jazeera Documentary is the first and only Arab-centred documentary channel dedicated to producing high-quality documentary films. Covering a wide range of topics, it presents high-quality documentaries, enriching the lives of millions of Arabs and inspiring future generations of great filmmakers. REACH: MENA

Al Jazeera English Al Hadath News Channel

PARENT COMPANY: Middle East Broadcasting Centre HEADQUARTERED: Riyadh (based in Dubai) FOUNDED: 2012 LANGUAGE: Arabic GENRE: Politics, Breaking news REACH: MENA Al Hadath is a free-to-air news and current affairs satellite channel, which operates as an extension of the long-standing Al Arabiya news channel. From an editorial perspective, Al Hadath focuses on extensive live coverage of events as they happen from across the Arab world and beyond. VIEWERSHIP: 1.4 million viewers daily reach in KSA DEMOGRAPHICS: males 53 per cent; females 47 per cent MEDIA REP: MBC Media Solutions;; +971 4 391 9999

FOUNDED: 2006 PARENT COMPANY: Al Jazeera Media Network HEADQUARTERED: Doha LANGUAGE: English Al Jazeera English provides international news and current affairs that places people at the heart of the story, rooted in the belief that everyone has a story worth hearing. Through its fearless journalism and award-winning programming, it tells authentic stories about people everywhere, without geographical or cultural prejudice. REACH: Broadcast to more than 360 million unique households across the globe.

Al Jazeera Mubasher Al Jazeera Arabic

LANGUAGE: Arabic FOUNDED: 2006 PARENT COMPANY: Al Jazeera Media Network HEADQUARTERED: Doha LANGUAGE: Arabic Al Jazeera Arabic is one of the leading news channels and websites in the Middle East. Featuring bold reporting and fearless journalism, it represents the voice of the people and seeks out stories that often go unreported. REACH: MENA

Al Jazeera Balkans

LANGUAGE: Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian FOUNDED: 2011 PARENT COMPANY: Al Jazeera Media Network HEADQUARTERED: Doha Al Jazeera Balkans is a unifying voice that’s bridging the region. Featuring multi-national correspondents, representing the full range of languages, accents and opinions, it gives audiences the regional news coverage they want, from a local voice they can trust. REACH: Broadcast to more than 8 million homes, primarily in the Balkan, East European, Austria, Germany and USA

LANGUAGE: Arabic FOUNDED: 2005 PARENT COMPANY: Al Jazeera Media Network HEADQUARTERED: Doha Al Jazeera Mubasher is the first Middle Eastern 24-hour live news and events channel, dedicated to giving viewers real-time footage of global and regional events. Using remote feeds and on-the-ground cameras, it broadcasts accurate coverage without edits or distractions. REACH: MENA

Al Resalah

PARENT COMPANY: Rotana Media Group LAUNCHED: 2006 BASED: Egypt LANGUAGE: Arabic REACH: GCC, Levant, North Africa, Europe, and USA AVAILABILITY: Arabsat, Nilesat GENRE: Al Resalah is an Arabic religious channel broadcasting a variety of daily live and non-live programmes suitable for all ages, which represents true Islam. MEDIA REP: RMS:; +971 4 567 4380; +971 52 538 8889;


April 25, 2022

PARENT COMPANY: ADQ HEADQUARTERED: Abu Dhabi FOUNDED: 1969 +971 2 445 5555 Abu Dhabi Media (ADM) is the UAE’s leading public-service broadcaster and media company that focuses on developing, producing and distributing unique premium content, covering news, entertainment, sports and culture, to a wide array of demographics across the Arab World. Established in 1969, in line with the vision of the UAE’s Founding Father, His Highness Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, ADM has become one of the largest media companies in the Middle East and GCC regions and has a major role in fulfilling and promoting the key pillars of the UAE. Focusing on digital-first content, ADM’s portfolio includes exclusively digital assets, as well as digital and traditional platforms for its TV, radio, and print assets. ADM is also available on Smart TV applications, including Apple TV and Android TV, delivering streaming, catch-up and video on demand services on ADTV and ADSports. Also, the new addition of ADRadio’s digital platforms and applications features audio and podcast streaming across the radio assets. Today, ADM includes 23 media assets, as well as two subsidiaries – Tawzea and UPP. Abu Dhabi Media is part of ADQ, one of the region’s largest holding companies with a diverse portfolio of major enterprises spanning key sectors of Abu Dhabi’s non-oil economy. TOP TV STATIONS (AND OTHER NETWORKS): Abu Dhabi TV networks (Abu Dhabi TV, Al Emarat TV, Majid Channel, Abu Dhabi Sports Channel, Yas, National Geographic Abu Dhabi); Abu Dhabi Radio Network (Abu Dhabi FM, Emarat FM, Star FM, Radio 1, Quran Kareem, Kadak FM); Publishing sector (Al Ittihad newspaper, Zahrat Al Khaleej Magazine, Majid Magazine, National Geographic Al Arabiya, Mohtawa); Digital (ADtv app, Mohtawa, UFC Arabia)


HAITHAM ALKATHIRI Acting executive director of Abu Dhabi TV Network

to deliver high-quality and original content through its platforms with the aim of easing the access to its offering. Additionally, we are constantly using research and data analytics to refine and improve our understanding of consumption habits. Our programming and distribution networks are always being optimised to match with the evolving habits of our target audiences.


There is no doubt that technology is constantly affecting TV advertising both positively and negatively. While it provides advertisers with numerous cost-effective options on digital platforms, it also allows TV to deliver a compelling offering on its linear and OTT services. At ADM, we are heavily investing in our OTT offering to leverage our data to drive more targeted advertising.


Nowadays, our audiences have gained access to a wider array of content platforms, making it harder to attract their attention. However, ADM is striving

With the ongoing and accelerating market dynamics, we aim to continuously reinforce our direct relationship with agencies and advertisers to provide them with adapted and tailor-made solutions to match their needs and mandates. We are also working on strengthening our go-to-market approach that enables ADM’s unique 360-degree coverage of the market.


ADM is looking to strengthen its OTT content offering and providing more advanced advertising solutions in the market (such as ad servers, real time bidding, etc.), allowing it to be a leading data-driven and content-led media company.

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April 25, 2022


ZIYAD ALOMAIR Director of Commercial at MBC Media Solutions (MMS)


I would say that the biggest impact technology has had on TV advertising is access to more actionable metrics and insights. This will especially be the case with the introduction of the people meter, which will make it easier to extract conversion data and trace the audience’s journey to an endpoint. Advancements in technology have also contributed to the rise of video on demand (VOD), which is now assisting marketing efforts by making households more addressable via both linear TV and VOD devices, allowing advertisers to serve ad content exclusively to certain audience segments. When a brand campaign is live on TV there’s a notable uplift in visitors to its website – so, while the TV element is key, the brand always has a digital component too.


TV remains one of the most efficient ways to create widespread audience awareness and remains at the top of the funnel. A TVC during a primetime show has at least 40 per cent reach in KSA. TV delivers speed of reach, so, depending on the audience’s vertical and time of exposure, TV can drive a significant number of conversions. What’s changing is the importance of cross-content presence; the content that was on TV then goes on to live on other platforms, amplifying reach and conversion and strengthening its connection with viewers.


A lot has changed in TV advertising, and in a very short period of time. With advancements in technology and the rise of streaming platforms,


viewers are now engaging with content across multiple devices, providing countless opportunities for brands to amplify their reach and expand their marketing efforts across different screens and marketing channels. Brands are expanding their campaigns to make sure they reach their customers at every touch point, which is why we build on top of our TV offerings, solutions that work across VOD, digital and audio solutions to help them do just that.


Consumers are looking for content that is more relatable and personable. We’ve lately been noticing a shift towards more Saudi-focused and GCC productions that viewers in this region can relate to and feel familiar with. Interactivity with users is also important. Engaging the audiences more, especially through social media, makes sure that people are tuned in. When it comes to advertising, a shift from product-heavy to emotive advertising has been taking place over the years. Relatability and inclusivity in ads are also crucial and what consumers are looking for.


Brand integration has evolved over the years to become an essential part of the marketing mix and one of the most viable and effective tools in reaching consumers. This is mainly due to the sheer volume of choice when it comes to content and the desire of consumers to avoid or skip ads – making these

“Brand integration has evolved over the years to become one of the most effective tools in reaching consumers.”

integrations the best way to deliver key desired messages in an unobtrusive way and without interruption. At MMS, we have developed various high-quality new formats and flexible brand integration opportunities that creatively push boundaries, presenting brands with a unique and formidable opportunity to deliver their messages to engaged audiences as they watch the content they love. The evolution of 3D graphic technologies has also highly contributed to the introduction of these new formats.

across digital, Shahid and brand integration, and we have introduced new ad formats for clients to leverage in sports through Saudi Sport Company’s channels. Our goal is to continue providing solutions that rely on content excellence, data-driven thinking and partnership-led solutions to help brands attain their goals. Our focus on quality and relevant content gives our clients an advantage as we deliver on innovative and creative solutions that engage with our audiences.



We continuously work closely with clients to better understand their marketing challenges and provide them with the best and most innovative solutions out there. We’ve recently renewed our partnerships with social media platforms including Snapchat and Twitter to make MBC GROUP’s premium Arabic content available for brands to leverage. We have been diversifying our offering and introducing new ad formats

For the short future, there are three main changes that are underway in the coming year: we can expect more local and regional productions that are relatable; more interactivity with consumers through crossplatform integrations; and better data measurement with the introduction of the people meter. We are lucky to be in an industry where there is something new every day. Along with change comes new opportunities.


April 25, 2022

ARY Digital

PARENT COMPANY: ARY Group HEADQUARTERED: Pakistan FOUNDED: 2000 LANGUAGE: Urdu GENRE: Family entertainment shows MEDIA REP: IAS Media: +971 4 447 5760 FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: Jeeto Pakistan, Good Morning Pakistan VIEWERSHIP: Pakistani expats living in the Middle East REACH: MENA


GENRE: World’s favourite Malayalam movie channel featuring the biggest blockbusters and biggest stars PARENT COMPANY: STAR India (subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company) HEAD OFFICE: Dubai Media City, Dubai LANGUAGE: Malayalam GEOGRAPHICAL REACH: Middle East, Kenya, and Singapore MEDIA REP: Anjali Desai -


PARENT COMPANY: ARY Group HEADQUARTERED: Pakistan FOUNDED: 2004 LANGUAGE: Urdu GENRE: News MEDIA REP: IAS Media: +971 4 447 5760 FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: Breaking News, The Reporter VIEWERSHIP: Pakistani expats living in the Middle East REACH: MENA

GENRE: Series, movies and locally created content PARENT COMPANY: STAR India (subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company) HEAD OFFICE: Dubai Media City, Dubai LANGUAGE: Malayalam GEOGRAPHICAL REACH: Middle East MEDIA REP: Anjali Desai -

B4U Aflam

Asharq News

PARENT COMPANY: Saudi Research and Media Group (SRMG) HEADQUARTERED: Riyadh FOUNDED: 2018 (went live in 2020) LANGUAGE: Arabic Asharq News is a 24/7, multiplatform Arabic news service reaching across the Arab world and beyond with a unique approach: news and in-depth analysis reported through the prism of the economy to empower people in their everyday lives. The Asharq News experience is delivered through a dedicated television channel, as well as multiple digital platforms, offering continuous insights into the people, events, organisations and ideas that affect the MENA region and international markets. REACH: Worldwide


GENRE: Malayalam general Entertainment channel featuring the best of series, movies, reality shows and locally created content PARENT COMPANY: STAR India (subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company) HEAD OFFICE: Dubai Media City, Dubai LANGUAGE: Malayalam GEOGRAPHICAL REACH: Middle East, East Africa, Seychelles & Singapore MEDIA REP: Anjali Desai -

PARENT COMPANY: B4U Entertainment HEADQUARTERED: Dubai FOUNDED: 2012 LANGUAGE: Arabic GENRE: General entertainment channel with Arabic series, Turkish Series, Asian Series subtitled in Arabic, Bollywood shows subtitled in Arabic, locally produced shows, cookery, Bollywood movies dubbed or subtitled in Arabic, music segments REACH: MENA

B4U Plus

PARENT COMPANY: B4U Entertainment HEADQUARTERED: Dubai LANGUAGE: Hindi GENRE: General entertainment channel with series, Bollywood shows, locally produced shows, cookery, bollywood movies, music segments REACH: MENA


April 25, 2022

share of spend is on average at 25-30 per cent, compared with below 20 per cent in the GCC in 2021. This needs to be rectified


Technology is the driving force behind the change in our life, and nowadays watching TV is not limited any more to linear and traditional through antenna or dish; you can also watch TV content through video on demand (VOD) or online streaming. TV programmatic is mushrooming in many markets, leveraging technology, and it will be a key method for TV advertising in the future. I believe that in the near future TV audiences will be more tracked and measured in real-time, somehow similar to digital platforms, which hopefully will start proving TV’s high impact in a scientific and reliable way while using technology


Research globally and regionally proved that TV is the most effective medium for brand equity, brand image and longterm sales. But there’s a misperception amongst many marketers in our region, as they say TV is not effective any more. This is obviously not fair for TV as a medium, and we need more ROI modelling cases so everyone within the industry can work based on facts rather than perception, and each medium can take its fair share.



We live in a world where change is the only constant, not only in our region but also globally. The change is applicable in everything in our life, including advertising and media. It’s true that TV viewership dropped in the past few years, particularly amongst the youth, but it did not vanish. TV is still an important source of entertainment and credible news across the region, particularly in Saudi Arabia. On the other hand, the drop in TV ad spend and its share within the pie is unfair, and this is mainly due to the lack of trust in TV measurement and misperception about TV effectiveness. If we look at many overseas markets, we see that TV’s


We hear about ‘content is king’, and this is so true when it comes to TV, where the best content is transmitted. Long-duration programmes are not as popular as before and consumers are looking for relevant, entertaining and shorter duration content that they can watch based on their suitable time. Rather than following the grids of channels, VOD is becoming the norm


The needs of advertisers remain the same; they simply want results, reaching out to consumers, building brands and selling. However, media consumption habits and how consumers interact with media have changed. Media vendors


“In the near future TV audiences will be more tracked and measured in real-time, somehow similar to digital platforms” must evolve in line with consumer demands, or they will be out of business. We should always create advertising opportunities based on current and future consumers trends so clients can tap into them


RMS realised many years back that relying on one medium is no longer sufficient, so we started expanding beyond audiovisual (TV and radio). We wanted to leverage integration and follow the consumer’s journey and new media trends. We are now offering adverting opportunities on outdoor and digital in addition to TV and radio. On top of that, we adapt our offering beyond traditional spots, selling to include branded content, engagement, consumer experience, etc.


TV will remain in terms of viewership and advertising opportunities. However, we expect that TV audience measurement, which was recently launched in the kingdom of Saudi Arabia, will boost its credibility, give new confidence to advertisers and pave the way for programmatic buys on TV. Attractive and relevant content will be consumed irrespective of the screen (such as linear, VOD, online transmission, etc.). New methods for engagement and performance led campaigns (such as QR codes) leading to brands’ website actions will emerge. And hopefully TV will regain trust amongst clients and get better share within the media mix.


April 25, 2022

BBC World News

Colors Rishtey Asia

CNBC Arabia

Colors TV PARENT COMPANY: BBC HEADQUARTERED: London FOUNDED: 1995 LANGUAGE: English MEDIA REP: Ali Taher, vice-president, advertising & partnership sales MENA, Turkey and Mediterranean: +971 4 367 8090; +971 55 8014 000

PARENT COMPANY: Middle East Business News HEAD OFFICE: Dubai, UAE YEAR FOUNDED: 2003 AVAILABLE: Free-to-air in Nilesat and Arabsat CNBC Arabia is the Arab World’s preeminent and first 24-hour Arabic-language financial and business information channel, presenting in-depth and up-to-the-minute coverage of regional and international affairs from an Arab economic perspective. CNBC Arabia brings real-time information to the most influential, powerful and affluent audience in the Middle East and Northern Africa.

PARENT COMPANY: Viacom 18 Media HEADQUARTERED: Mumbai, with office in Dubai FOUNDED: 2015 in Middle East and Africa LANGUAGE: Hindi GENRE: Hindi General Entertainment Channel with various Fiction and Reality shows produced in India and few shows produced locally in the UAE REACH: UAE, Qatar and GCC countries, Middle East and Africa MEDIA REP: Indiacast Media Distribution:; +971 4 367 9890; (affiliate enquiries); pankaj.arora@ (ad sales)

PARENT COMPANY: Viacom 18 Media HEADQUARTERED: Mumbai, with office in Dubai FOUNDED: 2010 in Middle East; 2012 in Africa LANGUAGE: Hindi GENRE: Hindi general entertainment channel with various fiction and reality shows produced in India and a few shows produced locally in the UAE REACH: UAE, Qatar and GCC countries, Middle East and Africa MEDIA REP: Indiacast Media Distribution:; +971 4 367 9890; (affiliate enquiries); pankaj.arora@ (ad sales)

Discovery Channel


PARENT COMPANY: Warner Media HEADQUARTERED: Atlanta, USA FOUNDED: 1980 LANGUAGE: English CNN’s portfolio of news and information services is available in seven different languages across all major TV, digital and mobile platforms, reaching more than 475 million households around the globe. CNN International is the number one international TV news channel, and in the last year CNN registered the highest US audiences in its history. CNN Digital is the number one online news destination across all platforms, with more unique visitors, global unique visitors, mobile unique visitors, millennial unique visitors, politics visitors and video starts than any competitor. CNN is uniquely positioned to tell stories for, about and from the Middle East from our bureaux throughout the region including Abu Dhabi, home to a major global broadcast hub and Connect The World with Becky Anderson. On digital, CNN Arabic has been based in UAE for almost 20 years and is undergoing substantial audience growth across the region and beyond. VIEWERSHIP: 475 million households around the globe DEMOGRAPHICS: CNN attracts high number of influential and business audiences globally FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: News room, Connect the World with the Becky Anderson, Quest Means Business, First Move, Amanpour MEDIA REP: Media International Services (MIS Gulf – Marwan Kai, CEO):; +971 4 321 2003

PARENT COMPANY: Discovery HEADQUARTERED: Dubai LANGUAGE: English GENRE: Factual content: survival, turbo, documentaries, science, nature REACH: MENA MEDIA REP: Discovery Channel is dedicated to creating the highest quality non-fiction content that informs and entertains its consumers about the world in all its wonder, diversity and amazement. It offers a signature mix of compelling, high-end production values and vivid cinematography across genres including, science and technology, exploration, adventure, history and in-depth, behind-the-scenes glimpses at the people, places and organisations that shape and share our world. DEMOGRAPHICS: Men aged 25-59 FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: Gold Rush, Deadliest Catch and Wheeler Dealers

Dubai Racing

PARENT COMPANY: Dubai Media Incorporated LAUNCHED: 2008 HEADQUARTERED: UAE LANGUAGE: Arabic MEDIA REP: MEMS: +971 4 454 5454; REACH: GCC Middle East and Africa, Europe, America VIEWERSHIP: 13,000 (GCC Adults 15+) DEMOGRAPHICS: 100 per cent males, aged 25+ FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: Horse and camel racing (Dubai World cup host broadcaster)

April 25, 2022

Dubai Sports

PARENT COMPANY: Dubai Media Incorporated LAUNCHED: 1998 HEADQUARTERED: UAE LANGUAGE: Arabic MEDIA REP: MEMS: +971 4 454 5454; REACH: GCC VIEWERSHIP: 56,000 (GCC Adults 15+) DEMOGRAPHICS: 100 per cent males aged 25+ FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: Dubai Tennis ATP 500, UAE Football League, International Golf Tournament



PARENT COMPANY: Discovery HEADQUARTERED: Dubai FOUNDED: 2006 LANGUAGE: Arabic GENRE: Food content REACH: MENA MEDIA REP: Rotana Media Services:;; +971 4 567 4380; +971 52 538 8889 Fatafeat was launched as the first Arabic channel in the Middle East specialised in culinary arts. Fatafeat offers the best in innovative and creative ideas in cooking delicious dishes from a talented team of local and international chefs to inspire and entertain the whole family. Broadcasting its programmes to more than 55 million families in 21 Arabic-speaking countries across the Middle East and North Africa. DEMOGRAPHICS: Women aged 25-44 FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: Wala Al Baal, Bil Afiya Ma› Hayat S2, Al Matbakh Al Moaser, Matbakh Manal Al Alem: Halaweyat

Dubai TV

PARENT COMPANY: Dubai Media Incorporated LAUNCHED: 2004 HEADQUARTERED: UAE LANGUAGE: Arabic MEDIA REP: MEMS: +971 4 454 5454; REACH: GCC, Middle East and Africa, Europe, America, Asia and Australia VIEWERSHIP: 3 million (GCC Adults 15+) DEMOGRAPHICS: 76 per cent aged 15-44 FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: Mashaheer, 40, Chopped, Carpool Karaoke, The Doctors, Turkish series


PARENT COMPANY: Euronews SA HEADQUARTERED: Lyon NUMBER OF STAFF: 650 FOUNDED: 1993 LANGUAGE: English, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish SALES: Christian Kachacha, regional head, Middle East: christian. +971 4 4313302; +971 50 7143436 Euronews is Europe’s leading international news channel. Euronews is unapologetically impartial and seeks to offer a diversity of viewpoints. Euronews is broadcast 24/7 and boasts 15 distinct language editions. Euronews delivers impartial news trusted by audiences across the world, available in 440 million homes across 160 countries, including 68 per cent of households in the European Union. Aside from round-the-clock news coverage, Euronews has dedicated shows covering topics like science, climate, business, current affairs and culture, both on television and on its digital platforms. It reaches 145 million people every month, be it on TV or digital platforms. DEMOGRAPHICS: Premium affluent audience, business leaders, decision makers and frequent travellers FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: Postcards, Focus, Business Line, Explore, Taste, Cult, Sci Tech, Postcard, Target, Meet the Locals

Fox Family Movies

PARENT COMPANY: 21st Century Fox HEADQUARTERED: USA FOUNDED: 2010 MEDIA REP: IAS Media: +971 4 447 5760 GENRE: Family oriented movie channel LANGUAGE: English with Arabic subtitles REACH: MENA

Fox Life

PARENT COMPANY: 21st Century Fox HEADQUARTERED: USA FOUNDED: 2004 MEDIA REP: IAS Media: +971 4 447 5760 GENRE: Female-skewed entertainment FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: The Taste, Jamie’s Quick & easy food, Home Team LANGUAGE: English with Arabic subtitles REACH: MENA

Fox Movies

PARENT COMPANY: 21st Century Fox HEADQUARTERED: USA FOUNDED: 2008 MEDIA REP: IAS Media: +971 4 447 5760 GENRE: Family movie channel LANGUAGE: English with Arabic subtitles REACH: MENA


April 25, 2022

Fox Rewayat PARENT COMPANY: 21st Century Fox HEADQUARTERED: USA FOUNDED: 2018 MEDIA REP: IAS Media: +971 4 447 5760 DEMOGRAPHICS: UAE audience and Arab expats LANGUAGE: Arabic REACH: MENA

India Today

PARENT COMPANY: India Today Group HEADQUARTERED: India FOUNDED: 1975 LANGUAGE: English GENRE: News DEMOGRAPHICS: Indian expats in MENA MEDIA REP: IAS Media: +971 4 447 5760 REACH: MENA

KSA Sports 1, 2, +1, +2 Hum Masala (Masala TV) PARENT COMPANY: Hum Network Limited Pakistan LAUNCHED: November 2006 BASED: Dubai LANGUAGE: Urdu PARENT COMPANY: Saudi Broadcast Authority HEAD OFFICE: KSA YEAR FOUNDED: 2002 LANGUAGE: Arabic GENRE: Sports REACH: Worldwide AVAILABILITY: OSN, Arabsat, Nilesat, Etisalat, Hotbird, Asia-sat, Galaxy 19,hispasat, UHF, Du, YouTube, Terrestrial broadcast, YouTube VIEWERSHIP: 1.75+ Million (Saudis 15+); MENA; 94% male; 76% 15-44 yrs FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: MBS Saudi Pro League; Saudi King’s Cup; Saudi Super Cup; Diwaniyah MEDIA REP: Saudi Media Company:; +971 4 425 4285 (Dubai); +966 11 271 6909 (Riyadh); +966 12 657 2323 (Jeddah)

Hum MENA PARENT COMPANY: Hum Network Limited Pakistan LAUNCHED: July 2014 BASED: Dubai LANGUAGE: Urdu

Hum News PARENT COMPANY: Hum Network Limited Pakistan LAUNCHING: May 2018 BASED: Dubai LANGUAGE: Urdu


PARENT COMPANY: Rotana Media Group LAUNCHED: 1994 BASED: Lebanon LANGUAGE: Arabic REACH: GCC, Levant, North Africa, Europe, and USA AVAILABILITY: Arabsat, Nilesat GENRE: General entertainment, social talk shows. Home to an impressive collection of shows catered to Arab female audiences as it airs a wide variety of shows with a Levant flair, including some of the latest Egyptian and Pan-Arab productions. FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: Be My Guest, Under Control (ta7t el saytara) MEDIA REP: RMS:; +971 4 567 4380; +971 52 538 8889;

M+ Channel

Hum Sitaray PARENT COMPANY: Hum Network Limited Pakistan LAUNCHED: December 2013 BASED: Dubai LANGUAGE: Urdu

PARENT COMPANY: Rotana Media Group LAUNCHED: 2017 BASED: Egypt LANGUAGE: Arabic REACH: GCC, Levant, North Africa, Europe, and USA AVAILABILITY: Encrypted Uncut music hits from all over the planet for the viewers to enjoy in high definition format. 24 hours a day, a wide selection of the latest and most appealing Arabic video clips, from all over the Arab world for all subscribers to enjoy hours of Arabic tunes in high definition format. MEDIA REP: RMS:; +971 4 567 4380; +971 52 538 8889; rms@

April 25, 2022


PARENT COMPANY: Abu Dhabi Media HEAD QUARTERED: Abu Dhabi FOUNDED: 2015 LANGUAGE: Arabic +971 2 445 5555 Majid TV is the region’s first and longest-running children channel in the original Arabic IP space in a market saturated by content acquisitions. The channel produces original Arabic programming, both animated and live-action. Since 2015, Majid TV has scored and maintained the highest TV ratings in the MENA region among original Arabic programming TV channels targeting children above 3 years old. The channel runs 24 hours, having a strong viewership inside and outside the MENA region. WHAT COUNTRY IS IT BASED IN: UAE REACH: All Arab countries AVAILABLE: Nile Sat DEMOGRAPHICS: 4-14 years old FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: Amoona, Naqeeb Khalfan, Fateen, Zakia AlThakia, Basal w Felfel, Jamool, and Gadha



PARENT COMPANY: Middle East Broadcasting Center HEADQUARTERED: Riyadh (based in Dubai) FOUNDED: 2003 LANGUAGE: English (Arabic subtitled) GENRE: Western movies REACH: MENA The leading Hollywood movie provider in the Middle East and North Africa. It offers premieres, greater variety, blockbusters, fuller franchises, stunts and activations, and is consistent in quality, more than any other movie channel. It is all in HD and free to air. This makes it the number 1 destination for movies in the region. VIEWERSHIP: 3.3 million viewers daily reach in KSA DEMOGRAPHICS: 35 per cent female; 65 per cent male MEDIA REP: MBC Media Solutions;; +971 4 391 9999

MBC 3 Manorama News

PARENT COMPANY: Malayala Manorama Group HEADQUARTERED: India FOUNDED: 2006 LANGUAGE: Malayalam GENRE: News DEMOGRAPHICS: Indian expats in MENA FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: Counter Point, Gulf This Week MEDIA REP: IAS Media: +971 4 447 5760 REACH: MENA

PARENT COMPANY: Middle East Broadcasting Center HEADQUARTERED: Riyadh (based in Dubai) FOUNDED: 2004 LANGUAGE: Arabic & English GENRE: Children’s programmes REACH: MENA, USA and Europe MBC3 delivers a programming mix of children’s education and entertainment that connects with and stimulates the imagination of Arab kids aged between 3 and 13. VIEWERSHIP: 424,000 viewers daily reach in KSA FLAGSHIP SHOWS: Tassali, Tawasol, mic of the biggest kid’s blockbuster titles MEDIA REP: MBC Media Solutions;; +971 4 391 9999


PARENT COMPANY: Middle East Broadcasting Center HEADQUARTERED: Riyadh (based in Dubai) FOUNDED: 1991 LANGUAGE:Arabic GENRE: General entertainment REACH: MENA The Arab family’s favourite entertainment channel, offering a broad mix of genres from drama series and gameshows to international formats and local social talk shows. VIEWERSHIP: 8.9 million viewers daily reach in KSA DEMOGRAPHICS: 54 per cent female; 46 per cent male FLAGSHIP SHOWS: Top Chef, Little Big Shots. The Masked Singer, Ta7edy Al Aelat, Kalam Nawem MEDIA REP: MBC Media Solutions;; +971 4 391 9999


PARENT COMPANY: Middle East Broadcasting Center HEADQUARTERED: Riyadh (based in Dubai) FOUNDED: 2005 LANGUAGE: Arabic, English (Arabic subtitled) GENRE: General entertainment with a special focus on Women REACH: MENA MBC4 is the Arab world’s first channel exclusively geared towards young Arab families with women’s interests at its core. The channel programming includes original scripted Arabic dramas, unscripted format shows like Beauty Match and Trending ,as well as international big formats like House of Talent (Boulevard Al Mawaheb). The channel also broadcasts the latest top-rated Western entertainment shows as well as international dramas, which are dubbed /subtitled into Arabic. VIEWERSHIP: 2 million viewers daily reach in KSA DEMOGRAPHICS: 54 per cent female; 46 per cent male FLAGSHIP SHOWS: House of Talent, Arous Beirut, Trending, Beauty Match, El Annisa Farah MEDIA REP: MBC Media Solutions;; +971 4 391 9999


April 25, 2022

Mazhvil Manorama

PARENT COMPANY: Malayala Manorama Group HEADQUARTERED: India FOUNDED: 2011 LANGUAGE: Malayalam GENRE: Malayalam general entertainment DEMOGRAPHICS: Indian expats in MENA FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: Super 4, Udan Panam, Marimayam, Panam Tharum Padam MEDIA REP: IAS Media: +971 4 447 5760 REACH: MENA

MBC Iraq

PARENT COMPANY: Middle East Broadcasting Center HEADQUARTERED: Riyadh (based in Dubai) FOUNDED: 2015 LANGUAGE: Arabic (mainly Iraqi, but also Syrian and Egyptian) GENRE: General entertainment REACH: MENA MBC Iraq is a premium general entertainment television channel, broadcasting a diverse selection of content suitable for the entire Iraqi family, consisting of Iraqi and regional productions VIEWERSHIP: 570,000K= viewers daily reach in KSA MEDIA REP: MBC Media Solutions;; +971 4 391 9999

MBC Action

PARENT COMPANY: Middle East Broadcasting Center HEADQUARTERED: Riyadh (based in Dubai) FOUNDED: 2007 LANGUAGE: English (with Arabic subtitles) and Arabic GENRE: Western entertainment, Arabic reality shows & sports shows REACH: MENA MBC Action is MBC Group’s action-packed channel that targets young Arabs. It delivers local programming from cars to trending news to lifestyle and the best in high-octane western series, sports entertainment, action movies and factual reality shows, keeping the youth buzzing around the clock with carefully selected and scheduled shows to suit the fast-paced lifestyle of the youth with an extended offering on multi-platforms. VIEWERSHIP: 1.6 million viewers daily reach in KSA DEMOGRAPHICS: 36 per cent female; 64 per cent male FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: Action Ma3 Waleed, Eish El Dour, Formula 1, WWE, Japanese Anime, Hollywood action movies. MEDIA REP: MBC Media Solutions;; +971 4 391 9999

MBC Masr

PARENT COMPANY: Middle East Broadcasting Center HEADQUARTERED: Riyadh (based in Egypt) FOUNDED: 2012 LANGUAGE: Arabic GENRE: General entertainment REACH: MENA MBC Masr provides Egyptian viewers with refined entrainment, which targets their diverse concerns and tastes through a careful selection of programmes, dramas, series, movies and documentaries. MEDIA REP: MBC Media Solutions;; +20 22 125 4800

MBC Max MBC Bollywood

PARENT COMPANY: Middle East Broadcasting Center HEADQUARTERED: Riyadh (based in Dubai) FOUNDED: 2013 LANGUAGE: Arabic dubbed; Hindi (Arabic Subtitles) GENRE: Bollywood Delivers a fresh approach to Bollywood by offering Arab viewers a combination of the newest Bollywood content along with culturally relevant daily drama series from the Indian subcontinent with a fully Arabised interface. VIEWERSHIP: 1.9 million viewers daily reach in KSA DEMOGRAPHICS: 52 per cent females; 48 per cent males FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: Monday Star of the Month Theme Night, Tuesday Premiere Movie Night, Arabic Dubbed Indian Drama Series MEDIA REP: MBC Media Solutions;; +971 4 391 9999

MBC Drama

PARENT COMPANY: Middle East Broadcasting Center HEADQUARTERED: Riyadh (based in Dubai) FOUNDED: 2007 LANGUAGE: Arabic GENRE: Arabic Series REACH: MENA VIEWERSHIP: 3.1 m viewers daily reach in KSA DEMOGRAPHICS: 51 per cent female; 49 per cent male. MEDIA REP: MBC Media Solutions;; +971 4 391 9999

PARENT COMPANY: Middle East Broadcasting Center HEADQUARTERED: Riyadh (based in Dubai) FOUNDED: 2008 LANGUAGE: English (Arabic Subtitled) GENRE: Western movies REACH: MENA Max is the home of romcoms, comedies and dramas that our audience loves but we›ve added more variety, more action and more edge-of-yourseat thrills in our upcoming line up. Love Movies, Love Max. VIEWERSHIP: 400,000 viewers daily reach in KSA DEMOGRAPHICS: 44 per cent female; 56 male MEDIA REP: MBC Media Solutions;; +971 4 391 9999

MTV India

PARENT COMPANY: Viacom 18 Media HEADQUARTERED: Mumbai, with office in Dubai FOUNDED: 2012 in Middle East and Africa LANGUAGE: Hindi & English GENRE: Music, Reality shows and youth culture programming REACH: UAE, Qatar and GCC countries, Middle East and Africa MEDIA REP: Indiacast Media Distribution:; +971 4 367 9890; (affiliate enquiries); pankaj.arora@ (ad sales)


April 25, 2022

National Geographic Abu Dhabi PARENT COMPANY: The Walt Disney Company and Abu Dhabi Media HEAD QUARTERED: Abu Dhabi FOUNDED: 2009 LANGUAGE: Arabic CONTENT: Factual content – scripted, hybrid, features, specials, documentaries. Launched in July 2009, the free-to-air National Geographic Abu Dhabi invites viewers in the Middle East to re-think the way they see television – and the world – through smart, innovative programming in the Arabic language. REACH: Algeria, Bahrain, Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Yemen, Oman, Palestine, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Tunisia, UAE, Djibouti, Mauritania, Somalia, South Sudan and Sudan. FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: Primal Survivor, Banged up Abroad, From Above, Lost Treasure of Egypt, Running Wild with Bear Brylls, Brain Games, The Hot Zone, Car SOS, Air Crash Investigation, Savage Kingdom, Untamed Wild, Big Cats, Sharkfest SALES: Sanjeev James (+971 55 992 8206); Marlain Daniel (+971 50 366 7096)

News 18

PARENT COMPANY: Network 18 Group HEADQUARTERED: Mumbai, with office in Dubai FOUNDED: 2014 in Middle East and 2019 in Africa LANGUAGE: English GENRE: News REACH: UAE, Qatar and GCC countries, Middle East and Africa MEDIA REP: Indiacast Media Distribution:; +971 4 367 9890; (affiliate enquiries); (ad sales)

OSN Family

PARENT COMPANY: OSN HEADQUARTERED: Dubai REACH: MENA SALES: Ellis D’Rozario, vice-president ad sales:; +971 4 367 7888 A one-stop destination for the whole family to enjoy a magical experience watching the best-of movies and premium series in safe viewing environment.

OSN Kids

PARENT COMPANY: OSN HEADQUARTERED: Dubai REACH: MENA SALES: Ellis D’Rozario, vice-president ad sales:; +971 4 367 7888 A channel for the youngest movie fans - Here is where parents can find everything they need to keep their 3–8 year olds happy.

OSN Kidzone Noor Dubai

PARENT COMPANY: Dubai Media Incorporated LAUNCHED: 2009 HEADQUARTERED: UAE LANGUAGE: Arabic MEDIA REP: MEMS: +971 4 454 5454; REACH: GCC VIEWERSHIP: 15,000 (GCC Adults 15+) DEMOGRAPHICS: 60 per cent male Flagship programmes: Balsam (health programme), Al Bath al Moubasher (live programme), Al Salifa Wa ma Fiha (social programme), Rouhak Riyadiya

PARENT COMPANY: OSN HEADQUARTERED: Dubai REACH: MENA SALES: Ellis D’Rozario, vice-president ad sales:; +971 4 367 7888 A kid’s channel designed to engage, educate, and provide a safe, trusted viewing environment for younger children.

OSN Living OSN Comedy

PARENT COMPANY: OSN HEADQUARTERED: Dubai REACH: MENA SALES: Ellis D’Rozario, vice-president ad sales:; +971 4 367 7888 A channel dedicated to all-things comedy, airing the latest and greatest of sitcoms, series, stand-up comedies and movies.

PARENT COMPANY: OSN HEADQUARTERED: Dubai REACH: MENA SALES: Ellis D’Rozario, vice-president ad sales:; +971 4 367 7888 A channel dedicated to showing the best home design, real estate, travel and adventure shows

April 25, 2022

OSN Mezze

PARENT COMPANY: OSN HEADQUARTERED: Dubai REACH: MENA SALES: Ellis D’Rozario, vice-president ad sales:; +971 4 367 7888 A food channel featuring well-known chefs from around the world. Offering everything culinary like, cooking competitions, baking shows, delicious recipes and much more.


OSN News

PARENT COMPANY: OSN HEADQUARTERED: Dubai REACH: MENA SALES: Ellis D’Rozario, vice-president ad sales:; +971 4 367 7888 A channel covering American and world news, as well as award-winning magazine programmes, documentaries and financial features.

OSN Movies Action

PARENT COMPANY: OSN HEADQUARTERED: Dubai REACH: MENA SALES: Ellis D’Rozario, vice-president ad sales:; +971 4 367 7888 Exciting, entertaining, and easy to watch. This channel is dedicated to delivering the most hard hitting and popular action movies, franchises and celebrated action heroes.

OSN Pop Up

PARENT COMPANY: OSN HEADQUARTERED: Dubai REACH: MENA SALES: Ellis D’Rozario, vice-president ad sales:; +971 4 367 7888

OSN Movies Hollywood

PARENT COMPANY: OSN HEADQUARTERED: Dubai REACH: MENA SALES: Ellis D’Rozario, vice-president ad sales:; +971 4 367 7888 OSN Movies Hollywood brings movies that made waves, the ones that are firmly embedded in popular culture - major blockbusters, award-winners, fan favourites & cult classics.

OSN Movies Premier

PARENT COMPANY: OSN HEADQUARTERED: Dubai REACH: MENA SALES: Ellis D’Rozario, vice-president ad sales:; +971 4 367 7888 OSN Movies Premiere is home to current & recent blockbuster movies.

OSN Movies Premier +2

PARENT COMPANY: OSN HEADQUARTERED: Dubai REACH: MENA SALES: Ellis D’Rozario, vice-president ad sales:; +971 4 367 7888

OSN Series Prime

PARENT COMPANY: OSN HEADQUARTERED: Dubai REACH: MENA SALES: Ellis D’Rozario, vice-president ad sales:; +971 4 367 7888 A channel for fans of medical dramas, legal crime dramas and action. It is a one stop suspense destination for the best of procedural drama.


April 25, 2022

OSN Showcase

PARENT COMPANY: OSN HEADQUARTERED: Dubai REACH: MENA SALES: Ellis D’Rozario, vice-president ad sales:; +971 4 367 7888 A channel featuring the latest and greatest series from top studios like HBO, directly from the US, as well as award-winning classic movies and documentaries.

OSN Yahala Bil Arabi

PARENT COMPANY: OSN HEADQUARTERED: Dubai REACH: MENA SALES: Ellis D’Rozario, vice-president ad sales:; +971 4 367 7888 A new channel that hosts dubbed Arabic content. It brings a wide variety of Turkish, Korean, Russian and Western series catering to all entertainment needs.

Rotana+ HD OSN W

PARENT COMPANY: OSN HEADQUARTERED: Dubai REACH: MENA SALES: Ellis D’Rozario, vice-president ad sales:; +971 4 367 7888 A channel that is one of its kind, always female-focused, fun and multi-faceted. Truly reflecting today›s young women. Airing an inspiring range of premium stories told through movies and series as well as documentaries and other entertainment programmes.

PARENT COMPANY: Rotana Media Group LAUNCHED: 2017 BASED: Egypt LANGUAGE: Arabic REACH: GCC, Levant, North Africa, Europe, and USA AVAILABILITY: Encrypted GENRE: ROTANA+ HD caters to all subscribers some of the best Arabic movies, elite series and a wide variety of lifestyle programs in HD format to provide its viewers with a crisper picture and a better experience. MEDIA REP: RMS:; +971 4 567 4380; +971 52 538 8889;

Rotana Aflam + HD

OSN Yahala

PARENT COMPANY: OSN HEADQUARTERED: Dubai REACH: MENA SALES: Ellis D’Rozario, vice-president ad sales:; +971 4 367 7888 A channel airing 100 per cent Arabic content. It features a wide variety of series productions from all around the region.

OSN Yahala Aflam

PARENT COMPANY: OSN HEADQUARTERED: Dubai REACH: MENA SALES: Ellis D’Rozario, vice-president ad sales:; +971 4 367 7888 A channel for movie buffs in the region. Showing everything from critically acclaimed Arabic films to Turkish movies & regional short films.

PARENT COMPANY: Rotana Media Group LAUNCHED: 2016 BASED: Egypt LANGUAGE: Arabic REACH: GCC, Levant, North Africa, Europe, and USA AVAILABILITY: Encrypted Rotana Aflam +HD has always been dedicated to featuring the best movies from around the Arab world that appeals to its diverse audience. With its substantial movie library brought to all home screens in HD quality, Rotana Aflam + HD offer its subscribers early access by catering all Rotana Cinemas’ monthly movie premieres, one week prior, all in high definition. MEDIA REP: RMS:; +971 4 567 4380; +971 52 538 8889;

Rotana America Channel

PARENT COMPANY: Rotana Media Group LAUNCHED: 2010 BASED: Egypt LANGUAGE: Arabic REACH: North America AVAILABILITY: Encrypted Rotana America was established to reach a population of more than 3.6 million Arabs living in North America. With its select programmes, the channel has made it possible for those Arab expats to remain connected to their homes, diminishing distances and providing a comforting sense of belonging along the way. MEDIA REP: RMS:; +971 4 567 4380; +971 52 538 8889;


RMS enjoys the unique privilege of offering its clients fully integrated media solutions, through the highly diversities media vehicles it represents.


April 25, 2022

Rotana Cinema

PARENT COMPANY: Rotana Media Group LAUNCHED: 2004 BASED: Egypt LANGUAGE: Arabic REACH: GCC, Levant, North Africa, Europe, and USA AVAILABILITY: Arabsat, Nilesat GENRE: The latest blockbusters and the best Arabic and classical movies handpicked to cater for Saudi viewers in particular and the wider Khaliji audiences in general. MEDIA REP: RMS:; +971 4 567 4380; +971 52 538 8889;

Rotana Drama

PARENT COMPANY: Rotana Media Group LAUNCHED: 2018 BASED: Saudi Arabia LANGUAGE: Arabic REACH: GCC, Levant, North Africa, Europe, and USA AVAILABILITY: Arabsat, Nilesat GENRE: The largest collection of Arabic drama series from around the Arab world MEDIA REP: RMS:; +971 4 567 4380; +971 52 538 8889;

Rotana Khalijiya Rotana Classic

PARENT COMPANY: Rotana Media Group LAUNCHED: 2005 BASED: Egypt LANGUAGE: Arabic REACH: GCC, Levant, North Africa, Europe, and USA AVAILABILITY: Arabsat, Nilesat GENRE: The largest library of old and classical Arabic movies and theatrical plays. Rotana Classic takes viewers down memory lane to times of platonic love stories, idealistic values and heartfelt music. MEDIA REP: RMS:; +971 4 567 4380; +971 52 538 8889;

PARENT COMPANY: Rotana Media Group LAUNCHED: 2005 BASED: Saudi Arabia LANGUAGE: Arabic REACH: GCC, Levant, North Africa, Europe, and USA AVAILABILITY: Arabsat, Nilesat GENRE: General entertainment, social talk shows A general entertainment Arabic channel that caters to Arab viewers in general, with an emphasis on Saudis. Covering daily news, social programmes and sports, and boasting international adopted formats along with the best drama series, Rotana Khalijia has a wide reach that covers all age groups. FLAGSHIP PROGRAMS: Sayidati, Ya Hala, Koora MEDIA REP: RMS:; +971 4 567 4380; +971 52 538 8889;

Rotana Clip

PARENT COMPANY: Rotana Media Group LAUNCHED: 2003 BASED: Egypt LANGUAGE: Arabic REACH: GCC, Levant, North Africa, Europe, and USA AVAILABILITY: Arabsat, Nilesat GENRE: Music videos MEDIA REP: RMS:; +971 4 567 4380; +971 52 538 8889;

Rotana Comedy

PARENT COMPANY: Rotana Media Group LAUNCHED: 2020 BASED: Egypt LANGUAGE: Arabic REACH: GCC, Levant, North Africa, Europe, and USA AVAILABILITY: Arabsat, Ya Life GENRE: Comedy movies, comedy series, plays and candid camera MEDIA REP: RMS:; +971 4 567 4380; +971 52 538 8889;

Rotana Kids

PARENT COMPANY: Rotana Media Group LAUNCHED: 2020 BASED: Egypt LANGUAGE: Arabic REACH: GCC, Levant, North Africa, Europe, and USA AVAILABILITY: Arabsat, Nilesat GENRE: Arabic cartoons MEDIA REP: RMS:; +971 4 567 4380; +971 52 538 8889;

April 25, 2022

Rotana Mousica

PARENT COMPANY: Rotana Media Group LAUNCHED: 2003 BASED: Egypt LANGUAGE: Arabic REACH: GCC, Levant, North Africa, Europe, and USA AVAILABILITY: Arabsat, Nilesat GENRE: Arabic music and video clips. Music-oriented offerings, live broadcasting, concerts of the world’s most iconic Arab artists, latest video clips, single releases, and scoop interviews with superstars MEDIA REP: RMS:; +971 4 567 4380; +971 52 538 8889;


SBC PARENT COMPANY: Saudi Broadcast Authority HEADQUARTERED: Saudi Arabia FOUNDED: 2018 LANGUAGE: Arabic GENRE: General entertainment REACH: Worldwide AVAILABILITY: OSN, Arabsat, Nilesat, Etisalat, Hotbird, Asia-sat, Galaxy 19,hispasat, UHF, Du,, YouTube VIEWERSHIP: 1.8 million Saudis 15+; 53% female; 55% 15-34 yrs FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: Dawod Al-Sheryan Show; Jawayiz AlSaudia; AlWaqt AlAsli; The Desert; Najem AlSaudia. MEDIA REP: Saudi Media Company:; +971 4 425 4285 (Dubai); +966 11 271 6909 (Riyadh); +966 12 657 2323 (Jeddah)

Sama Dubai

PARENT COMPANY: Dubai Media Incorporated LAUNCHED: 2005 HEADQUARTERED: UAE LANGUAGE: Arabic MEDIA REP: MEMS: +971 4 454 5454; REACH: GCC Middle East and Africa VIEWERSHIP: 286,000 (GCC Adults 15+) DEMOGRAPHICS: 74 per cent aged 15-44 FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: Qisat Najah, Sinarist, Al Darfa, 971

Sony Max

PARENT COMPANY: Sony Pictures Networks India HEADQUARTERED: India FOUNDED:1999 LANGUAGE: Hindi GENRE: Indian Blockbuster movies MEDIA REP: IAS Media: +971 4 447 5760 DEMOGRAPHICS: 6.5 million+ South Asian expats in the Middle East REACH: MENA

Saudi TV PARENT COMPANY: Saudi Broadcast Authority HEADQUARTERED: Saudi Arabia FOUNDED: 1965 LANGUAGE: Arabic GENRE: General entertainment REACH: Worldwide AVAILABILITY: OSN, DU, Terrestrial Broadcast, : Arabsat, Nilesat, Etisalat, Hotbird, Asia-sat, Galaxy 19, Hispasat, UHF, Du,, YouTube VIEWERSHIP: 2.37+ Million (Saudis 15+); MENA 56% males, 55% 35+ yrs FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: News; Live Prayers; Tam; Sabah AlSaudia; Kafo; Lahza. MEDIA REP: Saudi Media Company:; +971 4 425 4285 (Dubai); +966 11 271 6909 (Riyadh); +966 12 657 2323 (Jeddah)

Sony SAB

PARENT COMPANY: Sony Pictures Networks India HEADQUARTERED: India FOUNDED:1999 LANGUAGE: Hindi GENRE: Family oriented comedy shows MEDIA REP: IAS Media: +971 4 447 5760 FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: Tarak Mehta ka Oolta Chashma, Wagle Ki Duniya, Goodnight India DEMOGRAPHICS: 6.5 million+ South Asian expats in the Middle East REACH: MENA

Sony Entertainment Television

PARENT COMPANY: Sony Pictures Networks India HEADQUARTERED: India FOUNDED:1995 LANGUAGE: Hindi GENRE: General entertainment MEDIA REP: IAS Media: +971 4 447 5760 FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: The Kapil Sharma Show, Kaun Banega Crorepati, Shark Tank India, Flavours of Ramadan, Indian Idol, India’s Got Talent DEMOGRAPHICS: 6.5 million+ South Asian expats in the Middle East REACH: MENA


PARENT COMPANY: GNAM HEADQUARTERED: Dubai FOUNDED: 2000 LANGUAGE: Arabic GENRE: Animation shows (series & movies) REACH: MENA Spacetoon TV is the first kids’ and family channel to air in Arabic, targeting MENA countries and reaching over 200 million viewers. It was established in Dubai as a part of GNAM group in 2000.


April 25, 2022

Star Bharat GENRE: Series, movies and locally created content PARENT COMPANY: STAR India (subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company) BASED: Dubai, UAE LANGUAGE: Hindi (subtitled in English) GEOGRAPHICAL REACH: Middle East, East Africa, Seychelles & Singapore MEDIA REP: Anjali Desai -

Star Movies

PARENT COMPANY: 21st Century Fox HEADQUARTERED: USA MEDIA REP: IAS Media: +971 4 447 5760 GENRE: Hollywood movies DEMOGRAPHICS: All nationalities LANGUAGE: English with Arabic subtitles REACH: MENA

Star Plus GENRE: Hindi general Entertainment channel featuring the best of series, movies, reality shows and locally created content PARENT COMPANY: STAR Asianet Middle East BASED: Dubai, UAE LANGUAGE: Hindi (subtitled in English) GEOGRAPHICAL REACH: Middle East, East Africa, and Seychelles MEDIA REP: Anjali Desai -

Star Vijay GENRE: Tamil general Entertainment channel featuring the best of series, movies, reality shows and locally created content PARENT COMPANY: STAR Asianet Middle East BASED: Dubai, UAE LANGUAGE: Tamil GEOGRAPHICAL REACH: Middle East, East Africa, Seychelles, Mauritius & Singapore MEDIA REP: Anjali Desai -

Star World

PARENT COMPANY: 21st Century Fox HEADQUARTERED: USA MEDIA REP: IAS Media: +971 4 447 5760 GENRE: Hollywood TV shows DEMOGRAPHICS: All nationalities LANGUAGE: English with Arabic subtitles REACH: MENA

Star Gold GENRE: World’s favourite Bollywood movie channel featuring the biggest blockbusters and biggest stars PARENT COMPANY: STAR India (subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company) BASED: Dubai, UAE LANGUAGE: Hindi (subtitled in English) GEOGRAPHICAL REACH: Middle East, Africa, Indian Ocean & Singapore MEDIA REP: Anjali Desai -

Thikrayat PARENT COMPANY: Saudi Broadcast Authority HEADQUARTERED: Saudi Arabia YEAR FOUNDED: 2020 LANGUAGE: Arabic GENRE: General entertainment, nostalgia REACH: Worldwide AVAILABILITY: OSN, Arabsat, Nilesat, Yahsat, Etisalat, Hotbird, Asia-sat, Galaxy 19, Hipasat, UHF, Du, YouTube, Terrestrial broadcast, Jawwi TV. VIEWERSHIP: 865,000 (Saudis 15+) FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: Crystal Maze (1990-1993), Grendizer (1975-1977), Tash Ma Tash (1999), Hourouf (1988), Iftah Ya Simsom (1979-1989) MEDIA REP: Saudi Media Company:; +971 4 425 4285 (Dubai); +966 11 271 6909 (Riyadh); +966 12 657 2323 (Jeddah)

April 25, 2022

Times Now

PARENT COMPANY: The Times Group HEADQUARTERED: India FOUNDED: 2006 LANGUAGE: English GENRE: News DEMOGRAPHICS: Indian expats in MENA MEDIA REP: IAS Media: +971 4 447 5760 REACH: MENA

Zee Alwan

PARENT COMPANY: Zee Entertainment Middle East FOUNDED: 2012 HEADQUARTERED: UAE (parent company in India) LANGUAGE: Arabic SALES:, +971 4 454 5454 REACH: MENA LISTENERS: Daily reach: 1,623,000 DEMOGRAPHICS: All Arabs GENRE: Turkish series, Turkish movies, Indian series dubbed in Arabic


PARENT COMPANY: Discovery HEADQUARTERED: Dubai LANGUAGE: English GENRE: Lifestyle content: bridal, paranormal, food, property & home renovation, crime & investigation REACH: MENA MEDIA REP: Offering remarkable real-life stories without judgment, TLC shares everyday heart, humour, hope and human connection with programming genres that include fascinating families, heartwarming transformations and life’s milestone moments. DEMOGRAPHICS: Women 25-44 FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: 90 Day Fiancé, Say Yes To The Dress, My 600lb Life

Zee Cinema

PARENT COMPANY: Zee Entertainment Enterprises LAUNCHED: 2010 HEADQUARTERED: UAE (parent company in India) LANGUAGE: Hindi & English SALES:, +971 4 454 5454 REACH: KSA, UAE, Bahrain, Oman, Qatar, Kuwait, North Africa VIEWERSHIP: More than 5 million people DEMOGRAPHICS: All South Asians FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: Bollywood movies, chat shows & awards


PARENT COMPANY: The Walt Disney Company and Abu Dhabi Media HEAD QUARTERED: Abu Dhabi FOUNDED: 2015 +971 2 445 5555 Yas is the UAE’s primary Emirati sports channel, which specialises in traditional sports such as horse and camel racing, marine sports and falconry. The channel’s name stems from the UAE’s Bani Yas tribe, from which the Al Nahyan and Al Maktoum families originate. Yas Sports Channel targets Emirati sports enthusiasts with a passion for camel racing and falconry by broadcasting their favourite traditional competitions and shows; simultaneously attracting a large audience of competition enthusiasts with an interest in equestrian and marine sports, allowing them to further integrate with the Emirati community. REACH: MENA FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: Photo Finish, Al Hadeera, Serdal, Al Merkad

Zee Aflam

PARENT COMPANY: Zee Entertainment Middle East FOUNDED: 2008 HEADQUARTERED: UAE (parent company in India) LANGUAGE: Arabic SALES:, +971 4 454 5454 REACH: MENA VIEWERSHIP: Daily reach: 1,728,000 DEMOGRAPHICS: All Arabs FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: Bollywood & Turkish movies, chat shows & awards

Zee Keralam

PARENT COMPANY: Zee Entertainment Enterprises LAUNCHED: 2019 HEADQUARTERED: UAE (parent company in India) LANGUAGE: Malayalam SALES:, +971 4 454 5454 REACH: KSA, UAE, Bahrain, Oman, Qatar, Kuwait, North Africa VIEWERSHIP: More than 5 million people DEMOGRAPHICS: All Malayalis FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: Saregamapa, Dance Kerala Dance, Mrs. Hitler

Zee TV

PARENT COMPANY: Zee Entertainment Enterprises LAUNCHED: 1994 in MENA HEADQUARTERED: UAE (parent company in India) LANGUAGE: Hindi & English SALES:, +971 4 454 5454 REACH: KSA, UAE, Bahrain, Oman, Qatar, Kuwait, North Africa VIEWERSHIP: More than 5 million people DEMOGRAPHICS: All South Asians FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES: Saregamapa, Dance India Dance, Zee Connect, Zee Rishtey Awards



April 25, 2022

STREAMING PLATFORMS PARENT COMPANY: Zee Entertainment HEADQUARTERED: Dubai (parent company in India) FOUNDED: 2017 NUMBER OF STAFF: 40 members SUBSCRIPTION COSTS: Freemium (AED 18.99 a month for a premium subscription) Content: South Asian and Arabic content (Indian, Egyptian, PAN Arab, and Turkish) AVAILABILITY: Website, iOS, Android, and smart TVs REACH: Saudi – UAE – Worldwide VIEWERS: More than 2 million monthly unique active users

DEMOGRAPHICS: 80% audience Age 18 – 54; 20% 55 plus; 53% Female 57% Male; 60% GCC Audience SALES: Marian Sabra: +971 52 855 1559 BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT: Joudeh Al Shaer: +971 56 154 5545 Since its inception in 2017, Weyyak has grown rapidly to become the second-largest video-on-demand (VOD) platform in the Arab region. Weyyak offers exclusive Middle Eastern production and Indian content dubbed into Arabic. Zee’s strategic decision to venture into the Middle East and bring forward its experience, technology, and library has positioned Weyyak as a global pioneer in the entertainment industry. Similarly, the diversified content, the user-friendly interface that entices user engagement and the strong marketing hub that attracts and connects millions of users are key success factors of Weyyak. Premium brands across the MENA are collaborating with Weyyak to display high-quality video ads and website banners on their website and app. POPULAR SHOWS: Chicago Street, Whatiqat Sharaf, Safra wa Soufra, Layla Andi Bel Bait, Makanak Fe El Qalb, Hayat Qalbi


Nadine Samra

Lara Saab

Chief Business Officer

Marketing Director

Sarah Btaddini

Mais Halaseh

Content Director

Product Director

Marian Sabra

Joudeh Al Shaer

Sales Director

Business Development Director

April 25, 2022

ADtv APP PARENT COMPANY: Abu Dhabi Media FOUNDED: 2020 +971 2 445 5555 ADtv is the AVOD digital media platform launched by Abu Dhabi Media in February 2020, providing a free streaming service for the Arab audience, through a diverse and high-quality range of content and a livestream of all ADM’s TV channels. SUBSCRIPTION COSTS: None; free registration NUMBER OF USERS: More than 15 million DEMOGRAPHICS: 50 per cent of users are millennials and Gen Z; 55 per cent female, 45 per cent male


OSN+ PARENT COMPANY: OSN FOUNDED: 2020 SUBSCRIPTION COSTS: $9.50/month; $89.00/year OSN+ is the region’s leading local premium streaming service, featuring an incredible line-up of exclusive premium global and locally curated content from partnerships with major studios including HBO, NBC Universal and Paramount+. The platform ensures the latest content at the same time as the US, including critically acclaimed series and must-see movies. OSN+ is also the home to world-class Arabic original content with its OSN+ Originals.

Shahid Awaan PARENT COMPANY: DMI FOUNDED: 2016 Awaan’s is DMI’s VOD platform, allowing users to unlock a wide library of premium content from different categories such as entertainment, drama, news accessible from any connected device SUBSCRIPTION COSTS: Free NUMBER OF USERS: 1.5 million DEMOGRAPHICS: 56 per cent female, 44 per cent male

PARENT COMPANY: Middle East Broadcasting Centre FOUNDED: 2008 We carry all kinds of content: originals, premieres including local and international series, movies, soap operas, kids, sports, anime and many other genres. Most of these are available on both the AVOD and SVOD tiers. DEMOGRAPHICS: Shahid caters to all demographic profiles. From kids, teenagers and youth to middle age and older age groups. Also for both males and females. MEDIA REP: MBC Media Solutions:; +971 4 391 9999

Sony Liv AJ+ PARENT COMPANY: Al Jazeera Media Network LANGUAGE: English, Spanish, Arabic and French FOUNDED: 2014 AJ+ is a global community for digital natives focusing on conversations about news and beyond. Bringing stories that shape the world to engage and enlighten audiences. Highlighting struggles, celebrating achievements and empowering impassioned voices is at the core of AJ+.



Asharq Now PARENT COMPANY: Asharq News SUBSCRIPTION COSTS: Free CONTENT: Live streaming of the TV cahnnel, and a catch-up service for all programmes and documentary episodes

Manorama Max PARENT COMPANY: Malayala Manorama Group HEADQUARTERED: India FOUNDED: 2019 SUBSCRIPTION COSTS: $25/year

HEADQUARTERED: UAE FOUNDED: 2014 SUBSCRIPTION COSTS: $10.99/month Starzplay Arabia is a subscription video on demand service that streams Hollywood movies, TV shows, documentaries and same-time-as-the-US series – plus live sports, dedicated kids’ entertainment and Arabic content – to 19 countries across MENA and Pakistan.

Discovery+ Discovery+ is the definitive non-fiction, real life subscription streaming service offering a wide range of global content and original series exclusively available for Discovery+ across popular, passion verticals in which Discovery has category leadership. This includes lifestyle and relationships; home and food; true crime; paranormal; adventure and natural history; as well as science, tech, the environment and high-quality documentaries.


April 25, 2022


We asked: Are we in a golden age for TV advertising?

April 25, 2022


Alex Pineda

Executive creative director, TBWA\RAAD


If you think of TV as the classic media, we grew up with in the living room, broadcasting fixed programmes filled with million-dollar production cost ads, then No. But if you think of TV as something you can sync with your phone (albeit actually a pocket-size hard drive with Wifi and an HD camera), watch Netflix and Apple TV, stream YouTube, play music straight from Spotify, watch TED Talks, get movies and sports on demand and a million things besides, then Yes. TV is redefined as a gateway to endless possibilities. It has become a true ‘magic box’.

Danny Bates

Co-founder & chief commercial officer, Starzplay


TV advertising witnessed a remarkable evolution with the advent of digital advertising, which opened a whole new era of opportunities. Linear TV has long dominated the marketing play for a lot of brands. However, today TV advertising is adapting to new formats that help optimise reach to offer a breadth of content personalised for the consumers. Engaging content is now more important than ever. Further, other factors, such as high production values driven by high budgets and the arrival of big movie stars to television, are triggering positive change towards TV advertising.

Lara Saab

Associate marketing director, Weyyak


The Golden age of the TV ad has passed. Today’s consumer touchpoints are very fragmented. The audiovisual media landscape has witnessed a paradigm shift with the rise of digital media consumption year-on-year. The whole e-commerce ecosystem revolutionised communication, which resulted in an evolution of nontraditional media. Hence brands’ marketing effectiveness depends on strategising a 360-degree media mix that orchestrates relevant touchpoints that serve business objectives and drive ROI. The TV ad’s longevity is highly dependent on multidimensional innovative media planning, particularly in an era when digital media and video-on-demand platforms are proven to be effective as standalone players and constitute the highest share of voice in the current market scene.

Antonio Boulos

Vice-president, BPN MENA


TV consumption has evolved and is living another golden age, judging by the sheer number of people who are consuming video content across different platforms. Video advertising is the interactive brainchild of TV advertising. On the other hand, many regional brands view traditional TV advertising as “Golden” for the following reasons: Leading Pan Arab TV channels allow these brands to target 22 Arabic speaking markets across MENA with one spot, reaching tens of millions of consumers at once. No other communication channel can deliver this performance. Such advertisers benefit from a CPM that other channels cannot compete with.

Youssef Gadallah,

Head of creative lab, global business solutions, METAP – TikTok


We are in a golden age, but not of TV. This is the golden age of big ideas. The age of many screens, little attention spans and peak consumer savviness. People want the ‘what’s next’. They want it now, and they want it constantly. TV is focused on traditional, one-way, and almost entirely untrackable content, rather than actual solutions that build brands and sell products. It is less likely to give the space to truly innovate in terms of big ideas and creative solutions than other media platforms. And, let’s face it, most of the TV being consumed is ad-free, so brands are less and less likely to invest in a TV renaissance.


April 25, 2022

Mustafa Dada

Yasser Obeid

General manager, marketing and communications, AW Rostamani Group

Managing director, AKA Media



Since the turn of the century, TV advertising has been fighting a losing battle against the digital domain. Access to billions of users across the globe, proper targeting and flexibility in terms of format lengths have made the 30 second TV ad not very competitive, considering the cost of TV media, which is dramatically more expensive and gives brands less value for money. And the statistics speak for themselves: TV media spend has not seen any dramatic growth over the last decade. Most marketeers when producing content for TV have digital versions made out of the same content, and with more and more internet penetration and more OTT ad-free platforms, marketing budgets will continue to increase on the digital front.

It’s no secret that spending in TV advertising has declined in the past few years, however the pandemic played a major role in shifting consumer demand and increasing viewership. It’s currently a buyer’s market, where major brands are coming in especially to the streaming environment to take advantage of the increase in viewership. Out of five households, TV streaming occupies three, while only two are traditional TV households, so we are really seeing that pendulum swing into TV streaming and advertisers are really following suit – they are finally buying where the audience is first, versus going straight to traditional TV as an initial step.

Carolyn Gibson

Chief revenue officer, Euronews


TV is radically changing and while its traditional linear model is still very popular, video streaming services are rapidly developing. It is predicted that by 2026, 73 per cent of the US population will turn to OTT video streaming for their media consumption, a trend that is accelerating worldwide. At Euronews, we anticipated this shift early and are already in a market-leading position on the majority of platforms worldwide, with millions of hours of content streamed on the likes of Rakuten, Roku and Pluto TV. This has allowed us to grow our audiences not only in Europe, but also in the USA, Latin America and APAC, creating new opportunities for our advertisers.

Julie Caironi,

Regional head of marketing, Snap Inc. MENA


TV’s reach and viewership has declined steadily over recent years, making it increasingly challenging to reach the vast potential audiences of the past. This change has given way to new modes of advertising to achieve the reach and frequency of content that advertisers are looking for. Direct response solutions and immersive AR technologies supported by ROI and performance-driven KPIs have changed advertisers’ perception of TV - highlighting its limits in achieving holistic brand objectives. Mobile consumption has been at the heart of this, delivering dynamic and immersive video content from brands, creators, and publishers directly into the hands of their audiences, where it can be accessed anytime, anywhere.

Walid Yared

CMO, Choueiri Group


We definitely are, but it is no longer just a standalone linear TV play, as TV advertising has evolved significantly from its traditional model. Broadcasters and publishers must embrace a holistic approach towards TV, that extends from linear to connected TV, AVOD and SVOD. Moving ahead, the new TV play will continue to be all about harnessing the convergence of content and distribution. This evolution will help increase TV’s reach and will empower and enable users to consume TV content on their own terms, at the time and location of their choosing, utilising their preferred devices or platforms.

April 25, 2022


MATTER OF FACT News, views & trends from across the spectrum

EARN WHAT YOU PAY The past two years heralded an era of evolution and renewed growth for virtually every industry that had people scrambling to understand Managing Director of Cicero & Bernay their status and rework their projections and strategies. While it is Communication Consultancy easy to proclaim absolute change, not many industries were compelled to evolve as fast as the communication industry did. In fact, according to PR Week, 2021 was a record year of growth for the PR agency sector, which means whatever it is that we collectively did allowed us to survive the change and grow from it. TARIQ AL SHARABI

Consider this: for generations, our industry had been deeply rooted in earned media; our creative chops were the only tools and metrics for our success. Over the past couple of decades alone, the path forward had to be reimagined to involve, and in some cases accept full reliance on, paid media. Some viewed this as the communication industry adopting a race-to-the-bottom approach, sacrificing integrity and creativity to ensure relevance. This could not be further from the truth as it disregards the human element and denotes audiences as pawns on a strict clickbait diet. The contemporary metric for success requires nimbleness and a blending of earned and paid media that addresses a story, capitalises on it and grows it.



Profit per $1 spent on Google ads

Profit for every $1 spent on email marketing

Source: marketingevolution



Business marketing budget allocated for paid search

Google Ads clicks through mobile devices





1 chance

Slap Me Maybe

It was only time before YouTube would delve into the world of podcasts. After all, content creators have been uploading podcasts to the platform for a while, granting YouTube much-needed data to venture on its own and invite creators to their mix.

When it comes to humanitarian initiatives, none are as bold or ambitious as the ‘1 Billion Meals’ campaign. To ensure absolute awareness, the Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives took to the streets with cars without car plate numbers to raise awareness of the empty plates of more than 2 billion people worldwide who do not have access to food.

Will Smith reignited people’s interest in the Oscars for the wrong reason. The morality of his actions notwithstanding, the internet was quick to jump on the meme train, creating a viral impact. Though the moment may conceal audiences were welcoming of the parodies, and some brands that sought to blindly take advantage of the trend were forced to recall their meme attempts.


April 25, 2022


ark Livings in the co-founder and CEO of the non-alcoholic spirits company Lyre’s. This brand is Livings’ fifth multimillion-dollar business. Livings is a multi-award-winning entrepreneur and founder of a portfolio of businesses in the FMCG – CPG (fast-moving consumer goods – consumer packaged goods) sector, including marketing and advertising, logistics and fulfilment, print and merchandise production. He is bringing his alcohol-free drinks brand Lyre’s to the MENA region. It will be rolling out in the UAE, KSA and wider region in the coming months. The products will be sold directly from Lyre's website and will be available at high-end bars and restaurants in the Middle East. The whole range will be available, which includes flavours such as Dry London Spirit, American Malt, Italian Spritz, Pink London Spirit, Amaretti and more. Livings is an enthusiast of food and beverage marketing and advertising, having started his career with Coca-Cola, where he found his passion for the industry. “I got really lucky; I landed a role with them early and got to learn marketing from arguably the best marketing company from the last century,” says Livings. Even though he loved the industry, he didn’t quite enjoy the large corporate environment and moved to the marketing agency side. After three years, Livings opened his own agency when he was 29,

‘‘I GOT REALLY LUCKY; I GOT TO LEARN MARKETING FROM THE BEST MARKETING COMPANY FROM THE LAST CENTURY.” The Kinetic Agency, which became one of the largest marketing agencies in Australia. He also opened several businesses in marketing-related fields such as branding and promotion, working on projects such as the launch of Italian beer brand Peroni in Australia, and with other clients including Kimberly Clark, Nestle, Procter and Gamble. Livings is also an active angel investor and advisor and focuses on pre-seed and seed-stage companies where he can leverage his experience and networks to assist and accelerate commercialisation.

THE ‘MINDFUL DRINKING’ ALTERNATIVE Serial entrepreneur Mark Livings is launching his alcohol-free drinks brand Lyre’s in the Middle East. By Sofia Serrano

His investments include a spread of industries including finance, logistics, education, biotechnology, HR, food & beverage, marketing & creative, fashion, FMCG and luxury consumer goods, all with a common focus on innovation. Apart from being an entrepreneur, angel investor and accelerator, Livings says he is a “mindful drinker”, a philosophy that set him on the mission to find alternatives to alcohol, while maintaining the ritual behind gathering over a glass with friends. In 2019 Livings created and founded what is now one of the largest, most widely available and most awarded non-alcoholic spirits companies, Lyre’s Spirit Co. He says Lyre’s is a booze-free spirit brand that combines luxury, flavour and elegance in the world of mocktails and alcohol-free drinks. After extensive research and experimentation to replicate the taste of alcohol without the use of ethanol, eventually Lyre’s came out with formulas that combine extracts of spices such as pepper and chilli and other plants that come close to the original flavours. The purpose of the brand is not to convert people to non-alcoholic drinking but to give an option to those who are seeking for a healthier option and still want to enjoy the taste of their favourite drinks. Lyre’s is a brand that “offers tasty alternatives for those who don’t wish to imbibe alcohol, or are looking to reduce their alcohol intake, and aims to ensure everyone can enjoy the mirth and merriment of a soirée”. With events of recent years encouraging people to look closely at their lifestyle choices, Lyre’s presents a new opportunity for non-drinkers, wellness enthusiasts and mindful drinkers alike.

April 25, 2022


Saudi focus

‘A sword with two edges’ Hashtag’s Lamea Albaik offers a 22-year-old’s take on social media in Saudi Arabia


s a 22-year-old living in Saudi, I and those around me (Saudi’s youth) use social media in a different way compared with previous generations. While everyone knows that attention spans are continuously shrinking, one generation after the other, there is much more change happening and it’s taking place fast. Let’s start by asking ourselves: What is the most popular social media platform among the Saudi youth? As a member of the infamous Gen Z ,and having spent my whole time on earth in Saudi Arabia, I would split the Most Popular Social Media Platform award between two platforms: Tiktok and Instagram. I can already hear people saying, “What about Snapchat?” or “Saudis love Twitter.” But let me remind you that social media consumption is continuously changing, especially among the younger generation. Take, for example, content creators that actually create most of the content on any platform; they are all focusing on Tiktok. As a new, young content creator, it only makes

sense that you focus on Tiktok as it gives you the best chance of growing your platform organically, unlike the other platforms that have been in the market for longer. The same thing goes for young entrepreneurs who neither have large media budgets to promote their pages and content nor large production budgets to create professional content. And then you have Instagram, where people share their daily updates through stories and chat with friends. The addition of Reels started attracting young content creators as well. It is the go-to place for news amongst Gen Z When I look at my close circle around my age, I can say that nine out of 10 young Saudis get their news updates from social media. I personally don’t know anyone my age who reads newspapers or

watches the news channels on television every morning the same way our parents did. We live in an attention market, where traditional types of content that you can find on television aren’t catchy enough and take too long to get to the point. This is why short video content gets the most engagement, regardless of the platform, and will likely continue to grow in popularity. Add to that: young content creators are part of Gen Z and understand how people their age think, which gives them an advantage when it comes to content creation that traditional content channels don’t possess. When you get the personal touch of being able to see your friends’ news and regular updates, then there is no going back to television when it comes to news consumption for any young Saudi. Millennials witnessed the start of social media, when it was still a choice whether to be present on social media or not. But today, it is rare to find any Gen Z-er in Saudi who doesn’t use at least one or two social media platforms, regardless of whether they use

‘‘When I look at my close circle, I can say nine out of 10 young Saudis get news updates from social media. I don’t know anyone my age who reads newspapers.’’

them to create content or just to stay in touch with their friends. Social media has become a big part of our daily routines, from relying on it to communicate with your friends to getting entertained or staying aware of what is happening locally and globally in real time. However, this constant stream of endless information can be overwhelming at times, as you can easily spend hours using your phone before even realising. There is also that invisible pressure to always appear happy and show only the best parts of your life. Add to that all the negative content that you see online, and you end up with a sword with two edges. It is easy to get sucked into the social media world, to care too much about how many likes your posts get, start comparing yourself to others or feel bad about that rude comment you got from a stranger online. It is extremely important to switch off from time to time and to get help whenever needed. You need to be aware of how the content you consume makes you feel and find a healthy balance.

By LAMEA ALBAIK, social media account executive, Hashtag Social Media Agency


April 25, 2022


Katie MackaySinclair UP FOR A FIGHT?


Katie Mackay-Sinclair is a partner at Mother


hen was the last time you had a good argument? Not a scrappy, snappy barney after a long day. Nor a passive-aggressive tiff or even a really rather unproductive row where everyone leaves feeling hurt, frustrated and alienated. No, I mean a really good fight. One that makes the thing (a brief, a process, a scope, an idea, a script, a presentation…) significantly better by taking everyone involved to somewhere new and better and more challenging. A good argument that doesn’t bruise anyone because it’s not personal; it’s about the task at hand. I bet it’s been ages since you had one of those. Two-and-a-bit years of wee digital boxes has diminished our ability to vehemently (and productively) disagree right at the time our overwhelming context increases our collective desire to protect and support each other. A double whammy getting in the way of one thing our industry depends upon: conflict. This might seem like a bizarre thing to say, given how much of an advocate I am for being kind and empathetic, progressive and supportive. Having written about mudita and compassion and using our powers for good, how come no more Mrs Nice? Quite the contrary, actually. The kindest, most forward-looking thing we can do in work (as in life), is to learn to disagree productively. To be candid without being brutal. To put the stinky fish in the middle of the table and talk about how bad it reeks without making anyone sitting around it feel fault, blame or attack – something that’s only really possible if the relationships around that table have the foundations of trust and shared ambition in place. I’m certainly not advocating reducing our emotional investment, or developing skin thick enough that disagreement doesn’t hurt. Rather, I’m welcoming dissent and conflict with arms wide open. A perception shift where consensus equals apathy and where conflict is constructive. Make the brilliant Berkeley professor Charlan Nemeth’s four simple words your mantra: “Fear consensus. Love dissent.” Above all, because we recognise that, no matter how long we’ve been doing this, none of us has all the answers – and every one of us can benefit from our hypotheses being questioned. Gedankenaustausch is a German word for an exchange of ideas without combat; a collective challenge where everyone wins; where no-one overpowers or takes a superior position but where everyone advances the conversation. (Just don’t ever call it collaboration. There’s too much passive-aggression and politics in that.) Tomorrow we toast a new era. Perhaps one with a little less consensus and a whole lot more Gedankenaustausch. That great philosopher Christina Aguilera knew best: there’s a lot to be gained from a good fight.

Motivate Media Group Head Office: 34th Floor, Media One Tower, Dubai Media City, Dubai, UAE. Tel: +971 4 427 3000, Email: Dubai Media City: SD 2-94, 2nd Floor, Building 2, Dubai, UAE. Tel: +971 4 390 3550, Fax: +971 4 390 4845 Abu Dhabi: Motivate Advertising, Marketing & Publishing, PO Box 43072, Abu Dhabi, UAE. Tel: +971 2 677 2005, Fax: +971 2 677 0124, Email: London: Motivate Publishing Ltd, Acre House, 11/15 William Road, London NW1 3ER. EDITORIAL Editor-in-Chief Obaid Humaid Al Tayer Managing Partner and Group Editor Ian Fairservice Senior Editor Austyn Allison Junior Reporter Sofia Serrano DESIGN Art Directors Clarkwin Cruz Junior Designer Thokchom Remy ADVERTISING ENQUIRIES Tel: +971 4 427 3000 Chief Commercial Officer Anthony Milne Publisher Nadeem Ahmed Quraishi (+971 50 6453365) PRODUCTION General Manager S. Sunil Kumar Assistant Production Manager Binu Purandaran HAYMARKET MEDIA GROUP Chairman Kevin Costello Managing Director Jane Macken

The publishers regret that they cannot accept liability for error or omissions contained in this publication, however caused. The opinions and views contained in this publication are not necessarily those of the publishers. Readers are advised to seek specialist advice before acting on information contained in this publication which is provided for general use and may not be appropriate for the readers’ particular circumstances. The ownership of trademarks is acknowledged. No part of this publication or any part of the contents thereof may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form without the permission of the publishers in writing. An exemption is hereby granted for extracts used for the purpose of fair review. Campaign Middle East includes material reproduced from the UK Edition (and other editions) of Campaign, which is the copyright of Haymarket. Campaign is a trademark of Haymarket and is used under licence. The views and opinions expressed within this magazine are not necessarily those of Haymarket Magazines Limited or those of its contributors.

Google launches Plus Codes in MENA Plus Codes are free, opensourced, digital addresses that provide simple and accurate addresses for any place on Earth, including for places that don’t have accurate formal addresses. Instead of street and locality names, Plus Codes are based on latitude and longitude and are displayed as a short sequence of numbers and letters that provide accuracy. Since its launch in 2018, Plus Codes has been adopted at scale by NGOs (including Addressing the Unaddressed and Shelter Associates) and governments (such as in SubSaharan Africa) as the technology serves the addressing needs of millions of people. Plus Codes also ease the discovery of and navigation of businesses. Google has announced the launch of the latest Plus Codes feature on Google Maps in 18 countries across MENA, including the UAE, Egypt and Saudi Arabia. You can now use the app to find the Plus Code address for your home. Whether getting food or parcels delivered, sending a location to friends or family to help them get to one’s home or navigating, people can use Plus Codes addresses without going through the hassle of sharing approximate addresses with landmarks, or voice instructions that may be ambiguous. When saving a ‘Home’ location on Google Maps, users in the 18 countries will see a new ‘Use your current location’ that uses their phone’s location to generate a Plus Code (if the location precision meets minimum thresholds), which they can then use as their Home address. Google has also added a section at the top of the ‘Saved’ tab to make it easier to retrieve, copy and share these home addresses. The feature is currently available on Android only, with iOS following soon.

April 25, 2022


A tale of two televisions


elevision as a medium is not dead, but it has evolved and mutated so much that it is unrecognisable from what it once was. Two of the things that have happened to change it have involved little screens and large screens. Small screens are like a more popular spinoff from the original show. As Frasier is to Cheers, or Better Call Saul is to Breaking Bad. They are (comparatively) new, they are taking all the spend. Meanwhile, big screens are getting bigger. What we thought of once as ‘television’ bridges both experiences. When I was a lot younger I really wanted a pocket TV. For me, that was the best invention in the world. Just imagine how jealous everyone would be when I whipped out my Sony Watchman, pulled up the wire aerial and began watching Tomorrow’s World on the 2” black-and-white screen. Now, of course, I can watch anything I want to on my phone, which is smaller but has a bigger screen and is in colour and is less likely to explode in my pocket and emasculate me. At the other end of the scale, my family held out until I was eight before they bought a telly for the house. It had a 14” screen and I acted as my parents’ remote, but it was colour, and gave us many years of service before it stopped working even when you thumped it. When I came to Dubai in the mid-2000s I bought a second-hand CRT box with a 24” screen, the largest I’d ever owned. And when I moved out of shared flats and into my own apartment I forked out on 32” flat screen. They had become affordable by then. Now it is hard to get 32” TVs. Screens that ‘small’ seem to be reserved for computer monitors. And the cost of sets has continued to drop. Last year I woke up the morning after the night before to find I had somehow got online and ordered myself a 55” behemoth for less money than a posh dinner for two. The way we watch TV is changing. Even old-school broadcasters know that their video-on-demand (VOD) services are as important as their traditional, programmed offering. But they are finding ways to merge

the two, and they use them to complement and amplify one another, across both large and small screens. You can read more about this in our TV guide starting on page 51. And there is certainly still a place for live TV. We can watch pretty much any movie we want within a few clicks on our streaming platform of choice. But live TV offers the serendipity of catching an undiscovered programme or film. Editor It frees us from the agony of choice. Live sport is only that if it’s live. TV news is altogether different from @maustyn online reportage. We are still able to share those watercooler moments around big TV finales. Streaming platforms are not set in stone. Their models are not eternal. Netflix was once the biggest show in town. But as more and more content owners – from Disney to MBC – are investing in their own paid platforms, competition is rising. In its most recent shareholder announcement, Netflix admitted it has lost subscribers for the first time, and that it is contemplating introducing advertising. At the same time, streaming services allow niche programmes to be made, without having to appeal to broad audiences. So television’s story is not over. The credits aren’t ready to roll, and what might have seemed like the end was only a season finale. A whole new season is taking shape, with new characters and plot twists to keep us all engaged.


Desperate to believe in whatever’s new I



Dave Trott is the author of The Power of Ignorance, Creative Blindness and How to Cure It, Creative Mischief, Predatory Thinking and One Plus One Equals Three

n 2003, Elizabeth Holmes dropped out of Harvard to start a company called Theranos. She was only 19 but she was smart, driven and charismatic. Everyone was desperate to believe in something new and she was it. She was young, female, had piercing blue eyes, dressed like Steve Jobs – she was the future. Everyone who met her said she convinced them she was going to change the world. She knew she would need an impressive board who shared her vision. So that’s what she assembled: former secretary of state Henry Kissinger, former secretary of state George Shultz, former senator Sam Nunn, former senator Bill First, former secretary of defence William Perry, and seven more on that level. She became a Fellow of the Harvard Medical School Board and was featured on the cover of Fortune, Forbes and The New York Times magazines. By 2014, her company was valued at $10bn. In 2015, she was one of Time’s “100 Most Influential People”. But the next year her company, Theranos, was exposed as a fake, worthless. Rupert Murdoch lost $121m and Betsy DeVos lost $100m. In 2018, she was found guilty on four counts of criminal fraud. So how did these heavyweight

businesspeople and world leaders fall for it? They desperately wanted to believe in something, so she made herself become that thing. In 2010, Adam Neumann opened a new company called WeWork. Like Holmes, he was young, smart, driven and charismatic. Like her, he knew what everyone wanted to believe in, so he made himself that thing. He made his main focus “start-ups”, and his main message was “community”. Everyone who met him said he convinced them he was going to change the world. Like Holmes, he knew he needed to borrow a lot of money. And he knew that, like a Ponzi scheme, you need to keep borrowing more than you spend. At the time, a journalist said: “Millennials aren’t interested in work, they just want a cause, something to follow.” So Neumann gave them a cause, changing the world of start-ups into a community. All his buildings would have bright colours, cappuccino machines, vegan food, soft furniture, group games, free beer, everything that was more fun than work. And it was easy to sell this vision to people looking for a cause: in 2011, a real-estate developer invested $15m; in 2016, a venture capitalist invested

$430m, another one invested $1.7bn; in 2018, a private equity company invested $400m; in 2018, a bank invested $3bn; in 2019, another bank invested $2bn. WeWork was valued at $47bn – investors included JP Morgan Chase, Goldman Sachs and Harvard Corporation. But it all unravelled when Neumann tried to do an IPO with WeWork. After inspecting its books, one analyst reported: “We cannot even fathom the contortions that would be necessary to articulate a path to profitability here.” The Financial Times reported: “WeWork lost $219,000 each hour of each day from March 2018 to March 2019.” The IPO obviously failed and WeWork’s value fell by 75 per cent, from £47bn to just $8bn – the workforce was cut by nearly two thirds, from 14,500 to 5,600. So again, that’s what happens when people are desperately looking for something new, and desperate to believe anyone who can provide the appearance of that. We should be used to it in advertising, we see it all around us, all the time. We are desperate to believe in the new thing, whatever it is. We don’t question it so long as it is new. The key word is ‘new’ – words like logic, common sense and credibility are unimportant.


April 25, 2022

Spotify… ‘Spotify’s multi-faceted campaign is another positive step towards empowerment.’ (LB)

Neom… ‘It’s stylishly shot and the whole effect oozes glamour as well as excitement.’ (LB)

McDonald’s… ‘McDonald’s always comes up with highly relatable campaigns.’ (DL)

Canon… ‘This concept creates an impactful momentum for Canon.’ (DL)

Adidas… ‘This campaign was so impactful that it was – almost – impossible to miss it.’ (DL)

April 25, 2022




Brand commander, Plug

Director, Hanging Gardens Agency

SPOTIFY (1) Spotify’s multi-faceted campaign is another positive step towards empowerment and highlighting women’s voices throughout the region. The aesthetic is strong but I would have liked to see English subtitles on the film to feel more invested and involved, even as a non-Arabic speaker.

SPOTIFY (1) A year ago, after noticing that only one in five artists on the charts is a woman*, Spotify vowed to turn up the volume on women creators through the Equal campaign in celebration of International Women’s Day. This year, for the same occasion, they renewed their vow by launching Equal Arabia, an amazing initiative to push and support Arab women creators. While we are excited to see Spotify support their journeys every step of the way, the real question is: are women now more represented in charts?

NEOM (2) Trojena is another mind-blowing project from Neom, and McCann’s promo video captures the adrenaline-fuelled, adventure-packed promise well. It’s stylishly shot and the whole effect oozes glamour as well as excitement. I just wonder whether it’s setting the bar too high in its image of perfection; it’ll leave a big gap if the reality doesn’t match up. Also, the futuristic sci-fi vibe doesn’t fit with the more natural eco and sustainability values for me. MCDONALD’S (3) McDonald’s can always be relied on for great campaigns. This is another striking result. The TVC is funky and aspirational, with a real sense of how the brand fits into the audience’s everyday lives. Is it believable, though? It may be hard for millennial coffee connoisseurs to forget about McCafé’s roots as a multinational fast-food corporation with very few healthy options on its menu. CANON (4) On paper there’s a lot to like here. A strong idea in synergy with the products it’s promoting, underpinned by an authentic storytelling approach. The campaign videos are visually appealing, and the individual personalities shine through well. Shame, then, that it fell a bit flat overall. It didn’t get me excited about Canon as a brand or leave me inspired by the ‘trailblazing’ energy I expected to feel. ADIDAS (5) This one I love. Lots of brands talk about challenging perceptions and Adidas hits the mark here. What better way to celebrate real women’s achievements than with user-generated content – a far more appealing prospect than seeing celebrities posing in clothing. The fact that women can nominate themselves via Instagram is a brilliant tactic, which fosters a sense of community and inclusivity in the UAE. My only complaint is that I haven’t seen enough of these billboards around.

*According to the Spotify-funded USC Annenberg study on representation of women in the music industry. NEOM (2) If Trojena is redefining the future of mountain tourism, this campaign clearly challenges the way content is created. The futuristic video is so realistic that we could almost believe this project was already a reality. The execution allows us to visualise the concept and, from the engagement seen across the different social media platforms, definitely captivated a lot of people. MCDONALD’S (3) McDonald’s always comes up with highly relatable campaigns, and ‘For Every Beat of the Day’ is definitely one of them. The power of seeing McCafé featured in key, but most importantly relevant, moments of Gen Z’s lives gives it a unique approach and dynamism. We could easily imagine how such a campaign can be split through dynamic creatives on the social media platforms. One comment, though: Gen Zs are known to be glued to their phones, and it would have been great to see the same content but seen from a Gen Z’s eye – from a phone’s camera. CANON (4) Through ‘Trailblazers’, Canon focuses on these specific moments when you are empowered by Canon, which is known as a brand that you to express yourself in the best way possible. This concept creates an impactful momentum for Canon, through the story of the people interacting with the camera. ADIDAS (5) This campaign was so impactful that it was – almost – impossible to miss it. Adidas is smartly leveraging usergenerated content for a unique campaign connecting social media with outdoor advertising for the first-time.


Title: Equal Arabia Talents: Carole Samaha, Perrie, Almas and Dina El Wedidi


Title: Trojena Agency: McCann NY


Title: For Every Beat of the Day Agency: Leo Burnett Dubai Media agency: Starcom Dubai Production house: Prodigious ME


Title: Trailblazers Agency: Shadani Consulting DOP: Gregor Amon


Title: I’m Possible Agency: Havas Middle East.


April 25, 2022

The Spin “Looking for a freelance copywriter,” read the ad on Facebook’s UAE Journalists group. That’not an unusual request. But The Spin was not alone in raising an eyebrow at the next line of the gig description: “Must dominate the English language.” As one reply put it, “Ironically, you’re looking for a sub.” Speaking of subs, you can’t fit much more into a news story than this clipping about Joyce McKinney (she exists; we did our research) that has surfaced online recently. Our best guess dates it to about 2007, but a life like this will never grow old. The Spin has been chuckling to ourselves about this list of banned insights shared by @theincumbentagency on Instagram. We suspect that many in the industry might be able to relate. Hands up who’s heard: “The world is more divided than ever”; “Choice paralysis”; “Technology is accelerating”; “We’re busier than ever”; “We’re more connected than ever but we’ve never felt more alone”; “We’re connecting with our heads down”; “Millennials value experiences over things”; “Gen Z is the most progressive generation of our time”; “Institutional trust is at an all-time low”; “Millennials have had it harder than any generation before them”; “It’s harder than ever to be a teenager”; or “Anything avocado toast”. What crimes against perception would you add?

Appointments Socialeyez has appointed MARWAN DIAA as associate director. He has a vast experience in the field of communications, marketing, advertising and social media, and is helping to propel Socialeyez to new heights, ensuring growth across the board. With more than eight years of experience, Diaa joined Socialeyez after working at Leo Burnett as a senior communications manager in Riyadh, where he successfully launched G20 Saudi Arabia. Prior to this, he was instrumental in managing communications and social media at Young & Rubicam, also in Riyadh. His years in the Kingdom have earned him extensive experience across the telecom, banking, governmental and servicing industries.

Motivate Media Group has appointed HEBAH IKHLEIF to the new post of social media director. Ikhleif is an expert in digital marketing, and has grown her skills to include harvesting the power of data, consumer insights and lifestyle trends to create effective, smart and creative content, throughout a career lasting more than 10 years. Bond has appointed MATT HOROBIN as partner and head of strategy. Most recently leading brand, marketing and digital functions at DXB and Abu Dhabi Airports, Horobin has over 20 years of experience designing and building connected brand systems

for some of the world’s leading businesses across Europe, Asia and the Middle East, as both consultant and client. Rising Giants Network (RGN) has welcomed LUZ SALEM VILLAMIL as its head of partnerships and growth. With over 12 years of experience in media strategy and business development, Villamil will be responsible for cultivating and maintaining RGN’s strategic partnerships, as well as leading business and audience growth. The Saudi Media Company has announced the appointment of NADER BITAR as executive director. Previously, Bitar was working with MMP World Wide in various roles, starting as regional deputy GM, and his final role was as managing director. Bitar was

part of MMP World Wide for seven years. He is a serial entrepreneur with more than 12 years of advertisingfocused experience and a passion for understanding the tech nuances of the industry. Launch, a digital growth agency based in Abu Dhabi, has announced CHRIS LLOYD’s appointment as client services director. Lloyd will lead the growth of Launch’s digital event technology vertical as the agency looks to service organisers, corporates and public-sector clients through hybrid events and digital event services.

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