Category Archives: Industry

Dubai Enforces its Position as a Centre for Fashion, Design and Luxury through a New Dedicated Business District

DDD - A2 - Aerial View - Final Image - LR (2)His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai today announced that a new district will be created in Dubai, dedicated to developing the Emirate’s fashion, design and luxury sectors.

The “Dubai Design District” will be adjacent to the Business Bay area of Dubai. The district is expected to become a full service commercial hub for design industry-related organizations, brands, and supporting enterprises within the value chain. It will feature a custom built creative community that will encompass purpose built commercial and retail facilities for established and emerging designers, design institutes, waterfront promenade, convention centre and event venues and related academic institutions.

located a short distance from Dubai’s arterial highways and the Emirate’s two international airports, the district is in sight of the Creek, Dubai’s historic trading epicentre, the “Burj Khalifa”, the world’s tallest building, and “Dubai Mall”, the world’s largest shopping complex. It is expected to be the most connected fashion district in the world, with Dubai being only 8 hours flight time from 90% of the countries in the world.

The district will be operated by TECOM Investments, a member of Dubai Holding, which has an impressive track record in creating, operating and growing successful, industry focused business parks in Dubai.

The new fashion, design, and luxury goods district builds on Dubai’s strengths in tourism, which is expected to double the number of visitors to 20 million by 2020, and in retail, which is estimated to grow to AED151billion in the next two years.* These strengths coupled with Dubai’s strategic location and business-friendly environment, have encouraged major industry players like Prada, Louis Vuitton, and Ralph Lauren to set-up operations in Dubai.

Dubai Design District will be a vital part of the process as we look to deliver against the objectives set out in our Tourism Vision 2020, and it will provide an additional key element in Dubai’s bid to host Expo 2020.

Over the past decade, Dubai has become an international location of choice for numerous world-class events, such as the Dubai World Cup, Art Dubai, Fashion Forward and Dubai International Film Festival, which all gather renowned personalities from the worlds of art, design and film.

UAE nationals and expatriates alike are showing a keen interest not just in consuming fashion, design, and luxury goods and services, but also in the development of their own design and creative skills. One indication of this emergent trend is evidenced by rapid growth in enrolment rates on fashion and design courses at institutions in the UAE. The talents of the UAE’s home-grown designers, from those who have already made their mark on the international stage to the stars of tomorrow, will be the vital spark driving this community.

The new district seeks to increase the number of local and regional designers who are currently attaining international distribution and accolades.

The UAE also holds the second position in the 2011 Apparel Index, driven by a population with a high disposable income and immense fashion consciousness.

Dubai’s rapid growth in the areas of fashion, luxury and retail is typified by the success of The Dubai Mall, the world’s largest shopping and leisure destination, which welcomed 65 million visitors last year – more than the number of people who visited New York in 2012.

The Middle East luxury market saw growth of 10 to 15 percent from 2011 to 2012, establishing the region as the tenth largest luxury goods market globally.**  Dubai sits at the heart of this achievement.


Expert To Offer ‘Pre-Incubator’ Workshops For Budding UAE Entrepreneurs

Life in Harmony, specialists in individual and corporate coaching will offer the first ever series of ‘pre-incubator’ workshops / boot camps for budding entrepreneurs in the UAE. The sessions will help foster innovation, knowledge transfer and bridge the gap between an idea to a realistic and sustainable business.

Accredited by the Chartered Management Institute of London; the boot camps/ workshops will be led by Sahar Moussly, an Author, a Master Behavioral Coach, wellness instructor  with a business acumen of over 20 years. The intensive sessions will offer a structured framework to channel and execute ideas; develop required skills, network/ collaborate with other entrepreneurs, knowledge transfer and real-life experiences from successful business men and women.

The first ‘pre-incubator’ sessions will be held 25th November as part of Open Week to introduce communications strategies and basic businesses management – an event hosted by Knowledge Village. Sahar will offer free consultation after the event.

“We are seeing a growing trend of early innovators or dynamic people with viable business ideas but most of them are not able to convert them into real and sustainable businesses. These sessions are designed to help birth new businesses and increase the possibility for a startup to stay in business for the long term,” explains, Sahar Moussly. “The pre-incubator program is a proven and structured driven that helps promising entrepreneurs to channel their ideas, acquire required skill sets and meet as well as brainstorm with like-mined and successful entrepreneurs,” Sahar added.

Double A launches full line of stationery and paper brands at Paper World Dubai 2012

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Double A a key exhibitor at the Middle East Paper World launched an extended line of paper brands and stationery range. This range is for immediate distribution through Middle East, North Africa and South Asia.

“By Joining Paperworld Middle East we are endorsing our commitment for growth in the region. Paperworld is an instrumental platform to discover new opportunities and growing with our current partners. We are confident that we will be forging newer ties to expand our footprint and provide quality Double A Paper to a wider audience,” said Mr. Thirawit Leetavorn, Double A Senior Executive Vice-President.

Double A’s marketing activities in the UAE achieved significant success and acceptance with paper consumers. Double A achieved 97% spontaneous brand awareness with 82% of consumers preferring to use the brand. In 2011, Double A was awarded the Superbrand in Dubai.

A key highlight at Double A Paper World booth will be its “sustainable fiber source” exhibition. All Double A paper products are produced from Double Paper Trees from Khan-na, a sustainable source of fiber that saves natural forests. The trees are grown by 1.5 million farmers in a Corporate Social Responsibility program that was recognized by Asian Corporate Social Responsibility award for poverty alleviation in 2011.

“Next to global presence is market growth and we are looking to grow region by region. Our goal in the next 1 or 2 years is to become the dominant player to the markets that are strategic to us, like the Middle East”, revealed Mr. Leetavorn.

Oman Insurance Company announces new appointments

Oman Insurance Company (PSC), the leading insurance services provider in the UAE and region announced the appointment of a new senior management team.

Patrick Choffel, CEO of Oman Insurance Company commented, “We are pleased to attract the best caliber of executives into the organization. This will enrich and add to the overall professionalism of our Company.  The new team with a strong regional experience is set to implement the strategies defined for further growth and maintain our leading position. The Regional insurance industry does have a great potential and we are ready to tap into new opportunities and develop innovative solutions for our customers.

The first members to have joined are:

Ceri Weaver – New Head of Internal Audit:

Ceri is a Chartered Accountant from the United Kingdom and holds a Bachelor of Science degree with Honors in Mathematics from the University of Bath. With a long experience in both internal and external audit, finance, compliance and risk management, Ceri has worked with several reputed organizations such as MetLife Alico & AIG. He also has several years of Middle Eastern experience.


Bo Werkstrom – New Head of Life and Medical:

Bo worked in various senior positions in leading companies, such as Assicurazioni Generali S.p.A. – Dubai as Senior Actuary and GMD Regional Credit Life Underwriter & Business Development Manager in ALICO MEASA, prior to which he was part of Hannover Re in Paris overseeing the MENA Region.

 Nicolas Kouchnir – New Head of Bancassurance Unit:

Nicolas has over a decade of International Insurance experience, his specialty is Bancassurance, Strategic Planning and Business Development. He began his career with CIGNA in Europe and went on to work with International brokers AON and Willis, in the capacity of Divisional Director for Bancassurance. His Regional experience includes more than 4 years in the Middle East, as Regional Profit Centre (Credit Life) Manager with ALICO, Dubai and then as Vice President of Corporate Sales with Al Rajhi Takaful, Riyadh – KSA, where he achieved a sustainable growth model for his company.

Robert Pereira – New Head of Distribution:

Robert has over 20 years of international general insurance experience in diverse senior executive roles in the Middle East, Latin America, South Asia and the USA. A graduate of both Concordia and McGill Universities, Robert also qualified as a chartered accountant in 1989. For the last six years Robert served AIG as the General Manager for their UAE operations. He also served as Chief Financial Officer and Chief Risk Officer for several AIG regional operations. Robert’s exposure to the industry is global – yet tempered with critical experience in the Middle East.

Bilal Adhani – New Head of Branches, Local and International:

Bilal has over 18 years of International General Insurance experience in the Middle East region, where he held various senior executive positions in both direct insurance companies and brokerage. He started his career with UAP, where he was responsible of managing Abu Dhabi branch. He then moved to AIG and held various senior positions amongst which, Regional Personal Lines Manager – Middle East, Chief Operation Officer of AIG Egypt, and his latest assignment was the Managing Director of AIG Saudi Arabia. For the last two years, he served as the Regional Managing Director for Chedid direct brokerage firm. His extensive experience in the region has enabled him to build and grow successful operations.

Senior Executives are about to join and continue reinforcing our team and help Oman Insurance to maintain and enhance its leadership position.” Mr. Choffel concluded.

Dhamani Jewels establishes Multi-Million Dollar facility at the JLT Free Zone, DMCC

Dhamani Jewels establishes Multi-Million Dollar facility at the JLT Free Zone, DMCC

Dubai, UAE; November 16, 2011: Dhamani Jewels, one of the region’s largest wholesalers of gemstones and diamonds and retailers of high-end diamond jewellery, has opened their global headquarters in Almas Tower, the iconic centerpiece of the Jumeirah Lakes Towers (‘JLT’) Free Zone. The opening of the modern 10,000 sq. ft offices on the 55th floor of the region’s tallest office tower coincides with the launch of Dhamani’s 4,000 sq.ft high- end diamond jewellery factory in the Dubai Multi Commodities Centre Authority’s (DMCC) Jewellery & Gemplex facility.

According to Amit Dhamani, CEO & Managing Director of Dhamani Jewels: “We chose Almas Tower to centralise our worldwide operations as it is today the hub of the international diamond and jewellery industry and provides high-tech facilities for jewellery companies with global aspirations. Our new offices are equipped with the latest technology to enable our team to manage our operations spread across the UAE, Thailand, Lebanon, Switzerland and India. The company’s new diamond jewellery factory will focus on producing very high-end bespoke jewellery of the best quality and exquisite craftsmanship. It will help us to cater more effectively and promptly to the needs of our discerning customers, especially during special occasions like weddings when time is of the essence.”

He added: “In our Almas Tower offices we also have special viewing rooms for our elite customers who place importance on privacy. They can select loose diamonds and gems of their choice and our team of highly specialized designers will create exclusive unique designs according to their preferences.”

Dhamani’s multi-million dollar modern new offices and factory at the JLT Free Zone are the largest by a UAE based jewellery company in the zone. The Dhamani diamond jewellery factory has an estimated production output value of USD 30 million per year.

Welcoming Dhamani Jewels to Almas Tower, Ahmed bin Sulayem, Executive Chairman of Dubai Multi Commodities Centre said: “We are extremely pleased to welcome Dhamani Jewels to the prestigious Almas Tower, home to DMCC, the Dubai Diamond Exchange and centerpiece of the Jumeirah Lakes Towers Free Zone. Dhamani Jewels has been a DMCC member since 2004 and since that time we have enjoyed a successful and mutually beneficial relationship. This relationship has further been strengthened by Dhamani being the exclusive distributor of the ‘Dubai Cut’ diamond.”

Dhamani Jewels holds the sole distributorship for the 99-faceted Dubai Cut diamond in finished jewellery and loose stones; and is the supplier of choice to many prestigious international jewellers for precious stones. The company sells its finest quality diamond jewellery through 14 fully owned boutique stores in Dubai.

Dhamani Jewels will open a new retail outlet in Abu Dhabi in 2012.