Technology innovations boost GCC retail growth


Technology innovations, such state-of-the-art live events, virtual shopping screens, and 3D sound environments, are catalyzing the GCC’s retail growth to hit a record high of USD 313 billion by 2021, industry experts announced today.

Over the next four years, the GCC’s retail sector will grow by 25 percent to USD 313 billion, according to a recent Alpen Capital report. As malls rise and expand across the region — such as City Centre Al Jazira in Abu Dhabi, the Mall of Saudi in Riyadh, and the Mall of Oman in Muscat — retailers are investing in audiovisual technology to transform the in-store experience.

“Audiovisual innovations are the biggest game changers for transforming the atmospheric and spatial qualities for GCC Smart Cities and smart interiors. In interior design intangible material such as lighting, music, acoustics, and visual technology can combine to transform the identity of a place and its experience” said Dr Dolli Daou, Director, Association of Professional Interior Designers in the UAE, on the sidelines of today’s opening of InfoComm Middle East and Africa (MEA), the region’s largest professional audiovisual event.

“To drive success, GCC mega-project developers need to integrate audiovisual experts with interior designers from the beginning of the design process in order to provide customers and end-users with the right information and experience, which in turn will drive new revenue streams and design innovations,” added Dr Dolli Daou.
InfoComm MEA, being held under the theme of “See the Future of Networked Communications,” is set to host more than 100 exhibitors from 20 countries.

Showing the strong regional growth, the Middle East and Africa spend on professional audiovisual solutions will grow to USD 12 billion by 2022, according to a new report by the professional audiovisual industry association AVIXA, co-organizers of InfoComm MEA 2017.

As malls transform into shopping destinations, live events – from concerts to promotions – are increasingly central for malls to differentiate themselves from the e-commerce experience.
“GCC malls are no longer only about shopping – with mall operators and retailers transforming malls into entertainment destinations. Professional audio solutions are central to having effective live mall events and celebrations, interactive promotional signage, and setting the atmosphere in shops and venues,” said Hans J van den Berg, CEO, AudiCom Middle East and Africa.

Dubai-based AudiCom Middle East and Africa is a leading manufacturer and distributor of audiovisual systems such as mounting systems, LCD panels, and projection screens.
High-resolution LED displays can host mall wayfinding, advertisements, and product testing.

“LED displays are the fastest-growing technology in retail across the globe, and GCC retailers can grab the attention of passers-by, immerse shoppers in different environments, and showcase the latest products and services. SiliconCore LED displays lead the market in energy efficiency and fast response time, which creates a brilliant picture quality for retail brands, said Jim Wickenhiser, Senior Vice President of Strategic Initiatives at SiliconCore.

SiliconCore is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of cutting-edge LED displays and laser diode controls. At InfoComm MEA, SiliconCore is exhibiting its new Peony 2.6 mm and Magnolia 1.5 mm displays, LISA narrow pixel pitch platform, and ZACH driver chip for dynamic range and color, and exchanging best practices from retailers such as Nike Town New York.
Increasingly, GCC retailers are experimenting with in-store audio and music for enhancing the shopping experience in a 3D sound environment.

“Having the right music or audio in the right parts of the store at the right time can increase customer dwell time, purchasing choices, and sales. GCC retailers are also playing the right music to match their own brand values, and to make employees happier. Robust audio is also the foundation for successful live mall events,” said Jose dos Santos, Senior Manager of Professional Audio at Thomsun, which will showcase innovative Yamaha audio solutions.
Attendees can exchange information on latest trends and best practices during the InfoComm MEA Summit.

The 7th InfoComm MEA is running from 5-7 December 2017 at the Dubai World Trade Centre. For more information and to register for free, visit