Major manufacturers, industry experts, designers, architects, and consultants in the Middle East lighting business shared the stage as the region’s only dedicated event for the lighting design and technology industry opened in Dubai today (Monday 3 November).
Running for three days at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre, Light Middle East 2014 has grown by 27 per cent year-on-year in both exhibitor numbers and exhibition space, reinforcing the confidence in a lighting fixtures market that is feeling the flow-on effects of a resurgent regional construction sector.
That combined with a series of recent government initiatives encouraging the utilisation of energy efficient lighting has left the doors wide open for the world’s leading light manufacturers to capitalise on a market that is witnessing a surge in demand.
Looking to do just that are the 325 exhibitors from 27 countries at Light Middle East, which is now in its 9th edition and held under the patronage of the Dubai Municipality.
“Light Middle East continues to act as the barometer for the regional lighting industry which, thanks to growing infrastructure development and a resurgent regional construction sector, is on a steady growth path,” said Ahmed Pauwels, CEO of Epoc Messe Frankfurt, the organiser of Light Middle East.
“All of our regular exhibitors have returned this year while many major players are participating for the first time, which is also the right time, given the lighting fixtures market in the GCC alone was valued at US$2.5 billion in 2013.”
According to market research firm Ventures ME, US$128.4 billion worth of construction projects got underway across the GCC in 2014, ramping up demand for the commercial lighting fixtures market, which is estimated to grow between 8-10 per cent annually up to 2018, reaching US$3.7 billion.
Eager for a piece of that pie at Light Middle East are regular global heavyweights such as Osram, LG, Linea Light, acdc, and Trilux, while the scores of newcomers to the three-day event include Martin by Harman, Targetti, Artemide, Holophane, Civic, Regiolux, and Rovasi.
Many of these are vying for attention at the Future Zone – a dedicated section of innovative technology shaping the future of the industry that has tripled in size since launching in 2013 and now features 32 exhibitors.
Five country pavilions also brighten up the show floor, headed by Malaysia and the UK which, with 14 top manufacturers on board, is back for the first time since 2006 and supported by the UK Lighting Industry Association.
Anthony Kerr, CEO of LED Flex at the UK Pavilion said: “Our Company likes to be challenged; we design and make all of our flexible lighting products in-house and put quality and service at the forefront.
“We always look for interesting and challenging projects to apply our design knowledge and extensive product range. The Middle East market offers a unique opportunity to work on creative and innovative projects on a global scale. There is a saying in the UK: ‘If you build it they will come’. I believe this is also true in the Middle East.”
A major feature at Light Middle East 2014 is the two-day Light Middle East Conference, which begins tomorrow (Tuesday 4 November), and has attracted a world-class line-up of 21 speakers.
Among the highlights on the first day will be the latest sustainable lighting initiatives presented by UAE government representatives that are expected to have a big impact on the country’s lighting sector.
Faisal Ali Hassan Rashid, Director of the Demand Side Management at the Dubai Supreme Council of Energy, will give an overview of the Dubai Outdoor Lighting Programme which aims to retrofit 75 per cent of the Emirate’s street lights with LEDs by 2030; while Martin Valentine, Lighting Expert at the Abu Dhabi Municipality will speak about the new steps of Abu Dhabi’s Sustainable Lighting Strategy.
Meanwhile, the Middle East’s most outstanding lighting projects and products will be celebrated at a gala dinner ceremony at the Light Middle East Awards on the 5th November. A shortlist of 39 finalists made the cut from more than 150 nominations across 12 categories.
Show website: www.lightme.net