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04 October 2023

Agencies await results of Metro bid

By Vigyan Arya



Outdoor media agencies are awaiting the outcome of bids invited by the Roads and Transport Authority for branding and advertising in the Metro. According to industry experts, the contract is suppose to be the largest advertising deal yet in the Middle East.

The authority floated a tender on a 10-year frame of DBOT (Design, Build, Operate and Transfer) basis from select bidders on December 31 last year.

The tender invitation stated that “Roads and Transport Authority is desirous of entering into a DBOT Contract, in accordance with the terms and provisions incorporated in the Request for Proposal including with a selected service provider for the provision of advertising media services in the Dubai Red and Green Metro Lines”.

The tender is introduced as a multi-billion dirham project stating “Dubai Road and Transport Authority  wishes to appoint a Service Provider to sell, display, operate, and maintain advertising available spaces within the Dubai Metro project for the sole purpose of generating revenue under DBOT agreement”.

The invitation states that companies wishing to bid should possess the minimum of the pre-defined qualifications that include extensive expertise in the metro advertising and transit media sector and intensive experience in transit advertising strategies, adopted by media transport agencies in G7 countries or equivalent.

The tender invitation also encouraged local companies that specialise in outdoor media advertising through entering into joint ventures with a suitable international partner to qualify for the bid.

Following detailed discussions, the tender is to be awarded on March 13 after individual presentations are made by all the prospective bidders.

Dubai-based media house Concept Group said it has already forged alliances with international agencies that have experience in Metro projects.

“We have already tied up with Stroeer, which is the largest outdoor advertising company based in Germany. They handle 7,000 metro stations in Europe,” said Aldrin Fernandes, owner and CEO of Concept Group.

“Partnership with Stroeer will give us an edge over others, and we are very optimistic about our prospects,” said Fernandes adding whoever wins the Metro contract, with the sheer volume and money involved, will  dominate the outdoor advertising scene in Dubai.

Fernandes also said the contract worth billions is set to redefine the outdoor media concept in Dubai as there will be a sea change in the advertising scene once Metro and its related infrastructure is open for marketing exposure.

“Agencies will have to come up with innovative ways to make use of the advertising space on the Metro trains, on pillars, in and outside the stations etc,” Fernandes said.

“It will also throw open new campaign opportunities for clients with greater scope for nation-wide media campaigns via the Metro unlike the situation where most of the outdoor advertising campaigns are concentrated on Sheikh Zayed Road,” said the Concept Group CEO.

The Dubai Metro is a flagship project with an estimated capital investment of Dh15.8 billion. The completion of the project is due next year.