Dubai introduces ON.DXB

Photo: Dubai Media Office

Dubai Media City has announced the launch of ON.DXB, a new regional festival designed to support industry growth and talent development in the media, entertainment and content development industries.

The largest event of its kind in the region, ON.DXB will feature a host of engaging sessions, keynote talks, live pitches, workshops and panel discussions led by international experts and major companies across the film, game, video, and music industries. The festival will be held 21-23 November 2019.

An initiative of Dubai Media City in cooperation with the Dubai Film and TV Commission, the new festival aims to stimulate business development and partnership building within the wider industry ecosystem and enhance Dubai’s status as a global and regional capital for major companies and talent.

ON.DXB will host industry participants including filmmakers, music producers, videographers, animators and game developers, in addition to government agencies working to develop these key fast-growing industries.

The launch of the event is in line with the long-term vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to position the emirate as the hub of the media industry. The announcement of the first edition comes close on the heels of Dubai being named as the capital of Arab media for the year 2020.

ON.DXB is an integrated platform that brings decision makers, specialists, leading international companies and investors together with local and regional talent. The event also provides opportunities to stimulate partnership-building and technological and business development within the industries, while reaffirming Dubai’s position as a global and regional headquarters for major companies and talent.

Majed Al Suwaidi, Managing Director of Dubai Media City said: “The launch of ON.DXB comes as Dubai is named Arab Media Capital for 2020. This emphasises the important strategic role of Dubai in elevating the regional media and entertainment sector’s status on a global level, through its state-of-the-art infrastructure and stimulating business environment for innovation and leadership.”

Al Suwaidi highlighted the progress made by companies such as Anghami, Careem and Souq as examples of the opportunities offered by Dubai.

He added: “ON.DXB is an innovative model aimed at attracting and enhancing the best talent in the region. The event illustrates the role and vision of Dubai Media City in creating a conducive environment for major international companies through to startups in the media and entertainment sectors.”

For more than two decades, the Dubai strategy has been focused on enhancing sustainable development, specifically in strategic growth sectors that adopt innovation and knowledge to stimulate a diversified, knowledge-based economy.

Dubai Media City has provided the cornerstone to achieving this goal in the media, entertainment and content development industries. Since its inception, Dubai Media City has attracted leading organisations, studios, companies and talent, thanks to an advanced infrastructure and business environment that stimulates innovation and creativity. Dubai Media City currently hosts more than 2,100 companies employing more than 25,000 professionals and entrepreneurs.

Jamal Al Sharif from the Dubai Film and TV commission, said: “ON.DXB is an ideal opportunity to demonstrate Dubai’s achievements in these sectors to the world. Dubai has become a global hub for cinema production companies and many international film and entertainment companies, thanks to a number of strategic initiatives including a progressive legislative environment that inspires creativity and drives business facilitation.”

Al Sharif added: “ON.DXB will provide a platform for sharing knowledge and experience within content creation, production and distribution, as well as identifying best practices that support the growth and development of the industry. It will also offer an opportunity to explore areas of development in the regulatory and legislative environment, aimed at supporting the advancement of the media and entertainment sector, and encouraging innovative participation amongst stakeholders.  

“It also enhances the ability of regional content and media professionals to remain at the forefront of trends and developments, while directly contributing to the future of these industries locally and regionally, in terms of advanced levels of excellence and global competitiveness.”

ON.DXB will explore ways to empower local and regional talent, promote Arabic content, and further support through access to advanced technologies, finance and a business environment conducive to growth.

The latest ‘Arab Media Outlook’ study, conducted by Dubai Media City in collaboration with Dubai Press Club, indicated that digital media represents the fastest growing sector in the region with a growth rate of 17% between 2014 and 2018 due to smartphone and internet usage in the MENA region, and the growth of social networking sites.

The study highlighted the online gaming, publishing and video industries as the main drivers of the regional digital market with 29%, 23% and 12% respectively. According to the same study, the Middle East’s online gaming market reached $1billion in 2018, and with the global market expected to reach more than $90billion in 2019, there is significant opportunity for regional growth.

Dubai Media City has been central to Dubai’s strategy and objectives in the media and entertainment sectors, attracting leading organisations, companies and talent since inception. The launch of the In5 media innovation centres has also enabled talent and business by providing creative facilities, studios, and training and mentorship.

Dubai Studio City is the venue for ON.DXB and the event will feature a full programme of activities including live music, film screenings, video showcases, the launch of indie games and a showcase of technology, creativity and innovation used in the production of film, game, video and music.

Ahead of the event, the ON.DXB organising committee will run activities aimed at engaging with the regional industry-at-large in Dubai and across the region, to ensure the region is represented and supported at the festival. ON.DXB is proudly brought to you by Informa Markets.

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