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Massive Increase in Decision-Maker Attendees Reported at Dubai Shows


DUBAI, UAE — Confirming a trend being seen at shows around the globe, one of the Middle East’s largest organizers, Messe Frankfurt Middle East, is reporting that senior management visitor registration at its exhibitions last year increased by a whopping 78% in 2021 versus 2019. There has also been a corresponding 14% increase in registrations for procurement and purchasing execs compared to 2019 numbers.

Messe Frankfurt Middle East restarted live events in September 2021 at Dubai World Trade Centre, and has since hosted eight exhibitions that have attracting 64,254 visitors from 116 countries. While that number trails previous registration numbers, organizers have seen a steep rise in CEOs, managing directors and business owners attending shows. “While total attendance may currently be less than the bumper pre-pandemic years, those that do attend our shows are high-level decision makers with a clear intent and purpose,” Messe Frankfurt Middle East CEO Simon Mellor said.

“This trend is logical, given that companies across most industries have reviewed their expenses and budgets since the outset of the pandemic,” Gareth Wright, Head of Public Relations for Messe Frankfurt Middle East, said. “While the digital event format was welcomed during the global lockdown, there was a massive latent demand to get back to the physical trade show environment.”

Messe Frankfurt Middle East’s first two events of the 2021-2022 exhibition season in Dubai were Light Middle East and Hardware + Tools Middle East, which both took place in September at the Dubai World Trade Centre, followed by Beautyworld Middle East in October. Other shows included the debut of Hypermotion Dubai and the 11th edition of Materials Handling Middle East in November and Automechanika Dubai, Paperworld Middle East and Gifts & Lifestyle Middle East in December.

“Dubai is one of the few global locations where large-scale trade shows are taking place on a regular basis — with all the safety precautions in place,” Wright said. “I think it’s a model

example of how to navigate the current environment, and it’s worth noting that a snowball effect will take place. As more and more international visitors and exhibitors attend Dubai exhibitions in this new world we live in, the confidence will only continue to increase.” Reach Simon Mellor at +971 4 389 4500; Gareth Wright at


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