Programme | 13th Middle East Conference

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13th Middle East Conference

28 Feb 2018 to 01 Mar 2018
United Arab Emirates (the)

Programme | 13th Middle East Conference



February 28

  • 09:30

    Welcome Coffee and Registration

  • 10:00

    Official Opening of the conference

    Welcome address from our strategic partner


    Welcome address from our host


    • Managing Director, Dubai Media City (DMC), Dubai Studio City (DSC) and Dubai Production City (DPC), UAE

    Welcome address from the region


    Welcome address from WAN-IFRA


    Welcome speech from His Excellency Omar Bin Sultan Al Olama


  • 10:30

    VIP Tour through the Exhibition and Coffee Break @ Expo Foyer

  • 11:15

    Opening Keynote Day 1: Transformation in a disruptive market - Successful strategies from Svenska Dagbladet, a Schibsted newspaper

    In 2012, the Swedish media market was hit hard by the country's deflated economy. Print advertising and circulation both dropped rapidly and Svenska Dagbladet (SvD) was forced to make drastic changes. Gunilla Asker, CEO of SvD, will describe the paper's journey: from formulating its multichannel strategy to highlighting its digital innovations and internal implementation. Also how do you cultivate the right culture for such a change. A data-driven mindset has played a big part of that, particularly with how SvD has ramped up its digital subscriptions.


  • 12:00

    Media trends and Outlook

    Thomas Jacob will present the global trends and the outlook for news media companies that WAN-IFRA research has identified. He will also talk about the latest technological developments that are impacting the media industry and how publishers are responding.


  • 12:30

    Lunch and Networking @ Expo Foyer

  • 14:00

    News business in the age of platforms

    What do the latest changes in Facebook's News Feed mean to publishers?
    Digital platforms such as Facebook and Google have dominated users’ attention and become getaways to media content on the internet. Paired with superior  technology, the platforms have dominated digital advertising markets worldwide, and effectively decoupled content from ads.
    How should publishers respond? How can they change the competition dynamics? How are publishers in the Americas, Asia and Europe innovating with their business models?



  • 14:30

    Publishers, Platforms, Profits and Promises

    A Middle Eastern view on how Print Media organisations should be using video content and the role of platforms such as Facebook and YouTube. The elusive art of creating short form content, Live broadcasts, TV shows and turning print journalists into presenters.


    • Director of Digital TV at Muscat Media Group, Oman
  • 15:00

    Coffee Break and Networking @ Expo Foyer

  • 15:30

    How much will people pay for quality? The results of a 400% price increase

    The Danish quality newspaper Politiken introduced a metered model in 2013. After a couple of years of experimenting, Politiken decided to radically change its entire paid content strategy with a shift to the Premium model and a massive monthly price increase: from 10 euros to 40 euros. Astrid Jørgensen, Head of Subscription Sales and Marketing at Politiken, will take you through the learnings, mistakes and successes of their bold pricing move.


  • 16:00

    Bringing content and commerce together

    Sayidaty Mall has succeeded in bridging Sayidaty, the No.1 online magazine for women in  the Arab world, with an e-commerce online platform where readers can easily find and purchase high-end clothing, elegant accessories, and glamorous jewelry.


  • 16:30

    Official Announcement of Middle Eastern Digital Media Awards Winners

    These awards, presented by WAN-IFRA, the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers, recognise publishers who have adopted digital media and mobile strategies as part of their total product offering to meet the major changes in how people consume news and information today.

March 01

  • 09:00

    Opening Keynote Day 2: Singapore Press Holding's road to transformation

    While the structural changes impacting the news publishing industry are globally the same all around the world, every media company faces the challenge to formulate unique answers, perfectly fitted to its brand, culture, content mix, audience and market conditions.

    The keynote will feature the inspiring story of how Singapore Press Holdings, is transforming itself.


    • Deputy Chief Executive Officer, Singapore Press Holdings Ltd., Singapore
  • 09:45

    Spread the Facts! How to Increase Your Reach was launched in July 2017 and quickly became one of Norway´s most popular sites. Owned by the four largest online news providers in the country, is showing a new and comprehensive approach in the battle against so-called «fake news» and «alternative facts». The cooperation between competitors, and the way we distribute and spread our fact-checks, are key elements that has drawn attention and headlines from across the world.   In order to increase our reach, we simply give away the fact-checks for free to everyone who wants to print or publish them on their own platforms. Regardless if they are part of the partnership or not. This means our fact-checks can be read anywhere online in Norway, at or on our Facebook page. But most find them elsewhere – in their local newspaper, in both left-wing and right-wing blogs, through the Norwegian national newswire NTB, or as videos in their social media feed. And of course, our four founders are the largest online news providers in Norway and combined they reach 59 percent of the Norwegian population daily.


  • 10:15

    Hayat Social Network “Preparing for an Age of Participatory Content”

    In a time of declining public trust in news and content, loss of advertising revenue, and an increasingly participatory, self-expressive and digital media culture, journalism is in the process of rethinking and reinventing itself.
    Hayat Social Network is a tool of participatory content where the content is gathered, selected, edited and communicated by professionals and amateurs, and by producers and consumers alike.


  • 10:45

    Artificial Intelligence - a positive force in journalism?

    Many researchers believe artificial intelligence (AI) will soon be able to mimic human intelligence in a truly generic sense. The news industry has the kind of broad-based and deep data that is needed for AI to truly fulfil its promise. In return, AI will help the news industry to become super productive. 

    AI will assist and augment capability of news creators to focus more on quality journalism and not just reporting – broad coverage, in-depth analysis, investigative journalism. Will AI really replace humans in the newsroom and on-field? What about fake news – will AI solve this menace that it can also fuel?


  • 11:15

    Coffee Break and Networking @ Expo Foyer

  • 11:45

    Add Print – Add Power

    Advertising decision-makers have an increasingly difficult task. The media landscape is getting more and more complex. Buzzwords sometimes hide existing concepts or cause confusion. Then there’s the growing problem of ad blocking by users across digital devices. Print media proves to be an ongoing force in the advertising mix. Although lower in volume than 10 years ago, advertising in print newspapers has the power to address readers directly and amplify the effects of other channels.


    • Managing Director, Print Power Europe, Brussels, Belgium
  • 12:15

    It’s time to talk metrics: Audiences, attention, and the persistent power of print

    Recent reports seem to indicate that print is in better shape than previously thought. We take a look at this mainstay of our business and how it will contribute to our revenues going forward.


    • Professor of Communication in the Department of Communication Studies and Media Research, LMU Munich, Germany
  • 12:45

    Lunch and Networking @ Expo Foyer

  • 14:15

    Learnings from Hollywood

    Films are all about captivating story-telling.  Is there something media companies could learn from that, like "Saving the Cat?".


    • CEO, Al Abkaria Holding Company and GM Nebras Films, Saudi Arabia
  • 14:45

    Closing Keynote: Collaboration crucial to news industry’s future

    In a fast-moving digital age, it has never been more important for tech companies to collaborate with the news industry to have a sustainable news ecosystem. As new business models are emerging and news consumption is increasingly fragmented, collaboration across content creation, distribution, monetisation, data and infrastructure is the way forward for the news industry.


    • Director of Global Partnerships at Google for Emerging Markets, Dubai, UAE
  • 15:30

    Coffee Break and Networking @ Expo Foyer

  • 16:00

    Redefining the future of innovation in Production

    Join our tour to Dubai Production City and explore the production ecosystem.

    Dubai Production City is a leading business hub enabling the global and local publishing, printing and packaging industries to excel.

    DPC was launched in 2003 as the first dedicated community aiming to advance the development of the production industry in the region.

    DPC benefits from free zone privileges and regulations that facilitate the ease of business and operations, a unique and vibrant community supporting and fostering the growth of media production.


  • 17:30

    End of Conference

13th Middle East Conference