The 2014 event has a new show concept that focuses on new brands and enhanced features, leading to 30 per cent increase in pre-registered visitors and 44 per cent jump in country representation
A significant increase in pre-registered visitors and country representation at the Vision-X 2014, the Middle East’s largest optical trade event, has underscored the growth potential of the regional optical industry.
A month before the 15th edition of Vision-X returns to Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC) from November 25-27, pre-registered visitors are 30 per cent up on the comparative month-out period last year and at their highest level since 2010, while more than 250 brands from 26 countries are now confirmed to participate – a 44 per cent increase on country representation at the 2013 event.
“The overwhelming exhibitor and visitor response testifies to the conceptual overhaul we have implemented on the show,” said Trixie LohMirmand, Senior Vice President, Exhibitions and Events Management, DWTC. “In-line with the region’s prosperous optics industry, the Vision-X business proposition has evolved this year and attracted our most international audience to date.”
With major brands, distributors and retailers from China, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, South Africa, Taiwan, Turkey and the UK all returning in 2014, a host of new-to-show or returning companies hail from Algeria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Oman, Pakistan, the Philippines, Saudi Arabia, Singapore and the USA.
Heading the list of exhibitors is one of the optics business leaders and retail intelligence specialists, the UK’s Hakim Group, which will utilise a new ‘Future in Focus’ feature to provide one-on-one sessions detailing how technology is the driving force behind the global optical market growth.
“We are constantly looking around the globe for cutting-edge technology, as well as emerging trends on consumer behaviour,” said Dr Imran Hakim, CEO, Hakim Group. “Trends from one corner of the world can very quickly proliferate due to the blurred borders between countries and consumers, so it is vital to constantly monitor the landscape and keep abreast of game-changing developments on the horizon. We are passionate about the use of technology within the optical sector, so we aim to champion the industry’s drive to increased technology adoption. We want to help catalyse the adoption of some of these technologies into the mainstream to improve services and products offered to customers and patients. The ‘Future in Focus’ feature at Vision X will provide a great platform to showcase some of these ideas to key MENA region players.”
In addition to providing Vision-X visitors and delegates with the opportunity to wear and experience the revolutionary Google Glass at its first official trade show appearance in the Middle East, Hakim Group will offer regional optical industry professionals with expert consultation on how their peers in the UK and USA have commercialised the product into their businesses, as well as chairing general discussions on how regional opticians can maximise business efficiency and optimise social media effectiveness.
Dr Hakim added, “We have started utilising Google Glass to explore niche areas of optical service so that we can harness technology advancement to attract customers we have historically missed. Although the technology is still in the first stages of its lifecycle, early adopters stand to make the biggest gains once mass-market adoption takes place. Those that gain a strong product understanding ahead of their competitors usually lead the way in identifying untapped areas, markets and industries of potential usage – this is the ethos of Hakim Group.”
With a refreshed show concept hinged on new brands and enhanced features, over half of this year’s Vision-X exhibitors will be new to the event or the wider region. Leading international research group, GfK, will reveal new insights into the global optical industry and share key data obtained from its GfK Optician Census study.
Running alongside the event is the new Vision-X VP Awards, launched in partnership with VisionPlus Arabia Magazine. The only dedicated celebration of excellence in the Middle East’s optical industry, the awards have attracted more than 130 global entries. The nominees have been shortlisted by a panel of leading regional retailers and industry professionals across 15 categories. Mail and online voting is now open until November 15, with the Vision-X VP Awards winners set to be announced at an exclusive ceremony on November 25 in Dubai.
Shortlisted in the Best Value Enhancer Lab category, SnapIt will launch its worldwide patented SnapIt Screw and Eyeglass Repair Kit for the first time in the Middle East at Vision-X. The screw, which has already sold in the millions in the USA, is increasingly becoming the screw of choice for opticians throughout the world.
Nancy Tedeschi, Inventor of the SnapIt Screw, said, “We see the UAE and the wider Middle East as very important markets for us and Vision-X is the leading platform to forge direct relationships with optical chains and labs in the area, as well as find distributors to help us reach the independent opticians.”
Vision-X 2014 returns with support from Headline Sponsor, Vision & Fashion; Nikon & Kefan; Egma, GKB Hi-Tech and Medicals International. Held in DWTC’s Sheikh Saeed Halls from November 25-27, Vision-X Dubai is strictly a trade-only event. The show is open daily from 10am to 6pm on November 25 and 26 and 10am to 5pm on November 27. Registration is available in advance at the event’s new website: www.vision-x.ae.