Kholoud Rajeh joins Tiffany & Co. PR team

Tiffany & Co. has announced Kholoud Rajeh as the newest member of the in-house PR & promotions team. Working alongside Marketing & PR Director, Ghada El-Kari, Kholoud fills the position of PR Manager and brings with her over eight years of media relations experience. Having previously worked at Havas PR Middle East, Kholoud is well-versed in luxury fashion and accessories PR.

“I’m so excited to be part of the Tiffany team,” says Kholoud. “I’m looking forward to working with the brand because of its illustrious history and heritage as it exemplifies itself as a true luxury brand.”

Tiffany & Co. now operate an in-house PR team, therefore all PR requests can be directed to Kholoud at / +971 (0)56 171 7672 or Jennifer Chamly Jennifer / +971 (0)56 655 1225

New Beauty Editor for Arabia

Elizabeth Whiston-Dew has today joined as Beauty Editor. Formerly Beauty Editor of the Emirates Woman Group at Motivate Publishing, Elizabeth has spent the past three years working across titles such as Emirates Woman, Emirates Bride, Spend It and Luxe. Elizabeth will now oversee all beauty pages within Arabia, which is an English and Arabic language online magazine.

“I am delighted to be named the new beauty voice for, joining the task force of tastemakers at this pioneering publication,” says Elizabeth. “I will report daily on all things beauty, from pending trends to insider tips along with all the trinkets to propel our discerning readers to the next level of beautiful.”

Shashi Menon, CEO & Publisher, added: “We’re thrilled to welcome Elizabeth to the team. Her background in beauty and journalism makes her a natural fit for the publication and our authoritative style of reporting. We look forward to continuing to publish the best content — and first — for our broad regional and international audience.”

Contact Elizabeth at / +971 (0)4 422 5766


Al Jazeera America signs Time Warner deal

Al Jazeera America has signed a distribution deal with Time Warner Cable offering access to millions of households in the New York and Los Angeles regions of the United States. Just days after launch in August 2013, the Qatar-owned broadcaster hit rocky ground after American-based telecoms group, AT&T, dropped the network from its U-verse television subscription service, taking its distribution down from 41 million homes to just 36 million homes.

New Group Editor for OK! Middle East and Viva

Gemma White has been announced as the new Group Editor for OK! Middle East and Viva magazine. Gemma, who returns to ITP Publishing after two years at the Gulf News Group, will oversee the day-to-day running of OK! Middle East plus manage supplements and brand extensions. She will also have a creative input to Viva, the home-grown ITP title that launched nine years ago, which is now edited by Anita Quade.

Contact Gemma at / +971 (0)50 444 3824

Zainab Imichi Alhassan joins Grace and Garbo

Zainab Imichi Alhassan has been appointed PR Eleganceer at boutique PR firm, Grace and Garbo. Working across fashion and lifestyle clients, Zainab will concentrate on strategic brand building, media relations, boutique placement and social media.

“I hope to learn a lot about  PR from the Grace and Garbo team,” says Zainab. “I plan to use my rich knowledge in fashion and communications to help the brands we work with.”

Contact Zainab at / +971 (0)53 887 5879

SMG appoints Global President of LiquidThread

Olivier Gers has joined Starcom MediaVest Group (SMG) as Global President, LiquidThread, SMG’s branded entertainment content unit. He will be based out of the SMG London office and will report to Brian Terkelsen, CEO of MediaVest, who will continue to have executive oversight over LiquidThread in addition to his MediaVest role.

In his new role, Gers will be responsible for building the global LiquidThread business and expanding opportunities around the world with brands, local production studios, networks and distribution organizations. He will oversee a range of content marketing offerings, including digital marketing strategies, core partnership models and the development of brand programming. Working across disciplines, Gers will develop strategies that marry ideas with platforms to drive business for SMG’s roster of clients. He will partner closely with Brent Poer, who will continue to serve as President, SMG LiquidThread North America, reporting to Terkelsen. All regional leadership outside of North America will report to Olivier.

“At Starcom MediaVest, we are passionate about new content possibilities, new ways of telling brand stories in new places, and new platforms and emerging technologies that will change how our clients inform, engage—and even befriend—their audience,” said Terkelsen. “We believe Olivier is the right person to advance these possibilities for our company and clients around the world. He is a proven business builder and growth driver for brands and an inspiring leader.”

Most recently, Gers served as Chief Executive Officer for the Endemol Worldwide Brands division, the world’s largest independent production company, at Endemol Group in London. In this role, he led the monetization of the ancillary rights of Endemol’s key properties, including television shows Big Brother, Deal or No Deal, Wipeout and Star Academy. He managed a 50+ person global team responsible for all commercial extensions across licensing, merchandising, digital, gambling, gaming, live events, sponsorship and brand relations and music publishing.

Gers was named Advertising Age Entertainment Marketer of the Year in 2007 and has served as an active industry spokesperson over the years, including engagements at MipTV, the largest market and showcase for international TV content development; NATPE; World Congress of Sports; UBS Media and Communications Conference; Forbes Breakout Conference, and more.

Bit of a stretch

With temperatures falling and not a hint of condensation in sight, it’s back to the beach for the masses. However the bikini and beach shorts shy Team TMN are resorting to emergency measures to shape-up after a summer of long working hours and less than no exercise. In a desperate bid to get body beautiful on the double, we fully embraced the invitation to trial some Pilates Reformer classes… and wondered, could this be the answer to our quick-fix body prayers?

What: Pilates Reformer

Where: Fitness 360, J3 Mall, Al Wasl Rd, Jumeirah 3, Dubai

When: Opening hours are from 6am to midnight, seven days a week

The promise: “With emphasis on correct postural alignment, Pilates Reformer sessions support the core while allowing the development of long, lean muscles without adding bulk. It enhances body and spatial awareness through mindful exercises.”

Did it deliver? Outfitted in the theme of the American film Grease, down to the sock-hop décor, the framed photographs of Olivia Newton-John and John Travolta, and the bright pink lipstick on reception, we were sold the minute we walked through the door. But don’t be fooled by welcoming décor; one glance at our energetic and intimidatingly fit instructor, Rica, told us stone thighs and firm buttocks means more work and less muscicals.

Tucked away behind the boxing ring, the warm lighting and oak floors of the pilates studio contrasted sharply to the six guillotines in the room. Fitness 360 uses metal reformers, and the first thing that Rica taught us was how to adjust the system to better fit our individual frames and resistance. Rica took us through the basics, using fun metaphors to keep us at ease and in form. “The proper way to do a crunch on the Reformer is to give a gorgeous man the eye,” she said. “Tilt your head up, and then to give him a nod, tucking in your chin. It’s also the proper way to play coy with a guy in a bar.”

The class continued to be lighthearted and fun, and Rica was attentive to our motions, providing insight about our individual bodily tendencies and the way that each motion worked on our muscles. She even allowed us some grunts and cries when we started to work those long neglected muscle groups.

The Verdict: With Team TMN aching from head-to-toe the following morning, the Pilates Reformer class at Fitness 360 certainly did its job – and reminded us that there is no quick-fix to getting body beautiful. It seems hard work coupled with a good instructor is key to getting in shape, and with the fun and lighthearted approach to fitness, we can definitely say we’ll be returning to Fitness 360 to reclaim our beach bodies.


Would you like Team TMN to review your event, latest launch or product? Email with full details, and we’ll be in touch to offer our verdict.

Night of the AdEaters

Founder of the world famous Cinematheque Jean Marie Boursicot gives Team TMN a little insight into the history and future plans for advert festival, “Night of the AdEaters”

All of the advertisements featured at the “Night of the AdEaters” are from your collection. How did you get started?

As a kid, I was fascinated by cinema. I was a regular at the movie theaters in the “5 Avenues” neighboring Marseilles, but at the age of 10, I saw my first ‘treasure’ – a 4m x 3m poster boasting the merits of a soft cheese made by the firm Gervais. After frequent visits to these film houses, the projectionist at Cine Madeline noticed me and gave me snippets of advertising film for companies such as Gervais ice cream and Krema candy. Of course, I wanted more of these, and I found myself raking through trash cans, but not just any trash cans. These were the trash cans of the film distributors. Little by little, I amassed these treasures and rapidly enriched a collection that combined my passion for posters, ads and the cinema. I never imagined that this childhood interest would one day turn into a career. On the advice of friends, I went to Paris and started working at Publicis, a French advertising agency, where I noticed that the advertising film was being thrown away. Not even the agencies kept them, so I started collecting them, and decided to show them for the first time in Paris in 1980.

The “Night of the AdEaters” has been touring the world for 33 years. Why did you choose to take this library of TV and cinema commercials around the world?

Actually, it was not a choice. Maintaining a cinematheque is a huge task: collecting new adverts; restoring old ones. I even had the very first commercial from 1898! There were thousands of spots. Keeping the collection requires passion, time, energy, and a lot of space to put all these reels and tapes. And, of course, I needed money! I created the Night of the AdEaters to keep this one-of-a-kind cinematheque alive, and it was and still is a way to pay the bills, and to share my passion for cinema and advertising at the same time.

How does the Cinematheque acquire new ads?

We are always in touch with hundreds of agencies around the world, as well as festivals. Every year we receive 15,000 to 25,000 new commercials for the Cinematheque, and some of them are selected for the “Night.”

Who curates the set for the “Night of the AdEaters?” How does he/she decide what to include?

It is a personal choice. This is my way of sharing a much more cinematic vision of advertising. The marketing aspect is overshadowed in favor of powerful images, humor, music, unexpected situation, and the like.

How many languages feature in your commercials?

There are around 40 languages in our commercials, in addition to some rare dialects.

You don’t use subtitles! Why do you think that you don’t need translations?

The “Night of the AdEaters” is all about emotions, and the messages are brief and dense. They can be understood by everyone. They transcend linguistic and cultural differences.

More than 100 cities sign on to your annual tours. How did you get Dubai on board?

Last April, Mohammed Qara’een from Kilograms Creative Tactics got in touch with us through our website He had previously attended one of our shows in the Middle East, and described the “Night” as a breathtaking experience. Since then, everything has passed speedily and efficiently. I am now in Dubai for the first time.

Will you be broadcasting the festival on networks in the region?

I was not asked to do so, but it would be nice.

Why do you think people should go to the festival?

People will enjoy great moments of cinema with their friends. They will laugh a lot and watch exotic, surprising and beautiful adverts that reflect trends from different parts of the world. The festival is also a great source of inspiration for advertising professionals.

What are you hoping that people will take away from the festival?

Of course I hope they will have a great time, and for those who are not ad-addicts, I hope the “Night of the AdEaters” will convince them that advertising is not only about selling products, but offers moments of real cinema, and can evoke real emotions.

Can ad agencies in Dubai get involved with AdEaters?

Unfortunately, we didn’t receive a lot of commercials from Dubai, this year. I really hope that the “Night of the AdEaters” will encourage ad agencies to send their work to us, and to see how important it is to keep alive the memory of advertising. This is our main goal.

Where can ‘publivores’ get tickets?

Tickets to the “Night of the AdEaters” in Dubai are available through TimeOut Tickets and Platinum Tickets. For further information, call +971 (0)56 349 8212.

Do you have any plans to expand within the Middle East in the future?

We’ve already been to Kuwait, Syria, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Egypt, but I would love to organise annual “Nights” everywhere in the Middle East. This is the case in Lebanon, where the show has been organised for more than 10 years. We need to find the right partners who understand the interest of preserving the memory of advertising.


It’s time to engage through mobile media

While the UAE boasts a high number of smartphone users, very few use their phone for browsing and purchasing. It’s time to engage, says Abdullatif Alsayegh, CEO at Alsayegh Media.

“UAE brands need to shift from trying to make a one-time sale to creating an ongoing relationship via mobile”

The billion-dirham question is, despite having one of the highest rates of smartphone penetration in the world, why does the UAE lag behind when it comes to smartphone phone use? This is even more confounding when we consider that human beings are habitual creatures. Two prominent studies sponsored by Facebook and Nokia, respectively, show that we spend more time with our mobiles than with anyone or anything else. On average we are next to our mobiles 22 hours a day, and four out of five of us check our phones within 15 minutes of waking up. Given our dependence on mobile devices, why aren’t people using these mobiles to go online or engage with brands?

Due of the power of habit, people usually use the same apps every day, and new apps they try have typically been recommended by friends. Users ignore annoying banners, but don’t ignore notifications. Why? Because they are personally relevant. Contrary to what many advertisers think, mobile advertising is not just about banners or SMS’s. It’s about engagement and two-way interaction. Rather than waste millions of their budget competing for attention in a cluttered media landscape, companies should give consumers a reason to follow them and await updates and notifications.

An international example is Metro Trains in Melbourne, whose “Dumb Ways to Die” safety awareness video went viral, attracting countless consumers to download the app. “Dumb Ways to Die” wasn’t just soberly amusing or visually appealing – It took place in a familiar setting, had a clear message and implicated the consumer in its campaign for accountability. It was also dynamic. Similarly, UAE brands need to shift from trying to make a one-time sale to creating an ongoing relationship via mobile.

The more loved a brand is, the more talked about it is, and the more people will spend on it. Target their hearts and minds first, and their pockets will follow; because if there’s one thing worse than not having a customer, it’s having an irritated customer.

Most importantly, never introduce new ideas into the market until your own team is wildly passionate about it. It should give you goose bumps of enthusiasm. Because passion is contagious, and it will be passed on from one mobile user to another. The open secret is that the world’s best brands don’t clog people’s inboxes trying to get their attention. The best brands are the ones you love so much that you’ll spend all night in a queue to get your hands on them.

I have enormous faith in the UAE market, and I believe it’s only a matter of time before we claim our rightful place on the global stage of mobile Internet.