DABO & CO continues winning streak at MEPRAs

Integrated communications agency DABO & CO added three further MEPRA awards to its already impressive tally at last night’s fifth Middle East Public Relations Association (MEPRA) Awards. The latest awards sweep takes the company’s total MEPRA awards tally to 15 since the annual event was launched in 2009. Past awards include ‘Agency of the Year’ in 2010 and ‘Mid-Sized Agency of the Year’ in 2012.

DABO & CO triumphed with three awards out of the four categories entered picking up Best Integrated Campaign – DABO & CO & Marriott International: ‘The Launch of the JW Marriott Marquis’, Best Use of Media Relations Consumer or Trade: ‘Canon at Gulf Print 2013’ and Best Practice Consumer Goods: ‘kate spade new york’.

“The annual MEPRA Awards is a major highlight for us as an agency and we are thrilled to have walked away with three awards in recognition of our integrated and results-driven approach to communications,” says Managing Partner, Camilla d’Abo. “Yesterday’s MEPRA awards were the perfect celebration of an industry that has come of age. In light of yesterday’s Dubai Expo 2020 win, the Middle East’s PR industry is on the threshold of an amazing period in its evolution and I am confident that this will bring further opportunities to showcase world-class campaigns emerging from the region.”

Jason Leavy, Managing Director, added: “The 2013 MEPRA wins are the perfect way to round off another exceptional year for the agency. Not only have we recently moved to new state-of-the-art offices to accommodate our continued growth, but we have a stronger than ever talent pool combining exceptional local talent alongside international industry heavy weights, and we are looking forward to an even better 2014.”

Ketchum dominates Healthcare at MEPRA Awards

For the second consecutive year, Ketchum Raad dominated the healthcare sector at the Middle East Public Relations Association (MEPRA) Awards held last night. The event recognised the Ketchum Raad ME team as Best Practice in Healthcare & Services for their partnership with AstraZeneca Gulf on the Safe@Heart campaign.

The campaign, targeted at Gulf Nationals who are at risk of heart disease, those who have been diagnosed with a heart condition or those who have had a heart attack, has resulted in over 5400 people taking part in heart health screenings and hundreds signing up for a 12 week programme that encourages them to make easy yet impactful changes in their daily habits to benefit their health.

“Healthcare is a packed space with a lot of important messages vying for an opportunity to be heard,” says Nicola Gregson, Managing Director Ketchum Raad Middle East. “Campaigns need to be intelligent, strategic and extremely well executed to capture the media’s attention and reach their target audience. I couldn’t be more proud of my team for their success with Safe@Heart. We are expanding our healthcare offering in 2014 and look forward to partnering with our existing and future clients to deliver even more impactful and effective communications across the sector.”

Abigail Dawson, Account Director and Regional Healthcare Lead at Ketchum Raad Middle East added, “This is the second year in a row we have received the Best Practice Healthcare and Services award and we are truly proud to be taking it home again. Projects like Safe@Heart are the reason we are in communications. As a healthcare team, we are genuinely passionate about working with our clients to help them achieve their business goals as well as communicate with patients and customers and empower them to change their lives positively.”

What’s On Dubai 2013 Awards winners announced

There was a lot to celebrate last night at What’s On Magazine‘s twelfth annual What’s On Awards held at the Dubai Media City Amphitheatre. Not only was the magazine celebrating its 35th birthday, but it was also announced during the glamorous event that Dubai was indeed successful in its bid for the Expo 2020.

And the winners were…

British – Above Dhs400 Rivington Bar & Grill, Souk Al Bahar

British – Below 400 London Fish & Chips, Independent

Brunch – Above 400 Bubbalicious, The Westin Dubai Mina Seyahi Beach Resort & Marina

Brunch – Below 400 The Grand Grill, Habtoor Grand Hotel

Café Pantry Café , Independent

Chinese – Above 400 Shang Palace, Shangri-la Hotel, Dubai

Chinese – Below 400 Chopstix, Marco Polo Hotel

French – Above 400 La Petite Maison, Independent

French – Below 400 Oscar’s Vine Society, Crowne Plaza Dubai

Indian – Above 400 Indego by Vineet, Grosvenor House Dubai

Indian – Below 400 Qureshi’s Kebab & Kurry, The Country Club Hotel

International – Above 400 Kitchen 6, JW Marriott Marquis Hotel

International – Below 400 Horizon, Amwaj Rotana  – Jumeirah Beach Residence

Italian – Above 400 BiCE, Hilton Dubai Jumeirah

Italian – Below 400 Da Vinci’s, Millennium Airport Hotel

Japanese – Above 400 Okku, The H Hotel

Japanese – Below 400 Benihana-Steakhouse, Sushi and Seafood, Amwaj Rotana – Jumeirah Beach Residence

Middle Eastern – Above 400 Levantine, Atlantis The Palm Hotel

Middle Eastern – Below 400 The Courtyard, Al Manzil Hotel

Modern European – Above 400 Table 9 By Nick And Scott, Hilton Dubai Creek

Modern European – Below 400 The Farm, Independent

Pakistani – Below 400 Karachi Darbar, Independent

Pub Grub The Irish Village, Independent

Pan Asian – Above 400 Karma Kafé, Independent

Pan Asian – Below 400 Kitakits Kafe & Klubb, Marco Polo Hotel

Seafood – Above 400 BiCE Mare, Independent

Seafood – Below 400 Fish Market, Radisson Blu Hotel, Dubai Deira Creek

Steakhouse and Grill – Above 400 West 14th, Oceana Beach Club, Palm Jumeirah

Steakhouse and Grill – Below 400 Butcher’s Shop and Grill, Independent

Thai- Above 400 Thai Kitchen, Park Hyatt Dubai

Thai – Below 400 Royal Orchid, Independent

The Americas Above 400 Claw BBQ Crabshack & Grill, Souk Al Bahar, Independent

The Americas – Below 400 Fatburger, Independent

Bar Barasti, The Westin Dubai Mina Seyahi Beach Resort & Marina

Club Night Audio Tonic, 360

Ladies’ Night Aquara Lounge, Dubai Marina Yacht Club

NightClub Mahiki, Jumeirah Beach Hotel

Concert Bruno Mars

DJ Marco Smokingroove

Festival Sandance

Sporting Events Emirates Dubai Rugby Sevens

Fitness Clubs United Pro Sports

Hair Salon JetSet

Nails N Bar

Spa Beauty Connection Spa

MEPRA Awards 2013 set to be biggest yet

Tonight’s Middle East Public Relations Association (MEPRA) Awards are set to be the biggest yet with a record 150 entries received – a marked increase on previous years. The Awards, which are to be held at The Westin Dubai, recognise and reward excellence in the PR industry.

“We were greatly encouraged to see the increase in the number of companies and individuals submitting entries this year,” says MEPRA’s General Manager, Carine Duvignaud. “More impressive though was the quality of the submissions. As a consequence the judging panel had a hard task to narrow down the finalists.”

Agency Finalists include: DABO &CO; Golin Harris; Leocomm PR; GMASCO: Four Communications; ASDA’A Burson-Marsteller; Ketchum RAAD Middle East: Edelman: Memac Ogilvy PR: Weber Shandwick MENA; Leocomm PR; Limelight PR;  Action Global Communications: Capital MS&L: Mojo PR: TishTash PR: Hill+Knowlton Strategies.

The full list of MEPRA Awards Finalists is detailed below:

Best Practice -Sectors & Services

Consumer Goods

  • DABO &CO: “Kate Spade New York”
  • Golin Harris: “Kraft Original Treasures of Arabia”
  • Leocomm PR: “The Launch of HTC One”
  • GMASCO: “LEXUS Passion Pioneers”
  • GMASCO: “Your Opinion Counts”

Consumer Services

  • Troon Golf and Four Communications: “The Dhabi that Roared!”
  • ASDA’A Burson-Marsteller: “McDonald’s Nutrition Labelling Launch”

Healthcare & Services

  • Ketchum RAAD Middle East: “Safe @ Heart”
  • Edelman: “Cleveland Clinic Abu Dhabi Employee Engagement”
  • Memac Ogilvy PR Algeria: “Hidden Faces of Diabetes”

Business to Business

  • State Government of Victoria and Four Communications: “On a Mission”
  • NATS and Four Communications: “Going Up a Level”
  • Weber Shandwick MENA: “Hot Commodity”
  • Leocomm PR: “du Enterprise PR Strategy -Answers for Tomorrow’s Business”
  • Limelight PR: “Launching CCS in the Middle East”

Government Communications

  • Abu Dhabi Council for Economic Development and Four Communications: “Bright Sparks”
  • Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation and Four Communications: “Unlocking the UAE’s Natural Energy”
  • ASDA’A Burson-Marsteller: “Government Summit 2013”

Corporate Reputation & Image

  • Weber Shandwick MENA: “Standard and Poor’s -Reclaiming Leadership”
  • ASDA’A Burson-Marsteller: “Arab Aviation and Media Summit 2013”
  • London Business School and Four Communications: “London Business School”

Internal Communications

  • TAQA: “One TAQA Day”
  • Ketchum RAAD Middle East: “Hello Hakawati!”
  • Action Global Communications: “Above & Beyond”

Corporate Responsibility

  • Glasspoint and Four Communications / Antenna Group: “Focus!”
  • Capital MS&L: “Sustainable Bathroom in the UAE Competition”
  • Weber Shandwick MENA: “Awareness of Fire Safety Risks in the Gulf”
  • Mojo PR: “Summertown Interiors”


Best Practice -Techniques

Best Use of Sponsorship

  • Weber Shandwick MENA: “Jaguar Style Stakes at Dubai World Cup 2013”
  • Ketchum RAAD Middle East: “Unlock the Race with Infiniti”
  • Mojo PR: “Hong Kong Tourism Board”

Best Product/Service Launch

  • DABO & CO: “The Launch of Nokia Lumia”
  • JW Marriott Marquis: “Vault”
  • Mojo PR: “Eureeca”

Best Use of Media Relations – Consumer or Trade

  • Weber Shandwick MENA: “Gulf Business Machines – 2013 IT Security”
  • Weber Shandwick MENA: “Stars of Science Season 4”
  • DABO & CO: “Canon at Gulf Print 2013”
  • Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority and Four Communications: “Selling Ras
  • Al Khaimah”
  • British Council and Four Communications: “Going Global”
  • Victoria International School of Sharjah and Four Communications: “Leading the Way”
  • Mojo PR: “Tiffany & Co”
  • TishTash PR: “Summer Celebrity GlamBox”

Best Use of Social Media/ Digital PR

  • Memac Ogilvy PR Dubai: “Sprite Min Al Akhir”
  • JW Marriott Marquis: “Izakaya at JW Marriott Marquis”
  • Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation and Four Communications: “Unlocking the UAE’s Natural Energy”

Best Live Event/Stunt

  • Etisalat: “mHealth Grand Tour”
  • Edelman: “Building the Next Generation of Emirati Leaders”
  • Edelman: “Blackberry 10 Global Launch”
  • Hill+Knowlton Strategies: “Hammam Shami”
  • Ketchum RAAD Middle East: “Launch and Sustain Campaign of the 2013 Infiniti JX in the Middle East”
  • Tourism Ireland and Four Communications: “The Gathering Greening”

Best Integrated Campaign

  • Tourism Ireland and Four Communications: “St Patrick’s Week”
  • Edelman: “Qasr Al Hosn Festival”
  • DABO & CO & Marriott International: “The Launch of the JW Marriott Marquis”
  • Mojo PR: ” A Taste of Singapore”

Overall Best Campaign of the Year

  • Category NOT opened for entries. Winner will be announced at the Gala Event

Agency of the year

  • Seven Media
  • Four Communications
  • Edelman
  • Weber Shandwick MENA
  • Ketchum RAAD Middle East
  • Mojo PR

In-house Team of the Year (Sponsored by Edelman)

  • Mubadala
  • Etihad Airways

New Account Manager joins The Qode

Farah Zoghbi has been announced as the new PR Account Manager at The Qode. Bringing over four years of PR and Marketing experience within the luxury service industry in Dubai, Farah held various PR and Communications positions, working with leading brands including Fairmont Hotels & Resorts and InterContinental Hotels. As a resident of Dubai since 2003, Farah has witnessed the dynamic growth of the industry, gaining local market experience during this time.

“I am very excited to be part of the dynamic team at The Qode,” says Farah. “With such a diverse portfolio of clients, this is a great opportunity to work on exciting projects and brands.”

What’s On Award winners to be revealed tomorrow

The What’s On Awards Dubai 2013 will take place tomorrow evening at Dubai Media City Amphitheatre and will celebrate the UAE’s cream of the crop in hospitality, entertainment and leisure. Now in its tweflth year, the event – which is sponsored by Dubai First – has gained industry wide respect for transparency and fairness with all votes independently counted and audited by Jacobsons Direct Marketing Services and then counter-verified by a special panel of impartial industry experts.

For a full list of the shortlisted nominees, visit www.whatsonawards.com

Good luck to all!

New Editor joins The Dubai Mall Magazine

Caroline Scott has joined NPI Media as the new Editor of The Dubai Mall Magazine. Formerly Deputy Editor of OK! Middle East, Caroline will oversee the day-to-day running of the magazine.

“I am delighted to be joining the talented team at The Dubai Mall Magazine at this exciting time of growth for the mall and the city’s fashion scene, as a whole,” says Caroline. “Coming from a luxury publishing background, I find myself in a happy new home and look forward to a bright and busy 2014.”