ExtraCake and Katch collaborate for Games 15

ExtraCake, organisers of the Middle East Film and Comic Con and Games 15 have announced a strategic partnership with Katch International to help promote the 2015 edition of the marquee gaming event in a bid to maximise reach to fans and exhibitors alike.

While the event will again focus on early access to the latest games and demos from publishers like Sony PlayStation, XBOX and many leading games publishers, GAMES 15 will also incorporate many innovative and unique elements with the inclusion of eSports with ESL, Video Games Live, mobile gaming, table top gaming, workshops, merchandising, celebrity guests and much more making it an event that transcends boundaries.

“The scope we have for Games going forward is much broader than ever before.,” says Arafaat Ali Khan, Director of Public Relations at ExtraCake. “Like the Middle East Film and Comic Con before it, Games 15 will offer something for everyone and offer one of the most entertaining weekends out for families and hardcore gamers alike. To ensure that we reach every demographic and every communication channel, we felt that increasing our resources was a must and tying up with another strong agency like Katch seemed to be the obvious way forward.”

While the Games 15 event will be managed, organised and communicated by ExtraCake, Katch will add an extra layer of support.

MediaMost launches three-language news portal

MediaMost Publishing launches www.aviamost.ae, the UAE’s first three-language (English/Russian/Chinese) news portal to mark the 20th anniversary of Aviamost Magazine. Aviamost is a niche publication in both Russian and Chinese providing the latest news about business opportunities, hospitality, tourism, shopping and lifestyle as well as in-depth articles on fashion, jewellery and watches.

The news portal will be a link to the tourist and business establishments in the Middle East, offering access to several important services and exciting features including: daily updated UAE news, diplomatic talk, economy and business reports, tourism articles, hotel news, spa special, red carpet coverage from around the world, celebrity interviews, and details on the latest beauty, fashion trends, runway reviews, jewellery and watch collections, shopping, fine dining, bars and lounges, launches and airline news. It is internally managed by the MediaMost English, Russian and Chinese editors.

“We are extremely pleased to launch this exciting news portal, in correlation with the title’s 20th anniversary,” says Fady Bostany, Executive Director, MediaMost Publishing. “We believe this site will offer a new type of connection for residents and tourists alike, especially with the ability to reach the Russian and Chinese audiences in their first language.”

David Brady joins DABO & CO

DABO & CO has appointed David Brady as Group Account Director. Having previously worked at London-based strategic marketing and communications consultancy, freuds, David brings a wealth of knowledge and will be working with clients that include Nike, Yas Waterworld, d3, Miral and WWE.

In his new role, David will apply the experience he’s acquired from 14 years of planning and implementing integrated consumer brand campaigns in the UK, across DABO’s diverse client list.

“I wanted to join an agency that could offer its clients a truly integrated approach to PR and DABO & CO is the clear choice for me in this region,” says David. “The acquisition by Edelman can only strengthen its position, making this a very exciting time to start working alongside some of the most creative and strategic talent in our industry.”

SMG MENA appoints Mohit Lodha

Mohit Lodha has been appointed as Regional Director of Human Experience at Starcom MediaVest Group (SMG) MENA. Having been with SMG MENA for seven years, Mohit joined as Media Manager and in his most recent position as Human Experience Strategist at MediaVest MENA contributed in evolving the agency’s media thinking and delivering effective and award-winning campaigns, locally and internationally.

In his new role, Mohit will work alongside the agency network’s teams on Content@Scale – SMG’s proprietary real-time content marketing platform, and will drive effective and forward thinking work across client verticals to build on consumer connections. He has also been assigned to represent the MENA region in SMG’s Global Product Committee (GPC), where he will lead on raising the output and quality of the agency’s regional product.

Promotion at House of Enspa

House of Enspa, a Dubai-based grooming company, has promoted Bianca Ellis to Assistant PR and Marketing Manager across two of the collection’s premium home grown beauty concepts, The Nail Spa and Marquee.

Bianca has been with the company since the launch of the Marquee brand in November 2013, when she was hired as PR & Marketing Executive to assist with the launch. In her new role, Bianca will continue to work across various marketing activities but with a focus on driving PR & events as well as the implementation of social and digital strategy across both brands.

“Digital has become such an important part of our daily lives and I am extremely excited about strengthening our online and digital strategy to enhance and support our overall marketing efforts,” says Bianca. “It’s a really exciting time to be a part of the The Nail Spa and Marquee team, with new location developments and new launches, our focus on online and PR will be extremely important to the growth of both businesses.”

For further information, contact Bianca at bianca@houseofenspa.com / +971 (0)4 323 2288

JWI appoints Charli Ball to Dubai office

Charli Ball has been appointed as Associate Director at JW International. JW International which provides marketing strategy, communications planning and campaign implementation opened its Dubai office doors in April this year.

Having previously worked as Account Manager for Rave Communications, the UK sister company to JWI, Charli managed many of the agency’s largest accounts and executed numerous high profile events in London.

In her new role, having assisted in the establishment of the new office, she will not only be overseeing all client accounts and remaining as a key contact, she will also be focusing on securing new regional accounts for the Dubai office.

“I am delighted to have played a part in launching a new strategic marketing agency in the Middle East,” says Charli. “JWI will bring cutting-edge, British creative to the region and deliver it with passion and professionalism. Our strapline, ‘it takes great people to do great things’, really sums up our approach.  We value long-term partnerships with clients and get a great deal of satisfaction from helping our clients achieve success. I think this will help to set us apart from other marketing agencies in the UAE.”

For further information, contact Charli Ball at charli@jwi.ae / +971 (0)52 744 3374

UM MENA appoints Digital Director

Zadi Hobeika has been appointed as Digital Director for all digital business across the Levant and Egypt markets at UM MENA. Having previously worked at HP, Nestle and Google’s European HQ in online business development and consultation, Zadi has most recently held the role of Managing Director at Game Theory Digital offering media buying services in Lebanon.

In his new role as Digital Director, Zadi will shape and influence the digital approach in the region, grow the digital portfolio and develop new strategies focused on driving performance and revenue.

“It is both an exciting and challenging time to tackle digital in the region and I am delighted to take part in UM MENA’s continuous efforts towards developing a tailored multi-channel approach across brands,” says Zadi. “We’ll work on establishing a market leadership at a digital level through steadily educating and growing our clients with a clear focus on performance.”

Motivate Publishing to launch Cyclist ME

Cyclist Middle East is set to launch in September 2015. Cyclist Middle East will be published by Motivate Publishing under license from Dennis Publishing. The international cycling title first launched in the UK in 2012, and this will be the third license deal just in 2015.

The 116-page monthly magazine will be available from September 1, 2015 and will cost AED25. The title will feature content that focuses on the best road bikes and technology, performance advice from top experts and in-depth articles mixed with breathtaking imagery from the sport’s best photographers. With the growing enthusiasm of the sport in the Middle East, which currently hosts four major cycling races: the Dubai Tour, the Abu Dhabi Tour, the Tour of Qatar and the Tour of Oman, Cyclist Middle East already has a growing audience.

“Launching Cyclist Middle East is an exciting opportunity for Motivate,” says Ian Fairservice, Managing Partner and Group Editor-In-Chief, Motivate Publishing. “Cycling is becoming a hugely popular pastime in the Middle East, with more races being added to the calendar here each year. Launching the title now will allow us to grow the global audience of the brand.”

For Further information, contact Anthony Milne at anthony@motivate.ae / +971 (0)4 427 3461

Sonam Basantani steps down at Gulf News

After three and a half years working as Beauty Writer & Stylist for Aquarius, Friday, Alpha and other contract publications, Sonam Basantani today steps down at GN Media. Sonam will move into a freelance role where she will focus on beauty styling and writing, plus fashion styling.

“I’m really looking forward to becoming a freelance stylist and writer,” says Sonam. “My time at Gulf News has really helped me grow in the areas I love and identify the direction I would like to move in. I am looking forward to some new and exciting projects.”

For further information, contact Sonam Basantani at sonam.basantani@gmail.com or follow Sonam on Instagram @sonambasantani