Oct. 20--JEDDAH -- More than 130,000 ICT professionals from 150 countries are set to attend the 2013 edition of GITEX Technology Week.
Around 80 percent of the world's leading ICT brands will be present at the show in Dubai.
GITEX Technology Week -- the Middle East, North Africa, and South Asia region's top ICT event -- opens Sunday with the world's leading brands revealing new products and services, and the industry's key decision makers driving thought leadership on the industry's opportunities and challenges across the region.
The Middle East continues to be a booming market for the ICT industry with total spend projected to increase 5.5 percent from 2012 to $192.9 billion in 2013, according to IT research firm Gartner.
Driving the future of ICT in the Middle East and beyond is the 33rd edition of GITEX Technology Week, held at the Dubai World Trade Center from October 20-24 under the theme "Lets Create, Disrupt and Re-imagine Together", with Dubai Internet City as a strategic partner.
GITEX Technology Week has consistently driven results for businesses of all sizes, with 85 percent of the 2012 attendees saying the event met or exceeded their expectations for return-on-investment, according to Dubai World Trade Center.
Trixie LohMirmand, senior vice president, Dubai World Trade Center, said: "GITEX Technology Week is again ready to set the standard for ICT thought leadership and business development for every attendee from small businesses to multinational corporations and government agencies."
He said: "ICT trends like mobility, the cloud, and big data are commonly used industry buzzwords. However GITEX Technology Week is the MENASA region's only event that offers visitors an in-depth understanding of these concepts as well as knowledge on how they can be used to deliver enhanced ROI."
This year there will be substantial numbers of international exhibitors and visitors -- new country participants hail from Belarus, Brazil, Finland, Kenya, Lithuania, Serbia, Slovenia, Tunisia and Ukraine.
The official country partner of GITEX Technology Week is Serbia, under the auspices of the Serbia Investment and Export Promotion Agency (SIEPA), as the Eastern European country looks to boost trade ties with its rapidly-growing ICT-related companies.
The show has also attracted a major new international partnership this year in the form of the GSMA Mobile 360 Series comes to the Middle East for the first time.
The co-located GSMA Mobile 360 Series will attract high-profile executives in the mobile industry, as well as key regulatory and government representatives.
GITEX Technology Week will also welcome back InfoComm MEA for the third successive year to assemble the widest range of audio visual (AV) systems and technologies in the region.
Among the features appearing for the first time is the Big Data Conference. Supported by Diamond SponsorAccenture and Platinum Sponsors Commvault and Huawei, the event is the first stand-alone session on what is one of the ICT industry's most compelling and challenging trends.
Worldwide, IDC estimates that spending on Big Data technology and services will likely grow from $3.2 billion in 2010 to $16.9 billion in 2015, representing a CAGR of 40 percent, or about seven times that of the overall ICT market.
According to IDC, over 40 percent of CIOs in the Middle East are currently scoping investments in analytics and Big Data technologies in 2013.
GITEX Technology Week is also expanding on its ability to celebrate innovation and support local talent. The Cloud Awards will put a spotlight on cloud computing's contribution to the business community, while the GITEX Hot Stuff Awards is the largest consumer electronics gadget competition in the region.
Adding to this competitive spirit is the Student Lab competition, which is sponsored by the UAE Ministry of Presidential Affairs (MoPA) and held in association with Google.