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Tue 12 Aug 2008 04:00 AM

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CSI welcomes healthy competition

Firm CSI looks forward to challenges of the developing UAE's conference market.

Congress Solutions International (CSI), Emirates Group's professional congress organiser (PCO), is strengthening its workforce to cater to the rapidly expanding congress market.The company has recruited David Hirst as conference and events manager, responsible for CSI's growing portfolio of professional conferences and events. And, according to Hirst, he is relishing the challenge of tackling an increasingly competitive market.

"Continuing to grow a business in an already highly competitive market is the most obvious challenge, one that CSI is extremely well equipped to handle," he said.

"The resources available to us as part of the Emirates Group sets us apart from most other PCOs and means we definitely have an advantage over our competitors in regards to the services we can provide our clients."

Although the meetings and events industry was well established in the Middle East, with some of the world's largest and most important industry and association events already taking place in the region, there was still a great deal of scope for further growth and development, Hirst said.

"Furthermore, with the opening of many new hotels and convention centres, all offering world-class facilities, I can only see this trend continuing for many years to come," he added.

Hirst also noted that the growth in the number of PCOs entering the region was deemed healthy for the industry.

"This increased competition should be seen as a positive development that will encourage all of us involved in the industry to perform at our highest ability and creativity and further grow the size and importance of the industry in the Middle East," he said.

CSI plans to expand in the next few years, creating the need to employ more experienced personnel.

"This investment [in people] will help CSI in achieving its aim of becoming the leading PCO in the UAE and Middle East," he said.

Senior vice president CS Frederic Bardin said the company was well on target to achieve this status.

"The company is set to handle more than 20 business conferences and events in 2008 and we fully expect this growth to continue exponentially in the years ahead," he said.

"CSI's success is testament to both Dubai's booming business travel industry and the hard work of CSI employees. David Hirst joins CSI to assist in long-term large-scale bids and the management of many exciting new projects already on the horizon within the UAE and overseas."

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