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Wed 10 Mar 2010 03:11 PM

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Mideast ad industry 'couple of years behind Europe'

Region's advertising industry lagging behind other key markets - Omnicom Media boss.

Mideast ad industry 'couple of years behind Europe'
(ITP Images)

The Middle East advertising industry is lagging behind other key markets in its attempts to embrace the opportunities of new media, a leading industry figure has warned.

While the focus in other regions has shifted from traditional advertising to media such as the internet and social networking platforms, Middle East firms are failing to seize the same opportunities, even as revenues decline in the wake of the slowdown.

"[The industry is] shifting its focus from certain areas to other areas; from what we call traditional media to new, emerging media," Elie Khouri, CEO of MENA for Omnicom Media Group told Arabian Business.

"[This region] is not as advanced but it's on the way. I think we're lagging behind, I think we're a couple of years behind Europe."

Khouri said global investment in advertising will continue to drop as the industry focuses on cheaper, emerging media. "Global investments will continue to drop....That area (new media) you don't need to spend as much money as you used to in old media and what does that mean?

Overall investment will never be the same."

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sonnydubai 10 years ago

I have to disagree with Elie Khouri hugely on his comments. We cannot compare Middle East media with Europe. The Middle east media market is so young in comparison and a market like London is so more advanced than anywhere in the ME. ALL of Europe's media is auditted, transparent, has freedom of speech and has so much more choice for consumers. We are 20 years behind Europe here, and rightly so