UAE: With 370 exhibitors from 31 countries representing over 430 brands, the 11th edition of Light Middle East was flagged off at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre by Saeed Al Tayer, Managing Director and CEO of the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority.

Spanning 12,500sqm, the three-day event has grown 14 per cent over the previous edition, and arrives as the global lighting market undergoes a new paradigm, driven by energy efficiency, smart technology, new business models, and LED penetration.

According to analysts Frost & Sullivan (F&S), the global market for lighting systems was valued at US$85 billion in 2015, with the sustainable and long-lasting LED luminaire (light emitting diode) now accounting for close to 50 per cent of the market.

That trend follows in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) where the LED lighting market – worth US$910 million in 2015 – is estimated to have penetrated 38 per cent of the regional lighting market, as Greenfield investments in the real estate and infrastructure sectors fuel growth.

F&S expect the GCC LED market to clock an annual growth rate of 16-17 per cent in the next five years and, at this rate, the penetration will cross 50 per cent by 2020, offering ample opportunities for global manufacturers and suppliers of eco-friendly and smart lighting systems.

“Demand for the latest in lighting technology in the region continues to be high, as upcoming mega events such as the Dubai Expo 2020 provide a catalyst for regional growth,” said Ahmed Pauwels, CEO of Messe Frankfurt Middle East, the organiser of Light Middle East.
“Intelligent lighting and LED’s convergence with information technology is driving this transformation, along with the positive impact of region-wide sustainable economic development policies that encourage the usage of energy efficient lighting systems. Light Middle East plays a facilitating role in the completion of many business deals and fruitful partnerships,” Pauwels added.

Light Middle East is the region’s leading business platform for the lighting design and technology industry. The event’s Host Sponsor, the Dubai Municipality, is among the headline exhibitors this week, and is showcasing the Dubai Lamp, the world’s most energy efficient, and first commercially available, 200 lumen per watt LED lamp.

The government authority is among 53 UAE exhibitors, with overall local participation covering 1,700sqm of exhibition space, an increase of 62 per cent year-on-year.

Dubai-based LEME Lighting is launching its outdoor LED product range, designed and developed in the UK. “Our smart lighting solutions include the Dali dimmable outdoor landscape lighting,” said Sanuj Kohli, Group Executive Director at LEME Lighting, which has been at the forefront of several commercial, hospitality, and residential projects in the Middle East and Africa.

“The transition of lighting is fast paced, similar to the electronics industry. Consumers have specific requirements, and therefore manufacturers are working hard with their design teams to develop unique fixtures which create a certain ambient feel. LED chip manufacturers are still challenged in creating dimmable LED’s especially with smart lighting applications, however the trend is moving into this direction.

“The trend in outdoor lighting has also changed where many designers are stepping away from step lights and implementing LED linear lights, as more and more buildings modernise their design, creating a simplistic look yet so powerful,” added Kohli.

Also offering smart lighting solutions at Light Middle East 2016 is Gold Sponsor Yaming, which returns to the show after a successful outing last year. Rashid Al Noori, Yaming’s Chairman, said: “Since the last Light Middle East edition we have been in close contact with the industry’s key players and have signed partnerships with distributors within the region.

“Yaming’s Smart Lighting, Internet of Things, and iCloud solution is based on the public infrastructure network platform. We establish information perception and transmission network by wireless communication, 4G and sensing technology.

“Our Smart City Management System with iCloud realises core functions such as smart lighting, smart security and protection, wireless city, and Information Release System,” added Al Noori.

At the centre of Light Middle East 2016 is the Future Zone, a dedicated stage for the world’s leading brands that are shaping the future of architectural lighting design and technology. More than 50 international manufacturers and regional lighting solutions providers are exhibiting at the exclusive area, which has grown by 15 per cent year-on-year.

Switch Made, a French manufacturer of indoor and outdoor LED solutions, is launching its 2017 product catalogue, and has worked on a number of regional projects in the retail, entertainment, and education sectors in the last 12 months.

Jeremy Loisel, CEO of Switch Made, commented on the virtues of LED: “LED is recognised as the future of lighting, and thanks to our 10 years of expertise, we offer one of the widest range of LED solutions,” he said. “LED helps reduce up to 70 per cent of electrical consumption, 80 per cent of the maintenance costs, while offering new quality of lighting.

“We strongly believe in being close to customers, while offering 100 per cent LED sustainable solutions for the future. We’re committed to international standards, and offer 3 to 5 years warranty on our products.”

New features at Light Middle East 2016 include Light.ication in collaboration with design agency Light.Func, where the spotlight shines on the UAE’s future designers. Six teams from UAE Universities are sharing their vision of light interaction, and have created inspiring installations with the guidance of pro lighting designers, and with equipment provided by Light Middle East exhibitors.

Also making its debut is the Middle East version of Ready Steady Light, a hugely popular UK lighting design competition where seven teams will design and install a lighting scheme in just 90 minutes. The competition takes place on the 1st day of Light Middle East in association with the Society for Light and Lighting.

Light Middle East 2016 also returns with regular popular features, including the Light Middle East Conference; and the prestigious Light Middle East Awards, celebrating outstanding lighting projects and designers from around the world.

A shortlist of 56 entries from more than 200 submissions has been selected to contest 12 categories at the annual showcase, where more than 600 industry professionals will recognise lighting design excellence during gala dinner ceremony at the conclusion of Light Middle East on the 2nd November 2016. www.lightme.net.