How young Arabs are fueling the MENA media market [Report]

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Global consulting firm Strategy& has published a report on the potential of MENA’s youth and how they have shifted the local media industry. Written by Jayant Bhargava, a partner with Strategy& and a member of the firm’s global communications, media and technology team, and Noura al Kaabi, chief executive officer of twofour54, the report looks at how young Arabs are driving the shifts in the region’s media landscape.

According to the report, relatively high mobile phone penetration rates and demand for local Arabic content has fueled much of the growth in regional media, and created a more favorable climate for investors.

Moreover, these changes have forced international media players to reevaluate their presence in the region, and have afforded local media players the opportunity to reset their business models and invest in high-quality local content. The report insists on the need to understand how these changes are currently affecting the market, especially in three fields: gaming, audiovisual content, and e-commerce.

The report further indicates that understanding these changes is only the first step. Local and international players must help develop four fields in the media industry:

-Education, to expand resources for current and future digital careers
-Talent, to further the training of new hires within the scope of the business (gaming development, animation, movie production)
-Infrastructure and work environment, to improve accessibility to high-end facilities and foster an attractive corporate culture
-Financing, to bridge gaps in existing local funding models

The report states that the previous hurdles found in the MENA region, such as limited revenue opportunity and high costs, are changing and the region deserves to be noticed by potential investors thanks to its growing young talent pool, and its improved economics.

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