Anders Lindblad, Ericsson’s President and Head of Region Middle East and East Africa
The Ericsson Middle East Media Summit wrapped up in Beirut, having brought together telecommunications industry leaders from across the region, and sparked new and innovative ideas that will help bring the region closer to achieving optimum connectivity and becoming a truly ‘Networked Society.’ The event follows the Ericsson NEST (Networked Society Forum) event which was hosted in Hong Kong earlier this month.
The event was held under the high patronage of the President of the Council of Ministers His Excellency Mr. Najib Mikati, Lebanon Prime Minister. Participants, including CEOs from the region’s leading telecommunications operators, leaders in the research and consulting fields as well as members of the press from all around the region, all came together for the event on November 23rd to discuss ways in which ICT can benefit people, businesses and societies.
Topics covered during the event included social media as a driver for change in the telecom and media industries, the Networked Society’s impact on our planet, societies and countries as well as telecom customer trends in the region.
“An increasingly networked world has profound implications for all of us,” said Anders Lindblad, Ericsson’s President and Head of Region Middle East and East Africa. “Already, there have been major changes to the ways we communicate, work, and are entertained. And by 2020, we envisage a world with more than 50 billion connected devices. Therefore, there is a need for the industry to come together and discuss the way forward.”
The Lebanese Telecommunications Minister Nicolas Sehnaoui also attended the event providing valuable insight into industry developments in Lebanon. While Ghassan Hasbani, CEO-International, STC Group, Hassan Kabbani, Advisor to the chairman of Oger Group, Oger Telecom , Bassam Hannoun, Wataniyah Palestine CEO, Hussein Rifaï, MDIC Viva Cell Chairman, Ammar Aker, Paltel Group CEO, Hisham Akbar, CCO Zain Group and Alfa CEO Marwan Hayek were also on hand to take part in moderated discussions.
Lindblad, who hosted the event, described his experience in Beirut as energizing and refreshing, as so many key players from around the region come together with one common goal; “With some of the industry’s brightest minds in the same room having open discussions on the future of communications, there are, of course, some immediate results to this gathering. We have lowered the barriers and have come closer to experts in the media, research and consulting fields as well as our colleagues in the industry to understand the challenges and opportunities that lay ahead us on the road to the Networked Society within the region.”
Lebanon provided the perfect setting for the second instalment of the company’s NEST events, as Ericsson has a deep rooted commitment to the country and hopes to take part in efforts to rebuild its telecommunications sector.
Ericsson hopes to spark innovation and bring industry and field leaders together in other parts of the world with additional NEST events in order to continue to drive the global evolution towards the Networked Society.