Bilal Hilal, managing editor at Dubai-based money mag Fortune Arabia, each year correlates the main movers and shakers from the Arab business world for the title’s famous lists of influential business leaders, including the famous Fortune 500.
Speaking at a panel discussion in Dubai yesterday on the challenges posed to publishers by digital technology, Hilal said that when it comes to doing business, the Arab world is near the top of the tree.
The regional boss of business title Fortune reckons that while the Arab world may be producing highly talented executives, when it comes to creative thinking, it’s still a small fish in a big pond
That’s not the case though, claimed the US-educated Jordanian national, when it comes to ‘outside-the-box’, entrepreneurial thought.
“We are absolutely 100 per cent consumers,” Hilal said of the region.
“We don’t contribute anything ourselves - at this moment we don’t contribute anything worldwide. We don’t take risks.”
However, the media industry could offer the perfect opportunity to bring something new and original to the table from this part of the globe. The rapid growth and “phenomenal reach” of digital media and content in Middle Eastern countries is one area that offers massively rich rewards to anyone that can properly turn digital into dirhams.
As well as “enriching the region’s information and knowledge economies”, the Fortune chief believes the trend has opened doors for active economic and investment opportunities.
Fortune boss Hilal added: “Media needs to understand that the game has changed - and we need to change with it.”