Middle East’s digital signage market is experiencing a huge growth

Channel Post MEA spoke to Wilfred de Man, General Manager for EMEA at Philips Signage Solutions to find out the company’s plans ahead post its official re-entry into the Middle East market.

Wilfred de Man, General Manager for EMEA at Philips Signage Solutions.
Wilfred de Man, General Manager for EMEA at Philips Signage Solutions.

Why has Philips Signage Solutions re-entered the Middle East market?
We officially announced our re-entry into the Middle East market at The Hotel Show in September this year. We as Philips Signage Solutions participated at Infocomm this year with the aim of reinforcing our leadership position in providing premium digital signage and display products.

According to a new report by Global Industry Analysts Inc. the global digital signage systems market is expected to reach $13.8 Billion by 2017. In the advent of new technologies, the digital signage industry is expected to grow exponentially in 2013. A switch to larger screen sizes, interactive interfaces and Android-based solutions, the digital signage industry will only get a boost.

Through our participation at Infocomm, we will be strengthening our existing relationships and building new partnerships in the fast-growing Middle East region.

What market trends do you see in the Middle East digital signage market?
We strongly believe that the digital signage industry is set to grow at a very rapid pace in the UAE and across the Middle East region. Digital signage will no more be just an option but necessity as the industry unveils innovative offerings.

There is a strong focus on special digital signage products in the Middle East – products that offer touch functionality. We as Philips Signage Solutions, offer a comprehensive product portfolio, so that we provide the right solution for every project and every vertical.

What is the target market for your video walls?
We have seen that our video walls are being used in a corporate environment, at the reception desks to use it as an interface to communicate with visitors. These video walls are also being used in shopping malls, wherein latest offers and product information can be directly displayed for mall’s visitors.

Philips’ zero bezel range of video walls are currently available in 46-inch and 55-inch sizes. At Infocomm, we also launched a new range of low-end, edge-lit commercial digital signage displays, the Q-Line. The new 32-inch, 42-inch and 46-inch screens are designed for basic applications requiring uncomplicated playback functionality.

What sort of application areas do you foresee for your display products?
Our products can be used in various indistry verticals such as hositality, education, corporate, retail, and so on. For instance, in the retail sector, there isn’t always enough space to display all the products on offer.

In such a scenario, retailers can use our touch-based products to showcase their entire product portfolio along with additional information such as features, special offers, and so on. This offers an interactive shopping experience for customers, thereby improving in-store footfalls.

What sort of channel strategies is Philips Signage Solutions working upon?
Philips is a very strong brand name and hence it is quite easy to find good partners. Of course we would like to have a selective distribution partners so that they don’t start competing against each other.

System integrators and solution providers are also important to us since they are the ones who work directly with the end customer and they have good knowledge about the local market. We have Platinum, Gold and Silver levels of partnership for our channel partners at the moment and we are working on setting up demo centers across the Middle East region.