A sneak peak ahead to MEFMA CONFEX 2015

MEFMA CONFEX 2015 aims to break new ground and engage the topic of smart technology

The next step for the Confex would be to move beyond the borders of the UAE.
The next step for the Confex would be to move beyond the borders of the UAE.

Focusing on technology and its impact on facilities management, MEFMA CONFEX 2015 aims to break new ground and engage the topic of smart technology.

Opening its doors once again, the third Middle East Facility Management Association (MEFMA) Confex is set to be the annual event’s biggest outing yet. Hosted at the Address Hotel in Dubai Marina, the two-day event will run from the 16th to the 17th of March, 2015, and is expected to feature 18 exhibitors, showcasing and engaging the latest developments of the FM industry.

“This year, we’ve taken the route of technology and how it is facilitating FM, connecting the client with the FM company, and with the end-user,” comments Sinead Bridgett, director of MEFMA.

Under the theme of Smart Technology. Smart Cities. Smarter FM, the event’s topics will primarily focus on technology, particularly the development and implementation of automated and smart systems. MEFMA’s director also expects the topic of innovation and management, specifically with inspirational management tactics on motivating employees, to feature prominently during the event.

“We have seen growth of about 20 to 30% year-on-year. We are expecting that again this year. We’re hoping to get 400 to 500 delegates over the two days,” comments Bridgett on the predicted turnout.

In addition to the increased foot traffic, MEFMA has noted improved participation from across the GCC, proving the once UAE-centric event is quickly crossing borders.

Following its successful inception last year, MEFMA’s workshop is also set to make an appearance once again. Scheduled for the 15th of March, the workshop will focus on the topic of business development in FM. Aside from guest speakers and seminars, the workshop’s program also includes a site visit to the Dubai Marina Mall.

This provides a unique opportunity for participants to get an inside look at the back-end operations of a mall facility. From an exhibitor point of view, Bridgett shared that the Confex is expecting increased participation from access platform vendors. Over the last year, MEFMA’s training centre introduced certification courses for both International Powered Access Federation (IPAF) and Standard Mobile Access Tower (PASMA).

Over 15 speakers are expected to participate over the two-day event, including MEFMA president and Imdaad’s CEO Jamal Abdulla Lootah, who will be conducting the opening address. The two keynotes will be delivered by industry experts Fredrik Haren and Jamil Qureshi, while the Confex itself will be facilitated by Duncan Waddell, managing director of Agents4RM Asia Pacific.

Also participating as a speaker at this year’s event is Alan K. Millin, scientist, engineer, environmentalist and thinker, as well as a long-standing veteran of the FM industry. Set to deliver a presentation on the topic of positioning FM for leadership, Millin lauds the event for its capacity to draw industry leaders from across the GCC to discuss the latest developments and challenges of the industry.

At this year’s edition, the FM consultant expects the event will cover a range of topics on strategic issues, regulatory challenges, as well as performance improvement initiatives.

“As the regional professional body, MEFMA can lobby for our interests, but only if we actively participate. This is the forum that provides access to MEFMA’s evolving body of knowledge and also the key players who develop that knowledge on a daily basis,” comments Millin.

It is a sentiment shared by fellow speaker Gabriel Uribe, Middle East Manager, Rosmiman Software, who views the event as a unique opportunity to not only showcase products, but to also share knowledge of trends and opportunities.

“As an innovative company, we never tire of learning, improving and developing our skills. During this event, not only visitors will benefit—we, as exhibitors and attendees, will take advantage of all the information to be learned,” comments Uribe.

In addition to its support of the MEFMA Confex as technology sponsor, Rosmiman is also set to participate at the event as an exhibitor. From its booth, the FM software developer is set to showcase a number of its software packages, particular applications designed with smart management concepts.

“Less than two years ago, the concept of smart government was unknown in the Middle East region. Now, the transformation into a smart government has become a key factor for decision-making,” explains Uribe, whose company specialises in smart systems.

One of its expected products at the Confex will be Rosmiman’s Smart Mobility suite, which contains a new generation of smart apps designed for complex maintenance needs, FM and smart city operations. The company will also present its Smart Cities platform, which combines a variety of tools to manage collated data generated from cities.

Moving beyond 2015, MEFMA’s Bridgett hopes that the Confex will continue to grow well beyond the borders of the UAE. While she praises the country as a top destination for regional events, compared to the sheer number of projects put forth by its neighbour Saudi Arabia, the director sees the UAE as a mere “drop in the ocean.”

“Our gaze is definitely shifting more towards other countries that are emerging that need to help to emerge facilities management sector. Because they [Saudi Arabia] are building such phenomenal projects, I don’t think they can put a complete value on what the FM involvement is going to be,” comments Bridgett.

List of Exhibitors at MEFMA CONFEX 2015
- Chicago Urbanise
- Advanced Facilities Management
- Dulsco Waste Management Services
- Emirates National Facility Management/Emirates Security Services
- Engage Selection
- FSI Solutions
- Khidmah
- Manlift Middle East
- McFarlane Telfer
- Media Fusion
- Rosmiman Software Corporation
- Sealed Air – Diversey Gulf
- SMART FM by Nanosoft
- Virtual IT

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