His Highness Sheikh Mansour bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum today opened Insomnia Dubai, a three-day gaming extravaganza being held for the first time in Dubai. The event, taking place from 17-19 October at the Meydan Grandstand, mirrors the Insomnia Gaming Festival, the UK’s largest event for gamers.
Attracting major e-gamers and international gaming developers, the event is in line with Dubai’s drive to consolidate its position as a hub for futuristic technologies by attracting the brightest minds and expertise in the sector.
Sheikh Mansour toured the festival area, which features 240 exhibitors and 100 gaming platforms. The event is set to attract 25,000 visitors. Insomnia Dubai is supported by the Government of Dubai Media Office’s Dubai 10X Media initiative.
During the tour, Sheikh Mansour was briefed on the latest developments in electronic and cyber gaming globally and in the Middle East. The Middle East is one of the most promising gaming markets in the global industry with the world’s fastest annual growth rate of 25%. Gamers constitute six out of ten of the online population in the region. Major gaming developers participating in the event also briefed His Highness about key trends driving the sector and the opportunities they are seeking from the region.
Abdulla Al Mansouri, Team Leader of GDMO’s Dubai 10X Media said: “Dubai’s economic development is focused not merely on keeping pace with global developments in emerging industries, it aims to be global frontrunners in them. Today, Dubai is undergoing a digital transformation, which will cement its position as a hub for content creation and a global platform for eSports and cyber gaming, one of the fastest growing industries in the MENA region.”
Al Mansoori explained that the Government of Dubai Media Office, through the Dubai 10X Media team, continues to work towards enhancing the eSports sector by attracting the most important events in this field to Dubai and various elements of the sector’s ecosystem including experts and technology developers. Gaming is becoming increasingly popular around the world and has emerged as a multi-billion-dollar industry. The events GDMO is bringing to Dubai offer opportunities for industry networking, sharing knowledge and expertise and exploring global partnerships, he said.
INSOMNIA Dubai will be hosting 16 of the most popular games for gaming enthusiasts to ‘Turn Up & Play’, apart from mobile gaming, VR, tabletop games, cosplay, esports finals, and diverse stage shows. The mega event was launched in Dubai as part of a multi-year partnership with Dubai-based events company, Global Event Management.
Insomnia Dubai features a glittering array of the world’s biggest gaming stars. Josh, Ethan and Tobi of YouTube gaming superstars The Sidemen, original Pokémon theme singer Jason Paige, industry icon Tommy Tallarico, and YouTube gaming sensation Fasoleyya are special guests at the Festival.
Saudi Arabia-based YouTube gaming influencer Fasoleyya will be appearing at Insomnia Dubai as part of the Fortnite feature area, where he will take part in 1v1s and meet & greets over the course of the three-day gaming festival. With 1.47 million YouTube subscribers and more than 255 million channel views, Fasoleyya (real name: Faisal Omri) is a gaming sensation not only in the Middle East but all over the world. Josh (@zerkaahd), Ethan (@behzinga) and Tobi (@tobjizzle) of The Sidemen will also be taking part in meet & greets, 1v1 video games, main stage appearances, and after-party events, giving fans opportunities for selfies and autographs.
The global industry as a whole is expected to generate another $1.5 billion in annual revenues by 2020. There are now more than 2.5 billion gamers across the world. Combined, they will spend $152.1 billion on games in 2019, representing an increase of 9.6 percent year on year.