MIPCOM 2013: Arab world eager for content, says twofour54 CEO

Rebecca Hawkes | 11-10-2013

Noura Al Kaabi, CEO of Abu Dhabi's twofour54, has called for the creation of more relevant, locally created content for the Arab world during a panel discussion in Cannes, according to the Emirates Media Agency.

"We might not be Hollywood or Bollywood yet, but we are open to different cultures and our media industry is growing rapidly. There are more than 300 million Arabic speakers eager for content that reflects Arab identity and culture and that matches the quality of content that can be found on international channels," Al Kaabi told the audience.
Offering customised content for different audiences should be of key importance to broadcasters and online video providers, especially due to the proliferation of content available on the Internet, she said, adding that advertising must also reflect the needs of different audiences.
"Google and Apple TV give audiences audio, video and photo content, while Amazon and Netflix promise easy to use, high quality, smart and interactive TV. This revolutionary TV experience will take us to a whole new world," said Al Kaabi.
She highlighted the efforts by the twofour54 production hub to develop the film industry in the UAE, and called on local talent to join one of the media training programmes the government-supported initiative runs. In particular, she called on Arab women to enter new sectors of content creation and take on new roles. "The media industry is not just about standing in front of camera, rather there are many sectors in this dynamic industry in which women can be involved," she said.
Panellists participating in the discussion alongside Al Kaabi included British actress Emily Mortimer who co-created and wrote the series Doll and Em; Nancy Dubuc, president and CEO of A and E Networks; and Roma Khanna, president of MGM Television Group and Digital.