The 22nd edition of CABSAT will continue to drive disruptive innovation and monetization opportunities across the MENA film and audio entertainment media market.

Running March 8-10 at Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC), CABSAT 2016 will welcome more than 15,000 regional and international visitors involved in the creation, management, distribution and monetization of content to explore pioneering products, technologies and regional investment avenues. The tailored event provides an opportunity for industry professionals to test, use and experience the latest equipment in the broadcast, satellite communication, content delivery and electronic media industries.

With the Middle East and Africa filmed and audio entertainment media market undergoing a fascinating transformation, forecasts by the global analyst division of Pricewaterhouse Coopers, Strategy&, predict entertainment and media spend will reach US$66 billion by 2018. In this lucrative environment, CABSAT provides a tailored experience for industry experts to engage, strategize and debate future market trends.

Leading the CABSAT 2016 agenda are the rise of time-shifted, or 'binge' viewing, video on demand (VOD) platforms, and the mass regional adoption of internet-driven content delivery platforms including internet protocol television (IPTV) TV delivered over broadband and over the top (OTT) methods - content streamed directly to handheld devices, game consoles and smart TVs connected to broadband.

In a region where more than 900 free to air TV channels serve the Arab world, satellite distribution still account for over 80 percent of the regional market. Despite being relatively new options, IPTV and OTT already contribute to nearly 20 percent of regional content delivery platforms, thereby providing new opportunities for broadcasters and pay-TV operators to monetize content via an emerging post-TV market.

""The accelerated adoption of mobile technology across the region has created tremendous and transformative opportunities across multiple media platforms,"" said Trixie LohMirmand, senior vice president, exhibitions and events manager, DWTC. ""As international media companies and investors consider their global expansion strategies, MENA warrants new consideration and CABSAT provides a strategic entry-point.""

With more than 950 local, regional and international exhibitors at CABSAT 2016, the event will also boast the all new Content Marketplace - a dedicated content market for TV and film content creators, production houses and studios, distributors of content, producers, editors and advertising houses. The Content Marketplace will focus on buying, selling and co-production opportunities for Arabic and international content. Partners include Dubai Studio City TV and Film Commission, Dubai Film, VIACOM, Zee TV, Fox, MBC Group, NBC Universal and many regional broadcast pavilion organizers including the Nigerian Broadcast Commission.

""The Content Marketplace is the region's first exhibition focused purely on the selling and exchange of filmed entertainment content,"" added LohMirmand. ""International players from East and West will meet to discuss accessing and procuring content, co-production and format opportunities for scripted and non-scripted content, as well as monetizing viewing mechanisms that are thriving across the Middle East and beyond - from the demand for increased production of local, Arabic content to the highly-lucrative, emerging post-TV market for multi-language content.""

CABSAT 2016 will also boast a rebranded conference called the Content Congress - held under the theme 'The Future of Television in a Connected World' - and meetings program dubbed the 'Red Carpet Lounge'.

Finally, the show will also feature expanded certified post-production trainings, CxO roundtables, an aerial robotics and drone zone, the content delivery hub, a live hackathon competition to develop apps for the next generation viewing experience and CABSAT Connect - a dedicated C-level evening network event.

The satellite hub - held in partnership with the GVF - will focus on key technical trends and major satellite issues and challenges across the satellite communications industry.