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Digital

Social media fuels DMN’s start-up venture in Middle East

A virtual revolution is happening in the Arab world and start-up ventures such as DMN), a UAE-based social media and digital marketing service provider, are flourishing amid a growing online market.

Tariq Abu Samra, CEO and Head of Business development at DMN, said they saw an opportunity in 2014 to fill a gap in a market that is teeming with potential. “While there were big multinational advertising agencies providing social media and online marketing support, there were very few start-up agencies that can also deliver professional and high-quality creative work at reasonable rates.

“We decided to launch DMN to cater primarily to the needs of small and medium businesses who want to use social media and online platforms to connect with their target markets, at a fraction of the cost they would pay large ad agencies,” Abu Samra said.

And their timing couldn’t have been better, Internet penetration rate in the Middle East is steadily rising – 36% compared to the global average of 40% in 2014, with the number of users estimated at 135 million in 22 Arab countries. In addition, regional mobile penetration rate is one of the highest in the world at 110% and over 71 million are active users of social networking technologies, as per a recent survey by the Mohammed Bin Rashid School of Government.

“There was clearly a demand for our type of business. In our first month since launching, we were able to close deals with five brands, providing them with services ranging from social media and web design, to SEO, outdoor media and photography. Today, we serve more than 100 clients – including 25 local and 10 international brands – across the region,” Abu Samra added.

DMN acquires an average of 15 new clients every month and by the end of 2015, its CEO said they hope to reach its target of servicing 300 regional clients.

Aside from Abu Samra, DMN’s pioneer team included Ibrahim Bchara, Head of IT and Web Development; and Ihab Ahmed, Head of Digital and Social Media. The team has since expanded to 17 staff.

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