Celebrating its 25th edition this year, GITEX Shopper has earned its position as the largest and most anticipated consumer IT and electronics show in the Middle East. Attracting the world’s leading brands and the region’s power retailers, the show has grown in every respect since its first edition in 1991. Always a sell-out event, and constantly increasing in size, number of exhibitors, visitors and sales, GITEX Shopper reflects the growth of UAE in becoming a leading gateway for trade in almost every industry.
1991: GITEX Computer Shopper is launched at Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC). As the retail arm of the Gulf Information Technology Exhibition, and held concurrently, the event offers the general public the latest in home computer equipment, computer accessories and electronics.
1992: GITEX Computer Shopper opens two days before the trade-focused Gulf Information Technology Exhibition event to allow members of the public access to the show during the weekend. Over 30 companies offer special retail prices in a 750 square metre exhibition space in Hall 1. More than 10,000 private and trade buyers visit the show and purchase an estimated AED10 million worth of equipment.
1993: Over 12,000 visitors attend Computer Shopper with exhibitors reporting brisk sales.
1994: Event organiser, DWTC, reports a sold-out show two months prior as well as an increased space to 1,000 square metres. More than 17,000 visitors – a 41% increase from the previous edition – flocked to the retail-focused GITEX Computer Shopper, which generated over AED20 million in revenue.
1995: Due to increasing demand from computer retailers, show organisers expand Computer Shopper by 50% to offer some 1,500 square metres of exhibition space to 64 exhibitors and 35,000 visitors. This results in AED22.5 million in generated revenue.
1996: The four-day Computer Shopper announces longer shopping hours for the public and a 33% increase in space with more than 100 companies already booked to take part. Over 62,000 visitors attend with AED45 million generated in sales revenue.
1997: An unprecedented surge in attendance and sales results in organisers of the Computer Shopper extending the event by another day, attracting more than 150 local and regional companies. The five-day event is firmly established as one of the most prominent events in the marketing agendas of exhibitors and retailers in the region with 91,500 visitors – a 47% increase over last year – streaming through the doors.
1998: Computer Shopper draws 100,000 visitors looking for hi-tech bargains from the latest consumer electronics. Increased hall space accommodates bargain hunters from the Middle East, Africa, Indian sub-continent and CIS countries.
1999: GITEX Computer Shopper grows to 3,000 square meters at DWTC with AED65 million in sales concluded.
2000: GITEX Computer Shopper relocates to Airport Expo Dubai and is extended to eight days.
2001: GITEX Computer Shopper attracts over 125 IT retailers representing 200 companies from 15 countries displaying and selling the latest computers, accessories and peripherals across 12,000 square metres of space.
2003: Despite tension in the Gulf over Iraq and the worldwide economic downturn, GITEX Computer Shopper continues its upward trajectory and reports a 14% jump in the number of exhibitors.
2004: The 2004 edition breaks all previous records with more than 140 exhibitors representing 500 companies exhibiting and 108,000 consumers making a beeline to purchase the latest electronic gadgets.
2005: The renamed GITEX Shopper, now in its 15th edition, doubles its size with the addition of a new exhibition hall at the Airport Expo, which accommodates the rapidly increasing profile of the show. Retailers collectively report sales in excess of AED76 million. The event opens with more than 140 exhibitors from 15 countries and 117,994 visitors in the renovated and expanded Airport Expo.
2006: Retail spending at Gitex Shopper hits AED82 million over the seven-day event as shoppers take advantage of reduced prices on a range of consumer electronics. The total visitor number for Gitex Shopper is higher this year at 125,753.
2007: GITEX Shopper is 18% bigger this year, occupying 26,000 square metres of the Airport Expo, featuring over 170 exhibitors and more than 20,000 products. The event concludes sales to the tune of AED97 million compared to AED82 million in 2006.
2008: GITEX Shopper continues to grow in the face of the global financial crisis. GITEX Shopper exhibitors report that the first few days see a marked 25% to 50% increase in sales over the previous year.
2009: Dubai GITEX Shopper is open for two full weekends to give visitors more time to take advantage of the exclusive deals and promotions on a wide variety of technology. Ahead of the event, 20,000 visitors pre-register, a 40% increase over last year’s numbers.
2010: Spread over 32,000 square metres, GITEX Shopper offers more than AED2.5 million in prizes, which draw a large number of shoppers. Regular exhibitors increase their floor space by as much as 55% while others go the extra length to launch a series of promotions. Due to visitor demand, Gitex Shopper extends its opening hours until 11pm for the last day.
2012: GITEX Shopper moves back to the DWTC location, which is a contributing factor to the edition’s exceptional success. A total of AED237 million in sales is generated during the eight-day show, an increase of 23% over 2011. Visitor numbers also swell to 206,201, a 22% increase over the last year. The central location with easy access for visitors and 25% more space for exhibitors, allows the display of more than 25,000 products by some of the world’s top consumer IT and electronics brands.
2013: Following a directive by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, DWTC launches a new edition, GITEX Shopper Spring, which takes place in April. For the mainstay October event, power retailers and the world’s leading brands report excellent sales across the board, with an estimated AED245 million generated across the eight days. The much anticipated event attracts 210,324 visitors.
2014: GITEX Shopper 2014 celebrates high results in numbers of products sold, revenues generated and visitor footfall to its venue at DWTC. The eight-day electronics extravaganza generates an estimated AED259 million and welcomes 211,398 visitors with more than 35,000 products on show.
GITEX Shopper 2015 runs until Saturday, 10th October and is open from 11:00am – 11:00pm every day. Tickets are priced at AED 30 per person and are available at the venue and at select Emarat outlets and entry is free for children below the age of five. A promotional entry ticket price of AED 10 is available for students pre-registered in groups over 50. Entry is free for children below the age of five.