Agency: GES

Client: Cisco

Event Name: GITEX

Agency Website:

The Brief

GITEX is the world’s most important consumer computer and electronics trade show, exhibition and conference, where the world’s technology leaders, enterprises and start-ups come together to display and demonstrate the very latest in future technologies. Staged at the Dubai World Trade Centre in United Arab Emirates, it hosts more than 4,500 exhibitors from over 1,240 countries and welcomes in excess of 100,000 people every year. For the 38th show, held on 6-10 October 2018, Multinational technology conglomerate, Cisco, wanted to unveil its latest suite of technologies in support of the Middle East’s path to digital transformation.

Simultaneously, the company wanted to achieve greater visibility at the show. As in previous years, Cisco announced its participation with a new design theme – ‘the secure, intelligent platform for digital business’. This theme would be supported by five key pillars – reinvent the network, embrace the multi-cloud world, unlock the power of data, employee and customer experience, security is foundation and everywhere. Once again, Cisco was participating with six of its technology partners, which were to be split into two categories – Diamond and Platinum. Diamond partners were to have a dedicated pod with a screen in the primary area, while Platinum partners would have a dedicated pod in a secondary area. The stand was also to have a mezzanine floor which would be divided into two meeting rooms, a staff area and storage space.

The Solution

Following a thorough and detailed brief with the client, we decided on a core creative concept and visitor journey to convey “the secure, intelligent platform for digital business” theme. GES developed several overriding objectives for the stand. Overall, it needed to provide an immersive visitor experience that would take visitors on a ‘connected’ journey through Cisco’s products and services, where they would experience how the company could change the digital landscape in the Middle East.

It also needed to deliver an environment that provided adequate space for Cisco and its technology partners to welcome and entertain clients and demonstrate solutions to their customers. All of this was enveloped in a brand story that increased awareness about Cisco’s digital business. Our creative designers decided that the optimum way to do this would be to create a ‘halo’ structure – a central two-level pod that would be surrounded by a series of smaller transparent acrylic partner booths for displays, presentations and demonstrations. Overhead hung a structure of three different sized hanging rings linked by an LED screen that displayed Cisco’s overreaching core narrative – increasing visibility of the stand across the show floor.

The Activation

One of the main entrances was a sensor-activated set of doors, developed by GES, that was entitled ‘door to the future’. On entering the stand, visitors could ask a question and they would be referred to the relevant Cisco expert who would give them information requested in real-time. This proved to be a real show-stopper with visitors. Throughout the stand were a number of touchpoints including demonstrations, simulations, interactive displays and holograms. GES developed interactive solutions that showcased product-led content and enhanced the overall stand experience. A giant 85” touchscreen was put in place so that visitors could browse through all product information at the touch of a button. A dedicated zone, which provided visitors with an immersive experience was then created to include an LED wall that could be controlled by browsing through an iPad mirroring feature. There was also an informal hospitality area where Cisco representatives and visitors could chat over a cup of tea or coffee.

The Results

The new design and experiential concept marked a new milestone for Cisco in the region. Visitor reactions and feedback by business partners about the stand were extremely positive. Partners felt the overarching Cisco messaging supported their individual narrative and created a coherent visitor experience. The campaign received widespread coverage in Middle Eastern media. The stand even attracted the attention of Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum who was taken on a personalised journey among a frenzy of press.