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Three questions for Simon Mellor, CEO of Messe Frankfurt Middle East

Simon Mellor
Simon Mellor, CEO of Messe Frankfurt Middle East

1. In March 2021, the networking event Hypermotion is also being held in Dubai. Congratulations on this decision. How do the areas of focus at Hypermotion Dubai compare with those at Hypermotion Frankfurt? (mobility, smart cities, alternative drive systems, logistics etc.)

At this stage of the project the plan is to take the existing event and its unique collaborative nature and overlay the same structure, topics and features. We are also establishing two steering groups to help shape the specifics and tailor the content to the global and regional needs.

The local Dubai and UAE group will comprise of leading Government departments and industrial partners to draw on the best of the region, such as DP World, Emirates, RTA, Dubai South, Etihad Rail and Dubai Future Foundation as examples.

Globally we’re creating a network of cities that represent advanced transport and logistics systems, which have demonstrated the way forward. These cities will be represented in Dubai through their national pavilions at Expo 2020. Hypermotion in March 2021 will provide a dynamic platform for these cities to showcase their technical solutions, academic developments and future visions.

Hypermotion in March 2021 will provide a dynamic platform for these cities to showcase their technical solutions, academic developments and future visions.

2. If you could choose, what would be the USP of Hypermotion Dubai?

I’d highlight Dubai as one of the world’s most future-minded and dynamic cities with world-class facilities as the ideal environment to host Hypermotion and underline that with the global access that a World Expo provides. 192 countries showcasing their talents, culture and Government and economic strengths in one location. It’s a unique and exciting opportunity to host Hypermotion in Dubai during Expo 2020 from the 16th to 18th March 2021.

Dubai is both embracing digital technology itself, e.g. has aggressive targets around implementation of mobility related smart technologies which compare very favourably with any future-focused global city and it also wants to position itself as a significant hub where mobility and logistics related tech providers and developers will locate and invest. Hypermotion coming to Dubai will assist with that and is core to why the reaction has been so positive to-date.


3. Does the fact that Hypermotion Dubai is taking place alongside the World Expo offer synergies, or does it also present challenges?

Hosting Hypermotion in the newly built Dubai Exhibition Centre adjacent to the Expo 2020 site offers huge synergies for a number of reasons. The overriding theme of Expo 2020 ‘Connecting minds, creating the Future’ resonates with the values of the Hypermotion event, highlighting the collaborative nature of the community. In addition, the three Expo 2020 sub themes, Opportunity, Mobility and Sustainability provide a rich overlay for the specifics of Hypermotion. Mobility and sustainability are at the very heart of the Hypermotion concept.

Expo 2020 has attracted 192 country pavilions, each of which will be open to the public for the six months of the Expo. During that time, each pavilion is charged with engaging Government, Industry and the Public showcasing their attributes, passions and culture. These pavilions are hosting various delegations throughout the period, our plan is to ensure that between March 16th and 18th 2021 they invite speakers, industry, municipalities and Government that have interest in those specific topics in Hypermotion. Expo 2020 provides a unique platform from which to take Hypermotion to the global stage, exposing it to the entire world.

Beyond the value that Expo 2020 brings one must consider the attributes of Dubai as a host city.  In less than 50 years the United Arab Emirates and Dubai specifically have established themselves at the forefront of modern advances, especially logistics and mobility. Dubai offers much, the world’s busiest airport by volume, the fourth largest air cargo hub, one of the world’s leading ports, advanced autonomous Metro and Urban tram systems, as well as the ambition to convert 25% of all transport to autonomous driving by 2030. In addition, Dubai is developing a Cargospeed freight system similar to Hyperloop, a planned MagLev aerial mass transit passenger system as a GCC wide rail network.