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The Virtual Reality (VR) market in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region is expected to grow at a rapid rate according to Deloitte. Factors driving the MENA VR technology growth are among the topics discussed in the summer 2016 issue of Deloitte’s quarterly publication, the Middle East Point of View (ME PoV).

The issue also explores other hot topics in the region such as: the implementation of International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) in Saudi Arabia and the region; ISO 37001, the new standard in anti-bribery compliance, and its impact on Middle East companies; what it takes to create “irresistible” organizations to attract and retain talent; factors impacting the smooth transition of a family business to the next generation; business disruption underway in the telecom technology; and tips to chief information officers to shape their legacy in MENA companies.  The questions that Deloitte experts discuss in this issue of ME PoV reflect the changes that currently dominate headlines in the world in general and the Middle East in particular.

Deloitte experts expect the MENA VR technology growth to be driven by several factors including: increasing focus by MENA companies to deliver innovative products and services tailored to demands of regional customers; increased pressure to reduce operational costs due to continued depression of oil prices; lower acquisition costs and greater accessibility to VR technologies and expertise; and increased number of computer gamers and interest in VR-enabled gaming and enterprise applications.

 “Early adopters of concept gaming products will continue to be the mainstay of the industry but increasingly more products will begin to be purchased by casual gamers. VR-enabled games are delivered for personal computers (PC), console and mobile platforms, with currently the largest segment being PC solutions,” explains Zaid Selman, Assistant Director, Transaction Services, Deloitte Corporate Finance Limited. “VR applications delivered through smartphone and tablet devices will also continue to grow, however most are still at an early stage of development and will mostly appeal to casual gamers or technology enthusiasts.”

In “Factsheet: IFRS 16 Leases standard”, Steven Harmer, Audit Director at Deloitte in Saudi Arabia discusses the potential accounting and business impacts following the implementation of the IFRS 16 Leases standard. Harmer wrote: “The adoption of the new leasing standard could have a significant impact on lessees, both accounting- and business related. Lessors could face an increased business risk resulting from the adoption of the leasing standard; while investors will have access to better information and thus be able to make better investment decisions.”

Collin Keeney, Forensic Director at Deloitte Corporate Finance Limited, highlights  the new ISO 37001 standard in his report “It’s certifiable”, which will be the new standard in anti-bribery compliance, and its impact on Middle East companies. Keeney explained: “This will have a real, direct impact on partnering and business decisions by the multinationals. Consider how easy the decision will be between two companies of relatively equal merit, when one of them has ISO 37001 certification and the other does not. It will become an advantage and a differentiator in this very competitive market.”

The evolution of the CIO role within the company is highlighted in “Shaping CIO legacy”. “Every company today is becoming a technology company and the CIO has a unique opportunity to drive and impact both, top-line and bottom-line initiatives” concludes Rajeev Lalwani, Lead Partner, Technology Consulting at Deloitte in the Middle East.

In talent management, Maya Rafii Zaatari, Human Resources Director at Deloitte in the Middle East, discussed how employers should devise “actionable solutions to create tangible business outcomes and make the organization “irresistible.””

In “Communication, Communication, Communication”, Walid Chiniara, Partner and Deloitte Private regional leader, and Yasmine Omari, Manager, Family Enterprise Consulting at Deloitte Middle East, highlight the importance of communication in family business. “Communication is not just integral to the smooth transition of a family business from one generation to the next, it is imperative for the continuing success of a family business where the differing outcomes of commercial and emotional decisions often conflict,” the authors explain.

Andrew Jeffery, Capital Projects Managing Director at Deloitte Corporate Finance Limited, elaborates in his report “East meets Middle East” on the business opportunities generated by the “increasing regional fusion [of the Middle East] with Asia and how Middle Eastern businesses should move forward to explore the benefits for their investment, development or infrastructure projects.”

Emmanuel Durou, Consulting Partner and Technology, Media and Telecommunications Leader, and Hasan Iftikhar, Consulting Senior Manager at Deloitte in the Middle East discuss how business disruption is also underway in the telecom sector in their report Transformers II: time for strategic choices in the telecoms market. “These drastic changes in the business models of telcos have forced them to find new ways to interact with the digital ecosystem […] they need to rethink their commercial models and terms of engagement with the other players in the value chain,” the author argued.

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