Posted on November 12, 2017

Huge-scale new builds partnered with widespread redevelopment projects have made the Gulf one of the world’s most lucrative markets for interior designers – with the region’s contractor and fit-out market predicted to be worth almost US$17billion in 2018.

A region-wide study by market analysts Ventures – the details of which are released today (MONDAY), the first day of INDEX Qatar, Doha’s debut hosting of the international interior design exhibition – discovered that the value of interior-based design and fit-out spend across almost all sectors will increase in the next 12 months. In Qatar alone, the money invested in interior projects within each of these sectors – commercial, residential, retail, hospitality, medical and educational developments – will be close to US$1.5billion.

The report – commissioned exclusively by INDEX – stated that a rise in private sector projects was bringing “a renewed emphasis on refurbishment”, with property owners “looking to retool existing structures to serve new needs and demands.” Industry experts concluded that “interior design and fit-out contractors are now asserting their dominance and vitality in a market increasingly in need of their services”.

Jaafar Shubber, event director at INDEX Qatar, said: “This region and Qatar especially will play host to some of the world’s biggest events over the next decade; it is easily one of the most exciting places to be for interior designers and architects at this moment in time. “Huge developments are underway across the region, from hotels, to malls, whole new residential neighbourhoods and stadiums. The opportunities are endless for what continues to be a burgeoning industry in the Middle East.

“INDEX is here to help unite our most creative design minds with the international suppliers and manufacturers that bring some of the best furniture, décor and furnishings to the market. Combined with our stellar agenda of Design Talks speakers, our first ever INDEX promises to be the one must-attend event for all industry professionals looking to embrace Qatar’s interior design market.”

According to the report, the Gulf’s interiors industry will be valued at its highest within the building sector in 2018, where its annual worth is estimated to grow to $8.7bn. The commercial real estate ($1.5bn), hotel ($2.13bn), hospital ($740m) and education ($452m) sectors are all forecast to increase their interiors investment in 2018. The residential ($2.9bn) and retail ($813m) sectors are expected to remain extremely buoyant. All aspects of interior design will be showcased during INDEX Qatar, designed to offer interior designers, architects and procurement managers the ultimate creative platform on which to network and source some of the finest furniture and décor found anywhere in the world.

As well as the buying opportunities, INDEX also offers a host of industry-leading knowledge seminars through three days of Design Talks. Speakers lined up for INDEX Qatar include Shahd ElMahdi, Interior Design Manager at ASTAD Project Management; Peter Cook, Managing Director of the British Chamber of Commerce in Qatar; and Esra Al-Kazem Design Director, AEA Designs. They will be joined on the panel by designers, architects, CEOs and directors from the likes of Atelier Ten, the Arab Engineering Bureau, LACASA Architects & Engineers and Sabban Interiors, with more than 15 talks scheduled across the duration of the event.

INDEX Qatar – which is backed by Qatar Tourism Authority (QTA) and free to attend by pre-registering online – will host more than 50 international exhibitors showcasing a wide range of furniture, furnishings and décor. It is expected to welcome more than 3,000 people across its three days at the Doha Exhibition Convention Center starting today, and promises an engaging, interactive design experience for all attending. The show begins today (MONDAY) at 11am. To find out more, visit