Partner Newsletter May 2021
Look at Me Now
Meet the Team - Pete Sams Pavilion Director
Expo Spotlight - Inam Haider CEO HSG
Programming Update - World Water Day 2022
Expo Update - Covid Safety Measures
Life in Dubai
Discover Expo's Online Marketplace
Look at me now!
The investment into the Australian Expo journey has already generated over $160 million worth of business. Our participation in this global event is monumental and we are excited for the months ahead as we lead into the opening of Expo in October. Currently we’re in the process of refining our visitor and VIP experiences which is founded on 60,000 years of indigenous connection to land, waters and sky. Early this year we had the pleasure of welcoming Her Excellency Reem Al Hashimy, Managing Director of the Dubai Expo 2020 Higher Committee to the pavilion to see the progress we’ve made. Colourful, bright and engaging art from indigenous artist Josh Muir is the first thing guests will see as they enter a gallery filled with ambient light and sounds of Australia. As the Australian expo journey begins, each guest is invited to listen to individual stories from Australians young and old as they chronicle life in Australia and tell of the opportunity for greatness through collaboration, ingenuity, optimism and true Aussie spirit. We’re fortunate to have a great Australian company, Accolade, bringing all these elements together and look forward to sharing these inspiring Australian stories with the world.
Meet the Team
Pete Sams, Pavilion Director
Over the past few years, we’ve watched as the Australian pavilion has come to life. From concept design to the spectacular building we see today, Pete Sams has been the driving force behind ensuring our Pavilion reflects the Australian spirit of optimism, innovation and infinite possibilities. Last month Pete, sat down with the team at HSG to discuss why Expo 2020 will be the best yet!
Q. You have the title of Pavilion Director, what does that mean?
A. As Australian Pavilion Director, I will be managing operations at the pavilion to ensure that we deliver a high quality, informative and enjoyable experience for visitors and guests. We will demonstrate to the world what an amazing place Australia is to visit, study and do business in.
Q. Hospitality and international travel have taken a beating – how important is Expo to start the world moving again?
A. Critical. As one of the first mega-events as the world starts to focus on economic recovery, the UAE and all participating countries recognise what an important role the Expo will play in showing that recovery is possible and happening. The Expo will also be a terrific example of how to host a mega-event in a safe manner, but still offering an excellent experience for the millions of visitors.
Q.We understand you may be a veteran at these type of events – tell us more!
A. My thirty-one year career with the Australian foreign ministry continues to be wonderful. I have been lucky to serve in many countries including Expos in Aichi, Japan in 2005 and again in Shanghai, China in 2010. While Dubai is very different, and it would be entirely inappropriate to simply repeat prior approaches, it is certainly an advantage to be able to draw on prior success and failures. This will certainly be the best yet!
Q. You must have had some amazing experiences – apart from working with HSG – what is your highlight of Australia’s Expo Heritage?
A. Actually, working with partners like HSG is a really nice part of the work. Establishing that we both can support each other in achieving our own goals and to do so in a professional, but also fun way, is very Australian and very rewarding. In terms of personal highlights, I spent half an hour showing Chinese President Hu Jintao through the pavilion in Shanghai, and similarly for the Crown Prince (now Emperor) of Japan. As an Australian, it was an honor to show Princess Mary and the Danish Crown Prince through our pavilion too. But beyond the name-dropping, the really rewarding part of these projects is creating a team and a pavilion that represent our beautiful and diverse country, and to do so in a way that shows the public and VIPs not only what they expect to see of Australia (yes, when visiting Australia you will see a kangaroo!) but also to show the diversity, ingenuity and true spirit of Australia.
Q. What is the importance of having partners like HSG forming part of the pavilion experience?
A. How could we not? The point of our presence is to advance Australia’s interests and to showcase the best of Australia. The Expo team and I are working with high quality Australian businesses such as HSG to demonstrate what they are capable of and their capacity to provide the highest standards of product or service.
Q.Just give us a taster of what visitors can expect?
A. The experience starts with a warm Australian welcome! Then we will speak about our 60,000 years of Indigenous history including how Australia’s first people were the world’s first astronomers. . We will also look to the future and give visitors a sense of the unlimited possibilities that our theme “Blue Sky Dreaming” and the idea of connected optimism can bring…and of course you can enjoy Australian food and drinks, souvenirs and watch performances in our forecourt. Australia is also the leading nation for sport at the Expo, and right next door to the pavilion is the Aussie Sports park, where we will hold a huge variety of sports, health and wellness activities.
Q. What can the Australian Pavilion offer to business?
A. The pavilion will host an enormous variety of business, trade promotion and government-led events in the pavilion’s VIP area (where a lot of the HSG product will be put to use!). Whether you are a customer of, or an Australian business, there will be definitely be activities to take part in.
Q. What are you most worried about as we approach opening day?
A. Our pavilion is ready, and we are now working through the staffing and setup of equipment in the building. I am confident that we have the various components for success. For those Australian businesses that are unable to attend in person, we will have innovative options for online participation. So what am I worried about?…I want to make sure that we establish terrific quality for day one, and then sustain and improve that performance throughout the six months…it is a marathon not a sprint. Our partnership with HSG will assist us to do that.
Inam Haider, CEO HSG
With the HSG team interviewing Pete, we thought we’d reciprocate for this edition of the partners newsletter and chat to CEO Inam Haider. Just like most of us, Inam was quick to point out he never has enough hours in the day, and yet HSG continues to push boundaries with exciting innovation and AI technologies.
Q. What is HSG, where are you located, how many staff do you employ?
A. Hospitality Solution Group is Headquartered in Melbourne, Australia. Our Middle East office is in Dubai and we work with partners around the world. We are a diverse team of 30 with members from Philippines, Pakistan, India, United States, United Kingdom and of course Australia.
Q.How long have you worked for HSG, what’s your role, what does your typical day look like?
A. I founded HSG in 2012 and I am now the CEO. A typical day for us is full of action as we coordinate with our teams from around the globe. We are strategically located in a variety of time zones. Typically, I start my day looking after our concerns in APAC. After that I coordinate with our US operations. By afternoon in Melbourne, the Middle East begins to wake and I meet with the Dubai team to cover sales and operations. I also have to make time for my four kids and beautiful wife - I could do with 48 hour days!
Q. Tell us about HSG’s involvement with Expo Dubai 2020?
A. HSG is delighted to have been selected as one of the official partners for the Australian Pavilion at EXPO 2020. We are supplying cutting edge venue technology as well as hospitality products to help make the experience safe, memorable and comfortable. We are also privileged to have supplied a number of technology products to hotels, both on and offsite, who are preparing for the event. I will also make sure all our employees and families have time to visit the site and see the areas they have worked on - Expo is for everyone to enjoy.
Q. What are you hoping to achieve through your involvement?
A. EXPO 2020 looks to waken the pause in international exhibition and trade travel. The whole event is a beacon of light for our industry in very tough times. The EXPO 2020 represents the first big catalyst for world trade and commerce to bounce back. We seek to reach out to new and existing customers, letting them know we remain one of the most rapidly expanding Hospitality supply companies across the globe. The service visitors will receive inside the Australian Pavilion closely reflects our own company values - friendly, professional and dependable service. I really look forward to meeting fellow Australian and International businesses throughout the event and forging long lastings partnerships.
Q.Your company specialises in innovative products, tell us about some of your most exciting and recent innovations.
A. Where do I start! HSG prides ourselves on innovation and customisation. From our Media Connectivity Panels through to our Artificial Intelligence People Counting Solution we ensure we provide technology that solves genuine problems for hospitality. In terms of safety I am most excited about our new range of pouches and anti-virus films which kill pathogens on contact and can be applied to devices and surfaces.
Q. HSG works with some of the best hotels , bars and venues in the world. Any particular favourites ? And have you had the opportunity to stay in any of them ?
A. HSG handles large turnkey projects through to small specialist orders. We also provide solutions aimed specifically at Expo properties and Pavilions. While it is hard to pick one place out of all the wonderful places I have been lucky enough to visit. My favorite hotel would have to be The Address by Emaar - they also happen to be our clients!
World Water Day at the Women’s Pavilion, 22 March 2022
Making the Invisible Visible: Elevating women and marginalised people in water management and WASH
Women informally lead the management of water resources, water supply, sanitation and hygiene behaviour (WASH), yet a significantly smaller percentage of women than men perform decision-making roles within community structures, businesses, government, and research positions set up to address water issues. How can women contribute to and benefit meaningfully from improved water management if they are absent in decision making processes? How do we ensure diversity in the management of water cycle, including water supply and sanitation to achieve a more secure and equal world?
In recognition of World Water Day 22 March, and the 2022 theme ‘Groundwater: Making the invisible visible’, join us to begin shifting norms to ensure women and marginalised people are not ‘out of sight and out of mind’.
Lock it in your diary now and stay tuned for more programming details.
COVID Safety Measures
Across the UAE, COVID-19 safety measures have been in place since early 2020. Wearing a mask and carrying hand sanitizer has become second nature for UAE residents.
Expo 2020 Dubai want to ensure everyone’s visit is both enjoyable and safe, so in line with the latest guidance from Dubai Health Authority and the UAE Ministry of Health and Prevention, Expo has implemented a number of precautionary measures to manage and mitigate the risks of COVID-19.
- Thermal cameras at arrival points to check the temperature of visitors before entry to the site
- An abundance of hand-sanitising stations and washrooms
- Markings on the ground indicating the appropriate distance to keep, whether you are queuing, viewing exhibits and performances or enjoying parks and recreational areas
- Dining areas with tables adequately distanced from one another and with the appropriate seating capacity
- Expo staff members to assist you with your questions and guide you on our safety practices
- Medical clinics and facilities, in case you feel unwell
Additionally, more than half of the UAE population has now received the COVID-19 vaccine, with vaccinations being given at more than 205 medical centres around the country. The UAE are working hard to succeed in having a fully vaccinated community, which is an indication of the strength of the medical and health systems in the UAE and of their commitment to ensure the health and wellbeing of UAE citizens, residents and visitors.
Life in Dubai
With Commissioner General Dubai Expo 2020, Justin McGowan
Dubai is like no other city in the world!
It has a vibrant energy that draws you in and encourages you at every turn to discover your adventurous spirit. For the past three years I have had the incredible opportunity to bring the Australian Expo story to life and now as Expo approaches I’d like to share with you some of my UAE experiences and must do activities that I highly recommend you add to your Expo itinerary.
Earlier this year I got to see Dubai from a whole new angle. Skydiving over the world-famous Palm Jumeirah. The Palm is one of Dubai’s iconic man-made islands and resembles a stylised palm tree and is home to luxurious resorts and five-star restaurants. Somehow, I convinced my whole family to jump with me and thankfully the reward of seeing the Dubai skyline stretching out across the golden sands of the emirate, the blue waters of the Arabian gulf and the expansive 438-hectare expo site far outweighed any jumping jitters.
If jumping from a plane is not your thing, you’ll still be able to get a birds-eye view of expo from the top of the rotating observation tower at expo which provides sweeping views of the site and beyond. A stand out feature will be with be the Mobility Pavilion which is located right next to the Australian Pavilion. It features the world’s largest passenger lift, which will transport 160+ people at a time. The pavilion also stars a partly underground, partly open-air 330-metre track for you to see cutting-edge mobility devices in action. Aside from the Australian Pavilion the mobility pavilion is a definite must see, as you will come face to face with the larger-than-life, nine-metre-tall historical giants of mobility whose innovations helped navigate the world and paved the way for the technology we use today.
The mobility pavilion takes us from the past into the present and beyond, on a journey to the future where smart cities are created through artificial intelligence, big data, robotics, machine learning and autonomous transport. The mobility pavilion will showcase the complexity of moving goods around the world and how mobility could evolve in the human-centred city of the future.
Expo 2020 Dubai aspires to deliver one of the most sustainable World Expos ever!
To achieve this ambitious goal, Expo has developed a strategy packed with ideas – from recycling to promoting natural solutions – that are as intricate as they are innovative.
Sustainability goals include:
- 90% of the materials used to construct the site will be used to create legacy buildings after the event.
- 85% of all waste – including municipal solid waste, construction waste and decommissioning waste – to be segregated, treated and diverted from landfill.
- Energy consumption in permanent buildings to be reduced by more than 30 per cent during the six months of Expo through a combination of traditional design strategies, highly efficient equipment and smart building technology.
- Water consumption will be reduced by using methods such as smart controls for metering and irrigation. Potable water consumption will also be minimised through cutting-edge approaches, such as systems that convert moisture in the air into water.
Promoting natural solutions for visitors to remain cool and comfortable. 75 % of the concourse shaded by green canopies. They can enjoy a variety of walkable spaces and an abundance of landscaped areas that contain mostly local and adaptive species, and are managed without the use of chemical pesticides, herbicides or fertilisers.
Discover Expo's online market place
An Expo 2020 Dubai tool for businesses to connect, collaborate and compete for business opportunities globally
Inspired by the Expo 2020 Dubai theme, ‘Connecting Minds, Creating the Future’, the Online Marketplace aims to drive collaboration and growth by enabling businesses of all sizes to advertise their capabilities, market for business globally and connect with others within the supply chain.
Expo 2020 Dubai has committed 20 per cent of its spend to local and international Small & Medium Enterprises (SMEs), representing billions of dirhams (AED) in opportunities.
The Online Marketplace is a powerful platform for finding the very best products and services on offer globally, including the freshest and most innovative ideas developed by SMEs worldwide.
This is just the beginning of the journey to 2020 and beyond. Register here