The Entrepreneurship and Innovation Foundation (EIS) supports NOH Production’s ambition to expand into the UAE market.

The Entrepreneurship and Innovation Foundation (EIS) supports NOH Production’s ambition to expand into the UAE market.

Estonian entrepreneurs are increasingly striving for success with their businesses in the United Arab Emirates or the broader Gulf region. With over 200 different nationalities residing in the Emirates, choosing the right customer base and marketing channels is crucial, notes Birgit Karus, a partner at NOH Production digital agency. The European Union supports NOH Production’s ambition to expand towards the UAE and enhance the visibility of Estonian businesses in the region.

“When entering the Emirates market, one must consider that it is resource-intensive, both in terms of time and finances. Closing deals takes a long time and requires regular presence, or even better, being physically present,” states Ege Devon, the Gulf region representative of EIS.

She also points out that cultural differences in business practices often pose barriers. “Before closing deals, the counterpart wants to get to know you, and trust needs to be established before proceeding to business transactions. In Nordic countries, we are more accustomed to the idea that the product and price should primarily match, with personal relationships taking a back seat,” explains Devon.

“The Emirates or the broader Gulf market focus on IT, defense industry, digital medicine, and food industry. Based on this, EIS organizes annual contact trips to the region and participates in Estonian joint stands at regional trade fairs,” says Devon.

Devon emphasizes the need to clearly understand which marketing channels are most suitable and effective, as marketing is costly. Often campaigns and messages need to be adjusted to fit the local market, and it’s beneficial if marketers understand the entrepreneur’s product or service while grasping the local context simultaneously.

Founders of NOH Production Birgit Karus (left) and Mervi Pirhonen (right).

Birgit Karus, who has supported Estonian entrepreneurs with marketing in the region, states that their action plan in Dubai could work in two directions: “We want to find local clients there and help Estonian companies gain visibility in that market.”

Karus mentions that the company has so far contributed to introducing Estonian design firms in Dubai. One successful example is introducing the Estonian designer Riina Laanetu’s brand to the United Arab Emirates. Furthermore, she believes Estonian products have great potential to succeed in the region: “Often people think Dubai is all about gold and glamour, but in reality, European Nordic style, high product quality, and natural materials such as solid wood, cotton, and wool are highly appreciated.”

“We spend a lot of time in Dubai ourselves, and we have a good understanding of the market. We can help Estonian companies reach their desired audience with optimal costs and find important contacts to introduce their brand,” explains Karus.

According to Karus, Estonian entrepreneurs’ experiences with local marketing agencies vary. “Some complain that Estonian companies cannot afford the fees there, but also that behind impressive websites and appearances, there is often a completely different team. Sales and actual work may be handled by a different partner, and there is a high risk of being deceived,” notes Karus.

See our latest works:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.