Muslim Lifestyle Expo 2016 brings regional, global brands under one roof

Muslim Lifestyle Expo 2016 brings regional, global brands under one roof
Muslim Lifestyle Expo 2016 brings regional, global brands under one roof
One of the largest trade shows in the Muslim world, called Muslim Lifestyle Expo of 2016, is planned for Oct. 29-30 in Manchester, England, but many of the exhibitors will be bringing wares from GCC countries like the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

Top brands at the event will include Turkish Airlines, ASDA and Al Rayan Bank, as well as RAF, Manchester Art Galleries, London Beard Company, Abaci, Modestly Active and Human Appeal.

Founders of the event described it as a marketing platform for businesses and a way for companies to network with Muslim consumers.

One big element of the lifestyle expo is fashion -- many top brands will participate in a catwalk show, while visitors can also enjoy other attractions like a food demo venue and kid-centered activities.

Gulf News Journal spoke with Tahir Mirza, founder and CEO of the event, to get more information on what's happening and what this expo represents.

“The aim is to showcase the value of the global Muslim lifestyle movement in a contemporary, dynamic, fun and enjoyable way,” Mirza told Gulf News Journal. “MLE is an inclusive event for all and welcomes people from all faiths and backgrounds.”

As for other attractions, Mirza said the diversity of the event is part of the appeal.

“This year’s showcase has moved to EventCity in Manchester near Trafford Centre and will feature exhibitors from sectors including fashion, food and drink, travel, media, Islamic finance, and health and beauty,” Mirza said. “Manchester Art Gallery will also take part by providing a workshop on Islamic arts and showcase Islamic artifacts over the weekend … the interactive expo will also feature a live catwalk showcasing international modest fashion, comedy by British Muslim comedians like Aatif Nawaz and BBC Three’s Guzzy Bear, and a 'Nasheed Show' by renowned artist Khaled Siddiq.”

Mirza said the event has really gained traction within the last couple of years.

“There has been some really good support from brands and businesses,” he said. “It is the third event in 12 months that we have organized, and the response is getting better and better.”

Along with all of the interesting entertainment events planned, there will also be a lot of networking that is aimed at providing thoughtful consideration of how markets work in Muslim communities.

“Thought leaders will highlight the growth of the Muslim lifestyle markets and share business insights at the MLE Connect seminars,” Mirza said.

As for the process of extending this convention to the Middle East region, he said that's a distinct possibility.

“The expo has currently been focused in the U.K., but in the future there are possibilities to expand internationally with the right partners,” Mirza said.

Conventions and trade shows like this one present opportunities for people of all faiths and walks of life to discover more about the consumer choices, lifestyles and values of so many millions of people around the world.