Farouk Hemraj, CEO, DISTREE Events

Middle East, 23 April 2012: The Middle East Retail Academy (MERA) has announced the official vendor nominations for its 2012 awards. Hundreds of senior retail executives from across the region will vote live for the overall winners across 11 product categories during a gala dinner held on May 16th in conjunction with DISTREE Middle East.

A total of 38 vendors have received official nominations for the fifth annual MERA Awards with nine of these companies appearing in multiple product categories. Samsung lead the way with six nominations, followed by Sony with five, Canon and Microsoft with three, plus two apiece for HP, Toshiba, LG, Logitech and Belkin. The shortlist of vendor nominations has been based on feedback data from retailers over the last 12 months.

“All nominated vendors should be proud of their achievement, which marks them out as a clear top five brand in the product categories they have been nominated for,” stated Farouk Hemraj, CEO at DISTREE Events, the organisers of DISTREE Middle East. “We collect feedback from retailers each month on their preferred brands in specific product categories. This data is used to define the vendor nominations.”

The full list of nominated vendors for the ‘MERA: 2012 Awards’ listed in alphabetical order per category are as follows:

  • PCs: Retail Vendor of the Year – Dell, HP, Lenovo, Samsung, Sony, Toshiba
  • Digital Lifestyle: Retail Vendor of the Year – Canon, LG, Merlin, Samsung, Sony
  • Accessories: Retail Vendor of the Year – Belkin, Genius, Logitech, Microsoft, Promate
  • Imaging: Retail Vendor of the Year – Canon, Fujifilm, Nikon, Samsung, Sony
  • Storage: Retail Vendor of the Year – Buffalo, Iomega, Sandisk, Seagate, WD
  • Printing: Retail Vendor of the Year – Brother, Canon, HP, Samsung, Xerox
  • Home Networking: Retail Vendor of the Year – Belkin, D-Link, Edimax, Linksys by Cisco, Sitecom
  • Gaming: Retail Vendor of the Year – Logitech, Microsoft, Nintendo, Razer, Sony
  • Mobile Communications: Retail Vendor of the Year – Acer, Blackberry, HTC, Nokia, Samsung
  • TVs: Retail Vendor of the Year – LG, Panasonic, Samsung, Sony, Toshiba
  • Software: Retail Vendor of the Year – Bitdefender, Kaspersky, Microsoft, Serif, Symantec

The ‘MERA: 2012 Awards’ take place in conjunction with DISTREE Middle East, the region’s leading annual event for the ICT and consumer electronics retail channel, which runs from May 15-17th in Fujairah, UAE.

The vendor awards are designed to recognise excellence in the Middle East retail channel. This means that retailers are invited to judge vendors on the quality of their channel engagement and overall consumer go-to-market model – not simply on the volume of product sold – when they cast their live electronic vote during the Gala Dinner.

Apple was initially nominated in the top five vendors for both the Digital Lifestyle and Mobile Communications product category. However, in line with Apple’s policy not to participate in awards of this nature, MERA has removed Apple from both categories and replaced them with the next vendor in line to receive an official nomination. This explanation is part of MERA’s commitment to full disclosure and determination to ensure that its vendor selection process continues to be as open and transparent as possible.

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