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IN PICTURES: 2012, the year that was.

From cyber attacks, mega projects and business reality shows, Kipp takes a look at some of the most memorable moments of the UAE business world in 2012.

December 31, 2012 11:08 by

  • Late November plans to build a Mohammed Bin Rashid City were revealed. The development will include the largest shopping mall called "Mall of the World" a park 30 percent larger than London’s Hyde and 100 hotels to host 80 million visitors a year.


  • In August 2012, after reporting losses of nearly Dh2 million Living Social shut down its Middle Eastern operations. LivingSocial acquired UAE homegrown startup GoNabit in 2011.


  • October 3rd 2012 was the day the first episode of the first season of The Entrepreneur to air on Dubai One. The winner of the show was LouLou Baz, founder and CEO of skill-marketing website

  • After the Bahrain F1 Grand Prix was cancelled in 2011, there was considerable apprehension whether the 2012 race would face a similar fate. In spite of protests, the FIA gave Bahrain the green light to proceed with the race just one week before it was scheduled to go. Despite the tensions being high, the race went on without a hitch.

  • Late September Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum announced plans for all major malls and shopping centers to stay open around the clock during the three weekends before, during and after Eid. Retailers reported sales were sluggish during the graveyard shift but food outlets reporting the opposite. Hoteliers enjoyed a full house proving some amount of success in this crazy experiment in retail.

  • Real Estate saw a comeback in 2012. In the second quarter of this year Emaar enjoyed a whopping 82 percent surge in its profit with Nakheel posting an increase of as much as 40 percent in profits. Then in September, Emaar Properties announced its plans to build a new hotel, The Address The BLVD, which was to have 200 rooms and 542 serviced apartments. The development piqued significant interest from investors resulting in queues forming outside the Emaar headquarters from 6am in the morning growing to 400 people.

  • 2012 has been an eventful few months with regards to high profile cyber crimes in the Middle East. This August, reports emerged of a malicious code called Shamoon, planted in roughly 30,000 computers in two of the major players in the oil industry in the Gulf: Saudi Aramco and Qatari RasGas. Shortly after, a Middle Eastern group claimed responsibility of cyber attacks on US financial institutions including JPMorgan Chase, US Bancorp and Bank of America. In May, Kaspersky Lab discovered the Flame virus to be compromising systems in the Middle East and Iran.


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