Winning business in the Middle East

Sarah Wiseman (Shipley)

Sarah Wiseman PhotoAn appreciation of the opportunities and challenges of bidding in the Middle East, based on six and a half years' experience of winning in the Gulf in diverse industries.

This Intelligence Briefing is for anyone who:

  • is currently bidding or wants to bid into the Middle East;
  • wants to take advantage of a relatively buoyant market;
  • wants to apply best practice to a dynamic and challenging location; or
  • has been burnt before and needs some survival tips.

Bidding in the Middle East is different from bidding in the West. The usual rules don't apply, or don't exist. Cultural differences can enhance and complicate the situation and there is little understanding of best practice. The presentation will address: gathering information and understanding buying environment; taking an informed bid/no bid decision; price vs value to buyers raised in the souq; common misconceptions, opportunities and challenges faced by Western organisations. Using case studies and real examples to highlight key points, Sarah will leave with a clearer idea of how Middle East customers negotiate and buy, pitfalls to avoid and opportunities to grab.


Sarah Wiseman is an APMP accredited professional and senior consultant at Shipley Limited. She has spent the last six and a half years living and working in the Middle East, providing training and consulting services to companies trying to improve their win rate. Her clients include organisations in the insurance, defence, security, logistics, engineering, construction, transport and consultancy sectors. She has worked across the UAE, Qatar, Bahrain, Oman and India. She has helped to set up the APMP Middle East chapter, due to launch in September this year. Prior to Shipley, Sarah was the EMEA Business Operations Director for a global security company based in Dubai.


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