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Unraveling the Future of Textile Printing in Saudi Arabia

An Exclusive Interview with Karim Shalaby on the Saudi Stitch & Tex Expo 2024

ME Printer met with Karim Shalaby, the visionary leader behind Vision Fairs, to delve into the intricacies of the upcoming Saudi Stitch & Tex Expo. This event is a cornerstone for the textile and apparel industries, especially within the context of Saudi Arabia’s ambitious Vision 2030. Scheduled from November 18-20, 2024, at The Arena in Riyadh, the expo is set to be a landmark occasion for the region’s textile printing sector.

Karim Shalaby on the Saudi Stitch & Tex Expo 2024

Could you give us a detailed overview of what to expect at the Saudi Stitch & Tex Expo this November?

The Saudi Stitch & Tex Expo, which debuted in Saudi Arabia in 2023 after 14 successful editions in Egypt, is a direct response to the Kingdom’s industrial surge. It’s more than an exhibition; it’s a strategic move to align with Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030, aiming to showcase the latest in textile and apparel technologies. Our goal is to introduce cutting-edge technologies and applications in textiles, apparels, and textile printing to the burgeoning Saudi market, fostering growth and innovation.

What are your expectations for the 2024 edition of the Expo?

This year, we’re expanding into a 6,000 square-meter space at The Arena, Riyadh, to accommodate the growing interest from local and international companies. The overwhelming response from our first edition has shown us the critical need for more space to showcase the myriad of products and services our exhibitors have to offer. Our objective is not just to provide a platform for showcasing products but to facilitate the localization of the textile printing and apparel sectors, meeting the Kingdom’s increasing market demands while fostering regional and global leadership in this field.

Saudi Stitch & Tex Expo

Can you highlight some of the major companies that will be participating this year?

The expo will feature a robust lineup of brands, underscoring the importance of textile printing. Participants include industry giants such as Aleph, Atexco, Audley, Brother, EFI, Epson, Fedar, Homer, HP, Keundo, Mimaki, Mutoh, ORIC Systems, Twinjet, and Uras. This array of participants highlights the expo’s role as a premier platform for showcasing the latest in textile and apparel manufacturing technologies.

How will the Expo foster communication and cooperation among business sector participants?

The Saudi Stitch & Tex Expo is more than an exhibition; it’s a comprehensive platform for the industry. It brings together the latest technologies, trends, and materials in textiles, yarns, clothing, printing, dyeing, and embroidery. It offers a unique opportunity for companies and investors to explore new developments, network, and forge partnerships. The event will feature conferences, workshops, and professional training courses aimed at localizing the industry, addressing its challenges, and exploring opportunities for public-private partnerships. It’s a convergence point for stakeholders to discuss how to promote the industry in line with Saudi Arabia’s industrial and environmental goals.

What future expansions do you envision for Vision Fairs?

Following our success over the years, attracting over 50,000 visitors and more than 2,000 brands, we’re looking to broaden our horizons. Our next venture is the Morocco Stitch & Tex Expo, set for May this year. This expansion aims to cater to the well-established yarn, fabric, and ready-made clothing industry in Morocco, fostering growth and development in a new market.

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