Expo 2020 Dubai, flag poles, city wayfinding and signage


We are proud to announce our CSM Live UAE team were awarded the Best Overlay Supplier by Expo following a highly impressive two and a half years of wayfinding, branding and signage for the event.

To celebrate this astonishing achievement, we caught up with Project Director, Marina Brant and Operations Manager, Daniel Samuel to discuss their success, challenges they faced along the way, and what they have lined up next.

What was your favourite highlight from Expo?

The highlight for us was seeing the results of the completed Thematic pavilion branding scope. The branded upper and lower panels were an outstanding, vibrant branding execution that combined a culmination of cultural influences, national identities, iconic sceneries, and vivid colours. The results of our installed graphics brought the venue to life and that was a really rewarding moment for us.

In regards, to Expo, can you tell us the scope and what each of your roles were/are?

We performed as the leads of the project throughout the whole contract extension. Marina as the Project Director, being the main interface with the client, and Daniel as the Operations Manager. We worked closely dealing with client expectations, managing the deliverables, planning scheduling, coordinating teams, and activating logistic requirements.

The scope of the project covered the entire purpose-built venue and spanned an area of 4.38sqkm. This entailed the complete design, fabrication, installation, maintenance and removal of all look and wayfinding signage contained within the package.

For an event of such size, how do you approach sustainability?

Tackling sustainability for this delivery was a challenge from the offset. Contractually, we had to ensure that over 85% of all waste generated during manufacture, installation and removal was diverted away from landfill. Therefore we partnered with a local waste management consultant and worked with them to identify ways we could manage our generated waste and implemented a range of strategies.

Our overall statistics of waste diverted away from landfill came in at a staggering 97.2 % out of a total project waste of 790.226 Tons. A number that exceeded our obligations and expectations.

I’m sure there were numerous challenges but what was the biggest challenge you are most proud of overcoming?

The project duration was probably the hardest challenge of the delivery to overcome. Many of the key staff members were engaged on the project for over two and a half years and maintaining motivation in order to keep staff focused was not an easy task. It involved constant monitoring and agility to be able to flex shifts accordingly and as required. Couple this with the fact that the main installation period occurred during the peak of the summer in the UAE, with a month of night working hours, summer working curfews, and Ramadan in the middle all added additional pressure to this feat.

All our efforts into adapting and working on the project for that length of time were successful and were recognized by Expo by receiving the Worker Welfare Award, Best Overlay Supplier Award and a Health and Safety Certification.

After delivering such a global event, what do you have lined up next?

First, we are both taking some well-deserved vacations to clear our minds for the next challenges.

I (Daniel) will resume my day-to-day roll within CSM Live UAE as Operations Director and work with the team on all works that lie ahead this year. The UAE events season will begin in September, and we have numerous large deliveries already in the bag, with many more opportunities on the horizon.

For Marina, what’s next is far more personal. She will be taking some time off from the office to “work” on organizing her own wedding party, and to enjoy some quality time with the family and old friends back in Brazil. After that, she is keen to work on Branding and Look projects at international events.