The AIBC UAE in-person summit, held from the 25 to 26 of May, 2021 at the Intercontinental Festival City – Dubai welcomed a 4,500-strong international crowd to its emerging tech-focused expo. The show was held in tandem with the AGS summit, an event geared towards digital marketing, affiliation, and SEO. The hybrid event explored the long-term developments and recent innovations to disrupt the market through a series of panels and keynotes led by influencers, thought leaders, and government bodies.
The host emirate is perhaps the world’s most important hub for the future-driven industry, with the region likely to continue to grow in importance, playing a pivotal role in connecting the blockchain and crypto ecosystem on both a local and global stage. The UAE government has been a strong proponent of blockchain technology and crypto assets, with heavy investment in building a regulatory framework and support for the Emirate Blockchain Strategy 2021 – through which the emirates aspire to implement blockchain technology into the majority of government functions.
“The UAE and Dubai are always at the forefront of innovation and blockchain and crypto assets still have huge potential for growth and innovation”, opined Dr Marwan Al Zarouni, head of the UAE Blockchain Center, in his opening keynote. The event was AIBC’s first international summit to be held outside of Europe, with its success setting the stage for a strong calendar of global events across 2022. Notable firsts include the appearance of RoboAds on the AIBC-AGS expo floor, with the world’s first mobile advertising robot displaying NFT art and live cryptocurrency pricing, as well as a workshop run by CasperLabs which introduced smart contracts to lawyers.
The event kicked off with the Sheesha Finance DeFi Launch Lounge, where a panel event set the tone, with speakers such as Dr. Marwan Al Zarouni, and Prof. Scott Stornetta, Joseph Holm, Medha Parlikar, and Jorge Sebastiao leading the evening debate. The event continued over the next two days with key panellists, such as His Excellency, Dr Sultan Ahmed al Jaber, Minister of State in the UAE, who emphasized, “Innovation has never been more important than now, while the world is recovering from the global Covid-19 pandemic”.
Maltese Minister for the Economy and Industry, Silvio Schembri also praised the impact of Blockchain, speaking about its effect on the island nation’s economy. Brock Pierce, a former US presidential candidate, held both a keynote at the conference, as well as a course on Blockchain and Crypto – emphasizing the benefits of crypto for humanity, appealing to entrepreneurs to focus on improving the lives of billions, instead of focussing on making billions of dollars. His popular, educational workshop, which drew a full house, was designed for newcomers to the industry and sought to educate anyone interested in their ability to improve the world.
His workshop was so well received that attendees gathered outside the room for an impromptu press conference where he continued to take questions from the audience. Throughout the expo, digital artworks such as “Refresh” by Vesa, and “AI” by Anastasia Machikhina were presented. Successful NFT artist Amritha Sethi delved into the newly arisen use cases and capitalization opportunities during the hot topic panel debate.
The AIBC Dubai Awards shone a spotlight on exceptional achievers within the emerging tech industry. Dr. Al Zarouni himself was honoured for his countless contributions to the advancement of blockchain technology in the UAE. His Excellency, Dr Ahmed bin Sulayem also received accolades for creating the first crypto freezone of the world.
The future-driven event also sought to provide starters with a launchpad and the opportunity to network and gain attention during workshops, the Startup Village, and the Draper-Aladdin AIBC Start-Up Pitch. The best AIBC pitch went to PalletPals, a B2B blockchain platform for shipments, which will receive investment and a spot on the show “Meet the Drapers”, Their goal is “to make shipping as easy as booking a flight”. The Start-up managed to beat ambitious competitors including Bancambios and SolidBlock among others.
Self-proclaimed “KryptoGranny” Anita Kalergis and a number of other panelists also offered introductory workshops to newcomers interested in investment and trading. The AIBC event will next open its doors in Malta. The AIBC Europe expo will be held on the 17- 18 November, 2021, at the Malta Fairs and Conventions Centre (MFCC). The Summit will bring some of the leading creators, thought leaders, and policy makers to its stages, expo floor and judging tables. From regulation to hot topics such as NFTs and DeFi, a series of well thought out conferences and workshops will run across the 2-day event, while AIBC’s long-standing tradition of holding top-notch networking dinners and drinks will dominate the evenings.
Complementary super-shows, AIBC Europe , AGS Europe, SiGMA Europe, and Med-Tech World Europe are all set to take place in Malta this November from 15-19 November as part of Malta Week. Four leading shows will bring the best of the industry to a first-class meeting point, leveraging cross pollination opportunities for investors. Malta Week brings SiGMA Group’s leading verticals under one roof- each presenting the top developments of their focal industries.
The cross-collaboration of each brand makes Malta Week the number one destination for leading think-tanks in emerging tech, digital health, digital marketing and the gaming sector. The mid-Med location is the perfect place for multi-faceted business deals and face-to-face conversations with leading affiliates, policy makers and thought leaders.