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startups

Largest Gitex Technology Week set to focus on AI, startups


The annual Gitex Technology Week will strongly focus on startups, Artificial Intelligence and all those new age technologies and experiences that benefit the masses at large.

Featuring over 4,500 exhibitors from 100-plus countries,  the 38th edition of the largest gathering of IT companies and executives in the Mena region will see 80 per cent higher participation of technology startups to 700-plus companies as compared to last year’s edition. The five-day event will offer unique solutions to over hundreds of global investors descending down from all over the world for the exhibition and competing for more than Dh1 million in prizes.

Trixie LohMirmand, senior vice-president for events management, Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC), expects over 100,000 visitors at this year’s edition, more than last year, and over 290 hours of conferences and seminar where panelists.

“Gitex has grown to 1.3 million sqft and it is spread over 21 halls. We have more than 4,500 exhibitors, largest ever exhibition,” LohMirmand said.

“We have a lot of startups, especially on AI side, this year. There is no value of technology on its own until and unless it creates experiences and people can derive happiness out of it. This year’s edition is going to move away from just showcasing of PCs to better experiences for the visitors.”

She said over 200 government departments, 80 per cent of them from the UAE, will showcase their achievements and tangible technologies that benefit communities and public.

“Saudis are going huge this year as they will launch a big startup incubation programme and bring 20 startups along with them. Beyond that, we have startups from South Korea, Europe and Japan. We want to make sure that startups are given good opportunities because startups are more vibrant in Europe and the US,” she added.

Mahir Julfar, senior vice-president for venue services management, DWTC, revealed that there are a lot of surprises during this Gitex Technology Week, but the main surprise will be $180,000 prize for the best project by startups.

“There are over 700 startups participating and 1,500 investors who will be coming to have potential JVs with these young entrepreneurs. The Mena region is estimated to invest about $230 billion in technology sector in 2018 both by public and private sectors,” Julfar said.

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Global names like Amazon, Google, Microsoft, HPE, SAP, Alibaba Cloud and Huawei are just some of the tech juggernauts firms unveiling their latest technologies.

– waheedabbas@khaleejtimes.com

 

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