The region’s key decision makers will gather for the sixth edition of the ArabNet Digital Summit – the exclusive digital conference – on April 30-May 1, at the Madinat Jumeirah Conference and Events Center in Dubai. This year, the summit will feature a number of key talks and sessions across five separate forums, AdTech; Smart Economy; Money – Powered by NextMoney; Investmentand Real Estate Tech. It will bring together over 100 speakers, 75 exhibitors, 1800 attendees, as well as high-level sponsors, including Du, Emirates NBD, Gulf Capital, OMD and Dubai Chamber.

On the morning of 1 May, ArabNet will announce the launch of its third edition of “The State of Digital Investments in MENA (2013-2017)” report, published in partnership with Dubai SME and with the participation of His Excellency Abdul Baset Al Janahi, Chief Executive Officer of Dubai SME. The event will also witness the launch of “AI in the Middle East” report in partnership with Xische.

For the second time in a row, the summit will host the Startup Championship, a global-scale challenge bringing together winning startups from the local rounds of ArabNet’s Startup Battle. In this competition, 18 startups from Beirut, Kuwait, Riyadh, Casablanca, Muscat, and Dubai are expected to pitch their businesses for a shot at $20,000 in prizes, and other awards in-kind. The Digital Summit will also be hosting for the 3rd consecutive year, the Smartpreneur Competition final pitches and awards ceremony, organized by Dubai Chamber of Commerce, with the aim of elevating Dubai into a global platform for innovation-focused businesses.

On April 30th, the AdTech Forum, with Maddict as Knowledge Partner, will feature two full tracks covering the latest trends in digital media and advertising, including the AdTech Showcase – a convergence of new advertising and media technologies from around the world. The participating agencies and companies include some of the best in the sector such as Twitter, Google, Ford, IBM, The Coca-Cola Company and Facebook.

On the same day, the newly-introduced Money Forum – Powered by NextMoneywill explore the trends and opportunities in fintech, banking, and transactional businesses. Experts speaking at the forum will include Zubair Ahmed, Chief Information Officer of Emirates Islamic and Raja Al Mazrouei, Executive Vice President at FinTech Hive, Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC). Meanwhile, Xische Academy will be holding a private Blockchain Masterclass, designed to help leaders make decisions to transform organizations.

On May 1st, the all-new Real Estate Tech Forum, with KAIZEN Asset Management Services as Knowledge Partner, will be launched and will discuss how technology is impacting the real estate sector. The forum will feature experts including, Fadi Nwilati, CEO of KAIZEN Asset Management Services and Lynnette Abad​, Partner ‑ Head of Property Monitor at Cavendish Maxwell.

Similarly, the Investment Forum, with VentureSouq (VSQ) as Knowledge Partner, will feature a full track for investors, with high-level discussions on fund closures, governance and initiatives supporting the growth of the investment ecosystem. Investor speakers of the forum will include Kavita Gupta, Founding Managing Partner at ConsenSys Capital and Omar H. Al-Madhi, Board Member of Abdul Latif Jameel (ALJ) and Co-Founder and Venture Partner at Iliad Partners.

Simultaneously, the Smart Economy Forum, with Smart Cities NYC and Xische as Knowledge Partners, will propose visionary outlooks for creative cities of the future. Global experts who will be speaking at the event include Eldar Tuzmukhametov, Head of Smart City Moscow and Ger Baron, Chief Technology Officer of the City of Amsterdam.

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