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Largest startup gathering in the Middle East, Web Summit Qatar, welcomes 15,453 to Doha!

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Web Summit, the world’s largest technology conference, today announced that the

inaugural edition of its Middle Eastern event, Web Summit Qatar, is hosting 15,453

attendees from 118 countries.

● Sold out, with 15,453 attendees from 118 countries

● 1,043 startups – the largest gathering of startups ever in the Middle East

● 401 investors and 380 speakers

● His Excellency Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani, the State of

Qatar’s Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, and author and presenter

Trevor Noah addressed the Centre Stage audience on Opening Night

● 148 partners exhibiting on the event floor, including Microsoft, Meta, TikTok,

Snap, and Qatar Investment Authority

● 37 percent women attendees, 30 percent women speakers and 31 percent

women-founded startups

Web Summit CEO Katherine Maher took to the stage on Opening Night, saying: “Over

the last few years, we noticed a growing presence from the Middle East at our events.

Dynamic founders, investors and entrepreneurs from the region were contributing to

our events in such a meaningful way, we knew that it was time for us to bring an event

here. Web Summit Qatar represents a brand new opportunity to connect a new

generation of entrepreneurs, investors and changemakers.”

Sheikh Jassim bin Mansour bin Jabor Al Thani, Director of the Government

Communications Office and Chairman of the Web Summit Qatar 2024 Organising

Committee, said: “Hosting Web Summit Qatar signifies a milestone in our nation’s

ongoing journey to forge the future, showcasing Qatar's growing status as a place

where people, ideas and inspiration come together to envision the next digital

revolution. The tremendous turnout in attendees and ticket purchases demonstrates

the high demand for such events in the region, as well as Qatar's potential as a hub for

SMEs and innovators. More so, on its very first day, we set several new records in Web

Summit history, including the biggest startup participation in a first-year edition, the

largest presence of startups from Africa, and more. With such a strong start, Web

Summit Qatar is poised to be the next spot for technological leaps to take place.”

15,453 attendees from 118 countries.

Web Summit Qatar has gathered 15,453 attendees at the sold-out event in the Doha

Exhibition and Convention Center (DECC), connecting a new generation of founders,

investors, journalists and leaders in Doha.

Attendees from 118 countries across the globe arrived in Qatar for the first Web Summit

event held in the Middle East – an event that will serve as a pivotal force for innovation

in the region, enabling the people who are reshaping the world to connect.

The largest gathering of startups in the Middle East 1,043 startups from 81 countries were selected – out of nearly ten thousand applicants

– to showcase their vision to attendees on the event floor. 10 percent of attending

startups come from Qatar, while 20 percent come from Africa and 50 percent from the

wider MENA region.

10 percent of startups have joined the event through Web Summit

Qatar’s Impact programme, which focuses on tech for good.

358 startups will take part in 42 Mentor Hours sessions during the event, learning from

and connecting with leading entrepreneurs in the industry. Participating startups will

also have the opportunity to take part in Web Summit Qatar’s PITCH competition,

powered by Jusour, which brings together the world’s leading early-stage startups to

go head-to-head on stage in front of globally-renowned investors.

401 investors from 46 countries and some of the largest funds in the world will attend

the event to explore investment opportunities in one of the fastest-growing markets in

the world, and to meet the next generation of startups. Investors at the event include

Peak XV managing director GV Ravishankar, Global Ventures founder Noor Sweid, 500

Global’s Christine Tsai and Khailee Ng, and Invest Qatar’s Ali Alwaleed Al-Thani.

380 speakers, 896 members of the media

380 speakers will speak during the event, and 896 members of the media will attend.

Top speakers at the event include His Excellency Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign

Affairs of Qatar Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman bin Jassim Al Thani,

Emmy-winning South African comedian Trevor Noah, Bollywood actress and singer

Nora Fatehi, WPP CEO Mark Read, Whoop founder and CEO Will Ahmed, Groq CEO

Jonathan Ross, astronaut and Deep Space Initiative founder Sara Sabry, Replit

co-founder and CEO Amjad Masad, Builder.ai founder and chief wizard Sachin Dev

Duggal, soccer legends Patrice Evra, John Obi Mikel and Gilberto Silva, and Tabby

co-founder and CEO Hosam Arab.

148 partners, six community partners

148 partners will exhibit on the event floor at Web Summit Qatar to explore business

opportunities in the region, and to meet the up-and-coming companies and

technologies of tomorrow.

Big tech partners – including Microsoft, Snap, TikTok, Meta, Qatar Investment

Authority, Deloitte and Palo Alto Networks – will be exhibiting on the sold-out event

floor. Trade delegations from countries including Canada, Türkiye, Bahrain, Pakistan,

Nigeria and Kenya will be attending Web Summit Qatar to explore business

opportunities in the Middle East.

Also taking part in the event are six community partners – groups that support and

prioritise underrepresented people across the technology industry.

Women in tech

37 percent of attendees at the event are women, and 30 percent of speakers are

women. One in three startups participating in the startup programme has a woman on

the founding team. The Women in Tech Lounge will welcome organisations including

Women of Qatar and Women Techmakers, along with thousands of women in tech

attendees from all over the world.

Qatar announces US$1bn investment in international and regional VC funds

During his opening remarks at Web Summit Qatar 2024, HE Sheikh Mohammed bin

Abdulrahman Al Thani, the State of Qatar’s Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign

Affairs, announced Qatar’s first-ever venture capital Fund of Funds programme, which

will invest US$1 billion in international and regional venture capital funds. Led by the

Qatar Investment Authority, the initiative aims to foster innovation and boost the tech

ecosystem in the country.

In addition, HE emphasised that as technological innovations rapidly advance, it is a

collective duty to ensure this progress serves the greater good by balancing

innovation with ethical principles, guiding progress with moral wisdom for the benefit

of all.

About Web Summit

Web Summit runs the world’s largest technology events, connecting people and ideas

that change the world. Web Summit events – Web Summit in Lisbon, Web Summit Rio

in South America, Collision in North America, RISE in Asia, and Web Summit Qatar in

the Middle East – have gathered half a million people since Web Summit’s beginnings

as a 150-person conference in Dublin in 2009.

Web Summit’s mission has been to create software that enables meaningful

connections between the CEOs, founders, investors, members of the media,

politicians and cultural icons who are reshaping the world.

Forbes says Web Summit is “the best tech conference on the planet”; Bloomberg calls

it “Davos for geeks”; Politico “the Olympics of tech”; the Guardian “Glastonbury for

geeks”. In the words of the Financial Times, Web Summit is “the world’s largest tech

conference”, and the Telegraph calls it the “planet’s best tech conference”.

Last modified on Tuesday, 27 February 2024 15:30

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