Bahrain to host unbound innovation festival

Manama, Dec. 19 (BNA): Bahrain will host the most innovative startups in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) region.

As part of part of Bahrain Startups Week2018, the two-day event will take place at BIC on March 7-8 organized by "unbound global innovation festivals" in association with Bahrain Economic Development Board (EDB) and supported by "Bahrain Startups." The event is expected to attract 1000 entrepreneurs, who will have the opportunity to meet with leading innovators and explore over 100 emerging technologies, products and services from across the region.

The festival will also bring together fifty influential speakers from fintech, adtech, travel, e-commerce and more, for two days of panels and keynote speeches. Sessions will highlight the latest trends supporting the transition to a digital economy, as well as the creation of a supportive environment for innovation and e-commerce in the Gulf, the role that governments play in innovation, reaching the connected consumer and the future of finance. The festival will also feature a (Women Founders Startups Challenge), startup-investor pitching, exhibitions and hackathons. Khalid Al Rumaihi, Chief Executive of the EDB, said: "Technological advancements are revolutionising the way we do business and transforming our economies into digital powerhouses. Start-ups are playing a crucial role in driving this transformation, and in Bahrain, we are working hard to put in place a supportive ecosystem that will encourage the innovation the region needs. Events such as those organised by "unbound" are important platforms for discussing industry trends and for sharing the latest new products, solutions and services that will support long-term economic growth. We are delighted to be the partner for the first "unbound" festival to be held in the GCC." "Having helped fuel innovation ecosystems around the world over the past five years, I recognise the opportunity for growth of the knowledge economy of the Gulf and believe the kingdom to be an important strategic gateway for the region," said Daniel Seal, Founder and CEO of unbound. "We’re thrilled to be working closely with the visionary EDB to bridge the gap between disruptive, emerging companies and established, international brands." Bahrain Technology Week, which took place in September this year, successfully highlighted the role that modern technology is playing in disrupting global industry and emphasised the positive contribution that start-ups make to developing regional economies. During the event, Amazon Web Services announced plans to launch its first Middle East Region in Bahrain by early 2019, improving access to state-of-the-art technology for Gulf-based businesses and reducing the need for costly data infrastructure. An innovation-focused forum organised by MIT University was also held during the week.

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