Top 10 Takeaways From AIBC UAE
Blockchain Cryptocurrency Event Analysis Middle East & Africa

Top 10 Takeaways From AIBC UAE

AIBC UAE took place on the 25th to 26th May, 2021, in the emirate of Dubai.  The event, which was held at the InterContinental Dubai Festival City brought together key brands and individuals from the converging sectors of AI, blockchain, IoT, Quantum Tech to discuss and shape the future of emerging tech.

AIBC UAE is one of the leading events globally for blockchain, AI, crypto, and other emerging technologies, and gathers together an elite selection of delegates, policymakers and thought leaders from across the globe. Such international support and interest has helped propel AIBC Summit to becoming a favourite on the world circuit for emerging tech conferences and expos.

Here are some of the highlights of the event:

  1. AIBC Startup Pitch winner

For the first time ever, the Draper-Aladdin AIBC Startup Pitch offered a generous prize pool for a young company keen to get a leg up in the competitive business world. The award for best pitch was granted to PalletPal. This B2B blockchain platform for shipments pitched the idea of making shipping as easy as booking a flight. PalletPal is made up of passionate people who are focused on transforming the trade and logistics environment in MENA. This trophy secures funding for the idea as well as features on the show popular show “Meet the Drapers”. The winner on the popular show usually receives up to $500,000 from Tim Draper. Additionally, all contestants gain crowdfunding investment from the viewers.

  2. First mobile advertising robot displaying NFT art and live cryptocurrency pricing

AIBC’s expo floor served as a platform for RoboAds to introduce the world’s first mobile advertising robot exhibiting ​NFT artwork as well as live cryptocurrency pricing. Through this innovation, customers had the opportunity to inform themselves and invest in non-fungible tokens. Equipped with four 55-inch digital signage screens in 4K resolution, the robot was navigating autonomously through the expo floor. In a first during the pandemic, this robot allowed retailers to showcase their products in a digitally evolved setting while reducing the need for physical interaction.

  3. Official government support during the event

His Excellency, Dr Ahmad Belhoul Al Falasi, Minister for State for Entrepreneurship and Small and Medium Enterprises expressed his gratitude towards AIBC for bringing the emerging tech and digital marketing hybrid show to the UAE.

His message of support follows the official letter of welcome from the Government of Dubai, where they spoke of their delight that the AIBC Summit had chosen Dubai as host city for the super show, saying that Dubai was ‘located within one of the safest countries in the world and with unrivalled connectivity to all corners of the globe.’ Malta’s Minister of Economy Silvio Schembri was also present. He highlighted the success that Malta has achieved in terms of the digital economy and its sector, a success that has been attributed to the sustaining of a healthy economy, as well as a framework that allows for the best possible use of technology.

  4. Brock Pierce – Crypto for humanity:

Brock Pierce, a former US presidential candidate, held both a keynote at the conference, as well as a course on Blockchain and Crypto – emphasising 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.

5. Sheesha Finance Defi Launch Lounge welcome reception:

This very well attended event welcomed delegates and investors to the Vista Lounge in the Intercontinental Dubai Festival City and offered upcoming DeFi project partners the exclusive opportunity to engage with the world’s leading DeFi investors in a  relaxed networking session. Present in Sheesha’s panel were all well known faces in the industry, such as : Dr. Irina Heaver who was moderating this informative panel, Prof. Scott Stornetta, Josef Holm, Medha Parlikar, Dr. Marwan Al Zarouni and Jorge Sebastiao. With blockchain technology having far-reaching applications across many industries, the main point of discussion was the state of play of a decentralised future.

  6. Top keynotes and panel discussions

This event touched base on a myriad of hot topics interweaved with some of the best minds in the business and innovators to the stage.

Dr Marwan Al Zarouni, head of the UAE Blockchain Center warmly welcomed the event’s guests during his keynote discussion.

He headlined the keynote: ‘Regulatory updates within the middle eastern region’ and gave indispensable insights stating that “The UAE and Dubai are always at the forefront of innovation and blockchain and crypto assets still have huge potential for growth and innovation.

“We as Dubai Blockchain Centre aim to create a fertile environment to foster innovation and educate everyone on the applicable use-cases of this revolutionary economic system that is created by blockchain technology.”

  7. Magical AIBC Awards night

AIBC’s awards celebrated the best of the Emerging Tech industry in a record-breaking night with a premium guest list. Online users casted their ballots and decided on their picks of the most brilliant minds of emerging tech during the lavish AIBC awards night. With Dubai being one of the major blockchain hub of the world, it was important to reward the Middle East’s Most Impactful person of the year, with the accolade going to Jorge Sebastiao, CEO of Nimbus DeFi and conference panellist, powered by DIFX. The Blockchain Innovation of the Year Award went to the community-driven blockchain FreeTon, powered by Iritech. Improving privacy of crpytocurrenices, Nymtech won The Blockchain Solution of the Year Award.

Educating a broad audience on social media, Tone Vays, powered by Amir Capital, was named Crypto Influencer of the Year. CoinsLoot, powered by Nimbus, was named the NFT Platform of the year. Singularity Net powered by VG Pay was the pick for the AI Application of the Year. Exchange of the Year is, powered by CoinCasso. My Tokenized Capital, powered by CoinsPaid, is the Tokenized Asset of The Year. CoinsPaid itself, brought to you by CUB Ecosystem, was voted to be the Payment Provider of the Year. The number one DeFi Project of the Year is Singularity DAO, brought to you by OVR.

  8. World’s first NFT tokenised stand:

Serial digital entrepreneur Mru Patel and financial journalist Jane King have created the world’s first NFT tokenised stand at AIBC in Dubai. My Tokenized Capital’s stand was the first stand in an expo floor allowing participants to convert their interview on the stand into an NFT. This is the first tokenised NFT stand for emerging technologies’ in the world. Participants got to discuss their companies and projects in decentralised finance, NFTs, blockchain, AI and other emerging technologies and later transferring these interviews into non-fungible tokens.

  9. The new hype – NFT artwork:

During the event, a number of innovative pieces from both local and international established artists displayed the beauty of crypto and blockchain in the form of art work on the expo floor, presented both physically and as an NFT. Established artists who presented their work during the show included Mark Mallia, who is a Maltese artist working with abstract paintings on a variety of mixed media and ceramic sculptures, self-taught artist Derek Mason, crypto artist – VESA, Anastasia Machikhina and award-winning multi-media and tech artist Amrita Sethi.

The successful NFT artist Amritha Sethi also delved into the newly arisen use cases and capitalisation opportunities during a panel discussion while Fernando Matinho emphasised the intrinsic motivations of real artists to create their works. The chances for NFT art to have a beneficial impact on humanity are of high potential, and proposedly, the industry will need to find solutions on how to guide NFTs to a meaningful future, instead of money grabbing.

  10. VIP faces roaming around the expo floor

The premium list of guests present during the event was noting short of recognisable. Independent candidate in the 2020 United States presidential election Brock Pierce joined us on stage. He is an entrepreneur and venture capitalist with an extensive track record of founding, advising and investing in disruptive businesses. Dr. Marwan Alzarouni, Crypto Pioneer and the CEO of Dubai’s Blockchain Center was also present during the event. Prof. Scott Stornetta, a renowned physicist, scientific researcher, and notable figure in cryptographic science and distributed computing was also a recoganisable face roaming around the expo floor. He was the first person to mention blockchain architecture.

Other easily identifiable faces include Tone Vays, who has worked in Wall Street for 10 years prior to discovering Bitcoin. Since then he has been educating people on his YouTube Channel about the importance of this unique Financial Technology. Tone has been featured in several Documentaries like Magic Money & Bitcoin – Beyond the Bubble and has had lot of media appearances like CNBC, RT and more.



  • Francis is a journalist and our lead LatAm correspondent, with a BA in Classical Civilization, he has a specialist interest in North and South America.

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