Monday, 6 February 2012

Entrepreneurs at the ArabNet Digital Summit 2012: Ideathon & Startup Demo

My plan worked.

I did go down the legitimate route of applying to become an official blogger for the ArabNet Digital Summit 2012. But I also wrote a blog post demanding attention and it worked :) Thanks, guys for paying attention.

More people need to pay more attention.  Not just because this is the region's biggest web and mobile event. But especially to ArabNet's annual competitions: the Ideathon and Startup Demo.  The Ideathon aims to turn bright ideas into functional products. It will introduce the top 20 entrepreneurs and digital start ups in the region, exposing the latest in digital entrepreneurship and giving entrants the chance to win big cash prizes and the attention of investors, incubators and developers.

If you have an idea, this is your chance to bring it to life. Take it seriously, develop a plan and submit it to ArabNet. In the world of web and mobile, there are no boundaries to what you could achieve. I've been writing and editing this very simple blog post for three days, unable to publish. I couldn't bring myself to write about anything other than the recent events in Egypt and Syria that have taken over our Twitter timelines and TV screens.

But then I decided that there are some great ideas out there that need to find the right forum to come alive. There are young Arab entrepreneurs looking for opportunities to make their dreams come true. And if I can reach even one of them and drive them to submit an idea, then maybe I can contribute something a little more constructive than a melancholic post about more Arab youth losing their lives.

Last year's ArabNet Digital Summit brought together over 1000 attendees, 100 speakers, featured 18 panels and 17 talks , in addition to 20 entrepreneurs pitching their ideas and startups.

This year the summit will also feature cutting-edge panel discussions, specialised workshops,exciting competitions, focused networking sessions, social activities and more over five days:

- Two Developer Days with technical discussions & workshops for programmers
- An Industry Day about how web & mobile are transforming traditional industries like healthcare, travel, education & banking
- Two Forum Days, the largest gathering of digital business leaders in the region
- A Community Day raising public awareness about the power of digital.

So in essence, it's an event that presents real opportunities.

Watch this space for more updates as we're less than two months away.

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