The movers and shapers of the financial technology (fintech) world will return to Dubai on 30th October 2018 for the third annual Fintech Summit.

Organized by leading regional deal facilitation company Naseba, this year’s event will once again provide a solid platform - and timely update - for banking, financial services and insurance (BFSI) decision makers looking to remain agile amid a shifting topography.

Held under the banner theme of Enterprise Grade. Real World. Now, an influential line-up of over 20 high profile speakers will lead an intensive schedule of presentations, panel discussions, tech talks and round table discussions, alongside more than 15 solutions providers, with a supporting calendar of pre-scheduled business meetings and deal facilitation opportunities.

“Fintech innovation is gaining incredible momentum in the region, with governments and private sector companies eager to gain global competitive advantage and support sustainable economic development goals through next generation technology adoption. The UAE, and Dubai in particular, is fast-tracking investment and implementation in line with the National Innovation Strategy as set out by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, to make the UAE a global hub for innovation, and today’s BFSI C-suite need to be ahead of the curve when it comes to implementation.” said Sandeep Chauhan, EVP, Global Head, Operations and Technology, Mashreq Bank.

Digital disruption is unavoidable. It’s happening because multiple technologies are rapidly evolving all the time. While this very human approach to business may seem at odds with Mashreq’s digital backbone, it does in fact drive every choice the business makes – even the creation of what Chouhan calls his ‘Digital Workforce’

The global banking industry will spend US$519 billion on technology this year, an increase of 4.1% on 2017 spend, with legacy system updates and next-generation back office solutions leading investment.

Recent research by Gartner put a figure of US$155 billion on MENA region IT spending in 2018, with banking and securities firms leading spending growth in the last 12 months (+3.6%), followed by insurance (+2.9%); and making significant investment into analytics, blockchain, artificial intelligence and software applications.

A 2015 Ernst & Young survey found that banks were primed to invest anywhere from US$5-20 million for digital initiatives and the BFSI sector in the Middle East is turning its attention to digital transformation, with Emirates NBD alone committing Dhs1 billion (US$272.3 million) over the next three years.

In its Redrawing the lines: FinTech’s growing influence on Financial Services report, PwC found that 82% of financial services companies plan to increase fintech partnerships in the coming three to five years, with an expectation of 20% ROI on their innovation projects.

An AT Kearney report also noted that consumer e-commerce activity is set to quadruple in the region by 2020 with performance marketing technology company Criteo reporting that 43% of e-commerce transactions in the MENA region are made through mobile devices.

Commenting on the regional landscape, Christopher Fernandez, CEO and Co-Founder of Block Gemini said that “blockchain is going to play a key role in the success of financial companies in the near future. The world banking sector will save up to $20 billion by 2022 through implementing blockchain. The GCC banks have already started using blockchain in remittance, trade finance, Islamic banking, and soon we are going to see a lot of applications and services on blockchain. We are very excited that the agenda issues facing BFSI decision makers are fast reaching a decision crunch point, and the summit is a proven catalyst in supporting action and facilitating effective partnerships and deals’

Taking place on board the Queen Elizabeth 2 at Port Rashid, the summit will open with a keynote presentation by Nasir Zubairi, CEO, The Luxembourg House of Financial Technology, examining artificial intelligence applications in the real world and the impact on banking.

This will set the scene for a packed schedule of hot topics delving deeper into issues surrounding blockchain implementation, cybersecurity and data storage, next generation retail banking and customer-centric digitisation, along with case studies including Singapore’s transformation into a global financial hub and the importance of driving innovation.

Speakers at the 2018 event include Sopnendu Mohanty, Chief Fintech Officer, Monetary Authority of Singapore; Alice Hlidkova, CEO, New Economies Pvt Ltd; Bryan Stirewalt, Managing Director, Supervision, Dubai Financial Services Authority; Nick Lee, Authorisation Director, BFSI, Abu Dhabi Global Markets; Abdul Malik Al Sheikh, Senior Advisor, Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority; Max Liu, Co-Founder & CEO, EMQ.

If you are planning to attend the event, we think that you may want to check new hotels in Dubai and book a room at a newly opened property.