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  • Optimize your skills at the Prototype day with 15+ hrs of workshops!
  • Discuss Business, Media, Entrepreneurship with over 80 Speakers
  • Network with top digital professional & connect with 60 leading companies
  • Over 200 startups were launched to the world. Will you be next?

Digital Transformation Forum

The past year has witnessed bold leadership and direction in achieving growth in non-oil sectors and stimulating the economy under the National Transformation Program (NTP) serving the Vision’s goals for 2030 and beyond. ArabNet Riyadh will feature a Digital Transformation Track that will delve into the impact of the NTP on the digital and entrepreneurship ecosystems, and bring together government, private sector, and startup stakeholders to share insights, best practices and upcoming plans for building an innovation and knowledge economy in KSA.

Adtech Forum

Technology in Advertising and Marketing have become critical to the competitive reach and consumer engagement. Saudi youth under the age of 25 represent 51% of the population, while smartphone penetration is at 178% across the Kingdom. Meanwhile, Snapchat’s success with instant and ephemeral content has triggered the spread to other channels: Facebook’s. This forum tackles the top medium on everyone’s agenda: Mobile, through Ephemeral and Video content, empowered by distribution technologies, analytics and data. This forum tackles how brands, agencies and publishers are adapting to the new platforms that are transforming consumer habits on mobile and web; what are the key trends that define the region; how distribution of media is changing and the data driving advertising technology.

Innovation and Investment Forum

Investments in tech startups in Saudi rank 3rd in MENA by number of Investment, even though the number of investors / funding entities in Saudi is the second largest in the region (18%), according to ArabNet’s State of Digital Investments in MENA Report. However, the ecosystem is flourishing with startups that are rising to fill many market needs, gaps and tackle unemployment. The Innovation and Investment Forum will feature a dedicated track focusing on the investment landscape and improving the ecosystem and access to LPs and growth capital; and a track focused on startup growth strategies and development.

Digital Commerce Forum

The face digital commerce and payments in MENA has shifted radically in the past 12 month with Amazon entering MENA through it’s acquisition of Souq.com. It’s estimated that eCommerce in Saudi will reach $5.7B in 2017 according to the US Embassy in Saudi, with mobile transactions representing two-thirds of online transactions according to Wamda. The Digital Commerce Forum will highlight the latest trends on online and mobile commerce in the Kingdom and MENA, the financial technologies that could radically change the face of global financial transaction and the role of banks in growing their digital footprint.

Founders' Day

The Founders’ Day is a revamp on the previous Design+Code Day, this year focusing on entrepreneurship and SMEs as one the key pillars for transforming Saudi Arabia. The day features three tracks of hands-on workshops covering entrepreneurial skills, startups marketing must-haves and setting up digital commerce ventures.


ArabNet Riyadh will feature the staple Startup Battle competition that will select the top 3 startups from Riyadh to join the Startup Championship in Dubai in May to select the winner of $20,000 and a scholarship to Silicon Valley. As well as the Ideathon competition for aspiring entrepreneurs to showcase their innovative ideas. This year’s forum features an all new competition: the Creative Combat, for young marketeers to showcase their digital marketing skills.

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HRH Princess Reema bint Bandar Al-Saud Deputy of Planning & Development - General Sport Authority, President of Mass Participation Federation
Dr. Mohammed H. Almeshekah Deputy Minister for Planning and Development at the Ministry of Communication and information Technology (MCIT), General Director of Vision Realization Office
Abbas Safadieh General Manager MENA, JollyChic
Abdallah Saqqa Head of Hybris - Customer Engagement Commerce MENA, SAP
Abdulaziz Al Shawi Business Development Manager, HyperPay
Abdulaziz Al-Noghaither Co-Founder of AACC Consulting, Secretary General for Saudi Food Bank
Abdulaziz Madani Account Manager, Tojjar
Abdullah AlGhadouni Founder & Trigger Maker, Triggers
Abdullah Alsaadi Founder, Dook
Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al-Wasel Business Development Manager, Forsa
Abdulrahman AlJiffry Innovation Learning Officer, ‎KAUST
Abdulrahman Hammad Managing Partner, SME Law
Adrian Truscan Director - SEO, Resolution MENA
Ahmad AlFaifi Managing Director - Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Yemen, SAP
Ahmed Al-Bader Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Sihatech.com
Ahmed Sodoudi Head of Brand - Chevrolet, Middle East, General Motors
Akram Al Haddad Co-Founder and CEO, Famtree
Alex Perez-Fragero ‎Director - Strategic Partnerships, what3words
Alpesh Doshi Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Fintricity
Amanda Turnbull VP and Country Manager - MENA, Discovery Networks
Ambareen Musa Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Souqalmal.com
Amjad Ahmad Founder and Managing Partner, Precinct Partners
Amjad Edris Head of the Nine Tenths Program, Executive Vice President of Takamol Holding
Ammar Waganah Chief Executive Officer, Dokkan Afkar
Angad Dhindsa Vice President Business, Paytm Mall
Antoine Caironi Head of Large Client Solutions - MENA, Twitter
Arwa Shafi New Venture's Associate at the Entrepreneurship Center, KAUST
Ayman Haydar CEO, MenaMarketPlace
Ayman Itani Founder, Think Media Labs
Ayman Sharaiha Co-Founder and Chief Operating Officer, Altibbi
Bader Albader Chief Executive Officer, Rehlat
Bader AlGhamdi Digital Domains Director, National Digitization Unit
Basem AlSallom Deputy Governor for Marketing & Communication, Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority (SAGIA)
Colin Rhys Creative Director, Hyperloop One
Cristina Romento Creative Designer, Media Producer, KAUST Innovation & Economic Development
Danish Farhan Chief Executive Officer, Xische & Co.
David Cannon Executive Director, Al-Akaria
Dirk Henke Managing Director - Emerging Market, Criteo
Dr. Mamdouh Najjar Vice President and National Technology Office, Microsoft Arabia
Dr. Nasser Al-Uwaishiq Chief Officer, Content & Digital Solutions, Tatweer for Educational Services Company (T4edu)
Dr. Sabah Hamad al-Sabah al-Binali Active Investor and Entrepreneurial Leader,
Dr. Yousef AlOhali Chief Executive Officer, Tatweer Education Technology Company (TETCO)
Ebrahim Al-Jassim Chief Executive Officer, HungerStation
Ehab Al Khiary President - Riyadh, Entrepreneur Organization
Emre Ekmekci Chief Commercial Officer and Board Member, Hepsiburada.com
Fadi Ghandour Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Wamda Capital
Fahad AlMaghrabi Head of Digital, Initiative KSA
Fahad Bader Business Development Analyst, Tojjar
Faraz Khalid Chief Executive Officer, Noon
Fatima Mousa Program Manager, ArabNet
Fawaz Alrajhi Chairman, AlRajhi United
Fawzi Rahal Managing Director, Flat6Labs Beirut
Firas Mousli Regional manager, MENA, Innofis
Geet Bhalla ​Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer, HolidayMe
Hala Droubi Managing Editor, Raseef22
Hani Enaya Head of Investments, TAQNIA
Hatem Kameli Digital Marketing Expert, CoFounder Lucidya, Resal, iCLICK
Heba Sayed Marketing Manager, Watson Customer Engagement - Middle East & Africa, IBM
Hussam Abushelha Technical Manager, HyperPay
Jad Yammine Digital Manager, MENA, Discovery Networks
John Rossant Founder and Chairman, NewCities Foundation
Julien Cavailles Regional Business Director, Buzzeff Middle East
Mahdi Al Husseini Head of Marketing, Mayar Foods
Maud Moawad Founder and Managing Director, Maddict
Mazen ElDarrab Managing Director, ZID
Michael Dooijes Co-Founder and Managing Director, Startupbootcamp FinTech & CyberSecurity
Michel Malkoun Chief Operating Officer, DMS
Mohamed Abdeljalil Business Development Manager - Middle East and Africa, HERE Technologies
Mohammad Al-Rashidi Founder & Executive Chairman, One Global
Mohammad Almadani Chairman and Chief Executive Officer - Middle East, Classera
Moustafa Ismail Regional Director, DMS
Muhammad Arrabi Chief Executive Officer, EcommerceSEA
Muhannad Ebwini Founder and Chief Executive Officer, HyperPay
Nabil Borhanu President and Managing Member, Graphene Ventures
Naveed Minhas Banking Industry Leader MEA, Global Business Services, IBM
Nawaf Al Sahhaf Chief Executive Officer, Badir Program
Omar Almajdouie Founding Partner, Raed Ventures
Omar Christidis Founder and CEO, ArabNet
Omar Hashem Executive Vice President and Head, Digital Banking Division, The National Commercial Bank
Racha Ghamlouch Senior Program Manager, ArabNet
Rakan Alakeel​ Founding Partner, Inspire Ventures
Rakan AlEidi Entrepreneurship Leader,
Rana Sanyoura Partner, EY
Rasha Rteil Head of Innovation, UM MENA
Reem Abdellatif Editor in Chief, Argaam
Remo Giovanni Abbondandolo General Manager, Middle East, Travelstart Middle East
Rita Makhoul Managing Editor, ArabNet
Ronaldo Mouchawar Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Souq.com
Saad Aljabr Director of Operations, KSA, AstroLabs
Saeed Al Nahdi Head of ATM Network, Arab National Bank
Said Ouchnak E-commerce Director, Sayidaty Mall
Saleh Ghazal General Manager, UAE, OMD
Simon Galpin Managing Director, Bahrain Economic Development Board (EDB)
Sonia Weymuller Partner, VentureSouq
Tammer Qaddumi Partner, VentureSouq
Tareq Al Saleh Assistant General Manager for Investments, Gulf Bank
Thawab Al Sibai CEO, Navirize
Toby Daniell Head of Sales, MENA, INSKIN
Todd OBrien Managing Director, Startupbootcamp Smart Cities
Turki AlDhfayan Digital Banking Consultant,
Ulugbek Yuldashev Founder and Chief Executive Officer, AWOK.com
Wael AlFayez General Manager, AlKhaleejiah Advertising & PR CO.
Waleed AlBallaa​ Partner, STVentures
Walid Mansour Managing Director and Chief Investment Officer, Middle East Venture Partners (MEVP
Yasser Alobaidan Chief Executive Officer, Jawraa
Zach Finkelstein Vice President of Corporate Development, Careem
Zuhair Tariq Sagga Product Manager, My Applications
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