Manama: Steve Wozniak, co-founder of Apple, will be the keynote speaker of the 8th Annual GCC Financial Forum takes place in the Kingdom of Bahrain early 2019.
The Forum, co-hosted by Euromoney and the Bahrain Economic Development Board, will focus on the ‘reinvention of financial services’ and presents an opportunity for over 800 global participants to meet, network, and share their thoughts on how the financial services sector is being reinvented.
It was announced that the two-day conference, which features speeches and interviews with international financial and technology leaders, will hear from one of the heavyweights in the global tech industry, Steve Wozniak. Mr Wozniak founded Apple with Steve Jobs in 1976 and was behind the launch of the company’s first personal computers. He is also a leading and vocal expert on AI, blockchain and the financial technology industry at large. Wozniak is particularly active in advocating the benefits of cryptocurrencies, an area that a number of Bahraini start-ups are exploring.
“With Bahrain rapidly becoming the FinTech hub of the Middle East, we are eager to welcome Steve Wozniak to speak at next year’s GCC Financial Forum. He is well known for his insight into the latest FinTech trends and we look forward to hearing his thoughts on the latest developments in global finance,” David Parker, Executive Director, Financial Services, Bahrain Economic Development Board, said.
The Forum comes at a time of exponential growth in the FinTech industry, particularly in Bahrain which has seen recent measures like the launch of the Bahrain Fintech Bay, the largest FinTech Hub in the Middle East, firmly put it on the map as the perfect environment for designing, testing and growing innovative FinTech products. Such success is built upon Bahrain’s heritage as the GCC’s first financial centre, which has grown into the region’s largest – home to over 400 financial institutions.
“The GCC Financial Forum has established itself as a landmark event, engaging key-decision makers in dynamic discussions that will ultimately help the private and public sectors set the course for the future of finance. I’m in no doubt that Steve Wozniak will be at the heart of these debates,” he added.
As well as Mr Wozniak, there will also be speakers from regulators, FinTechs, global banks and policy makers from the Gulf and across the world. With financial services disruption becoming an increasing challenge to businesses, a number of key areas will be debated, including: the reinvention of financial services; responsible finance; women driving innovation in finance; open banking; and balancing regulation and innovation
The Forum takes place on the 26-27th of February 2019 and is part of the second annual Fintastic Bahrain Week, a week-long series of activities bringing together international and regional financial services experts to explore disruptive innovation across the industry.