Africa will host many important global tech gatherings during the course of 2019, with delegates and tech stakeholders from across the world set to descend on the continent.
From blockchain conferences to gatherings focused on artificial intelligence and the internet of things, Africa will see experts, academics, delegates and businesses visit the continent in order to be part of these growing expos, conferences and events.
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Countries that typically host these events include South Africa, Nigeria, and Kenya, and they remain popular locations for tech industry events during the next 12 months.
Here are 10 global tech gatherings that Africa will host in 2019.
Taking place in Cape Town, South Africa from Mar. 4-6, Africa Tech Week is a combination of a technology conference and expo with high-level industry sector-related sessions that feature world-leading authorities on the 4th industrial revolution and tech’s effect on specific industry sector. Industry’s leaders from the private sector, civil society, investors, partners, experts and academics will come together in March to discuss and debate the future of technology on the African continent, according to LinkedIn.
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The Blockchain Africa Conference attracts international experts and thought leaders in the blockchain arena to Africa, and the event has grown annually since its launch in 2015. This year will see a double-event, with a Johannesburg conference from Feb. 28 to Mar. 1, and a Cape Town conference on Mar. 6, according to the website.
AfricaCom is the continent’s biggest tech conference, with players and interested parties across African tech converging on Cape Town to network and discuss the key trends within the sector. Set for its 22nd edition this year, the event is bigger than ever, taking place in the Mother City from Nov. 12-14. AfricaCom brings together 14,000 attendees, 450 speakers and 400 exhibitors, according to the site. At the 2018 event, representatives from Facebook and Google laid out what their companies were doing to develop digital skills on the continent.
IST-Africa 2019 is a ministerial level technology conference supported by the European Commission (EC) and African Union Commission (AUC). This year’s event will be held in Nairobi, Kenya during May. It is the fourteenth annual conference of its kind, and will be focused on information society and ICT policy discussions, international development, research and innovation cooperation and community building, with senior representatives of leading public, private, education and research organizations from 50 countries set to be in attendance, according to IST-Africa.
EduTECH Africa 2019 is the largest education conference and exhibition in Africa. Taking place at the Sandton Convention Center in Johannesburg from Oct. 9-10, the event showcases the latest developments in education technology that is aimed at transforming and innovating the African edtech industry. The event attracts over 3,500 attendees, more than 800 organizations and 150 plus speakers, according to the event’s website.
Set to take place from Mar. 26-27, IoT Forum Africa 2019 is a two-day event that will see stakeholders within the internet of things industry converge on Johannesburg to discuss, network and explore the applications and benefits of IoT for businesses across Africa and beyond. Over 500 attendees and more than 30 expert speakers are expected at this year’s event, according to the IoT Forum Africa website.
The Women In Tech Africa Summit is an event at which over 500 tech leaders and professionals gather to celebrate gender diversity and assist in empowering women who are passionate about tech in Africa. This year’s summit will be held in Cape Town from Mar. 18-19, and forms part of the world’s biggest Women in Tech conference series that involves inspirational keynote addresses and debates. This year’s speakers include Asha Patel, head of marketing at Google South Africa, Megan Jacobs, information technology operations manager at Microsoft, and Wambui Kinya, VP of success at Andela, according to the site.
Healthcare Innovation Summit Africa has built a reputation as a unique event on the African tech calendar, with the latest global healthcare technologies showcased for an African audience, while world-class speakers discuss the latest trends and innovations. This year’s two-day event will be held in Johannesburg from Oct. 16-17, according to the event’s website.
Africa’s biggest fintech focused event, Finovate Africa‘s dates and location for 2019 have not yet been announced, but the event aims to support the network of financial institutions, telecoms and fintechs building a new fintech infrastructure. It features demos of new tech, and gathers expert speakers from around the world, according to the Finovate blog.
One of the newer tech gatherings on this list, the AI Expo Africa is the largest business-focused artificial intelligence and data science community event in Africa. Following the inaugural event last year, the 2019 conference and expo will take place in Cape Town from Sep. 4-5, with over 800 investors, buyers, suppliers, innovators, and global brands expected to attend, according to the event’s Facebook page.