Pakistan successfully created an impressive and robust buzz during the recently concluded Gitex Global 2023, the world’s largest technology event, which took place in Dubai, UAE from October 16 to 20, 2023.
During the event, Dubai hosted more than 6,000 exhibitors from at least 180 countries. At the opening ceremony, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, underlined the importance of the event.
According to Trixie Lohmirmand, executive vice president of the Dubai World Trade Center and organizer of the annual tech event, the country “shows a huge commitment to rapid digitalisation”.
Trixie spoke to Geo.TV, On October 15 at a press conference where Gitex Global announced its expansion plans in Europe in May 2024 – Gitex Europe in Berlin.
,[We are] It is a matter of privilege and pride to have a huge and growing Pakistan Pavilion with us – be it in the BigTech section of Gitex or at Expand North Star (our startup show),” he said.
“For more than four decades, the UAE has united the brightest minds and innovators from around the world in a shared quest to shape the future of technology.
Pakistani companies had strategically placed their stalls in almost all the halls.
talking with jio.tv“This event will help us enter the GCC market,” said Muhammad Umair Nizam, Group Vice President, Ecommerce Gateway Pakistan. [helping us] Connect with organizations, investors and governments interested in working with Pakistani companies.
He said, “Through this program, we are looking to bring a large delegation from the GCC to Pakistan to our event in Karachi, which will help open doors for tech companies who want to visit the Gulf and market themselves.” Unable to bring in.”
Nizam said ITCN Asia provided the platform and acted as a bridge between tech SMEs and international organizations looking to partner with Pakistani tech companies.
“We look forward to enlightening many organizations at our booth about Pakistan’s technological potential and how Pakistan is aiming to become a regional IT hub.”
Amar Makhdoom, Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Invents Global, said that Pakistan has left an unforgettable mark at Gitex.
He highlighted, “This remarkable performance highlighted Pakistan’s dedication towards technological advancement and its growing prominence in the global technology community.”
On the other hand, Trixie mentioned Pakistan’s campaign to move forward.
“I think there is some great motivation in the Pakistani startup ecosystem to want to internationalize; They want to build their businesses, they want to access funding, they want to discover new markets, which is why we’ve seen a tremendous and amazing pace of them coming to shows like Gitex.
According to official figures released by the organisers, over 100 exhibitors and over 2,000 delegates from the country headlined the event. My company Invents Global organized a fintech pavilion for 14 exhibitors and they collectively received thousands of leads and signed many contracts.
“Gitex 2023 was great this year (as always). Around 27 companies had stalls in the Pakistan pavilion. 10 independent companies were also there, and around 50+ startups participated; 10 of them were supported by Ignite Was [a non-profit company administered by the Ministry of IT and Telecommunications],” Muhammad Zohaib Khan, chairperson of the Pakistan Software Houses Association (P@SHA), said about three to four companies signed deals worth multi-million dollars during the event.
“This is an important result of Gitex,” Khan stressed.
The P@SHA chief also acknowledged and appreciated the presence of Federal Caretaker IT Minister Dr. Omar Saif as he conducted several G2G meetings.
“He was also a speaker at many forums. It was fantastic. There was also a Connections Lounge in Pakistan – a B2B lounge – which was set up for IT companies in Pakistan, which was supported by the Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP). It was a collective effort P@SHA, PSEB [Pakistan Software Export Board]MoIT, TDAP, and Ignite – they worked as a team for Pakistan’s greater presence and success.”
Khan said that Pakistani companies hold a prominent position in Gitex Global. “This presence will create ripple effects for opportunities in the area.”
The enthusiasm shown by Pakistani companies was also acknowledged by Trixie, who said, “I know the minister is also here. You see from the leadership to the startups, there is a huge commitment from Pakistan to digitize at a very fast pace.
“I think Europe will present a great opportunity for them; they are familiar with Gitex Europe, which means we can give them access to one of the largest continents in the world with less risk. So, we are looking forward to their Europe will secure entry and connect them with the right stakeholders.”
Waqas Naeem, visual and digital media consultant and director marketing at Media Clicks, said global tech events like Gitex and LEAP – another major tech event in Saudi Arabia – present significant opportunities for the Pakistani IT sector in the Middle Eastern region.
“Pakistan’s tech sector has immense potential to leverage its talented workforce and cost-effective solutions. A well-crafted strategy, effective networking and market awareness is essential to take advantage of these opportunities.”
“And events like this provide the best opportunity for the local tech community to foster long-term relationships, collaborate and connect with potential investors and partners,” he added.
Gitex had a separate space for its startup show. At Expand North Star (held in Dubai Harbour), most startup founders showed optimism and were eager to meet investors to expand their businesses.
Gul Zeba, founder of RedMarker (a startup backed by Ignite) said, “We are leading an education technology [EdTech] company; We are mainly working on examination reforms. We have developed our own self-assessment app.
Zeba’s company provides innovative online appraisal tools and aims to digitalize the appraisal lifecycle. It currently works with assessment bodies and external body assessment systems.
“We are also working on the B2B and B2C side. “We are here to collaborate and partner and increase investment.”