Alibaba Cloud, the data intelligence backbone of Alibaba Group, today held its inaugural Middle East and Africa (MEA) Internet Summit in partnership with UAE-based Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Cloud Computing leader Group 42. Drawing the participation of tech experts and executives from the region’s top 100 internet companies, the summit took place during the Ghyma Conference 2019.
Among the distinguished guests were HE Saif Mohammed Al Hajri, Chairman of the Department of Economic Development Abu Dhabi, HE Mohammed Gheyath, Executive Director Information Security Operations, Abu Dhabi Digital Authority, Ibrahim Ajami, Head of Mubadala Ventures, Peng Xiao, CEO of Group 42, and Selina Yuan, President of Alibaba Cloud Intelligence International.
Panellists and speakers covered an extensive range of topics over 10 keynote speeches. These included maximising the potential of cloud and AI, leveraging the internet to thrive in the new digital age, taking e-commerce to the next stage of growth, the startup and financial technology (FinTech) landscapes in the Middle East and Africa, and the online entertainment revolution in the region.
The MEA Internet Summit builds on Alibaba’s existing partnerships with over 30 local vendors across a wide variety of tech segments. In addition, the company invests in the development of UAE youth through its collaboration with Khalifa University that identifies opportunities in areas such as data analytics, the Internet of Things (IoT), robotics, and cloud computing.
Selina Yuan, President of Alibaba Cloud Intelligence International said: “This is an exciting time for internet companies across the globe, and lately we have seen a surge in the number of innovations spanning diverse domains – from retail to fintech and entertainment. At Alibaba Cloud, our mission is to make it easy to do business anywhere. We are proud of our role in helping enterprises expanding into some of the fastest-growing vertical markets through our proven technology capabilities, such as AI and machine learning.”
Peng Xiao, CEO of Group 42 said: “As a leader in Artificial Intelligence and Cloud Computing in the UAE, we are proud to partner with Alibaba Cloud to help Governments and key industries thrive in the age of digital transformation. Our first MEA Internet Summit aims to provide a platform for industry executives, developers, scientists, investors, and pioneers from top internet companies in the region to exchange experiences and ideas on adopting emerging technologies to drive growth and social progress, both locally and internationally.”
HE Saif Mohammed Al Hajri, Chairman of the Department of Economic Development Abu Dhabi in his speech during the conference: “Our economic policy and strategic plans not only see innovation as a technological aspect, but also believe in the importance of building people, their ability to innovate, and the transfer and application of knowledge to embody the principles of sustainability,” said Saif Al Hajri.
He added that this policy was inspired by the vision of our wise government and translated on the ground by opening up to the world and learning about the experiences of countries and international companies. This will enable our national cadres to lead the future of our national economy to achieve the well-being of society.
Established in 2009, Alibaba Cloud offers a comprehensive suite of cloud computing services to companies worldwide, including merchants doing business on Alibaba Group marketplaces, startups, corporations, and public sector entities. Alibaba Cloud has been a leading provider of cloud services to private companies and government institutions in the UAE and the wider Middle East region since 2015.