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UNLOCK Blockchain 2020 Forum will be held in Abu Dhabi - UAE on February 25th-26th. Our 2020 forum will be our third series of UNLOCK and hopefully the biggest yet. UNLOCK has been an integral part of the blockchain ecosystem in the region as it sheds light on what is being done in Blockchain across the MENA region and specifically in the GCC.

UNLOCK has also been a strong proponent for international and regional blockchain startups. In our 2020 UNLOCK Blockchain forum we will be holding the first UNLOCK Blockchain challenge with prizes to top three startups ranging from $15,000 to $5,000. The challenge is open to all startups participating at UNLOCK either through a stand or the UNLOCK Startup ecosystem sponsorship.

Our focus in 2020 will be on the success stories in the MENA region whether governmental, financial, health, and others. We will also discuss the tokenization movement including Security token offerings across the board and the rise of crypto exchanges in the MENA region.

We look forward to your participation at UNLOCK and thank you for helping to grow blockchain globally and in the MENA region.

As a final remark, UNLOCK series has brought together more than 800 attendees, 115 speakers, 15 major sponsors, 70 blockchain startups, 70 media partners and more than 30 investors from across 50 countries.

Agenda
Day One: 2020-02-25
08:30
am
Registration & Morning Coffee
1 hour
09:30
am
Welcome Speech
10 minutes
09:40
am
Keynote address
20 minutes
10:00
am
Panel 1: Regulating Crypto Assets in the MENA region the rise of crypto exchanges
45 minutes

The MENA region and GCC in particular has started to open its markets to crypto assets, and tokens. In UAE a draft law for crypto has been published, In Bahrain a crypto law is in place and others are following suite. In addition, today there are more exchange licenses granted in the region showing the willingness of governments to embrace the crypto scene. This panel will discuss this topic in detail looking into how this will change the investment and digital asset trading landscape in the region.

10:45
am
Networking Coffee break & tour of Blockchain Ecosystem Participants
30 minutes
11:15
am
Panel 2: Security token offerings in MENA region which sectors and why?
45 minutes

Security token offerings are seen as a new tool for attracting investments into traditional as well as new sectors in the economy. The MENA region and in particular GCC have embraced STOs as a regulated tool for investments, capital raise, share distribution, and democratization of ownership in a new era. This panel will discuss the STO momentum in the region, its regulation, aim, and future growth.

12:00
pm
Panel 3: How are MENA governments utilizing Blockchain: including strategy and policies
45 minutes

This panel will discuss how governments are utilizing blockchain inside their departments. It will also discuss the new policies that have been set in place to oversee these implementations. Today governments are digitizing across the MENA region to both streamline processes and costs as well as provide more transparent and efficient services. Blockchain is one of the technologies being utilized in association with others.

12:45
pm
Panel 4: Central Banks Digital currencies, and StableCoins can they prevail?
45 minutes

In the effort to digitize economies, and utilize the concept of stablecoins, many central banks across the world are looking into this topic. Some are in advanced stages others are still in study mode. Some researchers believe the first central bank backed stablecoins will come from regions like the Middle East, Africa, and others. What will this mean, how can it be used and will it change the role of central banks in regulating finance and the economy? Can stablecoins be a replacement for Central Bank Digital currencies and if so how?

01:30
pm
Lunch / Networking & Press Announcements
1 hour
02:45
pm
Parallel Tracks
2 hours
02:45
pm
Main Ball Room
2 hours
02:45
pm
Panel 5: How VC and institutional investors view digital assets
45 minutes
03:30
pm
Networking Coffee Break
30 minutes
04:00
pm
Panel 6: Blockchain technology platforms what is new?
45 minutes

Blockchain in its 11th year has still not given way to a dominant platform that can be utilized for building all solutions, applications and services. There are still public versus private blockchain platforms as well as platforms that are based on proof of work, proof of stake, and other new concepts. This session will look into the different platforms and discuss what works depending on the solution or business requirement. It will also question whether there will be room for one of two main platforms in the future.

02:45
pm
Break-Out Room
2 hours
02:45
pm
Session 1: Blockchain in Trade Finance
45 minutes
03:30
pm
Networking Coffee Break
30 minutes
04:00
pm
Session 2: Presentation” 2019 in Review”
45 minutes
04:45
pm
Keynote address
15 minutes
Day Two: 2020-02-26
08:30
am
Networking Breakfast
1 hour
09:30
am
Keynote address
20 minutes
09:50
am
Parallel Tracks
1 hour and 25 minutes
09:50
am
Main Ballroom
1 hour and 25 minutes
09:50
am
Panel 7: Blockchain in the Oil and Gas industry: Tokenizing the Hydrocarbon
40 minutes

One of the biggest sectors in the MENA region is the oil and gas industry. Yet one of the least discussed topics is how blockchain is infiltrating this industry not only in its operations, production, and processes but also in terms of how we invest buy and sell oil. This session will discuss how companies are utilizing blockchain for oil and gas as well as how by tokenizing this asset we can build a bigger better performing more democratized sector. 

10:30
am
Panel 9: Investing in Blockchain startups, where does MENA region stand today?
45 minutes

Investment is one of the building blocks of any sector let alone Blockchain. Today in the MENA region, particularly in UAE, we are witnessing increased investment in startups and this has trickled as well into startups proposing Blockchain based solutions. This session will talk about investments being made, on what basis, and how this is growing the ecosystem in the region and globally.

09:50
am
Break-Out Room
1 hour and 25 minutes
09:50
am
Panel 8: Making Blockchain accessible to everyone BaaS
40 minutes

Blockchain as a technology is becoming more accessible to all industries, sectors, and businesses as telecom operators, cloud providers offer Blockchain as a Service. UNLOCK discusses these solutions, the offering and more in this session. Making Blockchain cost effective and easy to implement will allow more implementations in less time. How secure is the Blockchain as a service solution and other topics.

10:30
am
Session 3: Presentation “2019 in Review”
45 minutes
11:15
am
Networking Coffee Break & Announcements
30 minutes
11:45
am
Blockchain Startup Challenge - Main Ballroom
1 hour

Ten Blockchain startups will pitch their solutions in less than 5 minutes to a panel of Judges. From these ten startups, three will be chosen as first place, second place and third place winners. Announcement and judge’s decision @13:30

12:45
pm
Parallel Tracks
45 minutes
12:45
pm
Main Ballroom
45 minutes
12:45
pm
Panel 10: Blockchain in the travel and hospitality
45 minutes

The GCC and MENA region will be receiving visitors for both Expo 2020 and FIFA World cup in the years 2020 and 2022. In addition, GCC and MENA region is becoming a hub for travel, tourism, and trade between east and west. This session will discuss how Blockchain can assist in building a more digitized transportation and travel industry as well as promote the tourism and hospitality sector in more innovative ways.

12:45
pm
Break-Out Room
45 minutes
12:45
pm
Session 4: Blockchain Consortiums the way forward - Break out room
45 minutes

The biggest challenge to any Blockchain project today is building and bringing together the right parties under one governance model to work on a successful implementation. There are many consortiums out there today within the Blockchain realm. This session will discuss what it takes to build a strong consortium the benefits, challenges, and rewards.

01:50
pm
Keynote “Blockchain in the year 2020, what will we see?”
25 minutes
02:15
pm
Lunch
1 hour and 30 minutes

UNLOCK Blockchain

Without a good challenge, you can never expand and grow. UNLOCK is opening up its forum and platform to Blockchain startups across the MENA region and globally to participate in the UNLOCK Blockchain challenge. This will be a great opportunity for startups to expose their solutions in the MENA meet with investors and potential clients. In addition, startups will enhance their media exposure as well as brand equity, in addition to the chance for financial gain. 

Eligibility:

  • Participating startups in UNLOCK
  • Startups that make less than $1 million in revenues
  • Startups that have built a solution using Blockchain as one of their elements
  • International and MENA based licensed startups
  • Startups should be beyond idea stage at least in POC or beta phase

Further information on vetting process and requirements and how startups will be screened before reaching final competition stages will be added shortly in a document to be downloaded.

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