The Leading Online Tech Festival for Emerging Markets

Get a FREE 50% discount code on the Regular ticket ($99) for STEP Anywhere 2020.

About STEP Anywhere

STEP started out as a series of workshops and small gatherings, and over 9 years has grown to become the largest tech festival in Dubai. STEP Anywhere brings together a global audience of startups, investors, digital enthusiasts, brands, and more over 3 days online. STEP Anywhere’s first edition in 2020 featured 6 tracks of live talks and panels, workshops, various startup programming, exhibition and showcasing opportunities, and live entertainment.

1500+

Attendees

50+

Hours of Content

100

Showcasing Startups

100+

Companies

Previous Speakers

Allen
Blue

LinkedIn

Allen
Blue

LinkedIn

Allen Blue is vice president of product management and cofounder of LinkedIn, the online professional network. At LinkedIn, he is responsible for LinkedIn’s overall product strategy. He also sponsors LinkedIn’s work and education products within the economic graph team, including the products and platforms supporting Skillful.com (a joint effort to close the middle skills gap in the United States between LinkedIn and the Markle Foundation.) He advises several startups in Silicon Valley, most focused on improving health and education. He sat on the U.S. Commerce Department’s Data Advisory Council, helping guide the department’s efforts to make its data broadly available to American businesses. Blue serves on the boards of the Hope Street Group, a non-profit which focuses on bringing economic opportunity to Americans through a combination of policy and practice, and Change.org, an online destination for making grassroots-driven change easier. Before LinkedIn, Blue cofounded SocialNet.com, an online dating service, and graduated from Stanford University.

Kat
Cole

Focus Brands

Kat
Cole

Focus Brands

Kat Cole is an inspiring leader and operator with a track record of turning around companies and building brands, teams and high-growth businesses over two decades. As COO and President of Focus Brands, the owner, franchisor and operator of global limited-service food brands, doing billions in product sales in over 50 countries, she leads the company's 7 brands: Cinnabon, Auntie Anne’s, Moe's, Schlotzsky's, McAlister's, Carvel and Jamba with 6500 operations globally, and leads the multi-brand licensing and CPG business. She is formerly president of Cinnabon Inc. and past Group President Focus Brands. She has led the evolution of several brands through product and technology innovation, organizational structure changes and building customer-centered cultures. Kat is a Young Global Leader of the World Economic Forum, a member of the Milk Bar Board of Directors, an advisor to high-growth businesses, and mom of two. Kat is a past member of the United Nations Global Entrepreneurs Council, was featured on CBS Undercover Boss, and was named one of Fortune’s 40 under 40. She is past chair of the board of the Women's Foodservice Forum, past Silver Plate winner from IFMA, named most admired leader by QSR magazine and named Elliot Leadership Motivator of the year. She is a college dropout, yet has her MBA in International Business. Her journey from restaurant hostess at 17, executive by 26, president by 31, and investor by 35 is often shared as an example of the American and entrepreneurial dream. Outside of the foodservice industry, Kat is an angel investor and advisor to early-stage consumer products and Direct-to-Consumer companies and an outspoken advocate for women’s issues and the broader role of business in democratizing access to education and opportunity.

Christine
Tsai

500 Startups

Christine
Tsai

500 Startups

Christine is the CEO and Founding Partner of 500 Startups. Since the firm’s inception in 2010, she grew 500 to over $580M in committed capital, 2,200+ portfolio companies, 5,000 founders, 120+ team members, and a vibrant community of founders spanning more than 75 countries around the world. Christine has spent her entire professional career in Silicon Valley, building tech products and investing in early stage startups. From 2003 to 2010, Christine held product marketing and technical operating roles at Google, focusing primarily on monetization and developer products. Early on at Google, she was part of the team that launched Google AdSense and Google Analytics. Christine also drove marketing for YouTube’s syndication products, including strategic partnerships with major consumer electronics and gaming partners like Sony, Panasonic, Vizio, Electronic Arts, and Ubisoft. She also worked on Google’s Developer Tools including App Engine, Google Web Toolkit (GWT), Android, and Google APIs, and led planning for Google I/O, Google’s flagship developer conference. Christine holds a B.A. in Cognitive Science from the University of California at Berkeley and was a National Merit Scholar. Christine also served as a research apprentice through the Undergraduate Research Apprentice Program in the Department of Psychology.

Jonathan
Richenthal

Human Future

Jonathan
Richenthal

Human Future

Dr. Jonathan Reichental is the CEO of Human Future, a global business and technology education, advisory, and investment firm. He is the former Chief Information Officer (CIO) for the City of Palo Alto, and a multiple award-winning technology leader whose 30-year career has spanned both the private and public sectors. In 2017, he was named one of the top 100 CIOs in the world and in 2016 he was named a top influential CIO in the United States. Dr. Reichental is also recognized as a global thought leader on a number of emerging trends including urban innovation and blockchain technology. In 2013 he was recognized as one of the 25 doers, dreamers, and drivers in government in America. He also won a best CIO in Silicon Valley award and a national IT leadership prize. His innovative work in government has also been recognized by the White House. Dr. Reichental is an adjunct professor at several universities including UC Berkeley and the University of San Francisco. He is a popular writer and online host, producing several highly successful online courses with LinkedIn Learning. He co-authored The Apps Challenge Playbook and he is a frequent public speaker on a wide range of technology and business-related topics. He co-hosts the popular podcast, Drinking Wine Talking Tech. He is currently working on his latest book about Smart Cities for Wiley & Co.

Zubin
Mowlavi

VaynerCommerce

Zubin
Mowlavi

VaynerCommerce

For 20 years, Zubin combined his passion for technology, music, and human interaction to launch and grow Lucid Fusion, a leading global eCommerce tech agency. In 2020, VaynerX acquired Lucid Fusion, launched VaynerCommerce, and appointed Zubin as President. Currently, Zubin leads VaynerCommerce and advises several direct-to-consumer, retail, and technology companies.

Ron
Simpson

The Avocado Show

Ron
Simpson

The Avocado Show

As a creative entrepreneur, Ron spends his time transforming his moonshot ideas into real life companies and campaigns that change the game. His visionary marketing concepts for global brands like Red Bull, Nike, Bacardi, Budweiser and SONY showed the world that he could think three steps ahead. But his ability to instantly create strong concepts and solve creative problems on the spot, made him the infamous go to guy for all your favorite brands and companies. After founding agencies like Don’t Say Nothing and 24K Agency, he started his latest adventure with his friends that took the world by storm: The Avocado Show.

Dr.
Graciela
Chichilnisky

Global Thermostat

Dr.
Graciela
Chichilnisky

Global Thermostat

Dr. Graciela Chichilnisky is the CEO and Co-Founder of Global Thermostat. A world-renowned economist and creator of the formal theory of Sustainable Development, she previously acted as Lead US Author of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which received the Nobel Prize in 2007. She worked extensively on the Kyoto Protocol, creating and designing the carbon market that became international law in 2005, and wrote the wording for the carbon market into the Kyoto Protocol at the COP in Kyoto in December 1997. In February 2019, Global Thermostat was named “10 Breakthrough Technologies” by the MIT Technology Review, curated by Bill Gates. In 2015, Dr. Graciela Chichilnisky was selected ""CEO of the Year"" by International Alternative Investment Review, and Fast Company Magazine selected Global Thermostat as one of the ""World's Top 10 Most Innovative Companies"" in energy. Additionally, Graciela Chichilnisky is a professor of Economics and Statistics at Columbia University, a University Senator and the Director of the Columbia Consortium for Risk Management. She is the author of eighteen books and over 300 scientific articles in preeminent academic journals. Dr. Chichilnisky holds two PhD degrees, in Mathematics and Economics from MIT and University of California, Berkeley.

Kalsoom
Lakhani

i2i Ventures

Kalsoom
Lakhani

i2i Ventures

Kalsoom Lakhani is the Founder/CEO of Invest2Innovate, or i2i, which supports startups and the broader entrepreneurship ecosystem in growth markets, focusing mainly on Pakistan and the region. She is also a partner in i2i Ventures, a venture capital fund for Pakistan, which is also the country's first female led institutional fund. Kalsoom has also trained young entrepreneurs, changemakers, and civil society leaders in Nepal, Cambodia, Ireland, Bangladesh, Kosovo, Ukraine, and Kazakhstan, and has spoken at numerous venues, including the World Economic Forum, Aspen Ideas Festival, SXSW, the Global Entrepreneurship Summit, and the Global Entrepreneurship Congress.

Khalil
Alami

Telr

Khalil
Alami

Telr

Khalil Alami is the Chief Executive Officer of a leading online payment gateway Telr. Khalil has more than two decades of experience in the financial services sector, including 19 years in the payment and card industry, with a focus on payment infrastructure and system implementation. He brings deep knowledge of industry structure, with emphasis on card processing and settlement, the four-party system, international payments architecture, electronic and mobile payments, consumer touch points, and network security. Khalil has an MBA from the American University of Beirut and a Bachelor of Science from Purdue University in Economics.

Ali
Abulhasan

Tap Payments

Ali
Abulhasan

Tap Payments

Ali Abulhasan’s interest in payments and technology has grown into a continuous road of discovery for the past 15 years. Throughout his career in the oil, banking, and telecom sectors, he always found himself exposed to payment transaction pain points. So he founded Tap Payments in 2014 to help enable startups and SME’s in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region to start accepting online payments easily. Today Tap serves over 50,000 businesses of all sizes, from small home businesses all the way to large corporations across various industries such as retail, food, insurance, airlines, telecom, and many others. Ali Abulhasan also shares an interest in arts, design, and product development.

Noor
Sweid

Global Ventures

Noor
Sweid

Global Ventures

Noor Sweid is the founder of Global Ventures, a UAE-based, growth-stage venture capital firm focusing on investing in emerging markets. Previously, Noor was the Chief Investment Officer at The Dubai Future Foundation, where she spent time developing the innovation ecosystem in Dubai, and a Managing Partner at Leap Ventures. In 2008, Noor led the IPO for Depa, her family business, on the London Stock Exchange and NASDAQ Dubai, scaling the business tenfold in three years to reach $600M in revenues. Additionally, Noor founded ZenYoga, the first yoga and pilates studio in MENA and largest chain of wellness studios in the region, which she exited in 2014 through sale to a private equity firm. Noor is Chairperson of the Middle East Venture Capital Association, was on the Founding Board of Endeavor UAE, and serves as a Director for MIT Sloan, TechWadi, The Grooming Company, and beyond.Recently, Noor was listed in the World’s Top 50 Women in Tech by Forbes, received the Arab Woman Award for Finance, and was named in the Arabian Business 100 Most Powerful Arab Women list. Noor holds bachelors’ degrees in Finance and Economics from Boston College as well as an MBA from MIT Sloan.

Alice
Nawfal

Notabene Inc

Alice
Nawfal

Notabene Inc

Alice Nawfal combines a business and policy background, and is passionate about bringing privacy-preserving technologies to market. She is the Cofounder and COO of Notabene, a KYC platform for digital asset businesses. Before Notabene, she was COO of uPort, the decentralized identity platform anchored on Ethereum, where she led sales, marketing and operations. Alice spent her earlier career as a Management Consultant at Bain & Company, and later as a Public Policy Consultant at the Economist Intelligence Unit. She has an MPA from the Harvard Kennedy School, an MBA from the Wharton School, and Math and Economics degrees from MIT.

Paul
Blazek

cyLEDGE Media

Paul
Blazek

cyLEDGE Media

Dr. Paul Blazek is a passionate entrepreneur that is driven by the curiosity to research and understand how user needs change the way products and services are developed and sold online. He is founder and CEO of cyLEDGE Media, Europe’s leading customization experience agency, with offices in Austria, Switzerland and Germany. In co-founding and scaling-up eight startups Paul learned many lessons on success and failure drivers and build up a strong network in the entrepreneurial scene. Currently he is also transforming in Vienna the former biggest bread factory of Europe into a co-innovation hub that will celebrate a new innovation culture in bringing young entrepreneurs together with established industries with the goal to solve the challenges of our times. Paul is mentor for the MENA region of the initiative enpact and in several European institutions, teaches customer experience management and business model innovation at the Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts, is affiliated researcher at the RWTH Aachen University, founding member of the International Institute on Mass Customization and Personalization (IIMCP), appointed member of the MIT’s Smart Customization Group and a research fellow of the Peter Pribilla Foundation. Paul studied at the RWTH Aachen University and the University of Vienna and achieved his Ph.D. at the University of Göttingen.

Ross
Veitch

Wego

Ross
Veitch

Wego

"Ross is CEO & Co-Founder at Wego, which is online travel marketplace that provides top ranked mobile apps and websites for users living in the APAC and MENA regions. Wego harnesses powerful technology that simplifies the process of searching, comparing and booking flights and hotels across hundreds of airlines, hotels and online travel agency websites. Wego is has dual-HQs in Singapore and Dubai and is backed by top-tier investors including Tiger Global, Crescent Group, Square Peg Capital and the MBC Group. Ross is a veteran of the Asian internet industry having established Yahoo!s Southeast Asian operations in Singapore back in 1998 and leading product development efforts across the region for 6+ years. He is also Singapore Co-Chair of H2, the premier global leadership network for the digital industry."

Jeremiah
Owyang

Kaleido Insights

Jeremiah
Owyang

Kaleido Insights

Jeremiah is a technology analyst who forecasts how technology will impact business, society and our lives, based in Silicon Valley.

Previous Partners

WHAT GOES ON

Stages and Tracks

STEP Anywhere features a Main Stage and themed tracks of content, running workshops and programming simultaneously covering everything from startups, digital media, fintech, and future tech, to wellness, lifestyle, and entertainment. 

Startup Programming

STEP Anywhere hosts multiple online startup programs to facilitate connections with investors, clients, partners. 




Exhibition & Networking

Tech companies and brands across multiple industries participate to connect with attendees and gather leads, scout for talent, or connect with potential partners online.