The Leading Online Tech Festival for Emerging Markets


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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

2021 Line-Up

More Speakers Will be Announced Soon

Emily
Oberman

Pentagram Design

Emily
Oberman

Pentagram Design

Emily Oberman is an award winning multidisciplinary designer whose work encompasses strategy, brand identity, motion graphics, publications, packaging, advertising, and websites. Her work is unique in that it blurs the line between promotion and design—often using language and humor to make an emotional connection for brands both global and local. Her clients include Warner Bros. Entertainment, Warner Records, and Fisher-Price, Rotten Tomatoes, Saturday Night Live, DC, J.K. Rowling’s Fantastic Beasts, Ready Player One, League of Legends, The Wing, COTE Korean Steakhouse and Netflix’s Queue digital magazine / platform. Before joining Pentagram, she worked at the legendary design studio M&Co., working with Tibor Kalman. Emily then co-founded Number Seventeen with Bonnie Siegler in 1993. A graduate of Cooper Union, Emily’s work has been recognized by the AIGA, TDC, ADC, CA, among other acronyms. In 2004, she was awarded Copper Union’s Augustus Saint-Gaudens Award. In 2016 she was one of Fast Company’s 100 Most Creative People in Business. She has served on the national board of AIGA and as president of its NY chapter. She has taught at Yale, Cooper Union, Parsons and The New School.

Siobhan
McDade

Jungle Creations

Siobhan
McDade

Jungle Creations

As Jungle Creations’ Brand Development Director, Siobhan leads the brand strategy for the company’s portfolio of media brands, which have over 125 million followers across social platforms, employing new approaches to content, partnerships and platforms.

Rami
Deeb

Talkwalker

Rami
Deeb

Talkwalker

Rami is a seasoned marketing professional with vast experience in the MENA region for the past 10 years. As MEA Marketing Executive, Rami manages Talkwalkers digital marketing efforts for the MEA market, specifically engaging with thought leaders, events, content distribution, and cross-industry partnerships. He had previously worked at Wamda and MIT Enterprise Forum Pan Arab where he spearheaded all community-building initiatives and communications efforts. His background includes media studies and television broadcasting. He is naturally inquisitive and constantly looking to disrupt the status quo.

Deborah
Magid

IBM

Deborah
Magid

IBM

Deborah Magid, Director of Strategy in IBM Ventures, is based in Silicon Valley and represents IBM’s $40 B software business. Deborah shares insights about emerging markets, technologies and business models with venture firms and entrepreneurs around the world. Deborah is responsible for fueling IBM’s ecosystem in strategic areas related to high growth businesses, including Analytics, AI, Cloud, Security, Blockchain and IoT; and contributes to filling out IBM’s product portfolio through M&A. Deborah is a frequent spokesperson on topics ranging from how startups can achieve success, women in technology and trends and disruptions in investing. She is a board advisor of Silicon Valley Forum and on the NVCA’s Corporate Venture Advisory Board.

Leila
Hamadeh

Finyal Media

Leila
Hamadeh

Finyal Media

Leila is Co-Founder and CEO of Finyal Media, an award-winning podcast network producing content that helps young people reconnect with the Arab world. Finyal Media are the creators of hit Arabic podcast series 1001 Nights, Juha and The Basement, among others. Leila has 15 years’ experience working in media and telecoms across Europe, Africa and the Middle East. She started her career in London at Fremantle and subsequently worked as a management consultant and in-house strategy expert for large media-focused companies including OSN, Etisalat and Value Partners, before joining Finyal Media. Leila holds a BA from Oxford University and an MBA from London Business School.

Kelsey
Warner

The National

Kelsey
Warner

The National

Kelsey Warner is the Future Editor at The National where she oversees coverage of what innovations and trends are reshaping society. She also co-hosts the weekly Business Extra podcast. Her reporting has appeared in the Christian Science Monitor, The New York Times, Forbes Middle East and MSN. Prior to becoming a journalist, Kelsey led a Boston-based non-profit that supplied emergency funding to families facing homelessness. She holds a master’s degree from Columbia Journalism School.

Hebah
Fisher

Kerning Cultures Company

Hebah
Fisher

Kerning Cultures Company

Hebah Fisher is a serial entrepreneur and journalist. She's the CEO and cofounder of Kerning Cultures, the award-winning Dubai-based network behind Arabic and English podcasts that regularly top the podcast charts across the Middle East. Kerning Cultures' stories have appeared on Radiolab, This American Life, Gimlet Media, and NPR. Kerning Cultures is also the first venture-backed podcast company in the Middle East.

Firas
Mghames

FEER MCQUEEN

Firas
Mghames

FEER MCQUEEN

As a young and creative leader with an energy that keeps him challenging the status quo and inspiring change, Firas Mghames had a vision of joining creatives, writers, filmmakers, animators, engineers, architects, and business consultants, all under one roof. A decade ago, this vision was translated into a vivid reality with the international hybrid creative agency FEER McQUEEN. As Managing Director of FEER McQUEEN, Firas has gotten a head start in the realm of digital transformation with an all new take on everything related to branding, design, advertising, animation, technology and all that goes with it. Firas holds a B.S. in Computer Graphics & Animation and a M.A. in Design from Notre Dame University. He has worked with a myriad of clients, including Swatch, Bank Audi, BBAC Bank, Total, and Danone.

Salah
Mustafa

Wego

Salah
Mustafa

Wego

Salah Mustafa Vice President of Digital Marketing Middle East and North Africa (MENA) Wego Salah serves as the Vice President of digital marketing at Wego Middle East. He joined Wego in 2013. Salah has setup the marketing function in the MENA region and took the digital and user experience to the next level, establishing an elite position for Wego across the region. Salah has a solid background in marketing and has held key roles in Denver PPC and Yahoo prior to joining Wego Middle East.

Ross
Douglas

Autonomy

Ross
Douglas

Autonomy

Ross Douglas Bio Founder & CEO of the Autonomy & The Urban Mobility Company Autonomy Paris is an annual event that brings innovators, policy makers, press and public together in Paris once a year to experience and build future mobility solutions. Now in its 6th year, Autonomy has become the most important international gathering for the urban mobility community. In addition, the Urban Mobility Company focuses on content, publishing a weekly newsletter to 12 000 subscribers and host webinars in partnership with leading companies.

Previous Step Speakers

Robert
Scoble

Infinite Retina

Robert
Scoble

Infinite Retina

Transformation Group Partner, Former UpLoad VR Entrepreneur in Residence and Futurist for Rackspace, Blogger, and Author Robert Scoble is among the world’s best-known tech journalists and futurists. He is also a keynote speaker and most passionate about Virtual and Augmented Reality and how they will change and disrupt business. Futurist Based on his many meetings with tech pioneers and thinkers, he is always looking for early changes in patterns that foretell lasting trends. Three such trends have resulted in his three books with Israel. Siri was launched in his house. He did the first live video from inside the first Tesla (Elon Musk gave him a ride before he gave his best friend a ride). He has the first video of a Google self driving car up on YouTube. He was first to show the world many companies and technologies, like those, and Flipboard, Pandora, Instagram, and thousands of others. Technology Expert Scoble is best known for his blog, Scobleizer, which came to prominence during his tenure as a technology evangelist at Microsoft. He later worked for Fast Company as a video blogger, and then Rackspace and the Rackspace sponsored community site Building 43 promoting breakthrough technology and startups. He worked for Upload VR  — a new media site covering virtual and augmented reality — as its entrepreneur in residence, where he developed new shows, events, with other entrepreneurs in the Upload Collective, a co-working space for virtual reality-focused startups. Transformation Group, LLC Founded by Robert Scoble and Shel Israel in March 2017, Transformation Group, LLC, is the first consulting firm dedicated to helping big brands develop and implement Mixed Reality (MR) strategies, a trend just now starting that will soon transform businesses as profoundly as the smartphone did a decade ago. They believe that a decade from today the center of digital commerce and life will have migrated from today's handsets to tomorrow's VR and AR headsets--or smart glasses, as they will be called. Robert wants to help brands understand, plan and implement strategies to make this vital transformation. Books Robert has interviewed thousands of tech company founders, and his three books, written with Forbes author Shel Israel, have predicted three decade-long trends Naked Conversations predicted how businesses would use Social Media before Facebook was released. Age of Context predicted how wearable and mobile technology would bring new kinds of software. His newest book, The Fourth Transformation, predicts how augmented and virtual reality will change every business. Keynote Speaker As a globally in demand keynote speaker Robert delivers a rocket ride through the future of technology, and shows you how your business is about to be disrupted by mixed reality, which will bring a new user interface onto smart cities, IoT devices, self-driving cars, robots, and drones. He gives businesses an insight into how other businesses, like Sephora, Disney, and Ford, are already using augmented reality and how your business will need to change to get ready for consumers and workers who will be wearing augmented reality (or what we call mixed reality) glasses while interacting with their business.  

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.

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.

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.

Charles
Schreger

NYU

Charles
Schreger

NYU

Former president of HBO Enterprises, currently marketing professor at NYU Stern School of Business, visiting professor at American University in Dubai and former staff writer at the Los Angeles Times.

Mike
Butcher

TechCrunch

Mike
Butcher

TechCrunch

Mike Butcher (FRSA) is currently Editor of TechCrunch Europe. Mike is also involved in a project to bring European technology entrepreneurs and investors together in a club environment called TechHub (@TechHub), in London initially. A long time journalist, Mike has written for UK national newspapers and magazines including The Financial Times, The Guardian, The Times, The Daily Telegraph and The New Statesman. He is a former editor ofNew Media Age magazine, the leading new media weekly in the UK, and the European edition of The Industry Standard magazine. Since 1996 he has launched or re-launched numerous media web sites and in 2000 he was nominated as NetMedia's European Internet Journalist of the Year. In 2004 he was voted "One of the 100 Innovators of the UK Internet Decade" by GfK NOP, the fourth-largest custom research business in the world. In July 2008 he was put at No. 47 out of the Top 100 people in London's creative industry by The Independent newspaper and The Hospital Club. In August 2008 TechCrunch Europe was awarded the best "Web 2.0 and business blog" in the UK, by the readers of Computer Weekly magazine. In 2009 it was named as one of the Top 10 blogs out of the UK. Also in 2009 he was named one of the Top 10 bloggers on Twitter in the UK. In October 2009 he was named one of the Top 50 most influential Britons in technology by The Daily Telegraph. In April 2010 he was named as one of Britain's Top 100 "digital power-brokers" by Wired UK magazine. In April 2010 TechCrunch Europe was shortlisted in the Specialist Digital Publisher category of the prestigious UK-based Association of Online Publishers' Digital Publishing Awards. In November 2010 he was named as one of London's most influential people in New Media and "king of dotcom commentators" by The Evening Standard Newspaper. In February he was listed as one of the Top 100 most influential people on Twitter in the UK. He has spoken at the prestigious Monaco Media Forum and Le Web, among many other conferences. Mike is a regular commentator on the technology business, appearing on BBC News, Sky News, Channel 4 and Bloomberg. Mike's personal blog is mbites, while he Twitters as @mikebutcher.

Christopher
Schroerder

NEXT BILLION VENTURES

Christopher
Schroerder

NEXT BILLION VENTURES

One of the most interesting questions of our time is what will happen to societies, economies and innovation as almost everyone has a super computer in their pocket — and what it will mean for those who don’t. Now, with access to rapidly changing tech, and with Covid, much is massively accelerated. When I travel — now on zoom, once 250,000 miles a year - I love to see and understand this shift bottom up; to understand differences in culture, history, governance. But I also love to see what is shared as, for all the diversity across borders, problem solvers in rising markets share a ton - more so often than with the West. Tremendous impact and wealth will be created. I am hopeful by nature; love to hike; read much of the time; try to be of-service all of the time - and hopefully share all of it first and foremost with my kids.

Mudassir
Sheikha

Careem

Mudassir
Sheikha

Careem

CEO and Co-Founder at Careem Mudassir looks after growth and expansion. He spent a geeky decade in Silicon Valley before becoming a management consultant in the region. He aspires to build the Middle East's first corporate institution that will improve people's lives and inspire others. When not traveling, he is hanging out with Captains and giving engineers feedback on user interface. He is an alum of McKinsey, Stanford and USC.

Ronaldo
Mouchawar

SOUQ.com

Ronaldo
Mouchawar

SOUQ.com

The co-founder and CEO of SOUQ.com, the largest online retail and marketplace platform in the Arab world. Since co-founding SOUQ.com in 2005, Mr Mouchawar has overseen aggressive expansion of the company to become the first choice in online shopping for millions of customers in the Middle East. Mr Mouchawar has more than 15 years of experience in technology and business management. He started his career as a Technical and Systems Consultant with EDS in the US, and before starting SOUQ.com, he spearheaded a consulting company that managed numerous web and e- commerce projects in the Arab world. Mr Mouchawar holds a Master's degree in Digital Communications and a Bachelor’s degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Northeastern University in Boston, MA. Mr Mouchawar’s family background is in trading, which combined with his passion for innovation and technology, has led him to start, develop and lead the e-commerce market in this region. As keen to set high goals for himself and his team in his career as he did as a Basketball player, he is an inspiration to young entrepreneurs looking to blaze their own trail and he is passionate about creating jobs for Arabs and like-minded entrepreneurs to join his growing team. In March 2015, Mr Mouchawar received an award from His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, in recognition of SOUQ.com’s digital influence in the UAE. Recently, Mr Mouchawar was awarded the prestigious Retail Business Leader of the Year & Entrepreneur of the Year Awards by Gulf Business (Motivate Publishing).

Mark
D'Arcy

Facebook

Mark
D'Arcy

Facebook

VP, Chief Creative Officer at Facebook where he leads the company’s creative efforts to make advertising across Facebook and Instagram more relevant for people and more valuable for businesses. Mark joined Facebook in 2011 and today his team, The Creative Shop, operates from more than 40 Facebook offices and last year alone helped produce several thousand projects across Facebook, Instagram, Messenger and Oculus for an extraordinarily diverse client base including 80% of the world’s top 100 advertisers. The Creative Shop does all this through close partnerships with all the major advertising groups and collaborations with independent creators, influencers, artists, production companies, media companies and technologists. The work these partnerships create is regularly recognized in the press for driving innovation and at leading award shows, including Cannes Lions, where Mark has served on the inaugural Innovation and 2016 Glass Lion juries. Mark helped establish the Facebook Awards to celebrate the best creative work on the platform and in 2012, he founded the Facebook Global Creative Council. Mark is proud to serve on the boards of AD and the IFP, Independent Filmmaker Project.

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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.