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Shaping The Future Of Finance: Dubai Fintech Summit 2024 The second edition of Dubai Fintech Summit reaffirms the Emirate's aspirations to become a global fintech hub.

By Mina Vucic

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You're reading Entrepreneur Middle East, an international franchise of Entrepreneur Media.

Dubai Fintech Summit 2024
H.E. Essa Kazim, Governor of Dubai International Financial Centre, at Dubai Fintech Summit 2024.

The Dubai Fintech Summit 2024, held from May 6-7, 2024 at Madinat Jumeirah- unfolded as a pivotal gathering of global financial pioneers, innovators, and visionaries.

The second edition of the event, organized by the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), was staged under the patronage of H.H. Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai, Deputy Prime Minister, and Minister of Finance, UAE.

Attracting more than 8,000 participants from 118 countries, the Summit served as a melting pot of ideas, perspectives, and collaborations among various stakeholders in the global fintech industry. The two-day event also saw over 125 discussions take place, which delved into multiple areas of fintech innovation, from regulatory frameworks and investment trends to sustainable finance and the future of banking.

The Summit's success came from its ability to create valuable connections and spark actionable insights. From day one, participants were encouraged to have open discussions, question traditional ideas, and work together to solve the biggest challenges in the financial industry. Indeed, the Summit also served as a major testament to the aspirations outlined in the Dubai Economic Agenda D33, which outlines the Emirate's mission to become a global fintech hub by 2033.

Related: "We Envision Dubai As A Global Leader In Fintech": DIFC Innovation Hub CEO Mohammad Alblooshi On The Drivers For This Year's Dubai FinTech Summit On May 6-7, 2024

Dignitaries at the Dubai Fintech Summit 2024. Source: Dubai Fintech Summit 2024

That was the sentiment highlighted by Arif Amiri, CEO of DIFC Authority, during his opening remarks at the event where he noted that fintech is set to secure an additional 5% of global financial service revenues this year alone. He also shared that by 2030, fintech could drive well over 25% of banking valuations. "Fintech isn't just reshaping individual financial habits; it is revolutionizing traditional financial institutions," Amiri added. "Remarkably, global fintech revenues have surged six-fold in recent years. Cryptocurrencies, once niche, have gained mainstream acceptance, propelling their market capitalization past an astonishing US$3 trillion."

The Summit's true value was thus in its impact, with it acting as a launchpad for important announcements and collaborations set to reshape the financial industry. "The Dubai Fintech Summit is not just a gathering, it is a platform for transformative discussions and collective action," noted H.E. Essa Kazim, Governor of DIFC.

The event also saw several strategic partnerships and expansion plans taking shape. Indeed, over 50 memorandums of understanding (MoUs) were signed during the event, underscoring a collective commitment to driving innovation and collaboration across borders. Noteworthy announcements included the expansion plans of Revolut, a global neobank and financial technology company based in London, as well as the reopening of State Street Global Advisors' Dubai offices, the investment management division of State Street Corporation and the world's fourth largest asset manager, with nearly $4.14 trillion in assets under management as of 31 December 2021.

But beyond the numbers and announcements, the Dubai Fintech Summit served as a confluence point for introspection and inspiration. Fireside chats with industry experts such as H.E. Helal Saeed Al Marri, Director General of Dubai's Department of Economy and Tourism, and Yie-Hsin Hung, President and CEO at State Street Global Advisors, delved into the core principles of leadership, resilience, and risk-taking, offering invaluable lessons for entrepreneurs and leaders navigating the turbulent waters of fintech innovation. Leadership, resilience, and risk-taking thus emerged as recurring themes throughout the Summit, with seasoned veterans sharing their insights and experiences with aspiring entrepreneurs and emerging leaders.

Related: For The Greater Good: Amnah Ajmal, Executive Vice President, Market Development, Eastern Europe, Middle East, and Africa, Mastercard

Source: Dubai Fintech Summit 2024

To gauge a better understanding of what it takes to be an efficient leader in the fintech space, Entrepreneur TV Middle East also held in-depth conversations with multiple speakers at the event. One such industry leader we caught up with was Alex Manson, CEO of Standard Chartered Ventures, which is the British multina- tional bank's platform for promoting innovation, investing in disruptive financial technology, and exploring alternative business models. When asked for his advice for entrepreneurial leaders in the fintech space, Manson replied, "You must address problems that are worth solving- financial success is an outcome of that. Stay close to your customers, and stick to your method. Entrepreneurship is a difficult environment, and resiliency is critical."

Meanwhile, Neeraj Makin, Head of Strategy, Analytics and Venture Capital at Emirates NBD, Dubai's government-owned bank, one of the largest banking groups in the Middle East in terms of assets, underscored the significance of exceptional listening skills and risk-tak- ing for leadership. "I think one of the most important aspects to be a good leader is to have exceptional listening skills, as well as the ability to lead and take risks," he noted. "A leader must listen to new ideas, take up new challenges, and move the team and business forward."

Similarly, Amnah Ajmal, Executive Vice President, Market Development, Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa, Mastercard, stressed upon the importance of courage, optimism, and empathy in leadership. "I think a leader without courage is like a car without keys- where will it take you?" Ajmal said. "As a leader, you also must be optimistic in difficult times, and empathetic. These, to me, are the foundations of leadership."

These are just a sampling of the insights shared at the 2024 edition of the Dubai Fintech Summit, and all signs point to them dictating the tone of the next edition of the Dubai Fintech Summit, which is set to run from May 7-8, 2025. In the meantime, for more of the interviews that Entrepreneur TV Middle East conducted at Dubai Fintech Summit 2024, head to our YouTube page.

Related: The Entrepreneur's Guide To Setting Up A Fintech Business In Dubai

Mina Vucic

Director of Production and Multimedia, BNC Publishing

Mina Vucic is the Director of Production and Multimedia at BNC Publishing, the media house behind Entrepreneur Middle East.

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