Major global technology conference Web Summit is returning to Portugal with an in-person event to delve into the world of fintech and cryptocurrency.
On Nov. 1, Web Summit 2021 will kick off in Lisbon, Web Summit’s first physical conference since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. The event covers topics from cryptocurrencies to geopolitics and is anticipated to bring together 40,000 attendees, running until Nov. 4.
Crypto an integral part of Web Summit
Web Summit’s fintech expert, Shauna Kiely, told Cointelegraph that the crypto industry has emerged as one of the conference’s most-discussed topics in recent years, largely covered at Web Summit’s fintech stage MoneyConf:
“Our events change year on year, but the one area that has remained topical is crypto. We have seen a huge shift in the fintech world from the various different digital currencies and decentralized finance to the launch of nonfungible tokens and the question of how sustainable crypto actually is for the environment.”
Web Summit has hosted a wide number of panels, talks and activities related to crypto and blockchain in recent years, featuring major industry speakers such as Ethereum co-founder Joseph Lubin, Revolut co-founder Nikolay Storonsky, crypto advocate Akon, and others.
In an online Web Summit interview last year, PayPal CEO Dan Schulman predicted that digital currencies will become mainstream one day. Major blockchain data provider and wallet Blockchain.com ran a $100,000 giveaway on the Stellar blockchain at Web Summit 2018.
Web Summit 2021 crypto and blockchain agenda
The upcoming Web Summit conference will bring together executives from major companies and platforms in the crypto industry, including speakers from hardware crypto wallet supplier Ledger, smart contract platform Tezos and decentralized web browser Brave.
On Nov. 2, veteran crypto investor Tim Draper will discuss crypto investment issues with Tezos co-founder Kathleen Breitman and Ledger CEO Pascal Gauthier. Breitman will also address crypto mining in the context of global environmental concerns with BitGreen CEO Adam Carver. On Nov. 4, Brave CEO Brendan Eich will talk about the decentralized web and blockchain’s capabilities to protect user data.
The upcoming Web Summit event will also feature issues related to nonfungible tokens (NFT) and decentralized finance (DeFi).
On Nov. 4, award-winning rap star and musician Tinie Tempah will discuss the impact of NFTs on the modern music business. Nicolas Julia, co-founder and CEO of blockchain-based fantasy soccer game Sorare, will also talk about NFTs in the entertainment industry. Illia Polosukhin, co-founder of the DeFi platform Near Protocol, will speak about the decentralization of the internet enabled by blockchain technology.
Some of the top speakers of the Web Summit 2021, such as World Wide Web inventor Sir Tim Berners-Lee, could have something to say about the crypto industry. In July 2021, he sold an NFT of the web’s source code for $5.4 million at fine art auction house Sotheby’s. Berners-Lee will discuss the next era of the web during a panel discussion on Nov. 4.
Cointelegraph editor-in-chief Kristina Lucrezia Cornèr is participating as well. She will discuss matters related to online commerce with Drift co-founder David Cancel and Red Points CEO Laura Urquizu on Nov. 3.
Originally held in Dublin, Ireland, Web Summit moved to Lisbon back in 2016 amid a big jump in tech companies and remote workers choosing to move to Portugal. The country is now also one of the world’s most vaccinated jurisdictions, boasting the second-highest vaccination rate in the world after the United Arab Emirates, according to Our World In Data.
Web Summit 2021 organizers are working closely with Portuguese health authorities to ensure they provide a safe event and comply with local COVID-19 restrictions, including mandatory masks for events. Official vaccine certificates or a negative COVID-19 test will be required to attend Web Summit. Where official certificates cannot be provided, organizers will require a negative PCR or antigen test, which will only remain valid for 72 hours.
“We couldn’t be more excited to return in person. Seeing people safely connecting in person again and experiencing the magic of face-to-face interactions will be incredible. Live events are bouncing back across the world. We’re seeing thousands of speakers, startups, investors and world-class media eager as ever to meet people in person again,” Web Summit CEO Paddy Cosgrave said.
The Web Summit 2021 conference follows another major industry event, the World Blockchain Summit in Dubai hosted in mid-October. The conference brought together some of the industry’s most prominent executives and investors, including Celsius Network founder Alex Mashinsky, Blockstream chief strategy officer Samson Mow, Iota Foundation founder Serguei Popov and others.