The Malta A.I. and Blockchain Summit (AIBC) returned to the Maltese islands for its third edition recently – bringing together thousands of incredible people to discuss innovation in Blockchain, Artificial Intelligence, and all kinds of internet related trends. Naturally, Raketech’s crypto and blockchain media team had to be part of such an important event happening right on our doorstep, so the team behind Cryptimi.com went along to soak-up everything that was on offer.
The summit is a must see event on the global tech calendar and attracted thousands of exhibitors, investors, tech leaders, suppliers, fans and even multi-award winning singer Akon (that’s right, more on this below). People from all over the world attended, all with a shared goal to improve the planet through the power of new technologies. We caught-up with Cryptimi.com project leader David Farrugia to find out the highlights from the event.
Tell us about the Malta A.I. and Blockchain Summit? Have you been before?
I attended the summit with both Agnieszka and Michaela – I had personally attended the AIBC summit twice before, since it first started back in 2018, but this was the first time for the rest of the team. Over 6,500 delegates attended the event held at Intercontinental Hotel, so the venue was buzzing with activity on both days with plenty of interesting talks and workshops.
What types of people and businesses were in attendance?
A lot of innovators and entrepreneurs attended the summit, including blockchain related start-ups, AI start-ups, cryptocurrency exchanges, new platforms, crypto casinos, media agencies, Bitcoin evangelists and plenty of tech investors. There were plenty of cool people to meet wherever you went, but Akon, Ian Balina and Mati Greenspan were our favourites – you are spoiled with different opportunities to meet interesting people sharing their ideas and thoughts.
What did the team get up to at AIBC?
There was a lot of planning and preparation involved in the run-up to the event. Our main goal was to obtain some exclusive material to share with the cryptimi.com audience. We managed to interview several people including an exclusive interview with Ian Balina, who is a well-known Bitcoin investor within the crypto space and a famous YouTuber, Richard Ells, Director at Electroneum, and Tom Trowbridge, President at Hedera Hashgraph who gave an excellent presentation on Facebook’s cryptocurrency – Libra.
I would say that our highlight was being invited to a private VIP event with Akon, and other leading business owners and investors at the Waterbiscuit restaurant. We were the sole media news website with the opportunity to interview Akon and learn more about his new cryptocurrency called Akoin. This event was great, plus we got to know a lot of other interesting people, we exchanged ideas and attended expert panel talks. All in all, we learned that if you are well motivated about achieving your goals everything is possible and everything starts with making a decision and going for it.
Can you tell us more about the meeting with Akon and the launch of his Akoin cryptocurrency?
We all know Akon as the Grammy nominated singer, songwriter and music producer, but in the recent years he started focusing more on philanthropy and social entrepreneurship. The desire to bring lighting to his grandmas’ home in Senegal, has motivated his movement ‘Akon lightning Africa’, which led Akon to bringing electricity to 18 African countries. We were interested in finding out about his own desire to help people in Africa and ask what inspired him to launch his own secure and transparent crypto currency. During the Blockchain Summit, Akon spoke about aiding the process of evolution of blockchain technology in Africa with his Akoin crypto currency. Despite being a world-famous superstar, he was a very humble and down to earth person, should you have a chance to meet him.
What great new initiatives for the use of blockchain has emerged recently?
Blockchain technology use is still in a very early adoption stage, however, we’ve seen case studies on how blockchain can help in the medical sector, chemical contamination, climate change, energy tokenization, charity and many more industries. We also saw pitches on how AI can people with special needs, deliver better results in paid advertisement and aid in medical operations to reduce surgical errors, which is the third largest contribution to death, right after cancer and heart disease.
What was your main highlight from the summit?
By far our highlight was the breakfast meeting with Akon and being the sole media website at that event with access to interview Akon. We were also given the opportunity to introduce our project in front of blockchain leaders. Events like the Malta AI and Blockchain Summit really do provide an opportunity to learn, network, meet experts and create exclusive content – what else can one ask for?
Why is Malta a special place for the Blockchain industry?
Malta is the blockchain island with creative talent and driving blockchain adoption within innovative industries. Nowadays the Malta tech scene is not all about blockchain, but also in Artificial Intelligence and this is always growing. We’re also seeing new university courses covering DLT technology to provide resources for blockchain based companies who decide to set-up their base in Malta
Is there anything else you wanted to share?
We think it’s important to attend such events, dream big and take chances. Connecting with other likeminded people in the same space, not being afraid to introduce yourself and your project is a big part to be able to collaborate and help each other out. At the end of the day we are building a new innovative industry and we are all in the same boat.