Web Summit to remain in Lisbon until 2028

 In News, Start-Up, Web Summit

The founder of Web Summit, Paddy Cosgrave, has deflected rumours that the world’s largest technology fair is leaving Lisbon.

The Irish entrepreneur said over the weekend that the fair, which has been based in Lisbon since 2017, would stay in the city until at least 2028 – the year when the agreement signed with the Portuguese government ends.
This year, around 100 Portuguese startups will represent the country at the tech fair with projects covering everything from Artificial Intelligence (AI), fintech, medtech and pharma at a bootcamp in which the best startup will receive a €20,000 grant.
Because the past two years were blighted by the Covid-19 pandemic, tickets for this year’s event sold out quickly. This is partly because this year technology conferences in Europe and the United States were downsized by 30% on 2019.
“We’ve been luck that Lisbon has become the most sought after city in Europe and the world for technology, digital nomads, and startups and I think Web Summit benefits from this”, said Paddy Cosgrave.
This year’s Web Summit will be the biggest ever covering 200,000m2 with +60% in terms of space for exhibitors. The Dublin event had only 22,000m2.
However, negotiations with the site at Lisbon’s Parque das Nações – FIL (Lisbon International Fair) to expand the actual physical premises have so far not born fruit and could prove an obstacle to the fair remaining in Lisbon from 2028.
“This is a discussion for the future, we are very focused on the coming week, but I am optimistic. The government and the city have been fantastic to work with. Let’s see what the future brings”, he said.
This year’s focus at Web Summit will be cybersecurity, trade wars, Ukraine, Artificial Intelligence, energy and sustainability.
Among the star personalities to speak at the event is the father of modern linguistics, Noam Chomsky, the CEO of ARM, Rene Haas (one of the most semi-conductor companies in the world).
Also, Changpeng Zhao, CEO of Binance, Barr Moses, CEO of Monte Carlo, Nathan Blecharczyk, Co-founder Air BnB, HM Queen Rania Al. Abdullah of Jordan, and Lisa Jackson, Vice-President Environmental Initiatives, Apple.
Paddy Cosgrave also said Web Summit was interested in being associated with the Mayor of Lisbon, Carlos Moedas’ Lisbon Unicorn Factory project. “We’re interested. From what I know the location of the Unicorn Factory is in Beato and I have chatted with Simon Schaefer who manages the factory about us having a presence there as well.
“I think it is a bold and creative vision, Lisbon is doing well and creating Lisbon’s answer to Station F in Paris is great. A huge complex to house startups from all over the world can only be a positive thing”, he said.