Three Blockchain Startups Emerge Grand Winners At The Smart Dubai Blockchain Challenge

Three Blockchain Startups Emerge Grand Winners At The Smart Dubai Blockchain Challenge
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Three Blockchain Startups Emerge Grand Winners At The Smart Dubai Blockchain Challenge

The Smart Dubai Office (SDO), the government entity charged with facilitating Dubai’s “smart transformation,” has announced the winners of the Smart Dubai Blockchain Challenge at the inaugural Future Blockchain Summit that took place at DWTC last week.

Winning US$20,000 in prize money, Ireland blockchain startup AID:Tech bagged the top spot, and local UAE digital enterprise Smart Crowd came in second, winning $15,000. US-based Codex was placed third, taking home US$10,000. Besides the monetary rewards, the top three winners also get an opportunity to connect with government officials, investors, business leaders, and even potential customers.

According to a statement, the concepts of the 17 selected finalists in the challenge covered 16 industries, and the teams benefited from an opportunity to train with technology startup organization Union, which was then followed by pitching to an audience of government leaders, investors and experts from private and public institutions.

The second edition of the Smart Dubai Blockchain Challenge, which launched in February 2018 reports that it has seen participation from blockchain startups from 85 cities across the world. Through this initiative, Smart Dubai was on the hunt for applications of blockchain technology to support Dubai’s Blockchain Strategy 2020 built on three key pillars: government efficiency, industry creation, and global leadership.

“In line with Dubai’s ambition of being a world leader in blockchain and establishing the world’s first city government that runs 100% on the blockchain by 2020, the global Smart Dubai Blockchain Challenge is a pivotal empowerment activity that harnesses the entrepreneurship skills of the private sector,” H.E. Dr. Aisha Bint Butti Bin Bishr, Director General, Smart Dubai, said in a statement. “We congratulate the three winners of this year’s challenge that has seen 17 finalists from 14 countries- a statistic that reflects the truly global allure that this competition has generated in the two years it has been running,” she added.

With a clear directive from the top encouraging the widespread use of blockchain for governance, Dubai continues to be keen in creating unique opportunities for startups to partner with the policy makers, and also continues to offer a platform for implementation for emerging innovations across sectors including retail and ecommerce, healthcare, transportation, education, food, hospitality and others.

“We are absolutely thrilled to bag first place at the Smart Dubai Blockchain Challenge. This competition has given us a platform to set up in Dubai and invest in growing our team here,” Joseph Thomson, co-founder and CEO, of the Dublin- headquartered AID:Tech. “I would urge startups in the blockchain space to create applications that have real-world use cases and solve problems. Blockchain has grown so big today, that we need to be able to demonstrate validity of this technology.” AID:Tech delivers aid to Syrian refugees transparently using blockchain technology.