Dubai will host healthcare innovation leaders at the inaugural EMERGE GHI event on May 24 and 25 play at Conrad Dubai.
The event will connect
the most innovative ideas in healthcare with the best minds in business and investment,
connecting investors with a global community of health-tech innovators looking to move their companies to the
next stage of their entrepreneur journey.
The event also offers healthcare providers and other stakeholders a clear window to the next-generation
technologies that are re-shaping the industry.
EMERGE GHI runs alongside the PrecisionMed Exhibition & Summit, the Middle East’s first event dedicated to
The two-day think tank, identified as an important driver in the GCC’s burgeoning healthcare industry, will move
beyond the existing medical ecosystem in search of new frontiers.
Located in Dubai, the gateway to the MENA region with its sophisticated business and investment infrastructure,
EMERGE GHI is a landmark event for the region.
Event director David Stradling said: “EMERGE GHI convenes the biggest international community of health
tech-disruptors and finance partners ever assembled for a dedicated conference like this in the region, while
delivering momentum to official efforts aimed at fostering the Middle East’s reputation as a centre of
innovation and opportunity.
“Participants will experience first-hand the vast commitment countries like UAE and Saudi Arabia have to the
health-tech start-up market, and meet decision-makers who are sanctioning millions of dollars in government
backing for research and development across the sector.”
From precision medicine to digital diagnostics, artificial intelligence and biocomputing, technology is fostering
much-needed change to the health ecosystem.
In tracking such emerging global trends in this fast-moving environment, EMERGE GHI will bring together over 100
health-tech startups and 50 life science investors.
Edward Kliphuis, partner at leading European VC firm Sofinnova Partners and a member of the EMERGE advisory
board, said: “There’s never been a moment like this in human history. Yes, we’re living in uncertain times,
but, on the other hand, our average life expectancy is at an all-time high, extreme poverty is at an all-time
low and humanity has never been this productive.
“We’re making technological advances our ancestors didn’t dream of, by pushing the boundaries of our
understanding of the world around us. The pandemic has paved the way for the wider adoption of virtual care and
remote patient monitoring platforms. It’s an exciting time to be part of this transformational journey.”
Lee Shapiro, who is the managing partner of 7wire Ventures and also on the EMERGE GHI board, adds: “There are
some incredible scientific discoveries and advances happening right now. And the convergence of these
breakthrough technologies is enabling adoption in practice with unprecedented speed.
“We’re lucky enough to have the opportunity to address the challenges that stand in the way of so many of us in
achieving good health as cutting-edge technologies that are available in other areas of our lives are now making
their way into healthcare.”
The exciting programme includes 50 confirmed speakers, most of whom are speaking for the first time in the Middle
East, and three keynote addresses from industry trailblazers.
Jalil Allabadi, managing partner of the Middle East digital health platform Altibbi, will focus on the way
forward for healthcare, given the problems that the world still needs to solve.
He founded Altibbi with his father Dr Abdel Aziz in 2008 in Jordan, which gives families in the MENA region
access to qualified doctors via online services, presenting reliable, up-to-date and simplified medical
information in Arabic.
Also on the agenda is Glen Tullman, CEO of consumer-directed health and care platform Transcarent. Based in
Chicago, Tullman was the founder and most recently executive chairman of Livongo, which became the largest
consumer digital health initial public offering in history on listing in July 2019, and offers a wealth of
experience for growing startups.
Delegates will also have the opportunity to listen to Eddie Martucci, co-founder & CEO of Boston-based Akili
Interactive, which has developed the first and only prescription treatment delivered through a video game, which
is now FDA approved.
According to market research firm Dealroom, global venture capital funding in healthtech and biotech is at record
high, with several fundamental shifts taking place in healthcare, providing tailwinds for market disruptors.
Globally, venture capital investment in health-tech and biotech startups has smashed
previous records, attracting a respective $45 billion and $34 billion in 2021. The three highest quarters for
health-tech and biotech investment ever were in 2021, with a record number of new unicorns announced last year.
Following an unprecedented year for biotech in 2021, Dealroom adds that investment figures have remained
resilient after a pandemic-driven surge and, while the US retains its global lead, increasing growth is expected
in new markets, notably the Middle East and Asia.
Sophie Smith, the CEO of femtech platform Nabta Health and also on the EMERGE advisory board, concluded: “There
are some fabulous opportunities across all sectors to build businesses that will make a huge impact. This is
driven mainly by the region’s youthful and still growing populations and their ever-increasing desire to build
companies destined to become global players.”