The consultancies shaping the agenda of tech event LEAP

04 February 2023 4 min. read
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One of the world’s top technology events, LEAP, is back, and is promising to be even bigger and better than last year’s award-winning inaugural edition. Saudi Arabia will once again serve as the backdrop for the four-day event from February 6 to 9, which is expected to draw over 120,000 participants from all corners of the world.

During the first edition of LEAP, around 100,000 visitors travelled to Riyadh to explore cutting-edge technologies and visionary strategies that can help shape the future of government, business, and society.

The event brought together more than 500 CEOs and executives, expert speakers, 700 exhibiting companies, and 330 investors – with the aim of building breakthrough partnerships. During the event, over $6.4 billion worth of initiatives and programs were announced.

The consultancies shaping the agenda of tech event LEAP

Hosted by Informa Tech, the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology and the Saudi Federation for Cybersecurity, Programming and Drones, LEAP 2023 (themed ‘Into New Worlds’) is on track to smash last year’s records (which already earned LEAP the title of ‘the most successful debut tech event in history’), with over 700 speakers and 400 sessions lined up for the expected 120,000-strong crowd.

“Technology and innovation have enormous potential to transform economies and societies. We live in a time where you either leap or be left behind. We are proud to host LEAP to help the region lead and leapfrog with technology and innovation,” said H.E. Abdullah Alswaha, Minister of Communications and Information Technology of Saudi Arabia.

“LEAP is a worldwide gathering of futurists, pioneers, investors, business leaders, policymakers, and tech enthusiasts from a wide range of fields who discuss the breakthrough work and the biggest socio-cultural challenges of the world – with technology at the centre of these developments,” he added.

Meanwhile, more than 500 investors will be present to connect with the 400+ start-ups and scale-ups present on the exhibition floor.

“Looking around the exhibition floor here at LEAP, there are so many incredible, hard-to-believe and inspiring innovations. I’ve been to a lot of conferences and conventions around the world, and this really feels like it’s in a class of its own,” said Steven Bartlett, a serial investor on the BBC One show Dragons’ Den, who attended the inaugural event in February.

LEAP’s consulting partners

The LEAP conference is supported by an ecosystem of 50 or so partners, and among them are some of the world’s household names in consulting. One of the event’s top sponsors, IBM (including subsidiary IBM Consulting) is a so-called Strategic Sponsor (up with the likes of Aramco and Microsoft), while Tech Mahindra is one of the Bronze Sponsors.

Four of the world’s largest consultancies have been tapped to shape LEAP’s agenda across topics. PwC is the event’s overall Digital Consulting Partner, while Deloitte has been named Innovation & Emerging Technology Partner. Notably, EY and KPMG are not part of the consulting partner roster, although they do have a delegation of experts among the speaker and panelist line-up.

Accenture is on board for arguably the event’s most futuristic and hyped topic: the metaverse. Appointed the official Metaverse Partner, Accenture has been at the forefront of the development, both externally as well as internally.

US-headquartered strategy consultancy Boston Consulting Group is also a partner, putting forward its recently launched BCG X division as LEAP’s preferred Tech Build and Design Partner. Rival strategy giant McKinsey & Company has a broader remit. LEAP’s official Knowledge Partner, the firm’s experts will inform leaders and participants on many of the strategic and technology topics discussed at the event.

Devoteam, which has a particularly strong presence in the Saudi market, has been named the Digital Transformation Partner of LEAP.

For all eight consultancies, LEAP comes within a month of their role at the prestigious World Economic Forum (WEF) in the Swiss city of Davos. All except Tech Mahindra and Devoteam are in fact among the WEF’s Global Strategic Partners – a privilege given to just 100 globally-operating companies.

Vision 2030

LEAP forms an integral part of Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 ambition to become a head-to-toe player in technology, promoting 5G, artificial intelligence, 3D printing, robotics, fintech, biotechnology and the internet of things, and supporting the development of a thriving startup ecosystem.

To drive its digital agenda, Saudi Arabia plans to spend $24.7 billion on technology by 2025.