Web Summit, the world’s largest tech conference, attracted 70,236 attendees from 153 countries to its flagship event in Lisbon. The conference featured 2,608 startups, with almost one in three being woman-founded. The event expanded its floor space by five per cent, totalling approximately 215,000 square meters. Attendees, including CEOs, startups, investors, media, policymakers, and creatives, engaged in various activities such as 1,180 investor-to-startup meetings, 70 masterclasses, 17 PITCH competition rounds, 25 evening events, and Night Summit parties across Lisbon’s vibrant neighbourhoods.
Katherine Maher, CEO of Web Summit, emphasized the conference’s role as a catalyst for remarkable achievements, from launching companies to advancing visions for the future. The event aimed to connect people and foster critical conversations about technology, society, and innovation.
The 2,608 startups participated in the conference, representing 93 countries and spanning over 30 different industries. More than 250 startups were part of the Impact program, focusing on positive contributions to their communities and ecosystems. Over 800 startups benefited from nearly 100 Mentor Hours sessions, covering industries such as SaaS, AI, machine learning, health tech, fintech, financial services, sustainability, and cleantech.
Web Summit prioritized gender equity, with 43 per cent of attendees and over 38 per cent of speakers being women—the highest percentage of women speakers ever. Women founders constituted almost one-third of all exhibiting startup founders. The annual State of Gender Equity in Tech report revealed challenges, including workplace gender inequality and instances of sexism.
The event boasted 321 global partners exploring business opportunities and emerging technologies. Thirty-two countries sent foreign investment delegations, and 17 regional and local investment agencies were represented. Web Summit collaborated with 37 community partners, supporting underrepresented individuals in the technology industry.
Nine hundred and six investors from 52 countries participated, engaging in 1,180 investor-to-startup meetings. An investor sentiment survey revealed insights into environmental impact considerations, disruptive technologies, and efforts to increase gender representation within firms.
Web Summit featured 806 speakers from 50 countries and 2,129 media representatives from 69 countries. The speakers, including Signal president Meredith Whitaker, former boxer and Kyiv Digital ambassador Wladimir Klitschko, security consultant Chelsea Manning, Alibaba.com president Kuo Zhang, and Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales, contributed to discussions across 27 tracks.