New Ownership And Updates On Web Summit Events


Web Summit, the technology conference business, recently announced the departure of Paddy Cosgrave from his position as CEO amidst a wave of controversy surrounding remarks he made about Israel. Despite stepping down, Cosgrave still retains 80% ownership of the company, which currently does not have a new CEO. An executive committee is overseeing the organization in the interim.

Key Takeaway

Paddy Cosgrave has stepped down as CEO of Web Summit but retains 80% ownership of the company. The organization is forging ahead with the Lisbon conference in November and the Qatar event in February 2024, with companies recommitting to participate.

Focus on Delivering the Next Events

The Web Summit team, consisting of 300 staff members and 6,000 volunteers, is actively preparing for the upcoming events. The flagship Lisbon conference, scheduled for November 13, is proceeding as planned. Additionally, the February 2024 event in Qatar is also confirmed to be happening. Some companies that had initially withdrawn their participation have since reversed their decision, and more than 300 partners are expected to attend the Lisbon conference.

Increased Participation and New Additions

The conference organizers anticipate the attendance of up to 70,000 participants, compared to the 71,000 attendees last year. Over the past week, 50 speakers and 200 media representatives have been added to the event. Furthermore, 2,600 startups and 800 investors are expected to be in attendance.

Controversial Remarks and Fallout

The controversy surrounding Paddy Cosgrave stemmed from remarks he made on social media criticizing Israel in the midst of escalating tensions with Hamas. Several technology executives, including representatives from Google, Meta, Intel, Amazon, and Stripe, voiced their intent to boycott Web Summit due to Cosgrave’s comments. Despite issuing apologies, the backlash led to the resignation of Cosgrave as CEO.

As of now, the reinstatement of the companies that had pulled out has not been confirmed. However, Web Summit is committed to delivering successful conferences and will provide updates regarding participation.

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