Leeds Digital Festival, the largest UK digital sector event of its kind outside London Tech Week, is returning for 2019 following a record year in 2018.
This year’s festival runs from Tuesday 23rd April to Friday 3rd May, with a wide range of events taking place across the city and wider region.
With over 60 events already listed, organisers are hoping the open platform festival will surpass the 170 that took place in 2018, bringing together 400 companies, 660 speakers and welcoming 20,000 attendees.
The reputation of the rapidly growing festival has also attracted international attention for 2019, with a delegation from China and Hong Kong attending, as well as presences from Estonia and the US.
Keynote events already listed include Women in Leeds Digital, a full day conference which will showcase the range of female activity within the digital sector; Super Connect Venture Lab for startups; and the return of perennial favourite Code in the Dark. Tech giants are also represented, with Leeds firm The Data Shed presenting alongside Amazon Web Services, and Netpremacy working with Google Cloud.
The festival has also attracted record levels of sponsorship for 2019, with leading tech businesses BJSS and Crisp Thinking taking their place alongside the University of Leeds and Leeds City Council as lead sponsors.
Other sponsors include Sky Betting and Gaming, digital agency Tall, law firm Womble Bond Dickinson, and the Leeds City Region Local Enterprise Partnership.
Festival Director, Stuart Clarke, said: “Leeds Digital Festival has grown rapidly in recent years to become one of the most significant digital events in the UK. Its reputation in the tech sector, like that of Leeds itself, has also grown internationally which we are seeing represented again in 2019.
“One of the keys to that success has been the open platform structure which allows anyone who is interested in digital and tech to organise, host and attend any events they like. This has helped to foster a hugely collaborative and inclusive environment where people come together to create the best experience possible. So, if you have an idea and want to get involved, we say come and play and let’s make 2019 the biggest year yet.”
Adam Hildreth, Founder and CEO of Crisp Thinking, added: “The Leeds Digital Festival has gone from strength to strength over the last few years and has put the spotlight on the incredible tech talent and innovation in the city. As a fast-growing tech firm based in Leeds and working across the globe, we’re really pleased to a be main sponsor this year.”
Mike Buck, head of delivery at BJSS, also commented: “As one of the largest technology companies in Leeds, BJSS is thrilled to be supporting the largest digital festival in the North. We’re looking forward to collaborating with the over 20,000 contributors, global experts and delegates that the Leeds Digital Festival attracts, and we can’t wait to see the amazing events that are planned for this year.”
If you’d like to organise or attend an event as part of the Leeds Digital Festival, go to https://leedsdigitalfestival.org/ to list your event or find out what’s going on.