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  • Festival organizers Fabiola Leon and Adrian Gomez from Break the Seven, speak at a press conference Oct. 2, 2017.

    Festival organizers Fabiola Leon and Adrian Gomez from Break the Seven, speak at a press conference Oct. 2, 2017. | Photo: EFE

The “No Cash Event” incorporates an innovative form of payment, inviting festival goers to link an electronic bracelet to their bank account.

Over 5,000 technological experts, businessmen, students and entrepreneurs will participate in the first Digital Festival of Central America when it arrives in El Salvador in November, organizers said.

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The event, known as BT7 (Break the Seven), will premiere the International Center of Fairs and Convention in San Salvador, organizer Adrian Gomez told EFE reporters.

"We are making El Salvador a benchmark for technology in the entrepreneur-oriented world. This will be a space with which we seek to break the paradigm and show the world that there are great ideas for the future in the country," he said during a news conference.

The festival is open to both seasoned and amateur advertisers, programmers, technology entrepreneurs and students to provide a platform for all to learn, compete and exhibit their technological ideas.

Other activities include talks, workshops and presentations by regional experts, such as Franco Amati, a pivotal player in Bitcoin's Argentina branch, and Juan Luis Polo, president of Association of Digital Agencies.

"We will have special guests like Salvador Aguilar, a Nicaraguan, and one of the main internet security developers. In addition, there will also be representatives from Forma Studios, which has been one of many illustrators for several major brands. It has also confirmed the participation of experts in telecommunications and digital marketing,” Gomez said.

He explained that the purpose of the event is to boost the digital industry in Central America, and specifically El Salvador, “closing the gaps that still exist in technology and highlighting the young talent in the country and region on technological entrepreneurship."

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The festival’s “Start Up” competition also invites Central American entrepreneurs to compete against each other in a race to win a cash prize of US$25,000.

"The BT7 will have the presence of international investors, who will have the freedom to finance those participating initiatives that, although they failed to win the prize, have shown a promising development," Gomez said.

One of the most interesting aspects of the event is its status as a “No Cash Event," which incorporates an innovative and appropriately “techy” form of payment, inviting festival goers to link an electronic bracelet to their bank account, paying for their food and souvenirs with a shake of their wrists. El Salvador will be the first to test this payment method.

Gomez added that a hefty percentage of ticket sales will be donated to educational and health initiatives that focus on improving technology in both fields. The director said the monetary sum will be distributed one day after the event in the presence of a few of the event's speakers and participating investors.

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