The 8th Punta Tech Meetup, an annual gathering of technology investors and businesses, drew leading tech gurus to the Uruguayan beach resort of Punta del Este.

Mariano Amartino, director of Spain's Telefonica OpenFuture and Wayra, the Spanish telecom company's business accelerator, and Claudio Bessa, Cloud Business Development and academic initiatives director of IBM Latin America, are participating in the event.

The forum's goal is to bring together major actors in technology and business to exchange ideas and strengthen their connections in one of the region's main tourism spots.

"This is an international event with speakers from different countries, but, above all, it's a place where people from the country, the region and other nations get to talk about the technology business," Alejandro Ferrari, coordinator of global services at trade promotion agency Uruguay XXI, said.

Organizers expect to welcome around 800 participants, most of them technology entrepreneurs, investors and corporate executives, this year.

Punta Tech Meetup's activities, including lectures, will provide a beneficial experience for the next generation of business leaders in Uruguay, Ferrari said.

The roster of lecturers is headed by Yuval Noah Harari, a professor at Hebrew University in Jerusalem and author of the best seller "Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind."

Uruguay is using the gathering to promote itself as a place where "there is highly qualified talent" in information technology, Ferrari said.

"A serious and reliable country, with important incentives, in particular for the development of software aimed at service exports, and where the standard and quality of life are also attractive for foreign talent," Ferrari said.

Punta Tech Meetup was first held in 2007, when entrepreneurs Pablo Brenner, Ariel Pfeffer and Sergio Fogel organized a meeting with prominent technology industry figures who were vacationing in Punta del Este. EFE