Saying 2018 is going to be a good year for technology is overrated because every single year is good for it and is good for tech events. But in a world full of bigger and smaller events spread all over it’s always good to have a guideline and to know which ones would benefit you somehow – there’s many more than these ones.
These 10 events are listed in order of dates, not of size or importance, because all of them are equally important and I wish you can attend all of them (I wish I could, to network, of course).
- 4YFN – February 26-28 – Barcelona, Spain
4YFN is the startup business platform of Mobile World Capital Barcelona that enables startups, investors, corporations and public institutions to discover, create and launch new ventures together. Of course it has everything normally attached to this kind of event like networking activities, hackathons, workshops, congresses and open innovation programs.
This event is focused on startups, investors and corporates. Startups can expect a boost in their network and business opportunities. Investors can count on connecting with other investors from different markets and getting in contact with new startups. Corporates may expect help innovating and also meeting new startups which can help their business.
2. SXSW – March 9-18 – Houston, Texas
No presentation is needed for South by Southwest. For those who have been living in a cave, SXSW aims to help creative people achieve their goals. It’s a conference, it’s a festival, all rolled into one with features sessions, showcases, screenings, exhibitions and a lot of opportunities to network.
SXSW claims it’s the living proof that the most unexpected discoveries happen when diverse topics and people come together. It’s a matter of going there and seeing with your own eyes.
3. Wolves Summit – April 10-11 – Warsow, Poland
Innovation meeting business and capital, this is the best definition for Wolves Summit. The conference is dedicated to startups, investors, entrepreneurs, corporates and SMBs. On the way of its seventh edition the event is focused on inspiring, educating and guess what? Networking.
The goal is to create growth opportunities for emerging firms and investment, of course. Connections, innovative solutions, matchmaking tools, meet potential business partners and numerous specialists are all part of this event.
- Pioneers – May 24-25 – Wien, Austria
The most promising tech startups meet the world’s top investors and executives at the most amazing venue ever: the Hofburg Imperial Palace. Business meetings, inspiring innovations, founders stories and industry insights all come together in this event.
It’s a great place for startups to create meaningful business relationships with corporates, investors and tech innovators. It’s a win-win for everyone involved. Pioneers has unparalleled access access to European-wide tech leaders.
- Latitude 59 – May 24-25 – Tallinn, Estonia
This event gathers the Baltic, CEE and the Nordic tech ecosystem. They provide opportunities for entrepreneurs, investors and leaders to learn, connect and network.
Which translated would be something like exploring different startup themes, network with like-minded people, join their investor-startup matchmaking and exchange futuristic ideas. Why Estonia? Because it has most startups per capita in Europe (bet you didn’t know this) and it’s the only functional digital society in the world.
- Arctic 15 – May 30-31 – Helsinki, Finland
The event focus on industries and technologies from a wide range of topics such as Talent and Digital Health, Smart Cities and Virtual Reality. There’s a pre-event matchmaking to optimize the network, a Deal Room for one-on-one meetings and the already famous Pitch Competition.
Every year there’s between 1500 and 2000 attendees with more than 300 investors, 450 startups and 150 corporates. Smaller events are the perfect place to get to know who you really want and create lasting connections with those people, ones that can actually change the course of things.
- Lisbon Investment Summit – June 6-7 – Lisbon, Portugal
LIS, as it is known, is Europe’s surprisingly informal and slightly unexpected startup conference. The event gathers seasoned investors, daring entrepreneurs and innovative executives for a two-day casual, sunny and action-packed event.
With the motto #nobullshit the event attracts more than 200 investors, 750 startups, 400 corporates, 100 speakers and 2000 attendees work together towards creating unique networking opportunities and real investment.
- South Summit – September 3-5 – Madrid, Spain
South Summit connects the most innovative entrepreneurs with the most important investors in the world and the corporations seeking to improve their global competitiveness through innovation.
Grab the opportunity to attend keynote talks and debates with worldwide innovation leaders, meet with the largest business angels and VC firms and do some business and networking (what else?). Shape the future thinking outside the box in Madrid.
- Web Summit – November 5-8 – Lisbon, Portugal
There’s no introduction or explanation needed when it comes to Web Summit. For the third year in a row the largest conference in the world is held in Lisbon. The attendees range from Fortune 500 companies to smaller tech companies in a mix of CEOs and founders of tech startups.
We can’t predict how many people will be attending the conference this year, it’s too soon, but if it continues to grow like previous years it will sure have more than 60,000 attendees. It is important to say that Web Summit also runs events around the world, events that you shouldn’t miss as well such as RISE Conference in Hong Kong (July 9-12) and Collision in New Orleans (April 30 – May 3).
- Slush – December 4-5 – Helsinki, Finland
We’ve already wrote about Slush when Rodrigo Zwetsch attended the event last year. If you go to Slush know that it happens during the sh*ttiest weather season of the year. The conference, considered by some one of the best kept secrets, is proud of celebrating entrepreneurship.
The event has grown immensely from a 300 person assembly to more than 17,000 attendees, 2,300 startups, 1,100 investors and 600 journalists. Slush is a collision of a festival and a conference and it’s not a business, it’s a community of people who love what they do. The core of the event is to facilitate founder and investor meetings and to build a world-wide startup community. And we are sure that networking is also on their minds.