Written by: Lindsay Chan, Director, #BCTECH Summit
As the Director of the #BCTECH Summit for the 2nd year, people often ask me what I’m most excited about this year. What’s different and why should people attend? You’d think this would be an easy question for me to answer given I spend literally ALL of my days talking to partners, speakers, stakeholders and so many others curious about this incredible event we are planning and the benefits it brings to B.C. and beyond. How much time do you have?
In all seriousness, this year’s event is an evolution of the last. The 3rd annual #BCTECH Summit will be the best showcase of innovation – led by homegrown champions and industry leaders from beyond our borders interested in sharing their insights and expertise with all of us. The BCIC, B.C. Government and Inventa teams are SO excited for what’s to come! Here’s my list for today…
- A Marketplace more than double the size of last year. The “Heart of the Summit” will have more than 50,000 square feet of innovative displays and is going to be an exciting showcase of tech and those who are supporting its acceleration and impact. This includes 50+ startups as part of our Startup Village, plus a beautiful lounge space dedicated to female founders and funders thanks to Lauren Robinson of Highline VC and Female Funders. The Reality Zone, powered by Microsoft Vancouver, is for VR companies, including those from The Cube. All of our main networking receptions and events take place here! Oh, and we’re bringing back the Global BC Live News Broadcast at 6pm on May 15th!
- The Content. Thoughtfully crafted panel discussions and SEVEN content streams highlight the tech and innovation that transcend sectors and industries (have you checked out our program yet?). From breakthrough technologies (we’re talking robotics and robo-ethics, AI, autonomous vehicles) to case studies from innovators leading the charge in today’s global economy to in-depth panel discussions on the opportunities the newly formed Cascadia corridor and Canada’s Digital Technology Supercluster offer. We are overwhelmed by the offers from industry thought leaders from across Canada and beyond to participate and speak in our program. Though our program is essentially full for this year, there will be other opportunities. 2019 is right around the corner!
- Our Sponsors. The instrumental support from industry leaders and titans truly demonstrates we are doing something right! This year, the #BCTECH Summit is pleased to welcome back not only title sponsor Microsoft but also TELUS, Vancity, BDC, Rogers, PwC, RBC, Stemcell, almost all of B.C.’s post-secondary institutions and so many others – as partners of the Summit. What’s been incredible to see is the new level of support and involvement from Teck, Vanbex, Google Cloud and others. Tech IS Everywhere. From May 14-16, there is no better place to be than at the Vancouver Convention Centre at the #BCTECH Summit!
- Diversity! Our goal each year is gender balance and diversity right across the board – from speakers to delegates. Take a look at our distinguished speakers and there’s no questioning the focus. I’m pleased to report that as of right now we are at about 43% female to 57% male, and we’ve still got a few weeks to go! Join us on May 14th before the official kick-off event for Women Who Tech | Collaborating on Action to Create an Inclusive Tech Sector delivered in partnership between BCIC, the BC Tech Association, The RAISE Collective and PwC, and don’t miss powerful conversations within the #BCTECH Summit program on May 16th.
- The Networking. The numerous opportunities for connection and re-connection add to the foundations of your organization. Join us at #BCTECH on the Terrace (May 14th) as we kick off the 3rd annual event and where we will once again light the Olympic Cauldron, our official After Party @ Science World (May 16th) and at Techvibe’s Techfest (May 16th) – there is no shortage of opportunities to expand your network, meet your next employer or employee and experience the vibrancy of our community! Heading to the Summit from Seattle? Connect with Troy De Frank, who’s spearheading Geeks on a Train through Amtrak. What better opportunity to unwind and network than on the train ride up with 70 others from your community! For others traveling from the US, don’t forget your dollar is incredibly strong against our Canadian dollar, making registration and travel to the Summit even easier to make happen!
It’s not too late to join us! Check out everything we’re building and get your ticket at www.bctechsummit.ca. Thanks to everyone for their support and involvement.