So the last few weeks have been insanely packed in terms of events. Europe’s entrepreneurs have been busy running around to all kinds of events in places like Poland, Portugal, the UK, France, Ireland and more. Here’s a quick rundown on some of the recent events I attended and spoke at, and the next ones to come – including speaking opportunities for entrepreneurs.
From Paris to Berlin (ok, not Berlin).
While I definitely haven’t made it to as many events as I would have liked, I did make it to quite a few – including LeWeb in London, Switch Conference in Lisbon and Web Game Conference in Paris.
LeWeb et moi.
LeWeb’s Loic and Geraldine Le Meur did a fabulous job of rounding up the usual impressive suspects and getting them out to Europe – including everyone from Michael Arrington to Kevin Rose to Kevin Systrom. As LeWeb is originally a French conference, there was a terrific number of people who crossed over from France to attend – a definite plus for the ecosystem. And while there were quite a few familiar speakers, some of the new names that caught my attention included Zach Sims (founder and CEO of Code Academy) and Eric Migicovsky (Founder of Pebble Technology, who raised $10 million via Kickstarter).
Oh, and one of my new-found tech heroines, Martha Lane Fox (cofounder of Lastminute.com, amongst others…). Here is the interview I did with her and Michael Bracken, who runs the development of the UK government’s digital services.
C’est bon, Lisbon.
Switch Conference in Lisbon was also very eye-opening. Prior to going to the event, I had only met a handful of Portuguese entrepreneurs and could not name a single Portuguese startup or investor. While Portugal still doesn’t have the same quantity of local investors as neighboring Spain or France – and most definitely not the UK – it was nice to see an international crowd making the journey there to see what was happening locally – clearly showing an interest in the local ecosystem.
Wondering what I talked about? How to improve the European startup ecosystem.
Playing the Web Game Conference.
The last conference I hosted was the Web Game Conference in Paris, which I also hosted last year. This year’s event was incredibly impressive – it was nice to see the organizers bring on a good selection of international speakers and make a number of additional improvements (live translation, exquisite venue, etc.) that really show that this event is growing nicely. One of the most entertaining speakers to take the stage was Nadeo’s Florent Castelnerac (who did a completely improvised and interactive speech) but I think one of my personal favorites was eRepublik’s Alexis Bonte, who discussed hard figures – including the fact that some of his users can spend up to tens of thousands of euros on the platform. Success? I think so.
Notice the text on his shirt. Turns out you can also invade different countries on Erepublik.
So now that the June event flood is officially over, I’m eagerly waiting some terrific events in July.
Les Matinales: July 3.
July 3rd I’ll be hosting the first of 3 mini-conferences about innovation called “Les Matinales.” They’re organized by the Agence de développement du Val de Marne but hosted by little old me. This first event will include speakers from companies like Airbnb, Etsy, Uber, Stardoll, Sparrow, Blablacar, Joliebox, Le Petit Ballon and more to discuss international and French innovation. The 2nd and 3rd events of the 3-part series will take place in September with more details to come shortly.
Want to speak?
We have almost a full agenda but there are still a few speaker slots available for July 3rd. If you are interested in discussing the challenges and advantages of being an entrepreneur in France or if you would like to do a 15 minute keynote on a particular topic, please get in touch asap. You can email me at rvarza at gmail dot com.
“How to impress a journalist.”
Leetchi.com’s founder and CEO, Céline Lazorthes, and I will be hosting a workshop on how to “wow” journalists on July 3rd. For anyone who is interested in finding out what to do and what not to do – from both the journalist and the entrepreneur’s perspective – this is an event you won’t want to miss :) Brought to you by Cup of Teach.