60,000 people present (hailing from over 170 countries) and approximately 1,200
speakers, Web Summit happened in Lisbon for the second time, between the 4th
and the 9th November. Some Sonae collaborators were at the
technology summit and we've challenged three of them – Alexandre Santos, Miguel
Bagulho and Tânia Calçada – to tell us about the impact they felt after an event
that happens once a year since 2009, which seeks to connect the technological
community to all sorts of industries.
Santos, Portfolio Development @ Sonae IM
is an overwhelming experience. It's the third time I've attended the event and
I feel that it needs more and more prepreparation, moreover because it's been
growing year after year. I try and avoid as much as possible the sensation of
wasting many opportunities to interact with startups and investors. So, as a team,
we've previously selected the startups we should try and know, considering our
investment priorities, as well as the investors we really want to meet to
explore co-investment opportunities.
more than in previous editions, we have made an effort to split work properly
and prepare an action plan to make the most of the event. We are now finishing
the report we usually make on the event and moving forward with the numerous
contacts we have established during Web Summit. For us, being one of the biggest
and most active private investors in Portugal, it is excellent that this
initiative is happening in Lisbon. It allows us to more easily tell other
investors and startups what we've been doing in Portugal for the world.
I hope Web
Summit stays in our country for a few more years.”
Miguel Bagulho, Investment Team @ Sonae IM
been my third Web Summit, after an experience in Dublin and the first edition
in Portugal, which happened last year. Besides the main event, Web Summit
organises a day for investors only, called Venture Summit, which constitutes a
great starter for the mad days that follow.
Web Summit an excellent moment for networking with other investors, namely
international investors, who probably wouldn't come to our country otherwise.
The startups' part can be a bit confusing, but if you prepare contacts in
advance, you can manage the contact with companies that are more in line with
our investment criteria.
In the 2017
edition we've already identified several investment leads, some of which we
were already in touch with, namely in retail and telecom technological areas,
as well as cybersecurity.”
Tânia Calçada, Future Tech Area manager @
Innovation and Future Tech, Sonae
at Web Summit for three consecutive years and I'm waiting for the next one. In
2015, I went to Dublin to attend the conferences and talk to companies that
choose this fair to promote their products or find investors. Despite the poor
organisation of the summit in Dublin, I managed to get the insight on new
information technologies and social challenges associated with them. In 2016,
with the arrival in Lisbon, convenience and quality of the organisation
improved, while content quality and quantity remained. In 2017, there were no
surprises, the format was kept.
catalogue of themes discussed and implemented by startups has evolved in a
subtle way. There are themes which seem to be here to stay, like artificial
intelligence or robotics; in spite of being more and more dealt with in a practical
way, they are still far from the application in final products with real
utility. Themes like virtual reality, drones and even autonomous vehicles are
beginning to be understood as consumer technology, therefore they come up in
conversations and the exhibition applied to real cases. In the new entries, we
saw the blockchain, which hit the headlines over the past few months. I really