After months of anticipation, last minute travel bookings and a mad rush to the Melbourne airport, I finally found myself in Hong Kong to attend the RISE 2017 Conference. This is my first time attending a large tech conference since I have been writing my blog in January 2016, and a chance to meet some really interesting and influential people within the global tech scene. Naturally, I am incredibly excited by what the next few days have to offer.
RISE is a three-day event (July 11 – 13, 2017) organised by the creators of Web Summit, which is Europe’s largest tech conference. RISE Hong Kong attracts thousands of entrepreneurs, investors and startups from all over Asia and the rest of the planet for three days of brilliant talks on innovation, disruption and non-stop networking.
In order to get a better perspective of the Asian tech ecosystem into which Hong Kong seamlessly fits into, I have been reading Alibaba: The House that Jack Ma built, a book that narrates the story of China’s perhaps most charismatic founder Jack Ma and the ethos on which he created the ecommerce giant Alibaba.
What makes Hong Kong the ideal place for RISE besides its spectacular harbour views and a great transport system is the fact that the city has rapidly emerged as one of the startup hubs of Asia owing to its economic and strategic advantages.
As the Asian centre of banking and finance with its Western-style government and stable regulatory environment, Hong Kong served as the channel for capital flows into and out of China for many years. Even with the globalisation of the Chinese economy, Hong Kong’s financial markets have remained a primary source of capital raising through IPO-s or initial public offerings for Mainland Chinese companies. Also as a melting pot of Eastern and Western cultures, this city attracts a lot of people with entrepreneurial talent and ambition looking to make it big in Asia. The access to the 1.2 billion strong Chinese market is relatively easy going through the Silicon Valley of China, the city of Shenzhen.
RISE 2017 will host Joe Tsai, one of the 18 co-founders led by English teacher Jack, who were behind the founding of Alibaba in December 1999. RISE also features social media stalwart Gary Vaynerchuk from New York, Stripe co-founder John Collison as well as leading brands such as Dropbox, Amazon, Google and Salesforce.
With my passion for emerging technologies, I am especially interested in the talks on fintech and artificial intelligence as well as the Startup University that will be of incredible value for any new founder.
So please stay tuned to my blog for more updates and insights from RISE2017!