STHLM Tech Fest placed innovation on map of the startup scene
What happens if you put 5000 participants from startups together with like minded corporations and investors in the same room? Magic! But, how easy is it to do magic in the context of business environment? Innovation is not a trick. It’s not based on good luck. It needs hard work and self-discipline. It needs to create value to have business potential. That was one of the topics at STHLM Tech Fest - to build bridges between corporations and the startup community to enable faster innovation and accelerate business growth.
STHLM Tech Fest took place for the fourth time this year. It has approximately doubled the number of guests it saw in its first year, and I asked founder Tyler Crowley how this has been achieved:
“STHLM Tech is number one in the recipe to build startup ecosystem in Sweden. Our mission in the beginning was to bring more attention to Stockholm. But, now it has already succeeded, the mission is more to make the next generation of startups more diverse and solve more important problems.”
Innovate, incubate, accelerate
Topics covered this year include the future of games, AI, VR, investing and working. But the innovation and collaboration highlighted all discussions. Future of Innovation was also our selected topic on a panel discussion hosted by Tieto. Ksenia Avetisova, Strategic Innovation Lead, Tieto Data-Driven Businesses; Taneli Tikka, Head of Innovation, Tieto Data-Driven Businesses; Fredrik Ring, Head of Commercialization, Tieto Data-Driven Businesses and Nicklas Bergman, Futurist and writer, shared their views and experiences from this challenging area. Ksenia challenged panelists to think about the following: How to build a winning team to make innovaiton with business potential happen? What's the value of building teams blending humans and technology? What do you think - is the future bright or gloomy for us humans?
Takeaways from the discussion included:
- AI raises the quality of decision making. Decisions are based on facts, not emotions or feelings.
- We are only in the warm up/boot camp phase of digitalization
- We need to understand what to use tech for. As there are shady areas such as cloning which might have a severe impact in our ecosystem
- The the lack of data is the biggest block we have to move forward with innovation.
- There is still a lot of ground uncovered and discussions that need to be taken to understand the impact of tech, but at the same time tech uncovers enormous opportunities.
- It is important to step outside of comfort zones to enable innovation.
Innovation is no one man show
Attitude matters, people matter and curiosity is key to innovation. It’s no one-man show, it needs to be done together. As Ksenia Avetisova says: ”Ground-breaking innovations are discovered when viewpoints, industries and cultures collide. Putting ideas quickly into the spotlight speeds up innovation.”
Unleash the power data
Outside of the stage, on the partner area, the emerging trend seemed to be well-being focused apps and tech. This was also showcased at Tieto X Sthlm booth with Data-Driven Health demo enabling predictive healthcare, Intelligent Building enabling a more emphatic office experience and VR/AR solutions created to ease the future shopping.
As a my colleague Raghunath Koduvayur, Head of Strategic Marketing, sums up the whole event: “STHLM Tech Fest is a shining star for the Startup ecosystem and provides entrepreneurs excellent access to corporates, investments, talent and other resources under one roof on the same day. While corporates like Tieto get access to talent, new partners and contribute our part to lead and facilitate the ecosystem. These ecosystems will further accelerate innovation and shape the future of our economy within Nordics”.
We need the spirit of STHLM Tech Fest and similar organizations to make it happen.
“Instead of judging people who have tried, we need to start appreciating courage. It often feels like it’s more important to ensure not to fall than shoot for the stars” - Slush - Talk the Talk - Roope Salminen
Don’t overthink it, just do it.
Big thanks to Tyler Crowley, STHLM Tech Fest, volunteers, customer, partners, Tieto X Sthlm team for the whole experience.