Biggest conferences coming up for startups in 2017

By Omar Elorfaly September 5, 2017
Startup Conference

What do entrepreneurs do when they finally establish their startup? Do they hibernate in their offices, trying to come up with creative solutions? Roam the streets looking for more investors? Or do they read up on other success stories for inspiration?

While all previously mentioned tactics can yield great success, there is a more exciting and interactive substitute. Startup conferences offer the opportunity for maximum networking while facilitating knowledge sharing among different industry participants.

2017 has already witnessed a load of successful and exciting conferences, including World Domination Summit, Startup+Fest and CEO Space. But the year is still not over, and the best is yet to come.

Pirate Summit (Sep 6-7)startup conference

Europe’s largest invitation-only event for early-stage startups, set in Cologne, Germany emerges in its 7th iteration. The 2-day event brings together innovators from startups in different industries with venture capitalists and industry leaders.

Besides the frequent “ARRRR!!” shouts, the conference maintains a theme that is much like Burning Man, and coincidently the event’s 2015 iteration did in fact hold a Burning Man festival. 

Discussion panels, 1-on-1 sessions, and keynotes are all a part of the conference. However, “Walk the Plank” stands out as the most interesting event. It’s a competition where entrepreneurs take the stage and proceed to pitch their startup ideas and their visions for the future. Winners of the competition receive a fully-paid trip to London and San Francisco, and pre-arranged meetings with venture capitalists in their respective cities. Pirate summit also adds a financial incentive of $50,000 to spice up the competition.

Disrupt SF (Sep 18-20)startup conference

The only non-invitation-only entry on our list goes to one of the most important annual events in the tech startup world. Disrupt SF is hosted by the famous TechCrunch magazine.

The event features the usual array of discussion panels, keynote speakers and meet & greet. The conference also gives a chance for newly-born startups to exhibit their ideas in the event’s Startup Alley, as well as a platform where entrepreneurs meet investors, dubbed “CrunchMatch”.

Multiple startups credit the event for boosting their business and activity, that includes Mathew Prince, CEO of Cloudfare who reports “We struggled like crazy to get our first hundred customers. Since Disrupt, we sign up about 5000 new customers a day.”

While the event is open to ticket-buyers, tickets are $2,995 each.

Summit LA 17 (Nov 3-6)

Probably the biggest and most exclusive entry on our list. The event set in the heart of Los Angeles not only features industry leaders like Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon, but also a wide array of leading figures in different fields, like Five-time NBA champion Kobe Bryant and Award-winning author Malcolm Gladwell.

LA 17 goes above-and-beyond with over 40 different entertainment performances by world-renowned musicians, stand up comedians and dancers.

The event is one to not go unnoticed by the whole city, taking over LA’s historic Broadway theater, as well as 9 of downtown LA’s biggest hotels, including the Intercontinental Hotel, which occupies the west coast’s highest tower.

The 4-day extravaganza is ‘the’ perfect opportunity for networking, and even meeting one’s own role models.

The limited invitation-only event is looking for industry leaders, unique figures in thought and innovation. While the event is completely open for invitation holders, attendees are expected to participate in making the event the highlight of the city.

TNW (Dec 12)startup conference

The last entry on our list is a 12-year-long success story. The famous tech-focused TNW aims to gather 135 industry thought leaders, including 9 CEOs to discuss the tech journey that led us to today’s latest innovations.

With a focus on subjects like AI, blockchain, and machine learning, the event sets up over 220 roundtable sessions covering the current and future applications of technologies.

The success of the event earned it partners of the highest caliber, including IBM, Microsoft, and PWC.

Praise for the invitation-only event is said best by Nir Eyal, Author of How to build habit-forming products, “If there’s one event I love returning to, it’s TNW. They never cease to surprise me with their attention to detail and their ability to make you feel part of the family. It’s a great way of connecting with friends from the industry – both old and new.”