Thursday, 1 February 2018

Thoughts from London - CVLF 1.3

Another fantastic event - the Biggest Surprise was how many people in the room were Estonian e-residents!  What a cutting edge group of geeks we are ;-)

It was a dual centre format and this allowed us to see some new faces - and two amazing venues

Thoughts from Geovation

We were treated to a number of short (in most cases) presentations at Geovation interspersing some insights into the latest innovations with some lighter stories about London.
Key take-outs for me were:

  • The scale of the prize in Fintech disintermediation Chris Sier’s. I also really liked the way he presented this as a benefit to the consumer  
  • The power of a fully functioning ecosystem in the two examples presented by Alex (Geovation) and Amy (Level 39) - and the use of a cookie bell..
  • The particularly enjoyed the counterpoint from Marc at MXC Capital with a more financially driven approach. 

I very much enjoyed so many intense conversations continuing over drinks and food - though I am not sure security was so happy with the time we left

Thoughts from Belron

My first take-away from this event was that I needed to play more chess - someone is trying to tell you something when every keynote mentions it!

Four great sessions - starting with an inspirational presentation from Nick (Belron) who really demonstrated how he is using innovation programmes to face digitisation and disruption head-on.

Key points:
  • ‘strategically important’ is not necessarily your core business
  • IBM Watson hackathon shows what is possible when people are empowered. 

Nick’s presentation highlighted that while it is imperative that these activities have a strategic imperative it might not be the core company deliverable,  Andy (Schneider Electric) took this to the next stage and spoke about how activities can be aligned with sustainability e.g the Global Sustainable Goals. The message: there are many parts of the corporate that do not necessarily touch each other but through collaboration both areas can be strengthened.

Staying with the theme of using collaboration to solve societal problems (and generally very big problems) Marc (Telefonica) spoke very eloquently about how corporate partnerships with XXXXX have helped them innovate and connect disadvantaged communities. Some amazing thoughts:
  • Think about who should be in the start-up team (Queen - well connected all rounder, Knight - able to jump over obstacles and make things happen, Rook/Bishop - deep subject knowledge)
  • The old Sun-Tzu expression - keep your friends close but your enemies closer... taking the CTO to every meeting!
However, what was really resonating with me at this point is that it is all about value alignment..If you can line up the value drivers of everyone in the ecosystem (other corporates, start-ups and end consumers) then BIG things will happen.

Which brings me nicely to Prof Erkko’s amazing trip through ecosystems...the good, the bad and the ugly. It is impossible to talk about this presentation without mentioning the fact he cemented his academic credentials early on with his calculation of the exact amount of rice on the last square and used a word that no-one else had heard of.

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