Ladies and gentlemen, the moment is almost here: Applied Sciences Valencia is next week!
In case you’ve been living under a rock (or visiting some other tech site, you traitor), we’re taking our cherished festival on the road. After 16 glorious years in Amsterdam, we are bringing the show to the Spanish Mediterranean coast – and you are all invited.
We are not only there for sun, sea and sand, far from it. Valencia has the fastest growing innovation ecosystem in Spain and the most startups per capita in the country. On March 30 and 31, we will be showcasing the best technology in the region to more than 2,000 guests.
Over the course of two days, attendees will enjoy inspiring talks, networking events, learning opportunities and the same festival vibes as our Amsterdam flagship. The entire editorial staff will also be present, awaiting your company, ideas and of course abuse.
In total we receive more than 100 speakers, 75 investors, 90 exhibitors and 3,000 meetings. Admittedly, this has created one big problem: you just can’t catch them all. To help you find your way through the packed agendahere are eight highlights on TNW València.
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1. The official opening ceremony and party
While the main agenda kicks off on March 30, the fun starts a day earlier at our opening party.
Our guest list includes a range of political heavyweights. They include Diana Morant, the Spanish Minister of Science and Innovation; Sandra Gomez, Deputy Mayor of Valencia; Arcadi España García, Minister of Finance of the Generalitat Valenciana; and Borja Sanjuán, Vice Mayor of Economic Development in the City of Valencia.
Join them (and us) for a drink, bite and network from 7 p.m. at Zeus València. To sign up for the party, click here.
2. A game of padel
The opening party is one of them 10 side events, with a healthy mix of learning, networking and partying. On March 31, you can even join one paddle tournament at the Valencia Tennis Center. I’ll be waiting on the field, so bring your F-game.
3. Essential speakers
We’ve put together a dizzying array of keynote speeches, fireside chats, panel discussions and workshops. With more tech celebrities than a PayPal reunionit’s hard to rank the speakers – but here are five of my favourites:
Heini Zachariassen, founder and CEO of Vivino
Zechariahs built the world’s most downloaded wine app and largest online wine marketplace. His company has made wine more accessible – and I speak from experience. My use of Vivino has become alarmingly frequent, but at least it finds me quality plonk at bargain prices.
Katica Roy, founder and CEO of Pipeline Equity
An award-winning economist and former Global 500 executive, founded by Roy Pipeline equity in 2017. At València, she will discuss how to close the innovation gap.
Miguel Ángel Leal, Chief Technology and Innovation Officer at LaLiga
As a digital chief at La LigaÁngel injects innovation a legendary football league. His role combines the best of both technology and sport, which sounds like a dream job to me – apart from my position at TNW of course.
Jen Carter, Global Head of Technology at Google.org
Carter leads the pro bono initiatives google.orgthe philanthropic arm of the Big G. Having spent six years with the organization and ten years on Google’s Trust and Safety team, Carter has a unique understanding of using technology for good.
Alex Roca, Ambassador at FC Barcelona
It’s not just tech leaders taking the stage. One of our most intriguing speakers is Alex Rockawho recently became the first person with a physical disability of 76% to complete a marathon. At TNW València, he will make his first public speech since achieving this achievement.
4. The FT Power Hours
Our beloved overlords of the Financial Times are bringing their best brains to Valencia. In a series of sessions called FT Power Hours, they discuss the hottest business trends in technology with industry leaders.
5. The startup pitch battle
It’s not all fun and games. While we don’t condone violence in TNW, we do love a pitched battle – and this one is sure to be fiery. Some of the world’s most exciting startups will present their ideas to our renowned jury.
The challengers will compete for the attention of top investors, a collection of prizes and – most importantly – a profile of your favorite editors. I mean us by the way.
And if you want to sharpen your skills, check out the startup pitching workshop on Thursdays at 12:30 p.m.
6. A ride on the TNW Ferris wheel
It wouldn’t be an TNW festival without our cherished Ferris wheel. The carriages not only offer fun rides and beautiful views, but are also the perfect place for private meetings – partly because your conversation partner cannot leave.
7. A walk through the company floor
Our exhibition floor has produced a lively mix of ideas and products.
The 92 organizations in the business hall include major brands such as Mercadona, Hubspot and Helloprint; Valencian tech players such as Sesame HR, Social Nest and Delivers.AI; and government agencies, including Spain Up Nation, Valencia Activa, Generalitat, Invest in Valencia.
There is a lot to see but our map can smooth your route through space.
I could go on, but my schedule is already bursting at the seams. Hopefully, these seven tips are enough to help you enjoy the festivities.
If not, feel free to give me feedback at the bar. I will have an Aigua de Valenciaby favour.