The 2019 Techsauce Global Summit, held last week on June 19th – 20th at Centara Grand at CentralWorld in Bangkok, Thailand saw over twice as many participants than in previous years and earned recognition as one of the leading technology conferences in the ASEAN region.
Bringing together a staggering 20,000 entrepreneurs, investors, industry experts, and corporate partners, this year’s conference hosted 126 exhibitors showcasing 15 technology tracks, including the latest in blockchain, artificial intelligence, Internet of Things (IoT) technologies, energy, and data science advancements.
Sponsored competitions, educational workshops, and thought-provoking presentations from 400 speakers gave visitors from over 50 countries the opportunity to engage across 13 stages in a unique two-day format that is designed to encourage and inspire action between delegates and attendees.
Amarit Chareonphan, CCO and Co-Founder of organizer Techsauce Media, said, “Techsauce goes beyond being a gathering that has speakers and booths on display — we put a lot of work into creating the best environment for start-ups and entrepreneurs to thrive alongside investors, established companies, and experts.”
Amarit is a seasoned veteran in setting the stage for thriving entrepreneurial activity, having played an unequivocal role in forging the Thai startup scene from its beginnings into what it is today.
“Starting from a 160 techies packed inside HUBBA coworking space in 2012, we have come a very long way,” he said. Pioneering the first community of its kind in HUBBA, Amarit has been bringing together the components that fulfill his “belief in the potential of Southeast Asia” for nearly a decade now and has scaled well beyond the national level, as he has become more adept at doing so.
Last week, Techsauce hosted almost 2,000 startups and registered more than 500 companies, which places the event firmly as one of the top tech conferences in the ASEAN region. The unique format seeks to provide networking opportunities and hosts activities for growth and advancement such as workshops and pitching competitions. This year saw the return of the Techsauce Global Summit Pitch Championship, featuring a grand prize of 1 million baht to the winning team.
The 4th annual Techsauce Summit succeeded in providing the necessary ecosystem for industry verticals such as blockchain to have real impact, as it will likely play a major role in Amarit’s vision to create “one of the most impactful conferences in the world and making the world a better place for generations to come.”
With a significant proportion of blockchain-related content, the specific emphasis directed towards how we choose to use technology and its impact on our lives is synonymous with the industry’s present mindset focusing on use cases and adoption, after having suffered through the prolonged market correction that was needed in order to distinguish the true sources of long-term value creation from the superficial.
“We are going beyond buzzwords like ICO and corporate innovation,” explained Amarit, who placed the focus of the conference on “telling the most important story of humanity — how new technology is affecting our everyday lives, and how we can consciously shape, build, and grow technologies as tools for positive change,” words that resonate with those who truly believe in blockchain’s potential to improve the human condition in an industry that has been marred with buzzwords more than any other.
With hundreds of people and countless teams inside the “Blockchain Room,” networking was carried out on a more personal basis and to the target needs and specifications of each project or investor, as was observed by Sanjay Popli, CSO of Cryptomind, a leading blockchain consulting and investment firm. With the post-ICO craze bear market finally over, the blockchain community has entered a period focused on practical usage, adoption, and tangible value creation.
“Each project must carefully analyze whether it is best to do a traditional fund raise, try the STO route, or go for the ICO; depending on their needs,” Sanjay remarked. He pointed out that the digitization of real estate will be an interesting use case for blockchain fundraising, commenting specifically on upcoming projects in Thailand and anticipating greater support from the pro-cryptocurrency government.
To further highlight the blockchain industry’s shift towards usage and adoption, the Techsauce main stage hosted 10-year-old Kaede Takanaka, CEO of KidLET coin, a platform for children and their parents to manage household finances and learn important skills in money management from an early age. Her project uniquely exemplifies the spread of adoption to the younger generations and demonstrates the ability of blockchain technology to provide value to a continually widening user base.
This year’s summer conference comes amid a banner week for the blockchain industry, as Facebook announces the Libra, marking the end of a transitional phase for cryptocurrencies and a potentially historic moment in the battle over the decentralization of money. Meanwhile, main street attention is increasing rapidly once again, with Bitcoin re-gaining its five-figure prices and continuing to post dramatic intra-day volatility.
But this time is different. As the over-hype of blockchain seems to have passed, the spread of practical knowledge and the resulting general increase in understanding will point to the overwhelming evidence for blockchain & distributed ledger technology’s (DLT) sustainable value. With this trend, the emergence of projects that compete to provide real value will only continue to replace projects that are only capable of capitalizing on the speculation and widespread lack of understanding that once stood in its place.
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