The Grand Duchy of Luxembourg @ Websummit 2018
Following the success in 2016 & 2017, the Enterprise Europe Network of the Luxembourg Chamber of Commerce organised an accompanied visit to the Websummit from 5th to 7th November 2018 in Lisbon, encompassing a well-rounded programme of business networking and b2b activities. Some 140 participants from Luxembourg were present at the Websummit this year including 70 companies who participated in activities organised by the Luxembourg Chamber of Commerce.
In a very short span of almost 10 years, the Web Summit 2018 has evolved into one of the largest tech events in Europe. This year, the so called “Davos for Geeks” has gathered, according to the organisers, some 70,000 participants, representing a wide range of companies from the “Fortune 500” list as well as renowned high tech companies and potentially fast growing start-ups from all over the world.
The number of Luxembourg companies at Websummit is constantly on the rise, compared to the previous editions of the event. The reason behind this is the growing importance of the ICT sector and digitalisation in Luxembourg, in line with the country’s strategy to adopt the Third Industrial Revolution developed by the American prospective economist - Jeremy Rifkin. This ambitious project aims at defining a new economic model for the Grand Duchy through the convergence of latest communication technologies, energy source and intelligent and interconnected transportation on a smart IoT platform.
Speaking on Luxembourg’s presence at the Websummit Mr Carlo Thelen, Director General of the Luxembourg Chamber of Commerce stated “It is overwhelming to see the growing number of Luxembourg companies at a high tech show like the Websummit which endorses the position of the ICT in Luxembourg and gives us the opportunity to present our vast & innovative ecosystem to the world. I am extremely glad to see the innovative companies participating as exhibitors at the Websummit which confirms our standing as the 6th most innovated country in Europe as indicated in the European Innovation Scoreboard 2018. Given the immense potential and dimension of the Websummit, we offered our companies an exhaustive programme including networking opportunities as well as b2b meetings and a networking dinner to help them optimise their participation at the event to a maximum”.
Regarding the significance of digitalisation, the Government’s commitment to digital transformation, as pursued through its nationwide “Digital Lëtzebuerg” strategy, also assures a good ranking of the Grand Duchy in this year’s “Digital Economy and Society Index” (-> #5) as well as in the “Digital Transformation Scoreboard 2018” confirming the country’s position amongst the EU leaders in terms of digital transformation.
In order to reinforce the Luxembourg participation at the Websummit, the Luxembourg Chamber of Commerce organised several side events in order to offer the participants an extensive programme and networking opportunities. In collaboration with the Embassy of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, the Luxembourg Chamber of Commerce organised a networking reception on 5th November at the Luxembourg Embassy. H.E. Mr Jean-Jacques Welfring welcomed around 75 Luxembourg and Portuguese companies who participated in this reception to kick off the “Networking by excellence” before this big opening of the Websummit.
Buzzing with visitors at this stand, Hughes Despres, CEO of Ujet said, “Our participation in the Websummit has been exceptional as the event brings together all important and innovation people from the Tech world. We have had a huge number of visitors on our stand who are discovering our first urban mobility solution - Ujet electric scooter which I am very proud to mention are certified “Made in Luxembourg”. Whilst, the event has given us a lot of leads as well as helping us increase awareness about our product and hi-tech lifestyle brand. We highly appreciate the support services and the side events organised by the Luxembourg Chamber of Commerce during the Websummit from which, we have thoroughly benefited”.
The Enterprise Europe Network-Luxembourg in collaboration with Industrial Association of Portugal (AIP) organised another side event with b2b meetings for the Luxembourg delegation at Websummit. The aim behind organising these individual business meetings was to provide the participants with an opportunity to conclude concrete bilateral partnerships with companies from Portugal. 12 Luxembourg companies benefitted from the b2b meetings and 42 meetings were organised for them the second day.
“The purpose of my visit to the Websummit was 3 fold: to meet innovative companies and start-ups at the Websummit, to meet Portuguese companies offering consultancy and technology solutions, as well as networking with the Luxembourg delegation present at the Websummit. I have achieved my objective and would like to thank the Luxembourg Chamber of Commerce for the overall program offered to the companies as well as the support throughout which helped me optimise my participation” quotes Elias Chbeir, Founder of company Elias Luxembourg, a fast growing company that is offering innovative digital transformation strategy and advisory services to SMEs.
With regard to the exhibition part, 10 Luxembourg companies coming from diverse areas of the tech world participated in the Alpha or Beta start-up programme or as regular exhibitors at the Websummit this year. Participating as a Beta Exhibitor this year, Vlad Gherciu, CEO of Keymitt active in the field of smart locks said “We have been Alumni’s of the Alpha Start-up programme last year and have highly benefitted from the networking opportunities provided by Websummit. The event is extremely dynamic that gathers tech gurus from all over the world who share their rich experience which serves as a huge knowledge base for start-ups like us. We also participated in the networking reception at the Embassy as well as the b2b meetings organised by the Luxembourg Chamber of Commerce. We are confident that all these elements together will help us to further expand our company”.
Given the growing importance of the Websummit as a tech event, the Luxembourg Chamber of Commerce plans to continue its initiatives to the event in the next years with a reinforced & increased presence in order to continue to position Luxembourg as a leader in Digitalisation as well as Innovation.