12 Mar Perspectives: What is your vision for European Tech in 2021? #4
I had the privilege to interview Marty Huisman Co-founder of Wyngs, Event Tech Expert & Focus Group leader at the ECA, we discussed the issues of European tech in 2021. We focused our interrogations around European Event Tech, the consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic among other European issues. I recommend you sincerely to read his interesting perspective.
Emma Neige – Strategic Partnerships and Communication at the ECA
What is your vision for European Tech in 2021?
In general, this year will be a breakthrough year for ECA to generate awareness, as you see the call for stronger European tech coming from everywhere now. Every organization in this space that we reached out to has complementary initiatives to ours, and even if there is overlap we should not perceive it as competition. We’re all part of a big wave that gives the ECA opportunity to work with others and grow the movement for stronger European tech. Macron is a big fighter for European networks, we need to leverage that and think big and act big. We need to support a combination of initiatives. If there’s an opportunity to join forces it would be great.
For the Event Tech sector, 2020 was a breakthrough year because everything moved to virtual, this year the sector will make the move to hybrid events. New event concepts will emerge from that, all supported by technology. Physically we can’t reunite thousands of people but thanks to event tech we will be able to serve the public with hybrid concepts. And there is room for new applications and technology for “post-COVID” live events: measure how many people are in the event per square meter and if they respect the distance. Live events will always be preferred but they will need to adapt, which, as said, gives an opportunity to new tech solutions. Also, in the virtual space, there is still a need for improvement: after 1-year people are fed up with simple webinars, solutions for more engagement are welcomed, and will hopefully spin-off innovation.
There is a big need for consolidation in event tech because there are too many propositions, there is ultimately no place in the market and the features offered are almost similar across virtual platforms To attract investors scaling is inevitable, leading automatically to mergers and acquisitions. US investors throw big money into event tech: UK-based Hopin is now in the hands of 3 US-based investors for an amount that is unreal and even dangerous: the real value will never be that high. With the ECA we will need to raise a voice that makes EU event tech stand out and get investments that are well calculated and help solutions growing internationally.
We hope at the ECA to bring these people together and join forces rather than to be competing.