Top global events that`ll help smart founders stay ahead of the curve
The legendary Peter Drucker wisely said, “The best way to predict the future is to create it.” In today’s fast-paced business landscape, staying ahead isn’t just an advantage—it’s an absolute necessity.
If you’re a founder who skips out on events tailor-made for innovation and growth, you might as well be telling your competitors, “Go ahead and grab all the market share.”
Now how does keeping your finger on the pulse of industry events and trends supercharge your entrepreneurial journey?
Well, the stats don’t lie: businesses that adeptly adapt to shifting trends can experience a whopping 20% boost in customer satisfaction.
And as Steve Jobs famously noted, “Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.” So, which side of that distinction do you want to be on?
Smart founders are always one step ahead because they know this little secret—attending the right events is often a key ingredient in their recipe for success.
That`s why you`d find them seizing emerging trends, real-time insights and the latest industry developments shared at events to propel their businesses to new heights, all of which are practically foolproof.
It‘s your turn to get smart. Thankfully, we‘ve done the hard part of carefully curating a list of global founders events that might just be your ticket to a brighter, more innovative future.
Attending them can provide invaluable insights and inspiration, heighten your drive, and help you scale through those hard rocks. Let‘s dive in.
TechCrunch Disrupt (San Francisco, CA, USA)
TechCrunch Disrupt, held annually in San Francisco, USA, is one of the global founders events that draws a crowd of over 10,000 attendees.
Participants engage in activities ranging from the high-stakes Startup Battlefield competition to enriching networking opportunities and insightful keynote speeches as well as panel discussions.
The event includes an exhibition featuring over 300 exhibitors showcasing cutting-edge tech products and services.
Founders and CEOs from leading tech companies take the stage, sharing their expertise, while attendees get the chance to connect with other founders, investors, and mentors, leading to startups raising more than $1 billion in funding.
TechCrunch Disrupt brings together the best and brightest in the tech industry, a great place to learn about the latest trends, network with other founders, and find investors.
Key African startups that have taken over stages at TechCrunch Disrupt and wow-ed their ways to clinching investments; Oze (Ghana); AltSchool Africa (Nigeria); and Famasi Limited (Nigeria), among others. To stay updated about the next events, you can visit TechCrunch‘s official website.
Web Summit (Lisbon, Portugal)
Moving across continents, the Web Summit in Lisbon, Portugal, is one of the global founders events that sees a massive attendance of 70,000+ annually.
Offering a diverse range of activities, including inspiring keynote speeches, thought-provoking panel discussions, engaging workshops, and numerous networking events, the exhibition floor is loaded with over 1,000 exhibitors showcasing their latest tech innovations.
Attendees seize the opportunity to hear insights from industry leaders and foster connections with peers, investors, and mentors.
The Web Summit is another commendable place to learn about the latest trends in tech. It features several speakers and panels on topics such as entrepreneurship, leadership, and innovation.
Startups are selected to attend the Web Summit annually, among the numerous companies, Dojah Inc. and truQ (Nigeria), as well as AppExperts (Egypt) emerge.
Olugbenga Agboola, Co-founder, Flutterwave Inc and Tosin Eniolorunda – Founder, TeamApt are last speakers of the Web Summit.
With open arms to receive, the Summit is right there for you, stay up to date and do not miss the next edition.
Slush (Helsinki, Finland)
Slush is focused on startups and early-stage companies. If you want to meet potential investors and mentors, as well as learn about the latest trends in the startup world, this is one event you should go to.
Founders and CEOs share their wisdom, and attendees can network with like-minded individuals, fostering collaborations and mentorships.
In Helsinki, Finland, the two-day event brings together 25,000+ attendees annually, also featuring startup competitions, enlightening keynote speeches, and interactive panel discussions.
The exhibition area hosts more than 2,000 exhibitors, showcasing cutting-edge tech products and services.
Nigerian startups that have been part of this programme, organized by a non-profit community, include Truppr, VacantBoards and Wecyclers. Jump on the train, the official website will take you right there.
VIVATech (Paris, France)
Paris, France, hosts VIVATech France, a gathering of 100,000+ attendees which offers startups a lifelong opportunity to raise funding, meet a new and wider array of clients, and scale like never before.
The event uniquely celebrates startups and innovation with a thrilling startup competition, enriching networking events, insightful keynote speeches, and in-depth panel discussions.
With over 1,000 exhibitors, the exhibition floor buzzes with the latest tech offerings. Founders and CEOs from leading tech companies impart their knowledge, while attendees explore networking opportunities with fellow founders, investors, and mentors.
Nigerian company Treepz has been one of the commendable startups that have scaled through this event. Others include Ilara Health (Kenya); Curacel (Nigeria) and Kippa (Zambia), among others. Visit the official website to experience innovation like never before.
Collision (Toronto, Canada)
Focused on the future of business, Collision is also one of the global founders events featuring speakers from various industries, including tech, media, and entertainment. This caliber of individuals are the ones redefining the global tech industry and you’re one of them; so join in.
Across the Atlantic, Collision in Toronto, Canada, referred to as “The Olympics of Tech”, attracts 25,000+ participants drawn to impactful networking events, enlightening keynote speeches, and insightful panel discussions.
The exhibition area features more than 500 exhibitors unveiling their innovations. Founders and CEOs from tech giants share their insights, creating an atmosphere conducive to meaningful connections among attendees.
Notable startups that have successfully leveraged the Collision programme are OurPass (Nigeria), Lemonade Finance (Canada) and Chimoney (Canada), among others.
Africa Tech Summit (Kigali, Rwanda, Ghana, London):
This premier event is focused on the tech industry in Africa. It enlightens about the latest trends, networks with other founders, and also helps in meeting investors.
In the vibrant continent of Africa, tech enthusiasts gather at the Africa Tech Summit, spanning multiple locations including Kigali, Rwanda, Ghana, and London.
With an attendance of 5,000+, the event is a hub for networking events, enlightening keynote speeches, and engaging panel discussions.
The exhibition showcases the work of over 200 tech innovators. Entrepreneurs and leaders from African tech companies share their experiences, fostering a sense of community among attendees. Still need more before visiting the official website?
Some startups previously selected to pitch at this business-changing event are Trade Lenda and Vesti Technologies Inc (Nigeria), FaidiHR LLC and Kiotapay (Kenya) and many more.
African Women in Tech Conference (Cape Town, South Africa):
Africa Women in Tech Conference is an empowering event supporting women in the tech industry in Africa. It emphasizes the latest trends, ensures a network with other women in tech, and connects m mentors with business owners.
Additionally, the African Women in Tech Conference in Cape Town, South Africa, brings together 1,000+ attendees. The event offers impactful networking events, empowering keynote speeches, and insightful panel discussions.
Over 100 exhibitors present their tech products and services, creating an atmosphere ripe for collaboration and innovation.
Women founders and CEOs from leading tech companies in Africa share their expertise, providing attendees with valuable insights and mentorship opportunities.
The African Women in Tech Conference stimulates your zeal to propel yourself for bigger goals and ambitions. Join like-minded individuals and set bigger goals.
For founders seeking inspiration, knowledge, and connections in the dynamic world of entrepreneurship, this list is for you. Actively engage with these events and docuseries to gain a competitive edge, scale through challenges, and walk on the path to venture success.
Got other remarkable and insightful events you believe should be on this list? Send it to us via [email protected]