After a successful, but unexpected Hagglr deal for discounted tickets (check them out!), I found myself getting off my plane from AngelHack Delhi and heading straight to e27’s Echelon 2014 conference.
It was my first time at Echelon, after having been to TechCrunch Disrupt SF last year and having lived in Singapore for the past six months. I was super excited to see how the best tech startups and premiere conferences of this region would stack up.
I was totally impressed with the caliber of people I met at the conference. Most notably, Tina Amper, Global Organizer of World Startup Report and Founder of Geeks on a Beach; and Lais de Oliveira, Community Architect of Startup Grind, handling all their expansion east of Europe. They’ve scaled to over 100 cities recently, and are doing amazing work. If you haven’t attended a Startup Grind event in your local city - you should!
I wanted a bit more out of the panels’ content, but it’s hard to top seeing Mark Zuckerberg, Marissa Meyer, Aaron Levie, Vinod Khosla, etc. in one day at TechCrunch SF. I got spoiled.
However, I’ve always felt that Southeast Asia leads the way in having a huge number of amazing, successful women entrepreneurs and executives, so I was looking forward to a high standard for inclusion and diversity of panelists. Many nationalities were represented, but I was shocked to see that only four out of the over 60 total speakers for two days were women. I had to take to Twitter.
— Kamrin Klauschie (@kamrinklauschie) June 10, 2014
In a fantastic turn of events, Dave McClure, Josh Constine, and even Mohan Belani joined in, amongst others, rallying to have more women speakers at next year’s Echelon. AngelHack is a female owned and dominated tech company, and we often deal with gender inequality and discrimination. I was so happy to see support and positive energy towards supporting women in technology.
@kamrinklauschie you've inspired me to put more thought into this issue.
— Mohan Belani (@mohanbelani) June 11, 2014
— Kamrin Klauschie (@kamrinklauschie) June 11, 2014
From left to right: Amarit Charoenphan, Co-Founder and Co-CEO of HUBBA, the region’s biggest coworking space network; Kelly Kampen, biz dev at Oozou, an app development studio for startups, and Curator of Startup Digest Thailand; Kamrin Klauschie, AngelHack’s Community Manager; Heislyc Loh, Co-Director of Founder Institute Malaysia.
What TechCrunch and other media and events companies have done for Silicon Valley has been crucial to startups’ growth and success there. Likewise, what e27 and Tech In Asia are doing for this region is laying the groundwork for more successful angels, VCs, and startups here.
We’ll all look back at conferences like Echelon 2014 and talk about all the ideas and connections made there - and reflect that it was history in the making. Of this I am certain.
- - - - -
For startups and businesses in Southeast Asia looking to learn the benefits of sponsoring and throwing hackathons, I’d love to meet with you.
Feel free to e-mail me at email@example.com and we can set up a meeting here in Singapore!