This week was eventful to say the least. My arrival at OneRagtime coincided with the Mobile World Congress, a massive event where all the big fish from the mobile industry present their newest ideas and innovations to entrepreneurs, investors, businesses, and simply curious and tech-passionate attendees.
But that’s not it! As part of the MWC, a whole handful of other cool events and happenings were taking place in Barcelona. 4 Years From Now (4YFN) was one of them.
4 Years From Now Conference
It’s basically a business platform regrouping hundreds of start-ups, investors and corporations who spend three whole days presenting their companies, attracting new customers and exchanging great ideas. You can imagine that OneRagtime wouldn’t miss such an amazing opportunity, so 7 of us from the team pitched up on Monday 27th of March, excited, motivated, and ready to show the tech world what we’re worth!
Picture the scene: a huge venue in the heart of Barcelona, just off the sunny Plaça Espanya, featuring over 500 start-up exhibitors, dozens of workspaces, conference stages, AR and IR presentations, delicious food stands and much more. Sounds amazing, right? Well, it was.
The place was literally buzzing with activity. From pitch competitions to interviews with the press, not a moment passed without something going on.
A fine selection of StartupBootcamp’s best entrepreneurs
The energy and diversity were breath-taking. People came from all over the world to present their companies. At one booth, there would be a start-up from Korea selling its new baby-feeding IoT device, at the next, a Spanish company thriving to bridge the gender gap within the tech industry.
You name it, 4YFN had it.
And to top it all, we got to go to loads of side events, one more exciting and interesting than the other. The breakfast at Camp Nou hosted by the French Tech and The French Tech Barcelona was particularly memorable. Listening to what this great organization does is fascinating anytime, but doing it whilst sipping a coffee in the second biggest football stadium in the world just brings it to a whole new level.
FT BCN meets la FT at Camp Nou
And then there was the slightly surreal experience of the Mobile World Congress. We explored the nine huge exhibition rooms on Thursday morning, trying out all the robots and AR gadgets on offer. At the front of the stage this year was the emergence of 5G and the ever-improving AI.
Testing VR with Seat at 4YFN
So is this what the world is gonna look like in the coming years? Are cars really going to drive themselves? Are we really going to be able to completely change location just by putting on a pair of glasses?
It certainly seems like.
All in all, throughout the week, I got the chance to talk to loads of people, interview investors and entrepreneurs, listen to many inspirational pitches and try out some really exciting innovations.
And I came away with the conviction that these are the guys who are shaping the future – and man does it look exciting! People here are truly dedicated to making our lives more exciting, cleaner, simpler, safer – or in one word: better.
Fireside Chat – Building in Europe, Scaling Global
I feel like I couldn’t have started my work here at OneRagtime at a better moment. I got to meet a big part of the team, take part in fantastic events and basically jump right in!