November 14, 2014

Web Summit – ihorizon’s highlights

ihorizon travelled to Dublin to check out this years web summit

A 22,000 strong crowd descended on the city for insights, networking and fresh Guinness. Finance Manager Tom Watts, gives us some of his highlights.
“What a week! Web Summit once again delivered some fantastic content. In amongst the networking, ihorizon saw one of our clients win a pitching award, and heard some great insights to bring home. I’ve added some of my key takeaways below.

SOLVING A PROBLEM (Basetone – Pitch Contest Winners – Alex Siljanovski)

We’re proud to recognise the achievements of our client Basetone and their founder Alex Siljanovski, who after beating 1,300 other start-ups to attend the event, took the crown over the 200 others who pitched live at web summit. They were named the Winners of the Alpha pitch event, the final of which took place on centre stage in front of thousands of people.
Alex has spent 10 years in the construction industry and formed his startup is based on a clear problem he’d encountered during that time. He’d identified and quantified a huge time/cost saving for a billion dollar global industry. Basetone already gained traction from a few smaller clients and pre-summit had some great news that a large company was interested in talks to get them involved in a billion dollar project. Their reason for winning was obvious to me, he also had proven the tech, built a great product and the next step was to source growth capital. It was a great pitch and deserved to take the win!


LEADERSHIP – Habits of highly effective companies (Justin Rosenstein, Asana)

Justin Rosenstein, Founder at Asana, told the crowd about their leadership techniques and how he thinks they have contributed to the success of the company.
Why? – The intention as to why the company is doing what it’s doing is an important message for the entire team
Responsibility – Each activity or task must have one responsible individual in order for it to be delivered successfully
Clarity – Does everyone know what needs to be done – ‘the primary indicator of success is clarity in purpose, plan and responsibility’ Justin Rosenstein, Asana

TRACTION – Tips to attract investors (Dave McClure – 500 startups, Josh Elman – Greylock, David Tisch – Box Group)

Most investment pitches and reach outs are read on a mobile, on the go – attachments/links etc will put investors off spending too much time looking at your email
Top Tips – embed images of the product in the email text, quote traction and metrics from the start – this will catch their eye and make them want to read more when they sit down.



Tony Hawk, former professional skateboarder and Actor spoke about how the persistence he needed to excel at his sport, can be applied to running companies.
Seeing Tony Hawk was great fun for me, I have always been a big fan of his. I’ve admired his sporting achievements, to his drive to be the best. His message and achievements were clearly down to his persistence and drive to achieve success and to simply never gave up!


INNOVATION (Brendan Iribe)

One of the best innovation sessions of the Summit came from Brendan Iribe, Founder at Oculus VR. On the acquisition of Oculus VR by Facebook 7 months ago, the major emphasis was on hiring so that they have the resource to deliver the best product to the consumer market. The company has grown from 50 people in January to over 200 people now. With the capacity to innovate, some remarkable things can be achieved.
Believable avatars is an idea that is being explored
They are making a big route into gaming. The market of a lot of fun and with innovation, the interactive experiences become even slicker
Real media is going to transform is face to face communication in different places in the world (as ourselves or as avatars)


PEOPLE (John Sculley)

An interesting talk

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