To conference or not to conference.
RISE’s closing numbers saw a “mecca-esque” convergence of hackers and hucksters, drifters and scientific labor men. At the price of a pretty penny, tech-centric TED experienced a 60% visitation boon disparaging of last year’s inaugural. Though some consider the conference model – think suit & tie for bondsman and insurance types – a promise of chatter and Valley coattail lore, many feel RISE to, instead, be an accommodation of the East’s mercurial form.
With that, Asian entrepreneurs have undoubtedly grown accustomed to a center stage of undeclared hallmarks: to share, borrow, learn, experience (preschool words at the heart of human advancement). But beyond the hopeful trickle-down effect of war stories (think Uber) or those about love (Tinder) is RISE a must-attend calendar event? Two of our members respond:
“Historically, Hong Kong’s foot traffic as a startup hub has been largely subterranean, now RISE is the obvious collective. It’s a useful barometer for startups without access or budget to expensive market data. We’re now able to benchmark (not always accurately) our product versus that of our newly discovered competitors. It’s always good to have competition.” – Hubert Tose, Business Development @ Lamplight Analytics.
“Hong Kong youngsters are smart and impressionable, not too mention discerning. If your product is a good one you have their loyalty. There’s no better platform in the calendar year to make that impression. The “Women in Tech Program” which, considering a shortage of tech-savvy women in Hong Kong, is awesome and really pulls on my heartstrings.” – Emilie, Human Resources @ Lamplight.
AS FOR THE INNOVATION:
“Quantum computing, artificial intelligence, and virtual reality: all buzzwords until you’re faced with something so shallowly understood it makes your brain hurt and your stomach churn with excitement. With Hong Kong’s backdrop the measure of its gravitational pull, RISE has redoubled its efforts, mimicking Flushing Meadow’s The World Fair, but in spectacular fashion has opted to use the overlay of undeveloped mediocrity. Despite a clear distinction between the Alpha startup and the rest, RISE has not focused on the technological mantra of real world application; instead, it focuses on the “nifty”, “neat” and occasionally just “swell” product with short-term wave making potential. RISE can either encourage innovation or facilitate networking, it cannot do both.” – Anonymous Person
You’ve heard both sides and with ticket prices from 1500 USD we were hoping to find a definitive answer. To summarize:
If you’re cash rich and idea-poor – go!
If your idea works too well to be true – go!
If you’ve survived the first year, are hiring and want to make an impact – go!
If you’re in it for more than just the gimmicks – don’t!