Big names in Amsterdam

The inaugural edition of the Startup Fest Europe has already booked some impressive names: Tim Cook (CEO of Apple), Jack Ma (CEO of Alibaba) and Travis Kalanick (CEO of Uber) will all be speaking at the event’s official opening at Amsterdam’s Beurs van Berlage on 24 May. 

Also on hand will be Pieter van der Does, the CEO of payment services company Adyen. Amsterdam-based Adyen is a former startup that has since grown into a true tech giant. 

Startup garden

These leaders will be speaking as part of a special section of the Startup Fest known as the Startup Garden. This is a one-day marketplace where selected startups will present themselves to investors and the press. The selection of startups is made by the partners of Startup Fest, and each of them represents a specific sector, industry, or region.

Bringing the tech giants to Amsterdam

The announcement of the festival was made after a visit to Silicon Valley by the Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte and the special envoy from StartupDelta, Neelie Kroes.

In the week after the official opening, more than 25 events will take place in 13 Dutch cities. In Amsterdam, the Energy Fest (at the Shell Technology Centre Amsterdam) will showcase technological breakthroughs and innovations in clean-tech, renewables, and the hydrocarbon energy industry. There will also be events in the field of fintech, autonomous vehicles, construction, smart materials, mobile applications, and smart cities.

Startup Fest Europe was initiated in association with StartupDelta after consultations in early 2015 with leaders of the Dutch startup ecosystem. The festival will take place from 24 to 28 May, 2016.