Guests to the first ESTnet gathering of 2015 were treated to an ‘Innovation’ themed evening at the SWALEC Stadium in Cardiff.
Speakers from Deloitte UK, the Knowledge Transfer Network (KTN) and Innovation Advisory Council for Wales (IACW) tackled the topic from very different perspectives which left the audience with plenty to consider, and act upon, in the next 12 months.
Paul Lee, Partner and Head of Research, Technology, Media & Telecommunications at Deloitte UK presented their TMT Predictions for 2015. Of particular interest to Welsh companies, was that Deloitte predicts that for the first time one billion smartphones will be purchased as upgrades in 2015. They also expect that nearly 220k 3D printers will be sold. Visit www.deloitte.co.uk/tmtpredictions for the full list of predictions.
The ESTnet Chairman Ian Menzies spoke in his role as co-chair of the new Innovation Advisory Council for Wales, established to advise the Welsh Government on a broad range of issues relating to innovation, including strategy, policy and priorities. The Council is also expected to advise on emerging trends and developments, including identifying existing strength and future opportunity, an area where the technology industry in Wales can certainly make a contribution.
Dr. Steve Welch, Domain Director at the Knowledge Transfer Network, called on Welsh technology companies to be a part of the next Wales Festival of Innovation, to take place across Wales from 1 June to 3 July 2015. The ESTnet is a key partner in the Festival along with the KTN and the Welsh Government. To find out how to be a part of it, visit www.festivalofinnovation.org.
The ESTnet Managing Director Avril Lewis also spoke about 2014 highlights and how the ESTnet proposes to build on this success in 2015:
“ 2015 promises to be another exciting year for the ESTnet family. I was very pleased to formally announce the shortlist for the next ESTnet Awards, which will take place on the 5 March at the Wales Millennium Centre. The quality and number of entries are excellent, the ceremony is certainly something we are all looking forward to very much. In May we will build on this theme of innovation at our Spring Members Meeting with a presentation on the Factory of the Future, before we really showcase our industry during the Wales Festival of Innovation in June and early July.”
“We also need to develop our network, to provide more business opportunities for our members and to ensure that we have the insight to continue to be the voice of the industry for the industry. I therefore urge our members to actively contribute to upcoming projects that will give us this insight, such as the member evaluation next month, the Industry Profile and Impact research project and the next Welsh Technology Industry Report that we will undertake with Deloitte in the autumn.”
If you were at the event take a look at our Flickr album to see if you can spot yourselves!