DisruptoCon is a 2-day event (April 28-29) which will take place is Sydney. Over the two days, the leaders of Australia’s and the world’s disruptive ecosystem will present their strategies, visions and thoughts on how to stay agile, innovative, and succeed in the age of disruption.
There are three main sectors which the will conference target: bitcoin and blockchain technology, financial technology and healthcare. The event will feature unique case studies from large corporations regarding their internal startup strategies, and sessions from the experts who have been hired to set them up.
There will be presentations from VC’s and the investment community, which will focus on where they are investing and what they are finding to be the most disruptive technologies. The companies themselves that are disrupting traditional business models will also be presenting.
Those in the Bitcoin space who will be presenting at the conference include:
- Steve Waterhouse, Principal, Pantera Capital
- Shawn Wilkinson, Founder, Storj
- Frank Schull, Founder, Safello
- Jeremy Lam, Founder, Vennd.io
- Jeremy Glaros, Founder, CoinArch
- Niki Scevak, Blackbird Ventures
- Rui Rodrigues, TankStream Ventures
- Reuben Bramanathan, Digital Currency Lawyer, Adroit Lawyers
- Omar Todd, Wikileaks Party National Council Member
- Chris Mountford, Software Engineer, Atlassian
- Kim Heras, Co-Founder, 25fifteen
An Interview With Founder Jonny Peters
Cointelegraph: What is DisruptoCon (theme) and why did you start it?
Jonny Peters: With DisruptoCon I’m trying to create the world's leading Disruptive Technology showcase. This might sound a bit like I've got stars in my eyes owing to the level of competition, but most of the other events are still the old formula of conference attendees and an exhibition. We're trying to make this event primarily online.
You will notice that the event will be streamed, and I tried to conduct an online talent show competition where audiences recommend their favorite tech talent to a list together with content. I even created a trending algorithm that would rank that talent in real time according to audience perceptions. No one really engaged with this I think because no one really knew about it. Next year I'm going to expand this concept.
I will add a Bitcoin voting mechanism (I should have done that this time around) and add virtual storefront/meeting rooms where people can meet and where brands can promote their content. I've already built an entire system for this but held it back as I didn't want to go to big too early and build the event over time. I reckon this was actually a mistake.
“As soon as this first event ends I'm going to ramp things up and get back to the original vision!”
CT: What is your background and can you tell us how it led to disruptive technologies like Bitcoin?
JP: I ran Australia's largest entertainment startup back in the dot com boom - it was called K*GRIND and was a video-on-demand play. Everyone said it was 15 years ahead of its time. We had purpose built channels for surfing, skateboarding, snowboarding, fashion, sex & relationships and other things like that. I've been producing films since then, but watching the startup space change and evolve from the side. I've been waiting for a the right moment to re-engage.
One of the main reasons I haven't until now is owing to Facebook. The whole world has been suffering from this Facebook psychosis/brainwash for years and years. Facebook is vanilla and fake in how it perceives life. Things aren't that great all the time for everyone. Bitcoin's underlying technology finally offers us a solution to alternative social networking that is democratized and much more real. So I'm getting back into the space by firstly doing an event like this. It was great meeting everyone and really understanding what's happening and where. And secondly, by launching my own startup - Kgrind Mark II.
CT: Who is this event for?
JP: This event is for startups and for corporates who need to understand startup mentality and incorporate that into their organizations. For startups, I'm trying to offer them something way better than Shark Tank. Again, that kind of thing is not real and because it's TV all you get are investors who have to be dramatic. I'm not saying they are wrong for doing this, but it doesn't help anyone for real. For corporates, they desperately need to attend this event. If they don't, they will get disrupted and maybe even be out of business within a year.
I think the best story we are telling at the event is MYOB's story. They got disrupted, and their CEO had the vision and balls to do something drastic about it. Now they're the disruptors, and it must really be upsetting to people like Xerox who probably didn't see that coming. Every corporate should be aiming for the same thing.
CT: Can you tell us what excites you most in the Bitcoin/fintech space?
JP: As far as technologies and companies are concerned? Fintech is an exciting space in Sydney, and it's about time too - it's the financial capital of the Pacific. Everyone trades the Aussie dollar, and we supply Asia with resources. This would have happened a lot sooner, but Australian investors needed to become more mature. We are very entrepreneurial thinkers, but we are not mature investors. This comes with experience and in knowing what a startup needs to succeed. It takes a certain level of maturity to believe in an entrepreneur's vision, invest and let him/her do it their way. Pivoting scares the hell out of investors who don't understand that it's just normal and a good thing.
I think Bitcoin entrepreneurs are good but there needs to be more of them, and they need to start looking at more than just remittances. That's the boring part. The price of bitcoin is irrelevant. Maybe with the price getting back to normality, it will scare away the quick buck artists, and we'll be left with the guys who really understand the space.
“The exciting part is the new Internet. The Blockchain solves every problem that the web has - from credit card fraud right through to piracy. Bitcoin entrepreneurs need to start selling that pitch. The world is crying out for that solution.”
CT: What are you personally working on at the moment?
JP: Kgrind Mark II is a social video-on-demand platform. Not like Netflix or Stan. I've developed a VOD smart token that allows any content owner to track, monetize and share content. It also allows content to develop social networks. In essence, Kgrind is the solution to bringing liquidity to film and TV content production and sales - an industry that is so prime for disruption that they'll welcome it with open arms. There's more to it, but that's the start. I'm going to be presenting a snapshot of it at DisruptoCon.
CT: Predictions in this space over the next 18 months?
JP: It's all about the new Internet. When I discuss "the new internet" people tune in big time. Deep down everyone knows it's needed, and when you explain that the blockchain enables exactly that, people want to know more. In this new Internet, you can bring new liquidity models to any old idea that needs a new lease on life.
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