Road To ICT Spring — Charlotte Boutelier & Margaux Vetzel (Farvest)

Charlotte Boutelier and Margaux Vetzel, Co-managing directors of Farvest and organizers of ICT Spring (Photo © Farvest)

Taking the lead at Luxembourg’s largest tech conference, ICT Spring, Charlotte Boutelier and Margaux Vetzel return this year with passion and energy. On behalf of Silicon Luxembourg, the duo provides an exclusive glimpse behind the scenes of the event, highlighting the upcoming key moments.

What are the main topics and speakers of the ICT Spring conference in Luxembourg this year, and what are some of the key takeaways that attendees can expect?

This year’s programme was thought to address challenges businesses face cross-industries in order to foster the sharing of expertise and to create synergies among professionals as well as across sectors. “Time for Change” is the common thread of the conference programme, highlighting the ever-growing digital world and how it is redesigning businesses, work culture and life in the years to come. This concerns how to grow sustainably, embrace AI and tech innovations (blockchain, cloud, web3, quantum computing), explore emerging cybersecurity threats, capture the value of the FinTech industry and deep dive into the future of HeathTech & Data. These are the themes that will be addressed on the two main stages. Visitors will also be able to attend specific demo sessions directly in some exhibitors’ booths.

“Time for Change” is also a wink to our own initiatives in embodying the change we want to see including offering a new breath of life, favoring diversity throughout the conference programme and taking a step forward to sustainability in working to receive the Green Business Event label.

The programme represents a nice blend of local and international experts coming from across the globe. Visitors can definitely expect to be inspired, leave the event with practical pieces of advice and intensively develop their professional network thanks to the numerous international delegations we will be welcoming this year. They will get the chance to meet them through the exhibition area as well as the other exhibitors present.

How are you building on the success of last year’s conference, and what improvements or changes have you made to enhance the experience for attendees?

Last year, when thinking about a new edition of ICT Spring, we knew we had to propose a new format and bring a new breath of life. When you are organizing an event for more than 10 years, the challenge is always to reinvent yourself and to meet the expectations of the clients: high-level networking, new business contacts and an opportunity to gain time and visibility.

The new format initiated last year is based on five pillars: the creation of themed zones in the exhibition area to deep dive into several key sectors this event intends to explore, the organization of international pavilions to welcome new countries’ delegations every year, workshops sessions/side events to enable companies to host their own session/product demonstration, a TV show to interview and leverage on the participation of international experts that come specifically for this event and finally the use of an event application to allow visitors to connect together and organize meetings.

Another key element was to reinforce our partnership with the Luxembourg Chamber of Commerce to achieve the objective of reaching foreign professionals and proposing specific programmes to delegations joining. This, in addition to the historical support from the Luxembourg Government in backing up our initiative by bringing strategic professionals into the country on this occasion, has been instrumental in offering a new proposal.

Finally, we always think about having a relevant programme that will be tackling the challenges companies are facing today and this creates a knowledgeable moment. This also allows them the opportunity to meet with international experts that faced or are facing the same situation and therefore share practical pieces of advice that will benefit everyone.

“It is a centerpiece of Luxembourg’s event calendar and one of the top European tech conferences hosting an array of international professionals.”

Charlotte Boutelier & Margaux Vetzel, Co-Managing Directors of Farvest

How have you seen the tech ecosystem in Luxembourg evolve over the past year, and how does this year’s conference reflect those changes?

Luxembourg is recognised for its financial center of excellence and the large range of services it provides to connect investors and markets around the world. Since the end of banking secrecy 10 years ago when this was what people thought made Luxembourg special, the country has been flourishing even more and not only in the financial industry. It has also created a unique digital ecosystem. In recent years, we can mention the inauguration of the MeluXina – Luxembourg’s high-performance computer- (June 2021) to support Luxembourg’s data-driven innovation strategy. The fact that Luxembourg ranks as the safest nation for data privacy and storage inside the European Union is thanks to its data centers it is also the highest-ranked country in the world in access to technology and 3rd best connectivity in the EU. This is linked to the adoption of an economic policy of diversification which has been instrumental in the attractivity of the country and it is now recognised as an Innovation leader with the best national research system in the EU.

Another example is the creation of a space agency in 2018 which has led to the creation of 70+ companies and research labs in the Grand Duchy with a space sector’s contribution to the nation’s GDP among the highest ratios in Europe. All these initiatives participate in driving the economy and business forward.

We have adapted the topic of the conference to the market needs and we also have seen an increase in the number of companies coming from abroad that are interested in creating genuine partnerships with Luxembourg and its ecosystem. This is also reflected in our exhibition area and in the profiles of the visitors that have already confirmed their participation this year.

Can you provide an overview of the ICT Spring conference and what makes it unique compared to other technology conferences around?

ICT Spring will consist of an exhibition area featuring international delegations, tech companies and innovative entrepreneurs as well as insightful conferences to tackle topical challenges. It will also enable the audience to participate in matchmaking and targeted networking sessions through the use of the event application. Specific presentations will be hosted in exhibitors’ booths and several side-events will occur, including the Mastermind challenge for startups and a great after-party the first evening.

It is a centerpiece of Luxembourg’s event calendar and one of the top European tech conferences hosting an array of international professionals. What makes ICT Spring special is its location. Often, when we need to convince companies to join, or experts to bring their expertise on stage, we need to explain why they should choose Luxembourg rather than other EU capitals and that’s truly a good question. In the end, what makes you choose Luxembourg?

The country is multicultural, cosmopolitan, open to the outside world and opportunities. ICT Spring is a human-scale conference where you can meet with high-level decision-makers, even members of the government and it really favors qualitative networking. From the topics it addresses and the outstanding professionals it brings, Luxembourg is a gateway to Europe and offers the chance to really be impactful, to create partnerships that do change things. Luxembourg has the can-do attitude that makes it special and can be both an interesting market to start with, a preferential location to set up a business and a partner to enter the European market. It will certainly be the place to be next June 29th & 30th to meet with the (Fin)Tech ecosystem and to contribute to what makes this conference a success: its people.

Get your ICT Spring Experience Ticket (with after-party) now by registering with our code SL23100, click here.

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