So, it’s all over for another year. Highlights of the leading digital conference NEXT 14, which ended on Tuesday in Berlin, were keynote speeches by the Federal Minister Thomas de Maizière and best-selling author Cory Doctorow. Then there was Cinepass’s award as the best start-up, as well as the launch of two European Commission start-up initiatives. The two-day conference, with a total of 1,500 participants, was opened on Monday afternoon by Parliamentary State Secretary Brigitte Zypries.
Zypries announced the government’s intention to promote start-ups even more in the future and presented the prospect of tax breaks for entrepreneurs. German Interior Minister Thomas de Maizière explained the challenges the digital transformation poses to politics and society. "The Internet does not belong to the state or its citizens," said the Minister. "The Internet is a public space. It should be used by all. But like any public space it needs rules, guidance and boundaries of usage."
NEXT Berlin 2014, organised by the digital agency SinnerSchrader and dfv Media Group, has put a spotlight on the growing importance of the digital economy.
On the first conference day, international speakers addressed important current topics like data security, new mobility and industry 4.0. In his opening keynote Brad Templeton showed that selfdriving cars will soon become reality. As a consultant for Google's robot cars, the Director of Singularity University is convinced that handing the steering wheel over to intelligent machines will have a positive impact on urban development and accident rates.
The second day was opened by entrepreneur Peter Hinssen, author of ‘The New Normal’, the book that inspired this year's motto of NEXT Berlin. Technology is, in his eyes, no longer anything special. Digital is the norm, and the disruptive force of change is a consequence of network effects that extend far beyond the field of digital technology. Volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity are the determining forces for him. He believes that companies need a mobile strategy with the core elements of speed and agility .
On the evening of Day Two, multiple entrepreneur Morten Lund (one of the first Skype investors) announced the best European start-up. The Berlin founders of Cinepass prevailed against competition from all over Europe, having convinced the jury and the expert audience at NEXT14 with their idea of a multiservice cinema platform. "85% of cinema tickets are still being bought at the counter," said Richard Ruben of winners Cinepass. With their idea, Cinepass had the power to disrupt the market, the jury said.
SinnerSchrader gehört zu den führenden Digitalagenturen Europas. Mit Fokus auf E-Commerce, Strategie und Kommunikation bietet SinnerSchrader die gesamte Bandbreite digitaler Agenturleistungen: Konzeption, Gestaltung und Entwicklung von Web-Plattformen, Mobile Apps, Service Design, Kampagnen, Media, Analytics und Audience Management. SinnerSchrader steht für technologische Exzellenz. Rund 500 Mitarbeiter – davon allein rund 200 Entwickler – realisieren Marketinglösungen für Marken wie Allianz, Beck’s, comdirect bank, Commerzbank, Holy Fashion Group, REWE, simyo, Tchibo und TUI. SinnerSchrader wurde 1996 gegründet, ist seit 1999 börsennotiert und hat Büros in Hamburg, Berlin, Frankfurt am Main, München, Prag und Hannover. http://sinnerschrader.com
About dfv Mediengruppe
dfv Mediengruppe, i.e. dfv media group, which is headquartered in Frankfurt am Main, is one of the largest independent specialist media companies in Germany and Europe. Its goal is to make people more successful in their occupations and businesses. Together with its subsidiaries and shareholdings, it publishes over 100 specialist periodicals for important economic sectors. Many of the publications are market leaders in their respective industries. The portfolio is supplemented by over 100 digital options as well as 500 current-release specialist book publications. Over 140 commercial events, such as conventions and trade fairs, provide opportunities for intensive networking as well as information. dfv media group has 1,000 employees in Germany and abroad and achieved a turnover of approximately 145 million Euros in 2013.