4 Speakers You Can't Miss At WSJ Tech D.Live
This Friday, a selection of leading luminaries from the worlds of technology, business and finance will gather in Hong Kong for the Wall Street Journal’s WSJ Tech D.Live conference.
The event, which is by invitation only and takes place twice a year, once in Asia and once in California, brings together top tech and business executives and senior government figures for a day of discussions and networking.
Subjects up for debate during WSJ Tech D.Live, which takes place on June 14 at Rosewood Hong Kong, include the power of big data; trust and privacy; the startup and funding landscape; the race between China and the US to dominate artificial intelligence; and the future of technology in an era of trade wars.
Here are a few highlights among the strong programme of speakers.
1/4 Carrie Lam
Who? The fourth Chief Executive of Hong Kong and the first woman to hold the position.
Talking points It has been a remarkable career given that she grew up in “very humble” surroundings in Wan Chai and was the first person in her family to go to university. Lam remains inscrutable on issues ranging from Hong Kong’s increasing ties with Beijing to the question of whether she will follow the central government's instructions in the current extradition furore. Learn more about her stances at WSJ Tech D.Live.
Quote this “I normally set very high standards for myself. But for other people, I try to lower my standards.”
2/4 Aldi Haryopratomo
Who? The Indonesian entrepreneur launched Ruma a decade ago, and the social enterprise got him noticed by the UN after it recruited and trained thousands of low-income entrepreneurs in Indonesia to provide services to their communities through phones and other Android devices. Today, he is busy trying to turn Indonesia into a cashless society with Go-Pay.
The company Digital payments are becoming increasingly popular in Indonesia, but until the launch of Go-Pay, the e-wallet from ride-hailing app Go-Jek, 99 percent of transactions were carried out using cash. Go-Pay has rapidly become the country’s e-wallet market leader.
Talking points The global move to mobile payments will eventually make us all cashless, transforming the way we work and live. Haryopratomo is one of a few key players leading the charge in Asia.
Quote this “The real competition is how do we move people away from cash? Once you have people moving away from cash, there are so many things that you can do.”
3/4 Ankiti Bose
Who? In just four years, this prodigiously successful 27-year-old has grown her Southeast Asian e-commerce startup Zilingo into a global platform with more than seven million active users. The site features fashion, beauty and lifestyle products, and is on the path to becoming Southeast Asia's next unicorn.
The company Zilingo is headquartered in Singapore and helps independent fashion and lifestyle retailers sell directly to consumers. It works like other e-commerce marketplaces, allowing designers and brands to sign up and list their own products, and has been wildly successful partly because it has little competition in the region. Zilingo vets each seller by metrics including authenticity and pricing. If approved, they are given access to services like tech support, financing and insurance, with Zilingo taking up to 30 percent of each sale.
Talking points Zilingo is also investing in technology and looking to beef up its financial services arm, which helps apparel manufacturers find lenders willing to provide the short-term loans routinely used in fashion to cover the gap between producing a garment and getting paid by the customer. If it fills this niche, it will become one of the most powerful retail companies in Asia.
Quote this “We need to build trust in order to be taken seriously by businesses and consumers across the world. We need to make sure we have the best returns, the best customer care; all of that is an investment.”
4/4 Petter Neby
Who? If you've ever frittered away half your day on your phone, you should get to know this name. Petter Neby is the founder and CEO of Punkt, a design-led Swiss company that has released a sleek modern phone that features calls, texts and GPS, but not social media or email.
The company Headquartered in Switzerland, Punkt was established to bring a breath of fresh air into the consumer electronics market with beautiful products that are functional but don't hog their owner's attention. The name Punkt is taken from the German word for full stop, symbolising the way the company’s products are built around simplicity, clarity and focus.
Talking points Rather than being retrogressive or anti-technology, Punkt products are designed to offer people a choice how much time they spend online. Its Punkt MP01 phone was pitched as an alternative to the smartphone scrollathon lifestyle and has been picked up by digital detoxers, who see it as an antidote to the obsessions smartphones were designed to create.
Quote this “Rather than just creating a new phone with a slightly new screen or different ergonomics, we’re asking people to question their fundamental relationship with technology. We soon found that the MP01 would unlikely serve as a solo device, but a supplementary one that you would use on holidays, weekends or when the office was closed."
Gen.T readers can save US$800 on the price of ticket by quoting the code GenTAsia when booking.