Wed | Nov 14, 2018

Tech Beach Retreat partners with LinkedIn, JAMPRO

Published:Friday | June 29, 2018 | 12:00 AM
Dr Maurice Taylor, Tech Beach Retreat's Canada brand ambassador, served as host for the evening's events.

Tech Beach Retreat in partnership with JAMPRO and LinkedIn, recently delivered a buzz-worthy mixer and panel discussion at LinkedIn's downtown office.

The curated line-up of speakers included Alexia Hefti, global blockchain tax lead at Deloitte; Jake Hirsch-Allen, economic graph and learning solutions higher-ed lead at LinkedIn; Darace Rose, CIO and VP of infrastructure at Think Research; Paige Dickie, digital strategy, AI and innovation at Vector Institute, a global pioneer in artificial intelligence.

The panel, theme, 'Building Pathways to Emerging Markets and Hidden Opportunities', explored the nuances and untapped potential of non-traditional geographical territories such as Africa, Asia and, of course, Jamaica and the Caribbean. The panel dove deep into the macro changes occurring, and the communities developing, that lay new foundation and offer unique growth opportunities. The aim was to help demystify markets to uncover undiscovered potential.

All this culminated into an exciting discussion, which touched on how artificial intelligence might transform the banking sector globally and at the same time potentially disrupt the call centre industry in places like Jamaica.

 

'UPSKILLING' WORKERS

 

There was a call to action for the 'upskilling' of workers in this space to allow them to participate in the future economy, a need already recognised by many players in Jamaica. Additionally, the discussion noted the significant advancements emerging markets, especially in the Caribbean, have made with regards to legislation around blockchain technology, positioning them well in front of places like the United States and Canada.

Vivion Scully, vice-president at JAMPRO, leveraged the opportunity to further the message of a new Jamaica, encouraging potential visitors and investors to take a new look at the island.

"JAMPRO is keen on attracting organisations in the technology space to Jamaica, with the aim to help with the transformation towards a digital economy," said Vivion Scully, manager of JAMPRO's North America regional offices.

The discussion yielded significant engagement as it was far from average for Toronto, a rising tech hub in North America, often shielded from discussions on markets outside of North America. The energy at the event was one of excitement and possibilities as guests expressed their intent to visit Jamaica for Tech Beach Retreat later this year. Many have already booked to be a part of the event, and as such, a strong Toronto contingent is expected.

The audience included some of the best and the brightest in the tech industry, including representatives from Google, Deloitte, Reuters, CIBC, Accenture, Scotiabank and many others.

"This was definitely a bold step for our brand and moves forward our vision of being the bridge between Silicon Valley and the Caribbean. Being able to partner with a company like LinkedIn in such a meaningful way was a historic feat and we're looking forward to more great relationships like this, deepening our access into this and other market territories," said Kirk-Anthony Hamilton, founder and CEO of Tech Beach Retreat Inc, the producer of the conference.

The Tech Beach Retreat Conference will take place from November 29 to December 1 in Montego Bay, Jamaica. It offers an awe-inspiring community of local and international investors, innovators and entrepreneurs exchanging ideas and opportunities towards profit and global change. Past Tech Beach speakers have included Jack Dorsey, founder and CEO of Twitter and Square; Pilar Manchon, director of Cognitive Interfaces at Amazon, and Lloyd Carney, former CEO of Brocade.