Walk the Talk: Meet 120 Tech Companies at Singapore’s Walkabout 2017
Walkabout is becoming one of the key events in Singapore for the start-up ecosystem.
PHOTO CREDIT: Getty Images
On Friday, September 22, registrants of Walkabout Singapore will be able to visit as much as 120 tech companies in the city.
This Walkabout 2017 will now be the fifth run of the annual event, which began in New York City by the co-founders of software company Harvest. They wanted to support the tech ecosystem in the city that would soon come to be known as Silicon Alley, the area in Manhattan where the city’s high tech companies are located.
The organizers of Walkabout Singapore brought the event to their city for similar reasons.
“We moved to Singapore in 2011 and thought that our small community of entrepreneurs should unite and show off the cool companies that we're building and the spaces where it all happens. An office is the visual representation of the company culture. It is the place that inspires the founders and the team to create something new and innovative,” says Walkabout Singapore organizer Kristine Lauria of her and co-organizer Vinnie Lauria’s motivations.
According to Lauria, what each company offers from site to site varies widely.
“Walkabout Singapore is a casual event — companies showcase their company culture, show off their workplace, and share why it’s great to be in tech. Some offices host drinks and snacks, others provide a tour of their space, and some hold recruitment drives. It depends on the company culture, which is a great reason to come take a look at what’s going on behind closed doors,” she says.
She adds, “We want to show that the tech industry is not just for men, it’s not only for people with a technical background or engineering degree. Walkabout Singapore highlights the many faces in tech, it takes a team of diverse people to launch a successful company.”
Other companies are even giving demos on their products, or sharing their expertise in a given field, as in the case of Arnaud Bonzom, co-founder of Map of the Money.
“The main goal of Map of the Money is to help entrepreneurs to navigate the funding landscape by identifying the right investor or investors for their start-ups. During the event, we will help entrepreneurs to use our website as well as sharing advice on their fundraising strategies,” he says.
The value proposition for each company also differs. Lauria says Walkabout 2017 can be a way to meet new people who would be interested in your company’s story, culture, or product, or get people interested in working in Singapore in general or even your brand in particular. Or the incentive can be even simpler. “It’s a chance to meet the neighbors,” she says.
According to Lauria, success for the different attendees can be any number of things. She says, “Did you meet someone interesting? Did you have fun? Did you make connections that might steer you into a career in tech? Did you discover a new product that you can’t wait to use? Did you meet the people who build your favorite app?”
Bonzom, for his part, chose to participate in Walkabout Singapore because of its uniqueness and breadth.
“Walkabout is one of the key events in Singapore for the start-up ecosystem. Kristine is offering a unique experience where you can visit and meet more than 100 organizations from start-ups to MNCs, as well as VCs,” he says.
In line with promoting inclusivity in Singapore’s tech community, Walkabout Singapore is open admission.
“The event is open to everyone — students, people working in different industries, people interested in technology and people who just want to see if the rumors are true — yes, most offices have a fully stocked bar and free snacks. No, not all offices have a Google-style play area and freshly made sushi,” Lauria says.