This year, TC Disrupt SF was held on the 5th – 7th of September 2018. Me and my friend, Stefan (checkout his site here), was fortunate enough to visit SF at that time, hence we volunteered for the event (ticket wasn’t cheap, so by volunteering, we got free tickets!). It was an amazing experience that showed how much Sydney is lacking in the tech scene. Hell, just by catching an Uber Pool in Palo Alto, you are guaranteed to bump into someone in tech and network with them. That’s what we did anyways.
TC Disrupt this year was held in Moscone West and was apparently triple the size from the year before. This year saw speakers such as Ashton Kutcher, Whitney Wolfe, Priscilla Chan, Eric Ries, Reid Hoffman, Dara Khosrowshahi, Ycombinator and other well known tech industry leaders give their insights into the industry, provide advice to startups and share their experiences with running a business. There was an exhibition hall where we saw many startups ready to impress. (Even an Australian Pavilion where Australian startups presented -> Owneroom.com there next year?) There was a lot of focus around quantum computing from IBM, which was super awesome.
The afterparty was held at the Midway, it was a great opportunity for exhibitors, investors and attendees to network, enjoy the music, dance, drink, play games and exploit the photobooth! Super fun times here.
I got to meet a load of people that are like minded, shared similar interested and much, much smarter than me. This was such an amazing and fun experience where I learnt a lot, and hopefully one day, be able to come back and pitch on main stage with a startup of mine!
If there was 3 things that I took away from my time here is this:
- SF is definitely the place to be for growing a tech startup. Investors are more risk taking. You can find people anywhere on the street that is ready to talk about startups. You’re more likely to bump into someone in a startup than in a corporate bank. Things move a lot faster here.
- If you’re gonna start a startup FT here, get ready to live under $10 a day. It isn’t cheap.
- You won’t get laugh at for failing. In Sydney, people will tell you to go back to working FT. In SF, they’ll tell you to try again or hire you to work for the next big thing.
Biggest fail on TechCrunch part:
The Disrupt App (to get replays of talks, schedule of agenda and chat with other attendees) was only available on the US App store (andriod and ios). I had many people from overseas coming in and asking why they couldn’t find the app.. It would require international attendees to change to the US app store, which require a US address, credit card etc.. but bad User Experience.