The Beacon Council’s Lyndi Bowman and Jaap Donath attended CeBIT, the world’s leading exhibition and trade fair in the information and communications technology industry from March 10 – 15 in Hannover, Germany. The five-day event attracted nearly 3,500 exhibitors from 70 different countries equating to more than 200,000 visitors. The most notable of the 1,000 speakers included British Prime Minister David Cameron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Apple Co-founder Steve Wozniak, and Wikipedia Co-founder Jimmy Wales.
The fair’s main theme was “datability” how to handle, manage and use big data. The conference featured Code-n, a global start-up competition in which CeBIT chose 50 of the world’s best big data startups to showcase at the event. Announcements were made by Volkswagen’s CEO Martin Winkerhorn, in which he declared that the company has already entered into an alliance with Google, stating that intelligent and driverless cars are “no longer restricted to the pages of science fiction.” Also, the UK announced that several of their universities are working on a 5G mobile-date network that would be 1,000 times faster than 4G with the ability to download a movie in less an a second.
Germany is one of the Beacon Council’s target markets for the attraction of foreign direct investment. The Beacon Council has participated in the CeBIT Tradeshow in the past; however, has not attended since 2004. Attending CeBIT is an opportunity to expand the reach into the German market as well as globally as exhibiting companies come from over 70 different countries. Prior to attending CeBIT this year, the Beacon Council reached out to exhibiting companies via CeBITs online platform to schedule meetings in order to market Miami-Dade County as a place to do business and to discuss the process in which to establish an office to serve both the North American and Latin American markets.