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Reinventing oneself in a fast-paced digital and creative environment

On May 9th and 10th, more than 5,000 of professionals gathered at the European Convention Center Luxembourg to discuss the latest tech, space, FinTech and digital trends. During two days, the ICT Spring 2017 speakers’ wondered how the digital technologies could change and improve our way of life through four conferences: Entertainment superpowers, Blockchain cross industry, Digital transformation and The Future of mobility.

Entertainment superpowers: “There are no more traditional media”

The first conference called “Entertainment superpowers” was presented by Keith Hopper, the Chief Financial Officer of Docler Holding. He dealt with the ways to use “superpower” to improve customer experience and make product or service more attractive. Among the different tools, data management, employee’s creativity, storytelling, virtual and augmented reality and digital transformation are the most usual and efficient. In his introduction, Keith Hopper remind how entertainment becomes complex. Today, there is no more traditional media, entertainment, in all its forms, makes any companies able to respond at the customer’s demand quickly.

Emmanuel Vivier, Co-founder of the HUB Institute and one of the world top “digital advertising & social media marketing” experts answered the following question: “Entertainment is changing, are you?”. New digital players are reinventing entertainment. Through the Netflix Vista example, Emmanuel Vivier showed that video is everywhere among us.  But he explained that TV has to fight back by trying to find new forms, new topics, and new way to interest the millennials because “ephemeral content is the new mainstream”. Thanks to Instastory on Instagram, stories on Snapchat and Facebook’s stories, users generate content and anyone can create his own video and generate a massive audience. Emmanuel Vivier added:” Those platforms are really innovating. We need to be much more innovating to be in the fight. We need to use this data to make this experience much more interesting.”

Then, Oliver Schaack, the Creative Director of the famous French private channel CANAL+, presented: “Creative Happiness Therapy”. With different videos illustrating emotions, Olivier Schaack showed the importance of TV to create new experiences and moments of happiness and grace. According to him, the perfect TV spot has to make you laugh and dancing because “Music is essential to a great spot and we have to laugh everyday”. It took as an illustration Don’t Stop Me Now by Queen, the most feel-good music of all of time. 

To continue this session, the next question was "How digital technologies could help marketers and companies to sell their product?". To start, the Former studio marketing manager of the Walt Disney Company, Anne-Claire Le Conte recounted “The story behind our storytelling”. The famous samples mentioned were the “Once upon a time…” and the legend of Steve Jobs’ garage and the beginnings of Apple. If we all love stories, it’s because that connects us with our humanity. Indeed, in marketing, a good story precisely adapted to the public is the first rule to keep its attention. Anne-Claire Le Conte explained that the most interesting in the storytelling is the story behind the legend.

And what could be better than new digital technologies to tell stories by offering new experiences to customers? That is what M. Bernard Michaux, associate at SAMS Film in Luxembourg, explained through the examples of virtual reality and augmented reality, the two burning and trending topics of the moment. According to him, ”if you have a good idea, technique won’t kill it”. Today, augmented and virtual reality disturb all content. If they still use traditional media, companies need to adapt their advertising to be the most competitive. Companies have to be creative and over-reacting all the time and, of course, “create a true story to make difference”.

M. Thomas Petersen, Brand Development Director at Ubisoft, can only agree. The development of virtual reality in video games is part of their digital strategy. The improvement of this technology is then necessary to innovate and evolve. That is what Julie Demarigny, Vice President International of Warner Bros, explained during her speech about “How data transforms our business”. From 2010 till present, she retraced the evolution of our data’s behavior and its impact on the movie market. For example, we began using data by sending emails and newsletters because it was cheaper and easier. Then, with social networks, the movies websites were slowly transformed into Facebook pages. In 2016, 74% of our emails are not opened. As she said: “more and more we realize that our traditional way of buying digital media is not efficient”. So they moved from traditional media buying to targeted buying. Instead of buying the audience of publisher that is in line with their target, they target different audience targets at market value.

At least, the first conference was concluding by a round table. Speakers share their ideas of their today’s superheroes.


Blockchain cross the industry

To continue this Digital summit, the second conference was entitled “Blockchain cross the industry”. Participants discussed how the blockchain, which wasfirst associated with the financial sector, is now impacting numerous industries.

David Dalton, Partner, Consulting, Deloitte Ireland, started the conference by introducing their global blockchain operating model. They focus on four things: innovation and ideation, the strategy development, the product development, and the prototyping. Exponential technologies are driving digital transformation in financial services. The main features of exponential technologies are: accelerating rate of improvement, rapid advance in innovation, great disruptive potential, cross industry initiatives and continuous cost-performance growth. Then, M. Dalton explained the blockchain trends, its capacities and its potential overall impact on financial services. To conclude his speech, David Dalton talked the misconceptions about the blockchain: “it’s not bitcoin, it’s not the real-time, traditional technology is not obsolete and you still need to integrate other data systems”.

Michael Terpin, the Founder and CEO of Transform Group, then addressed the topic: “Behold the ICO: Great equalizer or money-sucking bubble?” He started his presentation by introducing differences between blockchain and digital assets. Then he presented the history of blockchain and defined BitCoin, LiteCoin and Ripple. He then discussed the evolution of public tokens and the advantages of payment tokens: how are tokens born and sunk during the economic crisis, to finally reborn? And now, out of crisis, how tokens appear as an opportunity? Bitcoin’s scaling woes led to diversification among crypto investors, with Dash, Ripple, Litecoin, Ethereum & Monero soaring.

Kristof Van de Reck, Co-founder and council member, NEM.io Foundation, also thinks that Blockchain is an opportunity for many reasons. During his speech, he told how NEM blockchain technology can be used for secure storage and access of privacy sensitive data in a broad sense, including how this can be applied to some use cases. NEM is a holistic blockchain platform, built from scratch in March 29th 2015. The NEM blockchain works with an HD colored accounts, encrypting data with combination of these accounts, authentication using mosaics with structured message to act as certificates, authorization access by signing structured requests and identification by signing from master account. Through some examples, Kristof Van de Reck showed how NEM blockchain technology could be changing our storage access.

Mona El Isa, former star-trader at Goldman Sachs, CEO and Co-Founder of Melonport, a Blockchain software for asset management, presented “The Blockchain Promise”. The idea is to take the Bitcoin concept and embedded an entire coding language in it called Solidity. According to Mona El Isa, Melonport is the premier investment management infrastructure for crypto. The Melon Protocol enables to set up a decentralized fund structure, manage your fund within the fund structure you have selected, build a track record and invest in other funds or allow others to invest in yours. Moreover, the Melon Protocol is cheap, efficient, easy to use and transparent.

After a round table, Pavlo Tanasyuk, CEO and Founder of Blockverify, answered the question: When blockchain will rebuild the entire industry? He compared the future of blockchain as a mountain. At the moment, only few people already try to buy bitcoin but many people still talk about it. According to him “if you’re a consumer, you have to be able to use the technology”. Problem is, apart from programmers and developers, few people can read, understand and use code language. One other problem is the identity. M. Tanasuykexplained: «We have to find a way to secure and developing solutions/. It is new type of transaction”. To fix the issue, he built his answer around four points: identity, standards, user interface and scalability. Finally, Pavlo Tanasuyk concluded with this question: Is the blockchain the web 3.0?

Then Marco Houwen, Project leader at Infrachain in Luxembourg, addressed: “Infrachain from proof of concept to operations”. Infrachain aims at leapfrogging the adoption curve of blockchain by creating a compliant-ready community/permissioned node blockchain infrastructure. Based on the fact that it exists in the public chain trust and responsibility in nodes, sustainable operating environment, regulatory security and interoperability, Infrachain proposes a program based on cross-industry effort aiming to provide disintermediation services to all aspects of the economy (Fintech, Healthcare, Public services, Supply chain management...).

The next topic covered is “Trusted Identities & Governance in InfraChain” presented by Robert Bielecki, Executive Consultant at Luxtrust.  Luxtrust has created a protocol improved to provide by design identity management and to enter to the real world the blockchain applications should integrate the identity related to the addresses.

Dinis Guarda, the Founder and CEO of Humaniq, decentralized banking for unbanked people, answered the question: How Can Blockchain Tech Tackle the Global Problem of Financial Inclusion and told us why they created Humaniq? Starting from that 2 billion people in the world do not have access to banking, are excluded from the global economy and are ignored by traditional banks, Dinis Guarda created Humaniq to offer them “a basic key to identity”.  Humaniq is a cloud-based global bank built on the blockchain that combines distributed ownership, mobility, visual simplicity and biometric ID to deliver financial services to the developing world. This digital eco-system combines blockchain with biometrics and a simple mobile application. Humaniq is creating the clearest, most minimalistic, and most intuitive tools that will enable simple access for the 2 billion unbanked. Beyond the economic project, Humaniq supports a humanitarian project by giving the poorest the financing tools that will enable them to accelerate economic growth and fuel new opportunities in their economies.

To close this first day, Jonathan Hope, CEO & Co-Founder of the startup Keychain, presented “The Far-reaching Applications of the Authentication Blockchain”. Keychain is an authentication blockchain solution against the lack of information about authenticity and provenance of data.  Keychain offers authenticated FIX Messaging, secure IoT communication and encrypted email. Moreover, it creates authentication blockchain is cheaper and more secure, and enable new and more profitable business partners.