BrewDog co-founder James Watt headlining Startup Summit

BrewDog co-founder James Watt has been announced as the headline speaker at this year’s Startup Summit (SUS20), where he will be interviewed by renowned Scottish businessman Sir Tom Hunter.

Wednesday, 9th September 2020, 7:30 am
James Watt and Sir Tom Hunter in discussion at Startup Summit 2017. Picture: contributed.

The Scottish entrepreneurship event, which is being held online this year, unites names from Scotland and beyond to hear from leading business figures, and it is expected to attract 1,000-plus delegates across 28 and 29 October. Also speaking at this year’s event is Amali de Alwis, MD of Microsoft for Startups, joining a line-up already containing experts from the likes of Twitter, GoDaddy and 1Password.

Bruce Walker, co-founder of Edinburgh-based FutureX – which is behind the event – said: “Startup Summit 2020 is bringing together the most successful business leaders and entrepreneurs to inspire, educate and support the next generation of start-ups.”

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Watt (left) says he has long admired Hunter (right) as a businessman and philanthropist. Picture: contributed.

James Watt co-founded beer giant BrewDog in 2007. It now exports into 60 countries and has more than 100 bars across the globe. Watt, who is also a fully qualified deep sea captain, said: “Our approach has been non-conformative and anti-authoritarian from the start and I look forward to discussing this as part of SUS20.

“I have long admired Sir Tom as a businessman and philanthropist... so am looking forward to discussing what start-ups can do to make a positive impact on our planet together.”

Hunter from The Hunter Foundation said: “Startup Summit is a fantastic learning opportunity at a time when we really need to drive new businesses forward… James Watt typifies the brilliant nature of entrepreneurs who always pivot; jump over hurdles and grow massively whilst caring for their people and our planet. His chat will be, as ever, inspirational.”

Meanwhile, the team behind Scottish technology investor event EIE20, which is taking place virtually on 14 October, has launched its annual Scottish Startup Survey. In association with the Freer Consultancy and TalentSpark, this year’s survey will span issues including Covid-19, Brexit, the investment environment, target markets and the recently published Scottish Technology Ecosystem Review.

The EIE team has also announced that an investor-only event will be taking place on the eve of EIE20 featuring a Q&A session with the author of the review, former Skyscanner chief operating officer Mark Logan. He said: “I greatly look forward to our discussions with investors from the UK and across the globe in October.”

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