Thu, Oct 6, 2022
Open Again! With a slight delay…

This week our first hybrid SmartCom Summit should have been celebrated. An online live talk show with guests from Red Hat, KPN, Simfony, Logitech and oneCentral, combined with a Beach BBQ, info market and networking. Because after 16 months of lockdown we would be Open Again – and everybody is eager to meet people in real life again. Working together with our friends at MSP*Cafe, in a matter of weeks, more than 25 partners joined as sponsors and contributors. We were close to selling out and had everything arranged – when we were forced to postpone the event a few days ago due to sudden stricter Corona measures triggered by the rise of the delta variant in The Netherlands… We did not see that one coming all of a sudden…

Never a dull moment, and a great example of how the next normal requires more agility and flexibility in everything we plan and do. And a huge disappointment for all partners and our team that has worked so hard to organise everything! So, we spent this week communicating the change, rescheduling everything, and looking for a new beach location where we can organise both live shows and have a fun event with an appropriate distance. Of course, taking into account that we don’t know exactly what we have to plan for 6 weeks from now. After a lot of calling and mailing, and hearing from venues that are either fully booked already or don’t take reservations, it looks like we found a great new spot where we can create an even better event!

We’re very grateful that all our partners and registered attendees understand our decision to comply with the new measures and put safety first, and are moving with us to the new date and location. With an extra 6 weeks to organise, we can also accommodate more partners, and may even extend the online program. With more time to prepare we can also look at creating more valuable insights and content over the next weeks, as we also work on our yearly SmartCom Summit Trend Report. In the words of famous Dutch soccer player Johan Cruyff, every disadvantage has its advantages…

So, we continue to look forward to the Beach BBQ on 26 August, and will do our best to make it a great first “Open Again!” event! For now, we wish you a great Summer break. Stay safe and be agile. #peoplefirst


About the author

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Rob combines a strong technical and commercial IT background with 18 years of cloud communications experience as an entrepreneur, consultant, trainer/coach, analyst and business developer. His heart is in innovation and growth, working with scaleups and corporates to bring new technologies to market.

In 2016 he co-founded The Next Cloud because he believes the exciting world of business communications, with programmable telecoms, APIs, CPaaS and AI, is too important to leave to the Big Tech companies and deserves a local and people first approach. Optimal customer experience, new business models, but also solving our society’s real challenges by combining the strengths of corporates and innovators in new ecosystems.

Over the past 30 years Rob (co-)founded various technology companies, including one of the leading Dutch hosted voice providers (before hosted voice became the new normal). Today, he works with some of the world’s leading technology providers on innovation and growth, especially in the rapidly changing world of cloud communications.

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