EVENT REVIEW // Beta & Beyond: The Internet of Things Posted at 0:00, Wed, 3 December 2014 in Industry Insights

MitchelLake has been pleased to co-host the Beta & Beyond Innovation Series in partnership with Accenture since August 2013 and we just clocked up our 8th event in the program…

This November saw our final Beta & Beyond for 2014 across Melbourne and Sydney and we finished the year on a high thanks to a great lineup of speakers and an engaging and animated discussion with guests.

The ethos behind Beta & Beyond is ‘Ideas That Move Markets’. Each event is themed, with the speakers curated to present the most exciting, innovative and thought provoking angles on the topic.
On this occasion the theme was The Internet of Things: Moving towards intelligent ecosystems: How evolving device networks and applications are influencing commerce, consumers and communities.

The evening plays out as an intimate event showcasing innovations from three early-stage business ventures presenting new possibilities for companies tackling the opportunities and challenges of the Internet of Things. While guests enjoy a three-course dinner they hear three pitches before the discussion is opened up to the floor for guest Q&A. The aim is to allow leading organisations to discover innovation that is occurring at the grassroots level of relevant industries, both locally and globally.

A huge thank you to Simon Chamberlain, Entrepreneur & Investor and Stuart Fox, Managing Partner at Artesian Venture Partners who hosted the events in Melbourne and Sydney respectively. They provided a relevant introduction to IoT and were great contributors to thoughtful discussion and insights across the evening.


Mark Collis & Nicolas Tessier – PlaceAR
Mark Collis and Nicolas Tessier inspired the audience with one of the first presentations of their not-yet-launched startup PlaceAR, an augmented reality app that allows people to leave messages in the ether to either a closed group or publicly. Their presentation expanded the mind as discussion led to its hugely practical applications not only for private use, but for tourism, discovery, and content industries while potentially allowing cross-generational messages to be sent and received.

Daniel Friedman – Ninja Blocks
Daniel is the CEO and founder of Ninja Blocks – a startup aiming to redefine the connected home experience by simplifying human interactions with devices to create a truly magical user experience. Daniel’s presentation allowed the audience to imagine the wider advantages of Ninja Blocks as it could provide solutions across insurance, elder care and pet surveillance. Daniel proudly passed around their sleek hardware, Ninja Sphere, which allowed the audience to take a first hand look at their newest technology: a smart device that continually monitors and learns about its user and its environment. We can’t wait for it to be released.

Doug Buckle – Buzz Products (Melbourne only)
Doug is the Product Design Director at Buzz Products, a global creative agency that solves marketing and business challenges through product design solutions. With 15 years of innovative product design, Buzz Products have recently changed the way in which Canadians watch ice hockey in an exciting project with Budweiser. They helped to deliver the real-time experience of the in-arena experience to ice hockey fans across the country. Through a piece of hardware and a smartphone App, Doug was able to present Buzz Product’s take on IoT in relation to sport and customer engagement.

Jason Pellegrino – Google (Sydney only)
Google may not scream ‘startup’ but Google X is – the company’s lab for secret, weird and wonderful projects. Jason brought a great angle to the event, not only showing off Google Glass, a brainchild of Google X – but was able to contextualise the IoT through inspiring the audience with a polished presentation that allowed us to understand the capacity that IoT has but where it’s heading and how individuals and companies can find relevant applications in their own industries.

We are currently in planning phase for Beta & Beyond in 2015 and we look forward to welcoming a range of hosts, speakers and guests to the event. For more information on Beta & Beyond please email us at sydneu@mitchellake.com