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Panel Descriptions


Morning Keynote: To be announced, stay tuned!

Afternoon Keynote: Jim Breyer, Founder Breyer Capital

Legendary investor Jim Breyer has led investments in household names including Facebook, Didi, Spotify and Etsy. Of late, he is investing heavily in AI including a bet on Boston-based Kensho which was acquired by S&P Global for $550 million. How will successful companies of the future be financed and built?  Interviewing Breyer will be another VC heavy-weight and author, Hemant Taneja of General Catalyst. Taneja, who’s investments include Snapchat and Stripe, recently authored “Unscaled: How AI and a New Generation of Upstarts are Creating the Economy of the Future”. Attendees can enter to win their own signed copy of “Unscaled”.


Closing Keynote: Aron Ain, CEO of Kronos

Under Ain’s leadership, Kronos has grown to a stunning $1.4 billion in revenue.  In 2018, Kronos topped Boston Globe’s Best Places to Work list. How has Kronos become one of the largest HCM companies in the world while creating an exemplary work culture? What is the key to Ain’s leadership and Kronos’s success, what lessons should every aspiring leader draw?   Maia Heymann, founder of Converge, will ask these and more of Ain and discuss “WorkInspired: How to Build an Organization where Everyone Loves to Work”, his recent book. Attendees can enter to win their own signed copy of “WorkInspired”.

Track I: AI, ML & Robotics

Deep Learning Techniques and Applications


Kicking off the discussion, we have a panel of hot startups and large company experts including Kensho, a Harvard AI fintech startup recently acquired by S&P Global for $550 million, AI-based recruiting  startup Jobiak, the Head of Microsoft Deep Learning and NLP expert RAGE Frameworks, recently acquired by GenPact. This panel will go deeper into learning techniques, what’s working and what’s ahead.


AI, ML & Data Science: Opportunities and Limitations of current approaches 

Boston is home to some of the hottest AI companies including four time Gartner Magic Quadrant leader RapidMiner, on a growth tear DataRobot,  Cambridge Mobile Telematics which pulled in $500 million from Softbank Vision Fund, the largest fundraise ever in New England and StopLift which got picked up NCR.  Equally impressive are the leading implementors of Data Science and ML technologies like PWC/PRTM who are building some of the most sophisticated applications in industries ranging from financial services to manufacturing. These experts will discuss the opportunities and limitations of current approaches to ML, including issues of what happens outside of training regime, bias caused by them, and fragility of models.


Robotics: Present and Future


What is the state of robotics in Boston and the industry at large? Besides cool demos, what is the business value driving the growth of the industry? Are robots taking our jobs? Can there be a pillar company in Robotics in Boston or are they all destined to be gobbled up by the big fish as Kiva was by Amazon? Hear from some of the insiders in the Boston ecosystem who are sure to have a strong point of view on these and other questions. This year's Robotics panel includes a mix of large company and startup perspectives including Amy Villeneuve, ex President and COO of Kiva Systems, who went on to become VP of Amazon Robotics and now board member at 6River Systems, Walter Vahey, EVP Business Development at Teradyne and the architect behind Teradyne's acquisitions of Universal Robots and MiR, Youssef Saleh, Founder/CEO of Ava Robotics and ex GM at iRobot, and Peter Howard, CEO of Realtime Robotics. 

Track II: Digital Health

Amazon in Healthcare

From AWS, to Pillpack, to Alexa, to Whole Foods, to Haven Healthcare – where doesn’t Amazon have its tentacles in healthcare?  This flash talk and panel will uncover two of these areas by convening leaders who are on the inside track.  Speakers will talk about Amazon’s efforts in healthcare from their vantage and also the ways in which Amazon is supporting digital health innovation externally.  Elliot Menschik, Global Head of Healthcare and Life Sciences Startups for Amazon Web Services (AWS), will provide detailed insight on AWS’s approach.  Jim Harper, Co-Founder and COO at Sonde Health will talk about his company’s use of AWS platform for their innovation in voice biomarkers and the potential of these biomarkers to help voice services like Alexa become 21st century health assistants.  Don’t miss this vibrant discussion on Amazon’s potential to transform healthcare, focusing on two of its most interesting initiatives.

Scaling a Digital Health Company

Building a startup is hard. Building a successful startup in healthcare is incredibly hard. Tough regulations, exceedingly long sales cycles, insane contract requirements, unreasonable expectations. In which other industry is it the norm that most new products are not only expected to deliver quality outcomes but are also often required to save the buyer money in the long run? The bar is high. But for those who can clear that bar, the rewards are significant. This panel comprises founders of some of the most successful healthcare startups with roots in the Boston area and impact across the country. Jay Desai, Founder and CEO of PatientPing. Zoe Barry, Founder and CEO of ZappRx, and Trishan Panch, Founder of Wellframe, will share their learnings as they took their ideas through funding (hard) and scaling (even harder). If you have dreams of being a founder or if you are a founder wondering just how much longer it will take to get that pilot project approved, or to get that interminable pilot converted into a real paying client, then this is the panel where you'll hear from folks who've been there, done that.

The Future of Patient Data 

Even as our society continues to grapple with insufficient interoperability of clinical data, the world of patient data is growing exponentially with the addition of genetic information, sensor information, social determinants, and more. What will this mean for healthcare stakeholders such as payers, hospital systems, and clinicians, and most importantly for patients? What are the challenges and opportunities for entrepreneurs to make their mark? Who better to give us insight into these questions than Dr. John Halamka, the trailblazing innovator at Beth Israel Lahey and Harvard professor, Rodrigo Martinez, Chief of design and marketing at Veritas Genetics, a spin-off from George Church's lab and one of the hottest startups in the space, Danielle Ciofani, Director of Data Strategy at The Broad Institute, a leader in genetic research, and Mary Varghese, VP of Life Sciences at IBM Watson Health, which has been at the cutting edge of AI on large combined data sets in healthcare. Data is changing healthcare faster than most people think is happening. Don't get left behind.

Track III: The Heat in the East

Blockchain - Look Back, Look Forward

Blockchain has transformed over the past few years. Initially, the public were only linking blockchain to digital currency such as BitCoin or Ethereum.  After the initial hype and ICO craze -  the true power and potential of blockchain was underway. A 2018 survey of 600 executives from 15 territories, 84% say their organizations have at least some involvement with blockchain technology. Companies have dabbled in the lab; perhaps they’ve even built proofs of concept. Everyone is talking about blockchain, and no one wants to be left behind. As a distributed, tamperproof ledger, a well-designed blockchain doesn’t just cut out intermediaries, it can reduce cost while increasing speed and reach. It also offers greater transparency and traceability for regular business processes. Gartner forecasts that blockchain will generate an annual business value of more than $3 trillion USD by 2030. It’s possible to imagine that 10% to 20% of global economic infrastructure will be running on blockchain-based systems by that same year. Sharon Goldberg of Arwen (formerly Commonwealth Crypto), Richard Dulude of Underscore VC and Anders Brownworth of Circle weigh in on the state of blockchain from mainstream applications to the future of blockchain. 

Gap-to-Zero: The Next Revolution in Manufacturing and the Rise of Hardware Entrepreneurs

How do makers, manufacturers, and engineers achieve gap-to-zero distance between design and making? This session paints a future where design software speaks the language of additive manufacturing for 3D printing. In this flash talk and panel, hear from the CEOs of leading 3D design and additive manufacturing enablers including Solidworks, Rize, Digital Alloy and others. Walk through software and machine integration scenarios where unstructured manufacturing achieves faster concept to product realization.  See examples that illustrates how new process techniques, tools, and design interfaces create innovation in model generation and intelligent machines – at the click of a button. 


Space: The Trillion Dollar Opportunity

These are exciting times for Space! The space (no pun intended!) is rife with investment and commercial activity – it’s a $400 Billion market.  There are implications for every industry from finance, manufacturing, retail, shipping and more, as for-profit companies build businesses around satellite imagery, business intelligence, launch, travel and exploration.  New business models are emerging, and there is a LOT of money to be made.  Come learn from a distinguished panel of Space pioneers and thought leaders about the current state and the future – to boldly go where no human as gone before.  

Track IV: Startup Lifecycle

New Product Development: Description Coming Soon

Pricing & Packaging: Description Coming Soon

VC Funding: Description Coming Soon

TiE ScaleUp Cohort 5 Demo Day

Join us as 11 of Boston’s rapidly scaling companies pitch live during lunch at TIECON East. You will hear how these founders are solving challenging problems across different sectors from healthcare to e-commerce. Join the conversation among a select group of investors, entrepreneurs, and members of the startup community in Boston!

TiE Boston's award winning program, ScaleUp, is an accelerator specifically geared to help growth stage companies overcome common obstacles and barriers to scale. Based in Boston/Cambridge, the ScaleUp Team supports Massachusetts-based startups preparing to scale through a series of tailored workshops, mentoring from serial entrepreneurs, and structured access to investors throughout the program.

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AI, ML & Robotics
Digital Health Track
Heat in the East
Startup Lifecycle
ScaleUp Demo Day
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