S&P Adventures – the Bits&Pretzels conference

Cristin Iosif

CEO

Bits & Pretzels is an application-only, three-day festival that connects 5,000 founders, investors, startup enthusiasts, and all other decision-makers of the startup ecosystem. The festival took place between the 29th of September to 1st of October in Munich, in a unique setting just around Oktoberfest.

Bits & Pretzels is an informative event for tech founders and investors, and also a very well organized event with a lot of effort put into giving people networking opportunities that can generate business opportunities. We had the chance to meet great people from all over Europe, Asia or the USA. At the same time, it also poses a great advantage for learning new concepts and discovering innovative startups or key decisions makers from the global tech industry. With a great lineup comprised of illustrious leaders from different fields, like Jessica Alba, Drew Houston, Reid Hoffman, David Limp, among others, the Bits & Pretzels conference is positioning itself as one of the most original contemporary events, while breaking new grounds for the business ecosystem.

Former US President Barack Obama was the man of the show! He opened up the speaker’s lineup in front of a 5000 people audience that started gathering from 7 AM to take their place for the opening ceremony, which was scheduled to start at 10 AM. When he was introduced on stage, the whole audience got on their feet and started cheering – it was a moment full of energy!
As the conference’s subject was “Impact”, the former US president talked about the different ways each of us can and need to make a change to improve the future of our global community. He also touched upon subjects like women empowerment, climate change and the role tech startups can play in improving the situation in these areas.

His speech content and passion was exactly how we would have expected it – a very well structured, optimistic and authentic speech, which was also filled with funny moments. One of the most inspiring stories he shared was about one of the moments when he was working with his team on moving the Obama Care law through the Parliament. They were running out of options and almost ready to give up on this project. One of his counsellors came forward with a solution that might work, however it had low chances of success.

And at that moment he asked President Obama:

Counsellor: How lucky do you feel Mister President?

The President looked him straight in the eyes and asked:

Obama: What’s my name?

The counsellor looked a bit surprised.

Counsellor: Barack?

Obama: What’s my full name?

Counsellor: Barack Hussein Obama

Obama: And where are we now?

Counsellor: The White House?

Obama: Yes. Well if your name is Barack Hussein Obama and we are in the White House, I have to feel lucky every day.

Besides the networking opportunities during the first 2 days of the event, the organizers prepared an impressive closing of this edition. The last day was organised as a networking session at Oktoberfest, a very well-known Bavarian festival. This gave people the possibility to connect and exchange ideas in a very friendly and easy-going environment, complemented by Bavarian-style food and, of course, beer.

Definitely one of the best tech conferences we have attended until now and will make sure to attend next year’s edition as well. Looking forward to witnessing any innovative surprises and additions for next year’s event.