TechCrunch announced last month that we’re moving our flagship event, Disrupt SF (Sept. 5-7, 2018) to the beautiful Moscone West conference center in the heart of San Francisco.
Moscone West presents lots of big improvements over Disrupt’s venues in the past, including modern amenities — air walls! escalators! freight elevators! – and most importantly 3x more floor space.
We decided to take this big step up because we believe that expanding Disrupt SF is the right thing to do for the startup community. Why? Because Disrupt SF is bursting at the seams. Year after year Disrupt SF breaks attendance records, and it’s easy to understand why.
The startup scene is now more global than ever. In 2017, for example, TechCrunch produced major events overseas in Berlin, Tel Aviv, Nairobi, Sydney, Shenzhen and Shanghai. In all those startup communities everyone has an eye on Silicon Valley, which is still the gold standard for venture funding and company development. And Disrupt is a gateway for global founders working to establish a relationships in the valley.
Startup categories are also more numerous and diverse than ever. A few years ago, there were usually a handful of “hot” categories in the startup world at any one time. Today, there are easily a dozen or more demanding attention — like relative newcomers AI, mobility, blockchain, CRISPR, robotics, AR/VR, as well as perennials like SaaS, ecommerce and more. TechCrunch’s Disrupt is the Silicon Valley showcase for startups in those emerging as well as established categories.
The new Disrupt SF at Moscone presents a huge opportunity to deliver a better, more consequential show for everyone concerned. Here are a few important improvement that will come with a much larger, modern space:
- More attendees. Disrupt is expected to double attendance to at least 10,000, keeping our rich mix of founders, developers, and investors.
- More flexible access. Instead of one-ticket-price-fits-all, we are creating new ticket types designed to meet the interests and price points of Disrupt’s diverse attendees.
- More room for founders exhibiting in Startup Alley. Individual exhibitors will have more space to tell their story, and overall the number of category pavilions will expand to capture the emerging and established categories in the startup world.
- More room and opportunities for sponsors. Moscone not only provides dramatically more floor space. We can easily provide opportunities for expansive exhibit space on the show floor as well as private lounges, workshops, receptions, luncheons and breakfasts.
- More programming. TechCrunch is celebrated for its mainstage interviews at Disrupt, and this past year we added a highly successful programming twist called Off the Record sessions – where main stage speakers and Disrupt attendees can mix it up with questions and further discussions. At Disrupt SF 2018, expect even more programming from TechCrunch as well as other sources.
- More Startup Battlefield. TechCrunch’s unparalleled startup competition has brought more than 700 startups to the stage, and they have gone on to raise $8 billion and produce more than 100 exits. Disrupt SF 2018 will double-down on a global basis to find the best early stage startups as well as expand the field in the competition.
- More focused, even in the face of big growth. We’ve heard from attendees that while they value breadth in Disrupt, they also expect us to deliver focused experiences that allow them to make the most of their time. That is why we created CrunchMatch, a service that matches investors and founders as well as assigns meeting times in a purpose-built meeting area. In 2017, CrunchMatch delivered thousands of meetings at our three Disrupts, and next year we will deliver an even better CrunchMatch as well a powerful new feature to help attendees navigate all the show’s elements — programming, Startup Alley, sponsors — based on their interests.
Everyone at TechCrunch is excited by the huge opportunity that Moscone presents. We know the challenge is great, which is one of the reasons we decided to retire both the Crunchies and Disrupt NY. We need to be relentlessly focused on delivering this new show.
What’s next? In mid-January, look for TechCrunch’s sales to announce the sponsorship programs for Disrupt SF. If you want to receive an email when they are available – just fill this form and we’ll send you a note with the deck. In the meantime, put Sept. 5-7 on your calendar for Disrupt SF – TechCrunch’s most ambitious and epic Disrupt ever.