19:35 25.01.2018

Cryptohavens, Data Science and Techno Hubs: Highlights of Day 2 of Ukraine House Davos

Davos, 25 January 2018. During its second working day, Ukraine House Davos hosted panels which addressed burning global trends, such as the role of states in regulating the cryptocurrency market,  the emergence of global techhubs, and the transformative power of data science. The day's intense program was concluded by a Fireside Chat with the Klitschko brothers under the theme "Creativity, Innovation, Opportunity: The Making of World Champions".

The key theme of the day’s first panel "Where Is The Next Cryptohaven?", sponsored by Blockchcain Hub, was the interrelation between the global cryptocurrency community and states. The panels featured high-profile speakers, including Don Tapscott, CEO, The Tapscott Group Inc.,

John Hucker, President of Swiss Finance + Technology Association and Marc P. Bernegger, Fintech Investor.

From left to right: Don Tapscott, Marc P. Bernegger, John Hucker, Michael Chobanian

All panelists were in agreement that blockchain technology must be integrated into the state sector, which means that states have to create associations and working groups that would act as platforms for effective communication between the state and crypto communities and projects.

Commenting on this trend from the Ukrainian perspective, the panel's moderator Michael Chobanian, Founder Blockchain Hub Kyiv, stated: "Ukraine has all the chances to become the next Cryptohaven, providing the government provides necessary support to the national crypto community and facilitates the implementation of blockchain projects in the state sector and large business".

 

From left to right: Karin Rubinstein, Alexa Chopivsky, Vitaliy Klitschko, Nicholas Tymoshchuk

 

The second panel, “Emerging Global Tech Hubs”, sponsored by UNIT.City, featured Vitaliy Klitschko, Mayor of Kyiv, World Heavyweight Boxing Champion, Co-Founder Klitschko Foundation; Nicholas Tymoshchuk, CEO, UFuture Investment Group / UNIT.City; Karin Rubinstein, CEO, Israel Advanced Technology Industries; Mike Harvey, Head of Content and Communications, WebSummit.

When asked about the reasons behind more and more tech hubs emerging around the world, Mike Harvey noted: “IT and high-tech sectors account for a sizable portion of the global GDP growth, hence more demand for new locations to meet the soaring demand and expand to the new markets."

Elaborating on the same question, Karin Rubinstein added: “The biggest challenge that the industry is facing all over the world today is the lack of people. Ecosystems that will manage to address this issue and produce more talent will have a major competitive advantage internationally. I’ve been to Ukraine several times already and I am amazed by the abundance of young tech-savvy people in your country as well as with the quality of their education, experience and the way of thinking.”

On the Ukrainian side, Nicholas Tymoshchuk, talking about his group’s flagship project UNIT.City Innovation Park, said: “With our innovation park, apart from building an exceptional piece of infrastructure on twenty five hectares in central Kyiv, we’re putting together an entire high-tech ecosystem, with cutting edge education facilities, startup accelerators and incubators, leading Ukrainian and foreign innovation companies as well as multinational tech giants and their R&D centers. Moreover, we’re connecting our Ukrainian ecosystem to its most successful global peers in Silicon Valley, Europe and Israel.”

Supporting the eagerness of the private sector, Vitaliy Klitchko, Mayor of Kyiv, said: I am not an IT specialist, but I can promise you I will be a personal bodyguard of each and every foreign investor in Ukraine, especially if we are talking about investments in innovation and education to change life for better in my city and in my country.”

 

From left to right: Alex Fridlyand, Olexiy Skrypnyk, Marina Vyshegorodskikh, Borys Pratsyuk, Phaedra Chrousos

The Data Science panel, sponsored by Ciklum and IT Ukraine Association, addressed the future of Ukraine’s booming technology services sector, highlighting Ukraine's unique strong positioning for developing into a Data Science lab.

Representatives of Ciklum and IT Ukraine, as well as Alex Fridlyand, Soros Fund Management, emphasized that already now Data Science expertise enables Ukrainian IT-companies to solve the most challenging math and engineering problems for their clients.

Commenting on Ukraine's solid scientific base Olexiy Skrypnyk, IT Association Ukraine, stated: "Beginning from the early 20th century, Ukraine was a pioneer in sciences and had one of the strongest math schools in the world. Ukrainian universities managed to preserve this advanced approach and impeccable quality of education. A strong educational ecosystem powered by a large and fast-growing IT sector makes Ukraine an extremely attractive player on the global IT market with a focus on Data Science as well as R&D, AI and other digital areas”.

"Ukraine is a home of very smart, very intelligent, extremely well educated people. Today, if you travel through Silicon Valley or visit headquarters of major corporations, you will always see Ukrainian engineers there. What makes them different? Broad education”, added Alex Fridlyand.

Borys Pratsyuk, Head of R&D, Ciklum said: "Ukrainian IT engineers began to incorporate machine learning, deep learning technologies at their very early stages. Now we witness how Google heavily invests in deep mind, such companies as NVidia and other big brands develop an infrastructure for machine learning, deep learning design, etc. We, in our turn, feel more than confident in our capabilities to keep up with these trends and deliver cutting-edge solutions worldwide".

Wladimir Klitschko holding the first-ever Ukraine House Award

During the vibrant fireside chat "Creativity, Innovation, Opportunity: The Making of World Champions" Vitaliy and Wladimir Klitschko shared inspiring stories about their successful careers in sports, business and politics.

Alexa Chopivsky, Executive Director, Ukraine House, on behalf of the Ukraine House Organizing Committee awarded the first-ever Ukraine House Award to the Klitschko Brothers for their contribution to the development of Ukraine and the promotion of Ukraine on the global stage.

"My mission is to make Kyiv a truly European city and Ukraine a truly European country. Very soon Kiev will have European standards of life", said Vitaliy Klitschko when asked about his motivation to be a politician.

"It is my first Davos and I am very excited. We lost 48 years during which we haven't been here. We've been absent from Davos too long but with the help of Ukraine House Davos we will quickly make up for all this time", stated Wladimir Klitschko.

About Ukraine House Davos

Ukraine House Davos is a multi-format venue organized by Ukrainian Venture Capital and Private Equity Association (UVCA) in partnership with Western NIS Enterprise Fund (WNISEF) and Victor Pinchuk Foundation. Ukraine House will run January 22-26, 2018 under the theme Ukraine: Creativity, Innovation, Opportunity in Davos, Switzerland.

Ukraine House’s Gold Sponsor is Ciklum and Silver Sponsor is IT Ukraine Association.

All discussion panels will be streamed live on Ukraine House Davos Facebook page and YouTube channel.

For media inquiries contact Yuriy Sak at ys@cfc.com.ua or on +380 95 618 1564

 

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