Leaving Germany with the first snow was not something Vazy and I would regret. We left to the airport early morning last Monday. We quickly witnessed how deeply stretched the Web Summit was while we queued up at the gate. A volunteer, flying to help out, approached us asking if we were going to the Web Summit. The journey and the hype of the week had officially begun! Luckily our flight was on time and the sky blue and sunny. When we arrived, eager to register for the Web Summit at the airport, we got held back by waiting for our luggage. It just didn’t want to come. After 45 mins of waiting, we were finally able to pursue registration. It was already quite packed. Free T-shirts were given out, badges and maps handed out. The weather in Lisbon – sunny, yet cold (ok, no comparison to Germany xD).
Let´s get started!
We caught a cab, checked into our apartment (our home for the week!) and found a McDonalds to fill up the energy. Everyone was helpful and friendly from the first moment we touched base in Lisbon. No reason to feel like a stranger! We then moved to the FIL (Feira Internacional de Lisboa) and started queuing up. We hadn’t realised until then that the queue was going to be huge! After 1,5 h of waiting, we stormed into the centre stage for the best seats possible . The opening show was fantastic! It was exceptional to see everyone live and so close. We obviously always looked out for different people we may meet (thanks to those helpful badges!). We saw Joseph Gordon-Levitt on stage, the Portuguese Prime Minister and the Mayor of Lisbon. Who knew then that we would shake the Prime Minister´s hand and be on TV? Lol
We headed to the Web Summit quite early, as we saw how long the queues can get! Of course, we didn’t forget our World eSport T-shirts. We had already pre-set meetings for the Tuesday, but we quickly learned that the schedule changes fast. That being said, we did not hesitate in going up to people and checking the ´investors lounge´. We were eager to be seen and to communicate with everyone who is interested in eSport, Gaming and Social Media. And that’s exactly what we did. One meeting led to another. One contact suggested another. We always reminded ourselves that we are at the Web Summit for one main purpose: to find the right partner & investor to take World eSport to the next level. The day was that tiring, that we actually ended up not going to the Pub Crawl that evening…we actually couldn’t even see much of Lisbon!
Ready, set and go! We arrived first at our stand and had enough time to set up and prepare everything in peace. After some internet issues, everything was set up and ready to be shown to the crowd. We exhibited World eSport through showing the Beta version, the functionalities in place and by explaining the concept. The really interesting observation was, that attendees, who knew about eSport and Gaming straight approached us and were highly inquisitive in finding out more about World eSport. On the other hand, we also approached and spoke to many attendees, who did not know anything about eSport, explaining them how booming and popular the market is. It definitely makes a significant difference when you are legitimate in an industry. As for us and eSport, with Vazy´s career and me being a female, casual gamer, people do take us more seriously and show greater interest.
During exhibition day, we were positively surprised on how many attendees came and visited us at our stand. We exchanged lots of business cards and details, with some key contacts we will definitely be in touch with. And just while we were talking to one of these key contacts, we saw a crowded group, packed with cameras, microphones and security approaching the different stands. As they were coming closer, we saw that the Portuguese Prime Minister António Costa was coming to welcome everyone one-by-one. We had to cut off the discussions in the middle as we were completely thrilled to meet the Prime Minister live and appear on Portuguese TV. It was a shame we couldn’t discuss World eSport and the growing eSport sector with him. It was yet a memorable moment for us, which we will always keep.
Going the extra, extra mile!
How can we raise more awareness? How can we set up more meetings and get the max. out of our time during the Web Summit? We obviously took away the company banner and adverted World eSport. Literally the only ones that did! We caught lots of attention and had no hesitation in approaching investors just chilling and waiting for a cab or simply on the go. We pitched World eSport to everyone and anywhere. On Thursday, we again brought along our company banner, texted everyone over the Web Summit app and arranged meetings with more potential investors. Looking back at our time during these days at the Web Summit, we admit that we have done our very best to maximise our chances. We are now in the follow-up phase and are eager to find out who is going to be the partner by our side!