This article was published on August 5, 2011

5 reasons you’ve got to be at GROW 2011

5 reasons you’ve got to be at GROW 2011
Mike Vardy
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Mike Vardy

Mike Vardy is a husband, father, independent writer, speaker, podcaster and "productivityist". He is also the author of the book, The Front Mike Vardy is a husband, father, independent writer, speaker, podcaster and "productivityist". He is also the author of the book, The Front Nine: How To Start The Year You Want Anytime You Want, published by Diversion Books. You can learn more about his other work at his website,, visit his blog at, and you can follow him as @mikevardy on Twitter.

The Next Web is a media partner for GROW 2011, taking place August 17-19 at the Vancouver Convention Center. GROW 2011 is described as “a unique three-day conference that brings together the top minds in business, entrepreneurship, technology and startup investment to inspire and engage the next generation of disruptive entrepreneurs.”

So why should you be there? Well, here are 5 big reasons that you’ve got to be at GROW 2011 in two weeks’ time.

1. Networking opportunities

Not only are there going to be plenty of up-and-coming startups at GROW 2011, but there will be plenty of well-established companies to connect with. The chance to forge partnerships is going to be available right in the heart of downtown Vancouver, and such partnerships can enable both companies to, well…grow in stature.

2. Learning opportunities

If you’re just starting a new company, or are simply looking at the prospect of doing so, GROW 2011 is a great place to glean as much knowledge as you can. With such a wealth of experience and enthusiasm in one location, there’s no better chance to learn about the business of the web, tech and startup arena than at GROW 2011.

3. Gain visibility

The web certainly has made the world a much smaller place, but it is also a very crowded space. Startups can get buried online — despite putting together a product or service that really shines. GROW 2011 brings these companies together in the offline world, and the playing field evens out a lot more in that landscape. The ability to meet face to face with the people behind the startups is invaluable, and can really give those taking part a leg up on their competition.

4. Gain awareness of Canada’s web scene

It’s fair to say that there is a real lack of awareness when it comes to the web scene in Canada. Sure, there are companies that are well-known as Canadian (Research in Motion easily comes to mind), but there is so much more to Canada’s technology and web scene than just the big players. Attendees at GROW 2011 will have the chance to see some of the real movers and shakers that have been established in the Great White North, and will also get to meet some of the brightest minds working south of the border for companies like Facebook, Google and LinkedIn (to name just a few) — some of whom are Canadians themselves.

5. Have fun with like-minded people

While what happens inside the walls of an event like this is incredibly worthwhile, it’s often what happens outside those walls that cements it as a great overall experience. That’s because like-minded people are converging in one space for a short amount of time, and the energy that creates is electric. GROW 2011 is creating the opportunity for attendees to mix work and play while in Vancouver, with excursions that allow for real bonding outside of the venue to take place. And you know what they say about all work and no play…

Over the next two weeks leading up to GROW 2011, The Next Web will be drawing attention to Canada’s vibrant tech scene by profiling some of the startups that will be at the conference. I’ll be attending GROW 2011 as well, and will be offering updates from the conference itself as it takes place.

And now that you’ve got all the reasons you need to attend GROW 2011, make sure you introduce yourself to me while you’re there!

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