Little time appears to be devoted to discussion at the Ministry of Economic Development's two-day e-commerce "summit" in November, with most of the timetable taken up with formal keynote addresses and company presentations.
Some of the timetable is assigned to "workshops", but many of these will be of a presentation type, “though there will be time allocated for question and answers at all of them”, says MED spokeswoman Marianne Doczi.
Presentations will be part vendors' pitches and part user case studies.
The summit, limited to 500 participants, will be chaired by Gil Simpson of Aoraki Corporation. Speakers include John Sifonis, co-author of Net Ready and a director in the Internet business solutions group of Cisco, Don Tapscott, a consultant and the author of seven IT books, Internet marketer Jim Sterne and Russell Paine, managing director of Tradehub, an Australian e-commerce solutions provider.
There has been a strong response to conference organisers' call for sponsors, with some being turned away. Sponsors render practical assistance as well as making a monetary contribution. Sponsors and the ministry decline to discuss the amounts involved.
The six major sponsors are IBM, Oracle, Cisco, Telstra Saturn, Baycorp Holdings and SolNet. Four smaller sponsors are Waikato Management School, Trade New Zealand, the Advantage Group and Wilson & Horton. The organisers had to turn away about twice as many sponsors as it accepted, Doczi confirms, “because it’s not a good idea to crowd the sponsorship space”.
Unisys was one company that put forward a sponsorship proposal which was rejected, because, according to a spokeswoman, there was already another sponsor that the ministry judged was operating in the same area.
The summit is scheduled to be held on November 1 and 2 at Auckland’s Aotea Centre.