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“London Calling”: Seven Hills joins Here East at SXSW in Texas

Here East once again flew out to Austin, Texas for South By South West (SXSW) – the annual event celebrating the convergence of tech, film, music, education, and culture. It was the second consecutive year that Here East ran events at the festival, a decade on from launching its brand there.

Building on the success of last year’s roundtables exploring use cases for the metaverse, Seven Hills campaign director Lizzy Batchelor joined the Here East and London & Partners teams in Austin, to support on a new event: London Calling: Where Pioneering Ideas Meet Business Opportunities.

Welcoming over 100 entrepreneurs, disruptors and thought leaders, the event explored the unique advantages of London’s business ecosystem and the potential for collaboration and growth between the UK and US.

The event was opened up by Gavin Poole, CEO of Here East, and Stephen Feline, Director of North America at London & Partners discussing why London’s business ecosystem has all of the right elements for an international company to successfully set up and scale.

Richard Hyde, His Majesty’s British Consul General in Houston, provided valuable perspectives on leading the UK’s engagement across Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana, and New Mexico, emphasising London’s role as Europe’s top destination for US investment. This was further backed up by a range of start ups and scale ups taking part in the discussion.

Here East COO Mike Magan moderated a panel with Shelby Wanstrath, Managing Director, Vista Equity Partners and Solomon Rogers, Global Director of Innovation, Magnopus exploring the investment landscapes of the US and the UK, while James Cummings, VP of Business Development for London & Partners, hosted a discussion with Ariana Alexander-Safre, Founder and CEO of SPOKE, and John Smolen, SVP Distribution Sales of Atmosphere. This showcased two businesses at the forefront of innovation on both sides of the pond.

Celebrating 10 years since the launch of the Here East brand at SXSW, it was an excellent opportunity to reflect on how the campus has grown to over 6,500 individuals, fostering a dynamic ecosystem where students collaborate with startups and global tech giants to drive innovation.

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