Mercedes-Benz and SXSW are partnering on an innovative gathering, called meConvention—which is less about them and more, they hope, about you.
Taking place at the Festhalle in Frankfurt, Germany, September 15-17, 2017, the extension of the SXSW brand to Europe aims to take on a slightly different spirit than the SXSW the world has grown to know and love since 1986.
The motto of meConvention — #createthenew —reflects the spirit of creativity, collaboration and innovation the organizers plan to cultivate.
— meconvention (@meconvention) July 7, 2017
Bringing together “those who don’t normally interact,” meConvention producer, Morgan Catalina outlines the event in this video:
Three days of expert talks, keynotes, workshops, interactive labs, art installations, music, film and culinary events will be accompanied by a program of evening events throughout the historic city center.
— meconvention (@meconvention) July 13, 2017
As far as programming and the panel conversations, SXSW and Mercedes-Benz will explore five relevant themes across a future-forward strategy CASE (Connected, Autonomous, Shared and Electric):
· New Creation: New ways of thinking, new approaches, new methods and mechanisms of production, as well as the integration of new technologies, will lead us to entirely new designs, products and services.
· New Urbanity: The development and unfolding of new living environments and new infrastructures creates societies with new attitudes, needs and changed behaviour.
· New Leadership: Traditional leadership styles and models are increasingly dying out. Greater freedom, exchange and trust are leading to more productivity, efficiency, flexibility and innovation within companies.
· New Realities: We are creating a new reality: the boundaries between the real and the digital world are becoming increasingly blurred, opening up new ways of living, communicating and consuming.
· New Velocity: Expecting our goods and services to be available on demand, we are accelerating things that previously took a long time to deliver: societies are being transformed, while technological innovations are springing up on an almost daily basis.
— meconvention (@meconvention) July 11, 2017
The Mercedes-Benz/SXSW collaboration coincides with the Frankfurt Auto Show (aka the International Motor Show in Frankfurt or IAA) in September, when the meConvention will take over the traditional stage of the Mercedes-Benz IAA motor show presentation.
— meconvention (@meconvention) July 10, 2017
According to a press release, meConvention signals “a move away from an exclusively automotive presence, towards a trade show with international convention character that offers the visitor fellowship instead of exhibition, dialogue instead of prestigious presence and inspiration instead of traditional product experience.”
— meconvention (@meconvention) July 12, 2017
Dieter Zetsche, Chairman of Daimler AG, Head of Mercedes-Benz Cars said in the press release, “Mercedes-Benz is excited to work with SXSW to create a brand new, future-focused event in Germany. With this unique conference, Mercedes-Benz goes far beyond the bounds of traditional motor shows and invites the participants to an exchange of knowledge, opinions and thoughts.”
Hugh Forrest, Chief Program Officer at SXSW, added: “We are honored to be invited to work with Mercedes-Benz to produce the “me Convention” at the Frankfurt Auto Show in September 2017. The future of mobility will touch every aspect of the 21st century social fabric, and we look forward to presenting a wide variety of topics that stretch beyond anything one might assume would be offered at an automotive industry event.”