Ideas forum 7×7 is back after an eight year hiatus to celebrate Wellington’s creativity and inspire new thinking by connecting local innovators from across the city’s diverse sectors.

The 2016 7×7 will kick-off at 5.30pm on Friday 18th March at the Ministry for the Environment (23 Kate Sheppard Place), with seven individuals or collaborations given just seven minutes to entertain or present a new idea, insight or concept to an audience of Wellingtonians.

7×7 was launched by Brian Sweeney, founder of New Zealand-based international communications consultancy, SweeneyVesty, and filmmaker Jan Bieringa in 2000 as an ideas forum focused on technology, entertainment and design. It ran until 2008 and is now returning to Wellington to deliver a concentrated mix of new innovation thinking, success stories and provocations.

Crispstart founder Nick Gerritsen instigated the return of the 7×7 format in 2016, reaching out to Brian Sweeney to secure the license and working with Creative HQ, Tuia Innovation, the Ministry for Environment, San Fran, SweeneyVesty and Wellington Regional Economic Development Agency (WREDA) to deliver the first event.

Nick Gerritsen is excited to see the first event take shape, saying, “Wellington is made-up of a diverse mix of people involved in really interesting and successful projects. Many are working at the cutting edge of their fields and have developed an international reputation. But these success stories often go somewhat unnoticed. 7×7 will shine a spotlight on the capital’s innovative spirit and help connect people to fuel future collaboration.”

Brian Sweeney developed 7×7 after attending a TED conference where he was inspired by a speaker who received a standing ovation after delivering a seven minute presentation.

“I am delighted that 7×7 is returning to Wellington. It proved to be a highly successful forum for showcasing local innovation and supporting the cross-fertilisation of ideas. Much has changed since 2008, but Wellington remains a dynamic and exciting city with so much to show off.”

“The fast pace of 7×7 makes the format particularly engaging and attendees leave each event buzzing with energy and new ideas,” said Brian Sweeney who has also taken the 7×7 concept to New York – where he is now based – where it ran for seven years.

The 7 local innovators that make up the March 18th 7×7 line up are:

1.    Brian Sweeney, Founder, SweeneyVesty Originator of 7×7, Brian is a New York-based international communicator and passionate New Zealander.

2.    Phil Veal, CEO, Rangatira Investments Investing in middle market NZ companies with strong growth prospects, Rangatira is passionate about being part of building iconic NZ businesses and delivering for its investors which are predominantly charitable and community organisations.

3.    Shift Design, Team from Victoria University of Wellington’s School of Architecture The team developed a low cost earthquake-proof house design for developing countries.

4.    Steve Menzies & Jane Gibson, Flinch Marketing An SME working with leading global organisations on communications around sustainability and climate change projects.

5.    Declan Ramsay aka Lucid Effect (thanks to San Fran) Lyrical electronic artist who works with layers of sound interweaved together to tell stories both tall and short.

6.    Mark Amery & Sophie Jerram, Letting Space The founders of Letting Space who are reframing the use of space in cities and beyond.

7.    Mike Brough, DotLovesData A look at how data provides a crucial dimension to future opportunities for New Zealand.

Those interested in attending the event can register and find more information via Eventbrite. Places are limited.

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