The TechSauce Global Summit was kicked off by a keynote addressed that inspired, motivated, and surprised many attendees and delegates. Kamran Elahian delivered an address that was both insightful and informative.
Kamran’s wealth of knowledge and experience, as well as his wicked sense of humor, makes him more than qualified to deliver a keynote address about creating chaos. As he explained, the prefix of his name (Kam) in Japanese means Creator or god, and the suffice (Ran) means chaos. He willing admits to the audience that any difficulties in their lives is directly his fault.
Other than a name well-suited for his keynote address, Kamran is also a serial entrepreneur that started ten companies with six of them having successful exits. These exits included 3 acquisitions and 3 unicorn IPO’s. He then went on to venture capital and philanthropy that focused on educating the youth and women in technology.
Mr. Elahian’s address highlighted the economic struggles that many of the developing and emerging countries face. He called it a “ticking timebomb” and a situation that will create significant chaos if not addressed. The prices of oil and gas since 2014 had drastically dropped, with just a recent trend of price increases over the last few months. However, Kamran predicts that the price of oil and gas will soon reach zero as the technology that supports solar and green energy becomes more and more affordable.
A study conducted by Kamran’s organization five years ago tried to predict what countries would suffer economically should the price of oil and gas drop. The study showed a list of 32 countries that would suffer. Eliminating European countries and countries based in the Americas, you are left with a list populated by predominantly Muslim countries based in the Middle East. These countries have a huge population of young people who will not have jobs and who will not be able to thrive in the traditional ways as dictated by their culture. When youth have little hope of thriving and living, society suffers and certain radical groups take advantage of this hopelessness. The radical groups offer the youth jobs, hope, and training. For example, in 2014 when the price of oil dropped there was a rise in terrorist attacks from 40 per month to 140 per month. Basically, economic struggles for the youth is a huge catalyst for creating chaos.
Kamran’s solution is a simple one, countries will need to start looking at developing an innovation economy.
High tech entrepreneurship leveraged by broadband. The funds needed to develop high tech companies today are not as much as what was needed fifteen years ago. This is due to innovation in broadband and the introduction of Cloud.
Due to the advancements in tech, we no longer have to do things the same way we did it ten years ago. Kamran demonstrated by way of a pyramid the various way we work. We can work manually, mechanically, electro-mechanically, with software or with algorithmic content.
Doing this manually does nothing for productivity as it is labor intensive, where using algorithmic content, such as blockchain, productivity skyrockets as working becomes easier and more convenient. Any industry follows this pyramid over time.
Firstly, you have to start inspiring the youth to believe that they are not a victim of the economy, but rather a solution to economic problems. Teaching the youth to think like entrepreneurs will open up the country to an innovation economy.
Not all of the youth will go on to create companies but they do need an opportunity to start. In all the developing countries, big cash investments are not needed. An entrepreneur can easily start a company that employs at least three people with as little as $5000.
Mentorship for these youth will need to focus on iTechpreneurship, investment in iTechpreneurship and positive social impact. It is vital to remind them to do something amazing and still make a lot of money. For example, Google that opened up the world’s knowledge to everyone for free, but is still a profitable year on year.
The key to any innovation ecosystem is an investment in human capital, creating a functioned market system and infrastructure. Create a place for innovation to thrive.
An innovation economy will create chaos for the tried and tested of the way things have always been done. However, the chaos created now will avert a chaos later on. By using innovation and technology will give the youth hope for a future and will not find hope in elements that do not have the best interest of humanity in mind.
“The best way to create the future is to create it “ – Peter Drucker. There is no better quote to end off a keynote address about the future. A future that most delegates at Techsauce will be a part of.