Tech Tastes Wine launched in the Fall of 2014, during London Fashion Week SS2015, and has grown in bounds and leaps with professionals from the three verticals attending the events to network and hear founders share their experiences of taking ideas to market.
The goal of Tech Tastes Wine is to introduce tech entrepreneurs, investors, and industry experts for collaboration and investments – and at the same time learn more about fine wines, the wine industry, and new technologies for the food, fashion, and wine sectors.
“With IoT and 3D printing changing the face of fashion manufacturing, there are bridges to build between the different sectors. The Apple Watch is just the beginning. We will need more interdisciplinary collaboration going forward in order to make wearables profitable and to create emotional connection with the products. Fashion designers benefit from meeting software developers and likewise technologists learn about the importance of design when developing products.”, says the founder of Tech Tastes Wine, Mrs. Maya Plentz.
Now Tech Tastes Wine has partnered with The Collective Elevator, a beautifully appointed space next door to the British Museum, which caters to creatives and fashion start-ups, for their April 15th gathering.
The Collective Elevator supports tech entrepreneurs by providing innovative workspaces to start-ups and young businesses. In addition to Bedford Square, The Collective Elevator has several developments in the pipeline: in Acton, Holland Park, and Willesden Junction, as they roll out across London their network of well-designed workspaces.
They have also launched The Collective Elevator Investment Fund, an early stage fund that invests and supports high potential businesses. The fund provides investors exposure to start-ups with above market returns, by using an internally developed method to measure potential growth and assess risk.
Arnie Sriskandarajah, MD of The Collective Elevator, has welcomed the initiative: “We are delighted to partner with Tech Tastes Wine for this exciting event, which provides a unique platform for investors and start-ups to meet in an informal setting. People bond over the wine tasting; the more people have in common the more likely they are to make stronger organic connections. Strong organic connections can then lead to long-term relationships.”
Mrs. Plentz chooses wineries and importers of fine wines that have an interesting story to tell so participants learn about wine production methods and wine history, as much as varietals. and meet the sharpest tech startup founders and investors.
Who made the cut so far? “From the start we had investors, entrepreneurs, and software developers in the fashion e-commerce space. We had the head of software development for Not Just a Label, Luca Marini, COO and co-founder of FineryLondon.com, the Rocket Internet backed fashion startup, and Stefan Maurel, CEO of StylePilot.com, the menswear online retailer, presenting at our events held at Google Campus London. We tasted the best artisan wines produced in Italy, Hungary, and Portugal. We introduced the gorgeous wines of London Cru, with Adam Green, general manager of the first London winery. ”
Tech Tastes Wine seeks to present startups that are already funded and/or profitable, although they have also presented start-ups that are at concept, pre-seed, stage.
What guides the choice of wines? “We try to introduce wines from a different region every time. We see wine in a broader context: it is culture, history, geography. Vineyards tell us about the impact of climate change too. We attempt to go beyond organoleptic appreciation at Tech Tastes Wine.”, says Mrs. Plentz, who manages press relations for startups in the enterprise software sector and was international affairs, business, and technology news editor and producer for the United Nations and Bloomberg TV. She covered the high-tech sector, startups, VC/PE, and the largest media and e-commerce IPOs in 1999/2000, in New York City. She graduated from Columbia University, with a B.A in Political Science. Her background in the arts informed her coursework, and she focused on Digital Media and Art History, with a strong interest in the history of wine, and how the industry has been depicted in painting. She also studied Marketing Management at Columbia Business School.
Presenting at Tech Tastes Wine on April 15th will be Clotho London, a sustainable fashion e-commerce startup that is addressing the way young women sell & shop for beautiful second-hand items. Their founders, Caroline Wood and Vivien Tang, are graduates from Imperial College London. Since starting Clotho they have worked with Entrepreneur First, and are now working with TrueStart, a retail accelerator. They will be joined by Diana K. Lee, a Mathematics student at UCL, their Head of Digital & Communications. Clotho London is the winner of the Mayor of London’s Low Carbon Entrepreneur Award 2015.
Tech Tastes Wine is sponsored by Riedel UK, and Martin Turner will speak about tradition and innovation in the stemware industry and how the centuries’ old Austrian manufacturer embraces both.
To buy tickets to the next TTW on Eventbrite: TechTastesWine May 12th 7PM