Meet The Conference Founder That‘s Flying Silicon Valley VC’s To Silicon Koala, a.k.a. Australia

It sounds like the start of a sitcom or a pitch for a new Netflix show. Take a bunch of Silicon Valley Venture capitalists, entrepreneurs, and executives and stick them on a chartered 747 for around 16 hours with a bunch of Queensland-based entrepreneurs and see what happens. That’s 360 seats filled with top tech talent. When they land, they’re in Brisbane, Australia for Myriad, a three-day conference billed as “A celebration of the human beings who find themselves at the uncertain intersections of culture and industry and choose to make a difference.”

“A long flight is pretty boring, and you have to take a whole day off to travel,” said Martin Talvari, the diabolical genius and founder of Myriad and Myriad Air, which will be transporting these passengers. “So [I thought,] why not make it an experience on its own?” In some ways, this is incredibly clever.

Now there’s a plane full of cramped, bored people, many of them A-list entrepreneurs with investors, all with no escape. They have to listen to your pitch as there’s nowhere to go. Then you land, and spend a couple of riotous days attending sessions and parties, and fly back with the same crew. “It’s a unique experience,” said Talvari, adding that people from the debut flight last year still arrange meetups and catch ups. And, like much of Silicon Valley, it’s what you make of it. There’s no structured games or talks while on the plane, so apart from an introductory welcome, it’s up to the intrepid traveler to reach out to people they’re interested in, all within the bounds of air safety regulations. “It will be full of awesome crazy Australian founders and US investors,” he said. “We want to have a good mix of people.”

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14 Mar 2018