Former NBA All-Star Baron Davis, nicknamed “B-Diddy,” has been heavily active in the tech community in the past couple of years but recently, we are definitely starting to feel a lot more of his presence.
There is no lack of summits or events to attend in the Bay Area. After launching the Black Santa Co., late last year, Davis has his eyes set on a new venture, the BIG (Business Inside the Game) Summit. From Tech Inclusion to Blavity’s AfroTech to our very own tech summit, TechConneXt, event goers have a list to choose from so what makes this summit different?(L to R: Monte Stettin, Somesh Dash, Carren Morris, Baron Davis, Leslie Osborne, Justin Kan, Image: file)
Well for starters, Davis and partner Tina Davar have curated a group of extreme movers and shakers who are not only present as speakers but who also made up the attendance list. After speaking with several individuals, I was well aware that the audience themselves had their own set of success stories from Hollywood execs to data scientists to investors to established tech entrepreneurs.
Also, the carefully, curated crowd didn’t just consist of tech entrepreneurs. It was a beautiful intersection of entertainment, tech, business, and sports. The event kicked off with Davis moderating with the smooth sounds of Notorious B.I.G. instrumentals playing in the background. Panelists included:
- Somesh Dash, who actively led or participated in IVP’s investments in Pure Storage (PSTG) Qadium, Rubrik, Shazam, Snap, Tanium, The Players Tribune, TuneIn, Uber, Uproxx, and Zynga (ZNGA).
- Justin Kan, an internet entrepreneur and investor who is notably known for founding Twitch, a video game streaming platform (acquired for $970 million by Amazon in 2014). Venturing back into the entrepreneurial space after many years as an investor, Kan recently started Atrium LTS, which builds products and services to help automate legal workflows, innovate new processes, and help firms identify new clients.
- Leslie Osborne, a professional soccer player for 10 years, model, trainer, spokeswoman and ambassador for Puma. She is currently the chief marketing officer for Sweat Cosmetics, the preferred cosmetic brand for professional female athletes and women who live an active lifestyle.
- Monte Stettin, an executive and entrepreneur with a career that reads like a college course catalog spanning publishing, advertising, entertainment and media, real estate development, design, invention, alternative energy, medical devices, software, and healthcare with a strong interest in exponential technologies and their deployment to improve lives. There isn’t much Stettin hasn’t done.
- Carren Morris, a 16-year e-commerce, and business development veteran working for global brands such as Nike, Converse, and Puma. From her experience, Morris created a consulting company specializing in brand development, marketing, sales planning and go-to-market strategies for professional athletes, designers, and startups, helping them develop and launch their brands.
Topics during the discussion ranged from each individual explaining their ‘Business Inside the Game,’ i.e., what they bring to the table to what is the pulse (the culture) of their companies. Individual comments were followed by Davis’ swagged out catchphrase, ‘that’s BIG.”
“This event was a beta, an A/B test,” Davis’ partner Davar told Black Enterprise. “We got tired of talking about it and decided to do it.”
So what is the ultimate goal for this Summit you ask? “Our mission at BIG is to function as an educational and empowerment resource for our communities to nurture new opportunities, relationships, and careers at the intersection of sports, business, technology, and culture,” said Davis.
“BIG will be a new disruptive, open source power summit and platform with important activations that allow us to invest and incubate the next wave in culture.”