Orange Institute #22

Moscow, Russia

May 13 – 16, 2019


From Russia with Tech
Technology or mythology: undercover Moscow

Forget any preconceptions of the old days of the Soviet Empire (snow, vodka, 007 villains). Russia today has razor-sharp technology – and its consumers are saying “Da!” to it.
Our ambition is to reveal Russia’s current reality, understand its specific culture and challenges, and track its potential in an increasingly global economy.

So let’s discover together…

Fintech and Blockchain

Numerous initiatives are being launched, notably by the State, including the Skolkovo Technopark, to reinvigorate investment and encourage development in Fintech and Blockchain, among others. Indeed Russia already has rock stars in Blockchain: including Ethereum’s founder Buterin and Telegram’s founder Durov. The predicted growth in payments, financing and InsurTech services resembles a steep upwards 45-degree angle. But how will Russian companies achieve it?

Cyber Security

When the words ‘Russia’ and ‘cyber’ appear together in the news, the news is not always good. But what is true and what is fake? We know that Macron continues to push for good relations, although Russia has not yet joined the French in cyberspace. Kaspersky Lab is already well known around the world for its antivirus, so our mission here is to uncover who might be the “next big thing” in Russian cyber security. Are you ready to find out the latest intelligence?

Web Giants

The 25th anniversary of the .ru extension is an opportunity for us to take stock as companies move beyond traditional www services. Yandex (Russia’s Google) already offers taxis through its joint venture with Uber, and is now trialing a fleet of self-driving robotaxis to ultimately lessen the need for individual vehicle ownership. While Russians use Facebook, it is mainly for professional reasons, as LinkedIn is not accessible. The one to watch is VKontakte, which is attracting hard-to-win younger profiles via VK Pay and a marketplace for everything from tickets to take-away food delivery. What are the latest ecosystems, and why should global giants fear them?

Smart Cities

When you visit Moscow, there are already obvious signs of its 2030 Smart City ambition in terms of digital displays and autonomous transport. In fact, Moscow-based Cognitive Technologies claims its new 4D radar now surpasses humans in analyzing road conditions. Consumer adoption of new services drove a 26% growth in e-commerce in 2018. Acknowledging a Smart City can only come from smart people, Russia aims to increase graduates in digital economy from 48,000 to 120,000 per year. Why not come and meet some of these bright sparks?

Entertainment & Media

Although the word means fun, when it comes to entertainment, Russia means business. From image and speech recognition to automated journalism and even drones, how are these techniques shaking up how we consume mass media? Is Artificial Intelligence the new space race? Where is the next unicorn hiding?