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DIGITAL X: The digital transformation of a major event

DIGITAL X has been supporting German SMEs in their digital transformation for years. How the event used the crisis as an opportunity to undergo a profound digital transformation itself
Telekom Germany GmbH
August 31, 2020
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This text has been automatically translated from German to English.

DIGITAL X is Europe's largest digitization initiative. For three years now, it has been supporting SMEs in their digital transformation. The growing number of participants shows how relevant the initiative is for German SMEs. The number of participants at the regional events has already doubled in the second year. Just how crucial the steps toward digitization are was demonstrated not least by the Corona crisis. Companies were forced to switch their business operations to remote work virtually overnight. Those whose digitization projects were already advanced were able to respond more quickly and thus better meet the challenge. Others, less advanced in digitization, were often no longer able to maintain business continuity.

DIGITAL X supports SMEs with digitization

DIGITAL X was launched by Deutsche Telekom and aims to accompany small and medium-sized enterprises on the path to digitization. More than 200 national and international partners are now involved in this cross-sector format, making DIGITAL X Europe's largest digitization initiative. The participants - representatives from business, industry, politics and associations - benefit from the opportunity to learn from each other, share digital best practices and network. The motto is "network, exchange and learn from each other".

Digital Transformation of a Major Event - The DIGITAL X DIGITAL EDITION

Telekom also had to rethink this year. When all major physical events had to be canceled in March due to rapidly rising Corona numbers, the kick-off event in Berlin was only a few days away. The two follow-up events in Bochum and Hamburg had also already been organized. Due to the Corona restrictions, Telekom decided without further ado to set a bold example and transform DIGITAL X into a completely virtual DIGITAL EDITION. "The format was a complete success. We were already thrilled last year that a total of around 50,000 decision-makers took part in our six local events and the two-day closing event. This year, the first two virtual DIGITAL X events already attracted around 25,000 participants," said Thomas Spreitzer, responsible for SME Sales and Marketing Business Customers at Telekom Deutschland. "This shows the relevance of the initiative."

Digital format opens up new opportunities

The large amount of work was worth it. For example, Edward Snowden was on hand from his exile in Russia to speak about the right to data protection and the secure handling of private data as a global concern. "With Edward Snowden as speaker, we wanted to show that uncontrollable things that force us to innovate can also have positive aspects," Thomas Spreitzer comments on the choice of speaker. "As we know, we could not have invited Mr. Snowden personally to a physical event. In the new, virtual format, however, we seized this unique opportunity directly."

DIGITAL X DIGITAL EDITION virtual stages create large-scale event atmosphere

There was also an event atmosphere on the virtual platform. On six virtual stages, top-class speakers such as Tim Höttges, CEO of Deutsche Telekom, Mario Ohoven, President of BVMW, Achim Berg, President of Bitkom, Wladimir Klitschko, former professional boxer and entrepreneur, and Lea-Sophie Kramer, founder of Amorelie, held exciting keynotes on current topics. Among the topics discussed were business continuity management in the crisis, entrepreneurship, new work, and the economic stimulus package for the digitalization of German SMEs. In the breakout sessions, topics such as cloud computing, artificial intelligence, the new wireless standard 5G and its potential, IT security in the enterprise, and data analytics were made tangible for SMEs. In addition, the IoT Hub of the newly founded Deutsche Telekom IoT GmbH was presented and the relevance of the Internet of Things for the industrial sector was demonstrated. Questions about solutions and implementation options in their own companies could be asked via the live chat.

The grand finale of Digital X 2020 will take place on November 19 and 20 in the form of a highly interesting hybrid event. The details will be announced in the coming weeks.

The official page for the event as well as the registration form can be found under https://digital-x.eu/koeln/.

All information on the DIGITAL X digitization initiative is available at https://telekom.com/digitalx/.

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Telekom Germany GmbH


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