October 12, 2016 · Tips & Insights

11 Must-Attend Conferences for Entrepreneurs 2016-2017



In today’s world, connecting with entrepreneurs, innovators and creatives couldn’t be easier with how digitally connected we’ve become. But there is something to be said about face-to-face conversations, learning from industry experts and engaging in conversations with people from around the world in the same room. Being surrounded by like-minded entrepreneurs can be an eye-opening learning experience and networking is a crucial part of the growth of your business.

We’ve put together a list of 10 must-attend conference for entrepreneurs and innovators.

1. Inc. 5000 Conference and Gala

San Antonio, October 18-20, 2016

The Inc. 5000 Conference is one of the most anticipated entrepreneur events each year. The roster of speakers is world class and the topics always focus on powerful new ideas and perspectives. During the 3-day conference, attendees will learn and connect with industry leaders from all around the country. Not only is the learn and networking potential amazing, the celebrations are always on par. The conference closes with a Black-Tie Gala, beginning with a Champagne Soiree, followed by prestigious Awards Ceremony and Dinner.

2. WSJ.D

Laguna Beach, October 24-26, 2016

WSJ.D is just around the corner! This year’s theme, “Where Digital Worlds Connect”, brings together renowned CEOs, aspiring entrepreneurs, industry experts, and pioneers from around the world. WSJ.D will explore a wide range of issues including the shifting landscape for financing; the tenuous balance between privacy and security; the evolution of digital platforms; the future of automotive tech; and the growing influence of global challengers.

3. Fortune Growth Summit

Dallas, October 25-26, 2016

The two-day conference features authors of the best business books of the year. The 2016 Growth Summit, presented by FORTUNE, hosts the newsmakers and thought leaders who will help you out-learn and out-think the competition in the fields of leadership, strategy, marketing, sales, operations, and finance. Attendees will spend two days learning and connecting with the top minds from FORTUNE’s “Fastest Growing Companies”.

4. Social Media Week

Chicago, November 14-18, 2016

Social Media Week brings together some of the brightest minds in new technology to foster the best ideas, innovations and insights into how social media and technology are changing business, society and culture around the world. Spanning multiple cities around the world, SMW hosts conferences on 6 continents.

The next conference takes place in Chicago from November 14-18. Be one of the 70,000 attendees from around the world who take part in this innovative conversation about tech and social media.

5. Entrepreneur 360 Conference

Long Beach, November 16, 2016

Join Entrepreneur for a day-long event featuring keynotes, breakout sessions, networking and some fun. The Entrepreneur 360 Conference will bring together inspiring leaders and visionaries with one purpose for the day—to help you grow. Gain powerful insights, fresh opinions and practical solutions. Not only will attendees be able to enjoy inspiring keynotes, they’ll have the opportunity to connect with thousands business owners, executives and industry leaders.

6. Techweek

Los Angeles, November 17-23, 2016

Techweek will be returning to Los Angeles for its 4th year! This year’s summit will feature technology leaders from the growth companies aiming to change the world through technology – especially those with roots or relevance to the Los Angeles technology scene. If you’re an entrepreneur, innovator or anyone with a passion for changing the world through tech, this is the event for you. The summit spans the course of the week and explores different parts of the city along with the unique companies that create these emerging technologies.

7. CES

Las Vegas, January 5-8, 2017

The International CES is hands down one of the largest conferences for consumer tech. Each year, hundreds of thousands of people gather and explore almost 2.5 million square feet of exhibit space. CES brings a diverse crowd of entrepreneurs, tech leaders, innovators and spectators from all around the world. Attendees can enjoy keynotes industry leaders, experience the vast showroom and engage with other like-minded guests.

8. Startup Grind Conference – Powered by Google

Silicon Valley, February 21-22, 2017

The Startup Grind Global conference is the perfect meeting place for all things Startup and Silicon Valley. The conference featured past speakers from Google, Airbnb, Nest, Y Combinator, Instagram and Lyft. With such an impressive line up of keynotes and speakers, attendees are bound to walk away with valuable knowledge. With 3,000 founders and investors, more than 40 keynote and fireside sessions, and over 50 exhibiting startups, this is Startup Grind’s largest event ever.


Texas, March 10-19, 2017

SXSW brings together entrepreneurs, creatives, innovators, and influencers for a sneak peek into the future of technology and digital creativity. Possibly one of the largest conferences in the country, this event is a combination of speaker sessions, music festivals and networking events for a variety of industries. With their custom event badges, attendees can tailor their conference tracks and festival passes to create a personalized SXSW experience.

10. International Startup Festival

Montreal, July 12-16, 2017

Startupfest brings together entrepreneurs, investors and people passionate about the startup world. The festival, taking place in Montreal, will feature content and sessions about innovative new ideas to lucrative exits. Entrepreneurs will be able to learn from mentors, pitch investors and rub elbows with like-minded attendees. Last years speakers include leaders from Reddit, Amazon and Coach.

11. Forbes Women’s Summit

Although Forbes is still in the planning process for the 2017 Women’s Summit, this is something to keep an eye on.

Forbes brings together the most influential women in the world to create meaningful conversations women in business. This years conference focused on significance as the new success. Leaders today recognize that lasting success comes when you align passion and power with a higher purpose. How do organizations infuse their work with a sense of mission and what are the new ways to leverage influence and forge transformative partnerships? How are women, across industries and generations, redefining pathways to power to drive meaningful change in their businesses, in their personal lives and within the communities around them?

Interested in pursuing your entrepreneurial ideas? Maybe crowdfunding is right for you. Check out our Essential Guide to Crowdfunding and see if it’s a fit for you.