Startup Events – 4YFN Barcelona 2020

Last Updated: August 1, 2020

Now marking its fourth anniversary, 4YFN Barcelona has fulfilled its phase one mission to become one of the world’s largest and most significant startup events. Here is what to expect at 4YFN Barcelona at the end of February 2020.

4yfn barcelona
Image Source: 4YFN / Photography: Dan Taylor

4YFN Barcelona (Four Years From Now) is not just another startup event. It’s a manifestation and expression of Mobile World Capital Barcelona (MWCB), a public- and private-sector funded initiative across Barcelona, Catalonia and Spain, focusing on digital empowerment of citizenry; digital transformation of industries; and acceleration of digital innovation through entrepreneurship.

Pitched as one of the world’s fastest growing startup events, 4YFN Barcelona is the startup business platform of MWCB’s Mobile World Congress, hosted in partnership with the GSMA. It’s a mass gathering together of mobile startups and entrepreneurs, with, investors, accelerators, incubators, corporations from the mobile ecosystem, and public institutions.

To say there were will be networking opportunities for startup businesses, particularly in the tech sector, would be to indulge in understatement. So let’s take a look at what the organisers, led by their executive director Esteban Redolfi (pictured below) have planned this year.

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Image Source: Esteban Redolfi / 4YFN


4YFN 2020 – what you need to know

Here is a breakdown of the main points of this year’s 4YFN, with details of venue, agenda, speakers in attendance, and other information on what makes it significant for startups in the tech sector.


1. What is 4YFN all about?

4yfn barcelona, 4yfn

Image Source: 4yfn / Photography: Dan Taylor

4YFN (Four Years From Now), the global business platform for Mobile World Capital Barcelona, is a convergence of startups, investors and large companies, aiming to strengthen the entrepreneurial ecosystem that positions Barcelona as a leader in digital entrepreneurship.

Throughout the year, 4YFN’s team deploys a spectrum of activity aimed at building tech startup communities in global events such as GSMA Mobile World Congress Shanghai, DLD Tel Aviv Innovation Festival and Smart City Expo World Congress, to name just a few.

The highlight of its activities, however is 4YFN Barcelona, alongside GSMA Mobile World Congress. Since the first edition of the event, back in 2014, 4YFN has become the world’s most influential startup event devoted to innovation in the digital ecosystem.


2. Where and when does 4YFN Barcelona take place?

The fourth edition of 4YFN will be held from February 27 to March 1 in Fira Barcelona, Montjuïc, one of the city’s truly emblematic venues, with a history dating back to the 1920s. Doors will open at 9am and close at 8pm each day.


3. What were the key takeaways from 4YFN 2016?

The 4YFN 2016 edition closed with 12,500 attendees, 50% more than the previous year, and the Innovation Market, the 4YFN exhibition area, brought together up to 500 startups, large companies and accelerators.

More than 600 startups signed up to participate in the 4YFN Awards 2016, while some 230 speakers attended the event, including such business luminaries as Jimmy Wales (chairman of Wikipedia); Verner Wogels (CTO of Amazon); Dirk Ahlborn (CEO of Hyperloop); and Mark Shuttleworth (founder of Canonical and co-founder of Ubuntu).


4. What will be happening at 4YFN 2020?

2017 is the fourth anniversary of 4YFN, bringing to an end the first stage of the event’s lifetime. In those four years, 4YFN has consolidated its role as a meeting point and business hub for international entrepreneurs, startups, investors and large corporations. Organisers anticipate that 4YFN 2020 will draw 20,000 visitors, 60 percent more than the 2016 edition.

Specifically, the event will take place in an 18,000-square-metre space, complete with 5 stages, a global 3-day programme with 80 activities, 275 speakers, 100 planned talks, 40 workshops, 12 demo-days and startup competition finals, a customised exhibition area and unique opportunities to establish connections with investors and corporations.


5. Why should startups attend this event?

4YFN Barcelona 2020 is an amazing opportunity for the international startup ecosystem to connect and showcase their projects to investors, corporations and other potential clients from their own customised space during Mobile World Congress week. Many of the attendees roaming the aisles at the 4YFN Innovation Market will come from MWC to explore the latest breakthrough solutions emerging from the startup community, and seek out opportunities for business relationships and potential partnerships.

Apart from the various networking opportunities, this year 4YFN is launching the 4YFNetwork app, designed specifically to facilitate the contacts pre-during and post event.

4yfn barcelona, 4yfn

Image Source: 4YFN


Exhibitor pass holders also have the opportunity to go and listen to industry experts talk about the latest trends within the tech industry and build on their knowledge through interactive workshops and interesting keynote speeches.


6. Who are the major keynote speakers attending 4YFN Barcelona 2020?

Some of the major keynote speakers presenting at 4YFN Barcelona 2020 include Terry von Bibra, Global Manager EMEA, Alibaba; Michael Spiegelman, Director of Product Innovation for Growth & Acquisition at Netflix; Fernando Fanton, CTO of Just Eat; and Sir Martin Sorrell, CEO of WPP Group.

4YFN has chosen those professionals due to their innovative and disruptive profile, as well as their experience inside the entrepreneurial ecosystem.


7. Admission details

All information on ticketing, admission and registration is detailed on the 4YFN website. The event has three admission passes available: Visitor (€239.20); VIP (€319.20) and Investors Only (€399.20).

Admission to 4YFN Barcelona allows visitors to access GSMA Mobile World Congress on Thursday March 2.

4yfn barcelona, 4yfn

Image Source: 4YFN / Photography: Dan Taylor


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