Brave new world for startups at Collision 2021

Tech entrepreneur Evan Williams and New York Times tech writer in converastion at the Collision Conference

ONE of the world’s leading online events opened to more than 3,000 attendees on 20 April, and the big takeaway for startup businesses is that doing business will be nothing like it was before the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Similar to last year’s event, the Web Summit-powered Collision conference was once again forced online; however this time Mayor of Toronto Canada John Tory was armed with a game-plan for a future when the coronavirus will no longer pose a threat to gatherings, however large or small.

Collision conference founder Paddy Cosgrave opened this year’s event with Mayor of Toronto Canada John Tory

Mayor Tory, who was introduced by Collision founder Paddy Cosgrave at the conference’s opening day was first among speakers including investors, the media and global enterprises a Covid-free future and what it might look like. The takeaway was that there are lessons to be learned that may provide a network towards an uncertain future – life as it will be after the coronavirus pandemic ends.

“Going forward we have got to do a much better job,” said Mayor John Tory. “We have learned that lesson of being able to have that one-on-one connection with people so that when you get into emergency times let alone peacetime you can actually do business with people without having them go through some elaborate call centre or even an online portal. “I think people are yearning to be in the company of others. They are missing the social aspects of work which you come to realise are important in terms of your own mental wellbeing.”

Actor and climate advocate Mark Ruffalo was one of the keynote speakers at Collision 2021

The ticketed Collision conference, hosted online at was streamed live from Toronto Canada until 22 April to largely global startup businesses on a variety of online tracks from marketing, health and social media to internet and web development.

“I was delighted to be joined by the Mayor of Toronto,” said Collision founder Paddy Cosgrave at the opening day amid what was unanimously agreed as an incredible year. “We are very much running it from Toronto and looking forward to being back in Toronto in 2022.”


Tags: #CollisionConf #Collision2021 #CollisionConfHQ #WebSummit Mayor of Toronto

Image credits: Collision conference

Kim Mullahey

Kim Mullahey is’s Ireland Correspondent. She holds an honours undergraduate degree in Interdisciplinary Studies from the University of Chicago and has taught Adult Education Creative Writing Studies. Through a media career spanning nearly 25 years Kim has written and photographed regional news, national and international horse sports, fashion and lifestyle. Kim lives with her husband and son in Kildare Ireland, and a stray marmalade cat who has adopted the family.

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