The idea for Digital Sizzle was born one Saturday afternoon on the rooftop of The Queen of Hoxton pub in Shoreditch. A start-up project manager with experience in both the Cambridge and London tech scenes, a web designer and a digital PR guy that sat down and wondered if there was a way to make a real contribution to this community? How could we create a space to share stories, work, lessons and laughs? We decided on something as simple as the common BBQ.
We would later realise two things: 1) a digital, tech and creative networking BBQ would prove hugely popular amongst our little community and 2) it's incredibly hard to hold a BBQ in Central London. But we managed, and Digital Sizzle was born. It's grown to be one of London's most-attended and talked about meet-ups: all because of you.
Recently, we were approached by Michael Acton-Smith, CEO and founder of the of global kids hit Moshi Monsters, to partner with him to develop and expand his popular tech meet up, Silicon Drinkabout, in association with the quarterly Sizzle events. Founded earlier this year, the Silicon Drinkabout has become a popular Friday night event, connecting people from all walks of life who work in or around Shoreditch - (dubbed the Silicon Roundabout or London's Tech City). As The Digital Sizzle team had been regulars at Silicon Drinkabout since its inception, and felt it represented the very same sense of community that we were trying to create, it seemed a natural fit.
According to Michael, "We thought what the Sizzle guys were up to was great and that it would be good to combine forces and ensure there are really great weekly and quarterly Tech meet ups in place to help connect people. Community is so important in this industry to help drive growth and innovation."
Now we want to see what impact we can have as a community. On Thursday, 24 November, we are running a special Tech City Movember Digital Sizzle at the Adam's Street Members Club. Proudly supported by Mind Candy, geo-location service Foursquare, the world's first visual browser technology Aurasma, social-powered recommendation engine start-up Ntoklo & tech and creative accountancy specialists Kingston Smith, we're encouraging Tech City to band together, join our Digital Sizzle team, come to the party and show the rest of London what real community impact looks like. In 2010, over 112,000 UK Mo Bros and Mo Sistas got on board, raising £11.7 million for prostate and testicular cancer awareness. This year, we'd like to help beat that figure - and we can only do it with you on board.
Tech City is a vibrant community. Out of that unique combination of creative and business integration that exists here in London has emerged not just "traditional" tech startups like Huddle, Mind Candy and Skimlinks, but a new breed of creative and digital agencies like Albion, Poke, and TH_NK.
They exist alongside an array of VCs and investors like Index Ventures and Balderton Capital, a mature and responsive tech media including our new UK Huffington Post where you are now reading this, TechCrunch UK, Wired.co.uk, BBC, The Guardian, Daily Telegraph and FT and many others, and the big technology companies like Google and Cisco now moving in to the area.
Both government (the great work by Tech City UK) and non-government bodies (Seedcamp, TechHub etc) champion new business opportunities for this complex web of interrelated stakeholders daily. London can look right at Silicon Valley and find itself wanting nothing.
Join us 24 November at the Adam's Street Members Club and let's show the world what we can do together and raise money for a great cause along the way!
For tickets and details, come visit us here.
Follow Bryce Keane on Twitter: www.twitter.com/Bryce_Keane