13 annual tech and startup events in Vancouver you don't want to miss this year

As a growing Canadian tech and startup hub, Vancouver has many events for startup founders, entrepreneurs and technologists of all forms. Here I collected the information about 13 events happening annually that you don’t want to miss this year.


1) Vancouver Startup Week 

 When: Sept 13-20, 2019

 Where: Multiple locations around Downtown Vancouver

 Why you should care: 

 Vancouver Startup Week connects entrepreneurs, investors, community leaders, and friends to build momentum and opportunity around our community’s unique entrepreneurial identity.

 In 2018, VSW brought together 100+ events, 3000+ attendees, 100+ event & media partners. Want to get involved and bring value to our startup hub? Then join us for Vancouver Startup Week’s 2019 edition! 

 Ticket Prices: TBD

 Registration: Subscribe at the VSW website to hear about the registration as soon as it opens (there are usually some very good $ discounts for the first 50 people or so - don't miss it!)

 Am I going? Of course! I am also helping out with organizing so I might be a bit (just a bit!) biased when I pitch VSW as THE event for the local startup community.

BCTECHSummit 2017 -    Image Source

BCTECHSummit 2017 - Image Source

 2) BC Tech Summit 

 When: Mar 11-13, 2019

 Where: Vancouver Convention Center

 Why you should care: 

 The #BCTECHSummit showcases B.C.’s vibrant technology industry, builds cross-sector and cross-border opportunities for businesses and explores the latest ideas and innovations solving challenges and fueling the global economy. Hosted annually by the BC government and Innovate BC, the #BCTECHSummit brings together technology leaders, industry executives, investors, senior government officials, researchers and students to connect and share insights, experiences and opportunities.

 Recognized as Western Canada’s largest annual innovation event, the 2018 event featured 1,200 companies, 200+ speakers, 270 exhibitors, 150 investors representing $200B in capital, and international delegates spanning 23 countries and six continents.

 Ticket prices: Starting from 499 CAD ($199 CAD for startups who qualify)

 Registration: on their website

 Am I going? 100%. Already got my super early bird pass.

TIA 2018 -    Image Source

TIA 2018 - Image Source

 3) Technology Impact Awards 

 When: Jun 27, 2019

 Where: Vancouver Convention Center

 Why you should care: 

 The TIAs celebrate the change makers, the up-and-comers, the innovators, and the bold—those who are transforming our industry and building the fabric of BC’s vibrant tech ecosystem. We’re passionate supporters of the companies, entrepreneurs, and people who make up our community and believe that their contributions should be recognized. 

 Ticket prices: TBD

 Registration: Not open yet; check out their site for details

 Am I going? I think so. Will figure out closer to the date.

Traction Cond 2016 -    Image Source

Traction Cond 2016 - Image Source

 4) Traction Conference 

 When: Aug 7 & 8, 2019

 Where: JW Marriott Parq, Vancouver

 Why you should care: Traction Conf brings you actionable strategies and tactics for supercharging your growth, straight from founders and leaders of some of the fastest growing companies like Google, Twentieth Century Fox, Reddit, LinkedIn, Slack, Trello, Github, New Relic, Box, SendGrid, Grammarly, Bumble and much more.

 Plus, you get to network with and get on a first-name basis with Fortune 500 leaders, high-growth startup founders, leading investors, and major media.

 Ticket prices: Starting from 299 CAD

 Register: on their site 

 Am I going? I haven’t been to this one yet but heard only great comments from friends. Let’s see if I can make to the 2019 edition.

CTA 2016 -    Image Source

CTA 2016 - Image Source

 5) Unbounce Call To Action Conference 

 When: 25 Jun, 2019

 Where: Unbounce, Vancouver

 Why you should care: 

 We know there are hundreds of marketing conferences you could attend this year, mostly filled with recycled fluff. That’s why we’re here. CTAConf is carefully curated to teach you next-level, actionable marketing tactics you can use the very next day.

 We meticulously scout out the best of the best, choosing fantastic marketers to teach you about the strategies they’ve developed and mastered. 

 World-class marketing experts will be covering a wide array of topics such as conversion optimization, email marketing, copywriting, landing pages, PPC, analytics, content marketing, and much more. If you’re ready to learn these skills and use them to significantly grow your company, then Call To Action Conference is for you!

 Ticket prices:  2 tickets for $600 ($300 each)

 Registration: on this Eventbrite page 

 Am I going? Don’t know yet (figuring out my schedule). Many of my friends attended last year’s event and say it was a blast.

PCV 2016 -    Image Source

PCV 2016 - Image Source

6) ProductCamp Vancouver 

 When: Mar 9, 2019

 Where: Emily Carr University of Art + Design

 Why you should care: 

 ProductCamp Vancouver is the premiere event for Product Management, Product Marketing, and Marketing professionals to teach to, learn from, and network with each other.

 ProductCamp is an un-conference, meaning that it is FREE to you! Your only cost is your participation – bring your ideas, lead a session in your area of expertise, facilitate a round table discussion, network, or volunteer. 

 Ticket prices: FREE

 Registration: Coming soon; check the event website for details

 Am I going? 10000000%! Again, a bit biased due to helping with organizing but it is a must-attend event for everyone in product management.  

startups care

 7) Startups Care 

 When: TBD (Nov- Dec, 2019)

 Where: Vancouver & Global

 Why you should care: 

 Startups Care is a grassroots volunteer organization. We are a collective of grateful people working in the Vancouver technology scene trying to give back to our community. Together we raise money for charity and are having fun doing it. In a little over 5 years the Startups Care initiative and its partners have raised over $300,000 worth of food and funds for people in need. 100% of all donations go to the Greater Vancouver Food Bank

 In 2018, over 100 startups, government institutions, schools and coworking spaces participated in the fundraiser raising over $150,000 worth of food (a record number so far!) 

 Tickets & Registration: It's a fundraiser & food run to help the Vancouver Food Bank. Everyone is invited.

 Am I going? Yes, and inviting you to join us this year!

NVBC 2018 -    Image Source

NVBC 2018 - Image Source

 8) Innovate BC-New Ventures Competition 

 When: Submissions open March 2019

 Where: New Ventures BC, Vancouver

 Why you should care: 

 As a not-for-profit, New Ventures BC promotes entrepreneurship through innovation. Each year, they run the Innovate BC-New Venture Competition, offering education, coaching, and $275,000+ in prizes to BC startups. 

 The BCIC-New Ventures Competition was open to any BC resident, team or business with an innovative technology product or service. Companies cannot have raised more than $1,000,000 of financing.

 Check out the full eligibility requirements on their website

 Ticket prices: participation in the competition is FREE

 For more information, please visit New Ventures BC website.

Am I going? Not competing this year but I am sure will show up at some events to say “hi” and support friends.

Polyglot Conference 2016 -    Image Source

Polyglot Conference 2016 - Image Source

 9) Polyglot Conference 

 When & Where: TBD (while the dates for 2019 event have not been announced yet, I hope it will be happening. Join their meetup to stay up to date )

 Why you should care:

 Polyglot is a "non-denominational" software development un-conference event that encourages software developers from different stacks, backgrounds and with different opinions to come together for one day of spontaneous sharing, teaching and learning followed by an after-party.

 Polyglot software development is the practice of utilizing multiple languages, frameworks and stacks to build software. In many ways, and particularly for web developers, everyone seems to have at least bit of polyglot going on these days.

 At the core of the Polyglot Conference is creating an opportunity to celebrate software development diversity and break away from typically language-specific user groups and conferences to come together to talk about the challenges and interests that we all have in common.

 Ticket Prices & Registration: TBD 

 Am I going? Yes, if I will be able to fit it into my schedule. Last year’s event was a blast!

YVRFF 2018 -    Image Source

YVRFF 2018 - Image Source

 10) Vancouver Virtual Reality Film Festival 

 When & Where: the dates & location for 2019 event have not been announced yet. Join their newsletter and be the first to hear the updates

 Why you should care: 

 YVRFF is a non-profit tech culture organization headquartered in Vancouver, BC. Through their annual film festival event, they are on a mission to change the storytelling experience on a global scale, 360 degrees at a time. They custom curate our content to provide the most relevant and compelling narratives available for virtual reality applications.

 YVRFF gives Vancouver the opportunity to explore the world of VR with the most innovative technology and creative content. Industry influentials are working closely with the festival to celebrate the top creative minds and leading developments at the premier Vancouver Virtual Reality Film Festival.

 Ticket Prices & Registration: TBD 

 Am I going? Yes, if I will be able to fit it into my schedule. Last year’s event was a blast!


 11) VanHacks Hackathon

 When & Where: TBD (usually sometime in Sep)

 Why you should care: 

 VanHacks is an annual hackathon organized by ViDIA dedicated to helping those helping our community. We call you, hackers of Vancouver, to join us over a weekend to create tech solutions that solve challenging issues faced by our community's not-for-profit institutions whose aim is to do social good. With your help, we can work towards building a better, more unified Vancouver. 

 VanHacks is designed around the mantra of acting local and thinking global. All hacks are encouraged to be published open source so that an organization in Vancouver can benefit just as much as a similar nonprofit on the other side of Canada or the other side of the World.

 In the past, VanHacks participants solved problems for Ocean Wise, Mealshare, Working Gear and a number of other non-profits. 

 VanHacks brings together lots of mid-senior level professionals (developers, UX and UI designers), as well as students. 

 Tickets & Registration: Registration will be open when the event dates for 2019 get confirmed. Ticket prices are usually around $35-$60

 Am I going? Of course! If you are a developer, designer or student who knows how to build amazing products and wants to give back – don’t miss this one!

SOH 2017 -    Image Source

SOH 2017 - Image Source

 12) Startup Open House 

 When: TBD (historically, sometime in Sep)

 Where: startup offices around Downtown Vancouver

 Why you should care: 

 Fueled by cleantech and biotech companies, cutting-edge gaming studios and a growing blockchain community, startups are what make this city so forward-thinking and attractive.

 During Startup Open House, local startups open their doors to hundreds of visitors. Investors, students, job seekers, future founders & tech enthusiasts – whoever you are, there is something you can get out of this amazing event.

 In 2018, Startup Open House opened doors as part of Vancouver Startup Week, celebrating entrepreneurship and the tech community that led to the rise of Slack, Hootsuite and many others. Almost 50 startups and 750+ attendees participated in the SOH in 2018. 

 Tickets: FREE

 Registration: check SOH website  regularly for updates

 Am I going? Yup. Don’t know what offices will I visit this year but definitely going.

TechPong 2016 -    Image Source

TechPong 2016 - Image Source

 13) TechPong

When: TBD (historically, sometime in Nov-Dec)

 Where: TBD

 Why you should care: 

 Hosted by CHIMP, TechPong invites the Vancouver tech industry to participate in an epic tournament and raise money for causes in their community that they care about and they choose.

 Registration: sign up for updates at their website

 Am I going? I had lots of fun at 2018 event in Science World and will definitely be back this year!

Disclaimer: Please keep in mind that event descriptions were collected from official and unofficial sources. For registration, ticket purchases and other inquiries please contact event organizers. I am affiliated with Vancouver Startup Week, VanHacks, Startups Care and Product Camp. Event descriptions are arranged in no particular order.