Utah Promotes Digital Industry With Pushbutton Summit 2010

Gail Chiasson, North American Editor

Grow Utah Ventures has announced Utah’s first Digital Media Summit ‘Pushbutton 2010’, which will focus on expanding and growing Utah’s digital media companies, organizations and educational facilities.

Digital media is a booming medium in the state, so the State of Utah and the Governor’s Office of Economic Development, Grow Utah Ventures, and USTAR, are all behind the Summit, a two-day event designed to bring together world-class industry and technology leaders, entrepreneurs, students and community executives.

Grow Utah Ventures is a philanthropic enterprise with the aim of helping various business sectors in the state to develop.

Ustar (Utah Science Technology And Research) is an initiative of the Utah State legislature to bolster Utah’s high-tech economy by investing in recruiting new, high caliber faculty and university research programs

“We have between 10,000 and 20,000 employees related to the digital industry spread out through fairly broad technology in terms of mobile, animation, video, gaming, and many other sectors,”
says Craig Bott, president & CEO of Grow Utah Ventures. “We have between 50 and 75 companies involved in the industry, mainly in Salt Lake City and the Provo-Orem area. We had promoted other industries while the growing digital sector had been ignored. We decided this is the time to promote this industry.

“We have two audiences: the digital media players in Utah itself, and those outside who want to see the new technology involved in the industry.”

The Pushbutton Summit, to be held in Salt Lake City March 9 and 10, will recognize the successes of Utah’s digital media business, increase understanding, and promote support needed to start and grow these businesses.

The event will bring together world-class leaders in these areas for a conference to discuss the future of the industry. In addition to keynote speakers John Warnock, co-founder of Adobe Systems Inc., and Ian McKerlich, T-Mobile, Mobile Internet and Content, other industry experts scheduled as panelists include: Andrew Braccia, Accel Partners; Chris Berger, Integrated Production Director, Publicis; Barry Weiss, former Sony vice-president; and Peter Csathy, president and CEO, Sorenson Media. There will also be a small exhibition.

“There is no question that digital media is playing a greater role in the way people work, do business and are entertained,” says Bott. “What is exciting about this event is seeing the contributions Utah has made to this industry in the past and what the current trends are, specifically how far the boundaries will be pushed in respect to the type of media and images currently underway and the means of viewing and interacting with these productions.”

“Utah has always been a big contributor to, and played a significant role in, advancing the digital media industry,” said Scott Anderson, president and CEO of Zions Bank. “The Pushbutton Summit will hopefully influence other leaders in the industry to come to Utah.”

During the event, the Pushbutton planning committee will recognize individuals who have made a pioneering contribution to Utah’s digital media industry and will host an evening event showcasing past accomplishments of digital media created and developed in Utah.

More information about Pushbutton 2010 can be found at www.pushbuttonsummit.com.

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