Calling all crazy ones: The Next Web Conference 2016

Shortlister of the EuBea 2016
Congress / Conference

CUSTOMER: The Next Web

DATE: 26-05-2016 – 27-05-2016



  • Create an immersive and fun environment that attracts forward thinking individuals.
  • Scale the conference to ten thousand attendees without compromising intimacy.
  • Dominate the technology headlines for two full days.
  • Make money (ROI).

We aimed to design an event that is experienced by few, but witnessed by many. Dedicated live experience teams captured and instantly shared highlights of the event. These included: two 16 hour live TV shows, international live streams from 7 stages, Snapchat hit & run team, 300 bloggers, 6 photographers, and the production of a viral YouTube hit (Casey Neistat wakeboarding the canals of Amsterdam). Exposure exploded: 5 million YT views, massive media coverage and 430M social impressions for the event.


  • Jurlights – technical direction, stage build up, set build up, audio, lights, video
  • Boompje Studio – technical direction, design
  • Thearent – stage build up
  • Production and logistics: Xander Kranenburg and Simone Heeremans


How do you create an environment that unites and inspires a crowd of individuals, whilst shaping technology to disrupt the way we experience our world?

Spread across six industrial venues renovated by the Westergasfabriek in a modern landscaped parkland in Amsterdam, The Next Web (TNW) set out to create a two day festival where forward thinking individuals, companies and technologies took center stage. 10,000 visitors were led through an immersive experience of inspiring talks, unique networking experiences and an unconventional business ambiance together with the leaders and founders of companies like Uber, The Pirate Bay, Facebook, and Periscope.

The result: an extravaganza of inspiration, business and networking with 39,861 recorded business meetings between international tech decision makers from 103 different nationalities.



  • 632 people were behind the success of the event.
  • 3000m2 of festival tents
  • 7 stages
  • 48-hr hackathon
  • 2 TV studios
  • 1-on-1 meeting areas and an immersive silent outdoor stage
  • 25 food trucks unique elevated take-away restaurant
  • 5 live music acts.


  • 39,861 meetings set through the TNW app
  • 10,000 attendees from 103 countries
  • 58.000 mentions of the hashtag
  • 430 million social media impressions
  • Covered in 21 newspapers and 176 online articles
  • 15 startups raised €17 million in funding
  • Generated a profit margin of 44% for TNW



TNW Conference 2016 was praised for having an incredible line-up of speakers, immense production value, and the vibe of a festival rather than an industry event. CNBC called it “The most intimate technology festival on the planet.”, while BBC News said “It was a great show, the production was fit for tech superstars.”

 We pushed the limits of technology by introducing three new elements:

  • 2.7km of LED strips meticulously tied to the wrought-iron roof construction of the Gashouder to create a 360-degree visual explosion.
  • Integration of a revolutionary software called BlackTrax, which allows for the real time tracking of speakers with light and motion graphics.
  • Running the beta version of ‘Notch’ on the D3 Media Server, allowing us to manipulate real time video with graphics.



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