Tech talks

Talks under way to revive postponed X3 summit

X3 champions: James Varga and Russell Dalgleish

Talks are taking place between the sponsors and organisers of a major technology conference in Scotland to find out why it was postponed at short notice without explanation.

Daily Business revealed last month that the X3 Global Summit, scheduled to take place in Edinburgh over three-days at the end of May, had been called off.

The organisers have so far offered no reason for the postponement, but it followed last year’s cancellation of the EIE investor pitching event for growth firms. EIE will go ahead this year in a slightly changed format.

X3’s backers included the Department for Business and Trade, Scottish Enterprise, the Data Lab and the Scottish Business Network, whose founder Russell Dalgleish was among more than 15 speakers lined up to take part.

The Scottish Government has now said plans are under way to find a new date for the event which promised a “distinguished” lineup of innovators and entrepreneurs from around the world.

In a statement, it said: “Scotland’s entrepreneurial ecosystem is thriving, with companies attracting a record £1bn of risk capital in 2023.”

It added that there were “a growing calendar of investment events to bring businesses and investors together.

“We are aware that the organisers of the X3 Summit have taken a strategic decision to postpone the event planned for May, in order to achieve maximum impact for both investors and businesses.”

He said it was hoped that a new date would be announced in due course. An earlier statement that Scottish Enterprise was directly involved in rescheduling the event has been withdrawn.

The X3 Summit was heavily promoted on social media

The event attracted public money, including sponsorship from Scottish Enterprise, and was widely promoted, with the organisers describing it as a “pivotal three-day tech event across wealth, environment and health.”

It added: “X3 is about creating value for growth investors and global scaling companies through a fresh approach to content delivered by fantastic speakers.”

One of the organisers was James Varga, who recently stepped down from the open banking data firm DirectID, 13 years after setting up the business. Just days before X3 was postponed, he told his LinkedIn followers that X3 was “going to be an amazing event”.

He was asked three times for an explanation why it was called off and claimed he had not seen the article published on 18 March in which he was included, but said “it has been mentioned.”

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