Orchestrate 2016 Recap Video:
More than 300 attendees from breweries across the U.S. and the world gathered in our hometown of Portland, Ore. last month for our annual Orchestrate user conference. The user conference concept was born out of a desire to provide our customers an experience that combines learning, sharing and networking with the best that Portland has to offer.
Users come away from the 3-day conference with new connections, knowledge and business insights to help navigate today’s increasingly competitive climate.
Now in its 5th year, Orchestrate has quickly established a reputation in the industry as one of the largest annual conferences focusing specifically on the business and technology side of craft beer.
Presentations & Keynotes
Various presentation formats ranging from keynotes, group workshops, regional-based user forums and other sponsored speaking sessions delivered the actionable insights for attendees to incorporate in the brewery to stay competitive.
The Digital Transformation of the Craft Beverage Industry
Orchestra CEO, Brad Windecker delivered the main keynote “The Digital Transformation of the Craft Beverage Industry”. Technology was a key focal point throughout the conference and the opening keynote provided the prime opportunity to address the craft beverage industry’s need for industry-wide adoption of technology in order to radically transform the business:
“It’s no longer good enough to make good craft beer or spirits,” said Windecker. “That’s the new baseline. Now, success depends on how manufacturers approach the business side to achieve their goals and execute a vision. This includes investing in technology to escalate your business and outpace the competition.”
Local University of Portland professor, and Crafting A Strategy President Sam Holloway spoke on how brewery owners can plan for the future and make smart, rational decisions in an uncertain market.
Special Guest Oregon Senator Ron Wyden
Special guest and Oregon Senator Ron Wyden joined Windecker on stage to further validate how craft’s economic impact has captured the attention of many on Capitol Hill. Wyden detailed how small businesses like breweries, distilleries, wineries and cideries have influenced many important issues like taxes and spent grain regulations.
Expanded Exhibitor Hall
The conference also featured an expanded exhibitor hall for our attendees to connect with current vendors and establish new relationships with industry leaders. This year’s exhibitor list included a wider variety of vendors ranging from brewery automation systems and crowler machine manufacturers to hop suppliers, brewery architects and business consulting firms.
“Our growing network of preferred partners allows us to easily align our users with the industry-leading systems, top suppliers and trusted advisors,” said Windecker. “It’s one of our many efforts to help our customers take their business to the next level.”
The Orchestrate welcome reception capped off an engaging day of sessions, offering a “Uniquely Portland” experience complete with local food options and nine craft beer selections, all generously donated by members of the Orchestrated community.
Planning for The Future
For all of us at OBeer, the conference end marks the beginning of the next, at least from a planning perspective:
“Orchestrate embodies our ‘Customer First’ mindset and we will continuously improve the conference experience year over year in the same way we improve our products,” said Windecker. “We’ve already started planning Orchestrate 2017 with the goal of providing our users with new knowledge, connections, ideas and inspiration that will help these growing companies run better for years to come.”