Booking.com Continues Drive to Achieve A More Diverse Tech Sector with Web Summit Partnership
At Web Summit 2019, Booking.com will remain the title sponsor of the event’s dedicated ‘Women in Tech’ Lounge and host mentoring program for ambitious technologists
NEW YORK, NEW YORK – October 30, 2019 – Raising awareness of the need for greater diversity in tech and championing female technologists remains the focus of Booking.com’s partnership with Web Summit this year, where the company will host a series of initiatives at Altice Arena in Lisbon from November 4th-7th 2019.
Booking.com, one of the world’s largest travel e-commerce companies and a digital technology leader, will return as the exclusive host of the Women in Tech Lounge. The Lounge will serve as an interactive and engaging space for women from across the world to meet, network and share ideas. According to global research conducted by Booking.com in 2018*, nearly half (46%) of women in tech globally – and female students interested in a tech career – feel that creating opportunities for them to share experiences with other women can help bring greater diversity to the industry. Last year, the Women in Tech Lounge saw over 3,000 visitors across four days.
In addition, Booking.com will host its highly sought-after mentoring program for women technologists at Web Summit. Building on years of success, the program offers 300+ mentees the opportunity to connect one-on-one with a mentor in sessions focused on building leadership skills, growing their business and taking their tech career to the next level, under the pillars of Grow, Lead, Build and Change. Mentors include Chairwoman of Booking.com Gillian Tans, senior technologists within Booking.com, and other inspiring businesswomen from across the industry.
“We’re excited to be back at Web Summit this year, once again putting our commitment to furthering the diversity discussion and encouraging people from all backgrounds to consider technology as a career at the center of our partnership efforts,” says Gillian. “Creating opportunities for tech enthusiasts to learn from one another and develop their skills is something we are incredibly passionate about at Booking.com. We hope to stimulate discussions even beyond the Summit and empower more technologists to become role models, inspire others and act as champions of change to set the industry up as a place for future generations to thrive in.”
Gillian will take Center Stage at Web Summit for a panel discussion on Tuesday, November 5th at 3:50 pm on how companies can hold true to their core values. She will also deliver a keynote on the Startup University Stage at 1 pm on innovating at scale, offering advice to thriving startups and entrepreneurs in the audience, hosted by Elizabeth Schulze, technology correspondent at CNBC.
“Booking.com began its operations as a Dutch startup, and we’ve remained true to our roots in terms of supporting and funding startups and entrepreneurs at various stages of their growth journey,” continues Tans. “We regularly see the caliber of innovation and creative uses of technology that enable startups to grow and maximize their impact across the world. Encouraging a diversity of perspectives, ideas and solutions is central to our commitment to make technology and tech-led entrepreneurship an inclusive arena.”
As the tech conference with the highest attendance in the world, Web Summit continues to show its commitment and progress towards being a gender-balanced event - something that Booking.com supports. "In 2016, we started an initiative to even the gender ratio at Web Summit, and in just two years, 44.5% of our attendees at our 2018 edition were female. Our attendees have always highly regarded Booking.com's women in tech initiatives at Web Summit, particularly the mentor hours and the chance to meet a prominent female figure like Gillian Tans" says Anna O'Hare, VP of Content Marketing at Web Summit.
On October 1, Booking.com announced that nominations are open to enter the 2020 Booking.com Technology Playmaker Awards. Booking.com launched the awards in 2017 to recognize and celebrate the achievements of women who are transforming businesses, industries, and communities through technology, and the companies and individuals who are championing diversity of all kinds and inspiring the next generation of tech leaders. More information about the awards can be found online at http://techplaymakerawards.com/ or in the Women in Tech Lounge at Web Summit.
The Booking.com Women in Tech Lounge will be located in Pavilion 4 at Web Summit.
Notes to the Editor:
Research commissioned by Booking.com and independently conducted among 6,898 respondents (from the UK, USA, France, Brazil, The Netherlands, Germany, China, Australia, India and Spain). Respondents completed an online survey from August 2nd to September 6th, 2018. Respondents include high school and undergraduate students entering the field, early career and experienced technology professionals and those returning to the sector.
Founded in 1996 in Amsterdam, Booking.com has grown from a small Dutch startup to one of the world’s leading digital travel companies. Part of Booking Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ: BKNG), Booking.com’s mission is to make it easier for everyone to experience the world. By investing in the technology that helps take the friction out of travel, Booking.com seamlessly connects millions of travelers with memorable experiences, a range of transportation options and incredible places to stay - from homes to hotels and much more. As one of the world’s largest travel marketplaces for both established brands and entrepreneurs of all sizes, Booking.com enables properties all over the world to reach a global audience and grow their businesses. Booking.com is available in 43 languages and offers more than 28 million total reported accommodation listings, including more than 6.2 million listings alone of homes, apartments and other unique places to stay. No matter where you want to go or what you want to do, Booking.com makes it easy and backs it all up with 24/7 customer support.