ArmTech Congress 2009, the official High Tech Industry Conference and Platform of the Government of the Republic of Armenia, was the third edition of the congress. It was held on 5-8 November 2009 at the Fairmont Hotel in San Jose, California, the Capital of Silicon Valley. Held under the patronage of His Excellency TigranSargsyan, Prime Minister of the Republic of Armenia, the Congress was attended by 271 delegates, representing government, business and academia from Armenia, California, USA, Europe, and elsewhere.
ArmTech Congress 2009 built on and extended the success of past ArmTech Congress 2007 in San Francisco, CA, and ArmTech Congress 2008 in Yerevan, Armenia. The stellar program resulted from a concerted effort by board and committee members from Armenia and the US. Armtech Congress 2009 served to continue to establish and strengthen the very strong ArmTech brand standing for quality, cooperation and progress.
Emblematic of the significance of ArmTech, His Excellency TigranSargsyan, Prime Minister of the Republic of Armenia traveled to San Jose to take part in the Congress. His presence and presentations were inspiring. The Prime Minister took full advantage of his time in Silicon Valley to hold public meetings, meet public companies such as Intel and Cisco, and to understand the workings of Silicon Valley through visits to such places as Plug and Play Incubator, Stanford University, University of California at Berkeley, Venture Capitalists Sequoia Capital and USVP, and Stanford Linear Accelerator Center. The Prime Minister’s visits to Intel and Cisco raised the visibility of Armenia at those leading companies and led directly to improved relationships with them, starting the path of investment in Armenia.
ArmTech Congress featured a stellar line up of keynote speakers and well attended, lively parallel track sessions. There were a total of 29 speakers. This included top multinational corporate executives (at executive management and President levels). The topics were diverse and thought provoking. The impressive list of keynote speakers included:
- His Excellency TigranSargsyan, Prime Minister of the Republic of Armenia
- Honorable Joe Simitian, California State Senator – USA
- John E. Davies, Vice-President, Sales and Marketing, Intel Corporation – USA
- Dr. Chi-Foon Chan, President and Chief Operating Officer, Synopsys, Inc.- USA
- Daniel M. Mahoney, President and Chief Executive Officer, Renesas Technology America, Inc. – USA
- Gregory K. Hinckley, President of Mentor Graphics, Inc.- USA
- Haroutune Armenian, President of AUA, Prof. in Residence at UCLA – USA
- Bengt Henriksen, CEO of Quality Logistics, former CEO of Maersk International – USA
- Brian V. Hannafin, VP of BD & Marketing, Center for Economic Growth (CEG) – USA
- Andre Andonian, Director, McKinsey & Company, Inc. – Germany
- Harut Sassounian, Lincy Foundation, President of UAF, Publisher of California Courier – USA
- Lisa Kalustian, Chief Deputy Director, Office of Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger – USA
- Robert Lloyd, Executive Vice-President, Worldwide Operations, Cisco Systems, Inc. – USA
- Yervant Zorian, VP and Chief Scientist Virage Logic Corp. – USA
- Sergey Urezchenko, Vice-president, Head of SITRONICS Consumer Services and Products, SITRONICS JSC – Republic of Armenia
- Merrill Lynch – USA
- Arpit Joshipura, VP of Strategy, Marketing and Communications, Ericsson – USA
- Tony Moroyan, Co-Chair of ArmTech Congress ‘09, Chairman of Viasphere Ventures-USA, CEO of Impeva Labs – USA
- Rich Goldman, Co-Chair of ArmTech Congress ‘09, VP of Corporate Marketing & Strategic Alliances of Synopsys – USA and CEO of Synopsys Armenia
- Areg Galstyan, Deputy Minister of Energy and Natural Resources – Republic of Armenia
- Aram Salatian, Director, National Instruments – Republic of Armenia
- M. Michael Einik, Deputy Executive Director, Partnership and Sustainability Department, International Science and Technology Center – Republic of Armenia
- Pegor Papazian, CEO, National Competitiveness Foundation of Armenia
- Vache Kirakosyan, Head of IT & High-Tech Department, Ministry of Economy of Republic of Armenia
- Bagrat Yengibaryan, Director,Enterprise Incubator Foundation – Armenia
- Ashot Chilingaryan, Director, Yerevan Physics Institute – Armenia
Parallel track sessions set new benchmarks for the future to break. The diversity was incredible. The amount of information and insight were unparalleled. There were four parallel tracks organized around major core industries with multiple sessions and moderators. There were overall eight tracks, with 25 individual sessions i.e. three sessions in each track. At least one company is preparing to launch its product in collaboration with people this company’s CEO met during a session in the medical IT field.
Parallel track sessions included:
|• IT Industry & Services||• Renewable & Green Energy|
|• Semiconductor Industry||• Engineering Design|
|• Digital Media||• Investment Projects|
|• Advanced Materials||• Telecommunications & Internet|
|• Higher Education / Research & Innovation||• Professional Networking|
ArmTech Congress 2009 also included a focus on The ArmTech Platform, a unique differentiator for Armenia in the development of its high tech economy. The congress started Thursday evening with a plenary panel session on the progress of the Platform, moderated by Yervant Zorian including The Honorable Minister of Economy, Nerses Yeritsyan, and Synopsys Armenia CEO, Rich Goldman. The panel reviewed Synopsys experience over the past year with the platform issues, the progress made, and programs implemented by the Armenian government to address the platform issues. The panel discussion indicated significant progress on the platform issues with continued needed progress.
ArmTech Congress 2009 concluded with a Town Hall style meeting moderated by Rich Goldman to address the current status of the platform and to reach consensus on any modification needed on the platform. The process was started to add detail to each plank of the platform, define metrics, and owners were assigned to drive progress on each plank. It was acknowledged that the owners assigned may be temporary until we find more suitable owners. Some of the modifications made at this meeting may need additional modification.
As modified by ArmTech Congress 2009, the current ArmTech Platform states:
- Knowledge based economy is key to Armenia’s economic development;
- Develop it through Government / Business (PPP)/Academia cooperation;
- Leverage the intellectual capital and entrepreneurship of Armenia’s Diaspora;
- Address Global Markets;
- Drive R&D in Armenia;
- Focus on education improvement, from elementary school through universities (Life Long Learning);
- Focus on programs that fulfill industry needs;
- Utilize electronic media for education – (Action Item: consider UITE recommendations);
- Focus on improving business & financial infrastructure;
- Build a strong Internet presence;
- Constant improvement in bandwidth, reliability, affordability
- Connect Internet cable through most direct possible route.
- Development in the regions (i.e. Gyumri, plus Stepanakert, Sissian, Goris, etc.)
- Reform & transparency in government agencies, especially State Revenues Committee;
- Remove import tax on capital equipment;
- Review and improve Labor Law;
- Revise Customs Laws;
- ReformState Registry;
- Tax incentives for startups;
- Special Economic Zones in Yerevan and elsewhere;
- Consistent and timely enforcement of legislation
- Document clear procedures
ArmTech Congress 2009 hosted an exclusive evening reception at the elegant Capital Club, high above Silicon Valley, hosted by His Excellency Tigran Sargsyan, Prime Minister of the Republic of Armenia in honor of Dr. Craig Barrett, former chairman and CEO of Intel, the inaugural laureate of the Global Award of The President of The Republic of Armenia for Contribution to Humanity Through IT.
The traditional gala featured classic Armenian dance demonstration, a virtuoso piano recital, musical performance by Elements band. Significantly, His Excellency TigranSargsyan, Prime Minister of the Republic of Armenia delivered a speech on significant current affairs and the position of the Armenian government.
A new element of ArmTech Congress in 2009 was the design, creation and awarding of medals for outstanding service. The organizational effort for ArmTech Congress 2009 was headed by Executive Board Co-Chairs: Nerses Yeritsyan, Chairman of ArmTech Congress ‘09, Minister of Economy of the Republic of Armenia, Rich Goldman, Co-Founder and Co-Chair of ArmTech Congress ‘09, CEO of Synopsys Armenia CJSC, VP of Corporate Marketing & Strategic Alliances at Synopsys, Inc.,Tony Moroyan, Co-Founder and Co-Chair of ArmTech Congress ‘09, Chairman of ViaSphere Ventures, CEO of Impeva Labs, Inc.Robert Harutyunyan, Co-Chair of ArmTech Congress ‘09, Director of ADA.
The strong program for ArmTech Congress 2009 was organized by the program committee co-chaired by Yervant Zorian, Vice President & Chief Scientist, Virage Logic Corp. and Bagrat Yengibaryan, Director of Enterprise Incubator Foundation (EIF).