ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW TO PLAN YOUR TRIP AND PREPARE FOR GEC 2017

The information below is intended to help all delegates determine their preferred arrival and departure dates and plan their visit to South Africa. If you are a speaker, sponsor, GEN Country Managing Director, GEW Host, part of GBAN, GERN, Startup Nations, Startup Huddle or otherwise part of GEN Global, you will hear from your GEN Global point of contact in Washington on certain logistics soon.  If you are unsure, please email William Charter at william@genglobal.org.

WHEN

The Global Entrepreneurship Congress (GEC) occurs from March 13 – March 16, 2017 in Johannesburg.

HOTELS 

The official hotel is the Sandton Sun Hotel in Johannesburg. For more information on the official GEC Johannesburg hotel and several other recommended accommodations including several connected by walkway to the GEC venue, visit HOTELS page of this site.

Most GEN Global Delegates are staying at the official headquarters hotel of the GEC - the Sandton Sun Hotel –which is connected to the Sandton Convention Center.  [VIEW ADDITIONAL INFORMATION].  If you are a GEN Delegate, your hotel information will be provided to you by your GEN Global staff point of contact.

WHERE IS EVERYTHING HAPPENING

All sessions on Monday March 13, Tuesday March 14 and Wednesday March 15 will be held at the Sandton Convention Centre in the financial hub of Johannesburg. Located in the business district of Sandton in northern Johannesburg, the convention center is flanked by a number of leading hotels, shopping centers and entertainment complexes. [VIEW ADDITIONAL INFORMATION]

WHAT CAN I ATTEND

The two main days open to all registered delegates are Tuesday, March 14 and Wednesday, March 15, 2017. 

The GEN Annual Meeting of GEN Global leaders that occurs all day on Monday, March 13 and sessions on Thursday, March 16 are by invitation only.

IS THERE ANYTHING HAPPENING AFTER THE GEC? 

There is a GEC+ Cape Town add on weekend starting on Friday, March 17 through Sunday, March 19, 2017.  Further details are coming soon. 

HOW ABOUT OTHER THINGS TO DO IN JOHANNESBURG? 

Johannesburg is a city of contrasts with a vibrancy that can be attributed to its diverse people. It is best described as a melting pot of cultures, classes and races. From the modern silver, glass and chrome of Sandton, to traditional colonial architecture found in the city center, as well as colorful patterns and designs of townships such as Alexandra and Soweto. Johannesburg, as Africa’s most advanced city, can proudly count itself among the world’s greats, standing toe-to-toe with the likes of Berlin, London, New York, Shanghai, Sydney and Berlin. Be sure to download TRPPN, the official tourism app of GEC 2017. [VIEW ADDITIONAL INFORMATION + THINGS TO DO]

OTHER PERSONAL PLANS BEFORE AND AFTER THE GEC

You are encouraged to use Tourvest, the logistics support firm that has special tour opportunities arranged for delegates, when planning activities before or after the GEC who has several.  You may wish to go alone, bring your family, or see more of South Africa with a group of other delegates.  Connect with them on-line and discuss plans with Tourvest if you need help. Contact Jeanne Pollnow at jpollnow@welcome.co.za for more information. [VIEW ADDITIONAL INFORMATION]

VISA INFORMATION

For visa information we encourage you to act early and to engage your embassies directly to follow the normal visa application process. Visitors’ visas are for international travellers (citizens of other countries) who have permanent residence outside South Africa and who wish to visit the country on a temporary basis for tourism or business purposes for a period of 90 days or less.

Requirements for visitor’s visas differ from country to country (click here to see which countries are currently exempt), and the requirements are subject to change. As each application is treated as an individual case and you should make enquiries with your nearest South African mission or consulate abroad or any office of the Department of Home Affairs to see whether or not you are required to apply for a visa.

We are unfortunately not able to provide visa invitation letters to the general public. Once you are registered to attend, we encourage you to act early and to engage your embassies directly to follow the normal visa application process.

UPDATED PROGRAM / AGENDA INFORMATION

The most up-to-date information will be available on the GEC website. Delegates are encouraged to view the mobile site on their smart phones, tablets and/or other devices to access the latest updates, room locations and to connect with other delegates during the Congress.

ATTIRE

The dress code for the GEC and its sessions is business casual. For those attending the Compass Awards (by invitation only), semi-formal attire is expected (traditional dress is acceptable as well). 

WIFI / INTERNET CONNECTIVITY

Free wifi is provided throughout the GEC. More details on wireless Internnet connection will be available at a later date. 

SOCIAL MEDIA

Follow @gecglobal and @unleashingideas on Twitter for the latest information on the Congress and what is going on with the Global Entrepreneurship Network. You can follow GEC Johannesburg news by using #GEC2017.

SCHEDULE

[VIEW FULL AGENDA]

SUNDAY, MARCH 12

  • Arrivals and Hotel Check-In: For international delegates, GEN members and partners.

MONDAY, MARCH 13 (BY INVITATION ONLY)

  • GEN Annual Meeting I: Invitation-only session for international delegates, GEN members and partners. Mandatory for GEN lead delegates.
  • Welcome Reception: Networking and welcome social event for international delegates, GEN members and partners.
  • Arrivals and Hotel Check-In: Suggested for general attendees. 

TUESDAY, MARCH 14

  • GEC 2017 Open Sessions: Opening Ceremony and Welcome; Plenary sessions; Parallel sessions; Networking sessions; Exhibition
  • GEN Gala + Compass Awards (by invitation only): Formal dinner and awards ceremony for international delegates, GEN members and partners.

WEDNESDAY, MARCH 15

  • GEC 2017 Open Sessions: Plenary sessions; Parallel sessions; Networking sessions; Exhibition 

THURSDAY, MARCH 16 (BY INVITATION ONLY)

  • GEN Annual Meeting II: Invitation-only session for international delegates, GEN members and partners. Mandatory for GEN lead delegates.
  • Closing Dinner: Networking and social event for international delegates, GEN members and partners.

FRIDAY, MARCH 17 (BY INVITATION ONLY)

  • Cape Town Sessions: Global Entrepreneurship Research Network sessions.

OTHER FAQS

Have a question about the Global Entrepreneurship Congress? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions. [VIEW FAQs]

If you have any logistics questions (registration, hotel accommodations, airline reservations, excursions elsewhere) please contact our travel partner Tourvest.

If you are an international delegate and have any questions about GEN or the Global Entrepreneurship Congress activities, please notify William Charter at william@genglobal.org. All questions from South African residents should be directed to gec2017@seaafrica.co.za