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Hassan Syed

Mentor/Advisor

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Hassan Syed

Minneapolis, US

Profile Summary

Hassan Syed is the CEO of Bir Ventures USA, founder of IdeaGist, founding director of Minnesota Innovates, and founding director of the Institute for Innovators and Entrepreneurs Minnesota. He is also part of the National Committee on Emerging Technologies under the Digital Pakistan initiative by the President of Pakistan and a member of the Advisory Council to the Federal Minister of IT and Telecom. Hassan is recently appointed as the Convener to the CSR Committee on Innovation and Entrepreneurship at the Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI).

His story was recently published by Green Card Voices in their book Green Card Entrepreneurs. Hassan was recently recognized by Pollen and AARP MN as one of the 50 most inspiring and accomplished leaders across Minnesota.

After 29 years of overseas experiences, Hassan is transitioning back to Pakistan with a focus on emerging technologies development and applications through entrepreneurial ventures. Hassan has pledged a large technology investment into the Prime Minister’s Startup Pakistan program and in the emerging technology accelerators program. This pledge will help one million students in learning about starting up their own businesses by establishing 600 incubators in educational institutions. Hassan’s second project is the Science Park of the future. It is a network of 14 parks in mostly 2nd tier cities, focusing on highly scalable startups in 7 emerging technologies, offering an accelerated growth path. The third project Hassan is working on is a network of 1,000 rural incubation centers, helping to develop micro-enterprises in rural and underprivileged communities.

A technologist by heart, Hassan has 30+ years of broad international experience and an impressive track record of converting concepts into successful products and scale them at the global level. As the CEO of Bir Ventures, Hassan leads the development of new ideas and focuses on growing the partners' network.

As a futurist, Hassan has been actively working on emerging technologies and their impact on the future. He is leading the emerging technology accelerator program at IdeaGist, focusing on seven base technologies, including 3D Printing, Artificial Intelligence, Augmented Reality, Blockchain, Internet of Things, Intelligent Vehicles, and Smart Robots. Hassan is always interested in new ideas and would love to learn about innovative ways in which technology can solve real-world problems.

At IdeaGist.com, Hassan amalgamated and leads a collaborative network of more than 400 communities from all 195 UN-recognized countries. Harnessing the power of this network, he has launched four knowledge-based products in the market, including www.ideagist.com, the first-ever SaaS-based digital incubator, which now connects more than 250,000+ people worldwide. In addition to www.IdeaGist.com, Hassan also started an IOT based company www.tapaphone.com, a social media amplification platform, www.teamup.social, and a Pharmacist Network at www.emergrx.com.

Evolving IdeaGist from a simple idea-sharing site to a digital innovation ecosystem connector that is connecting communities from all countries, Hassan has accumulated practical insights on the digital DNA of entrepreneurial and innovation ecosystems. This knowledge helped Hassan in providing the vision for Prime Minister’s Startup Pakistan.
Before starting Bir Ventures in 2012, Hassan worked as the Executive Director for Twycross Zoo in the UK, leading Finance, IT, Fund Raising, Project Management, and HR. During his job at Twycross, Hassan led the future search for the organization and also helped in a Horizon Scan for Species Conservation by Zoos and Aquariums, under the banner of the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums.

From 2003 to 2011, Hassan worked as the Chief Information Officer at International Species Information System, now Species 360. Hassan led a global team on the Zoological Information Management System (ZIMS) project since its inception in 2002 through its launch in 2010. ZIMS is a SaaS-based solution for the global aquarium and zoo community, currently in use by 1,200+ institutions worldwide.

Hassan loves to share his experiences as a technologist, as a futurist, and as an expert on Entrepreneurship and Innovation Ecosystems. He has been working on developing a digital twin for innovation ecosystems and regularly does presentations on the Digital DNA of an innovation ecosystem. His work on evaluating 49 emerging technologies and the selection of 7 critical emerging technologies became the foundation for the IdeaGist Emerging Technology Accelerator program. His experiences during his leadership role that digitally transformed an industry worldwide are also very insightful on collaboration at an international level, knowledge management, big data, and knowledge sharing.