Initial summit postponed to March due to Omicron fears
Upfront Summit, the extravagant tech and venture capital conference known for its distinguished attendees from business and entertainment, is now the latest in-person event disrupted by the continued increase in COVID-19 cases.
The Upfront Ventures conference organizer informed ticket holders on Tuesday that the annual summit has been postponed for five weeks, to March 1 and 2, due to concerns over the highly contagious variant of the omicron. Santa Monica-based Upfront, one of Los Angeles’ biggest venture capitalists, canceled last year’s conference due to the pandemic; in 2020, he hosted the Upfront Summit at the Rose Bowl at an event featuring fireworks, dance performances, steaks by Wolfgang Puck and even a zipline.
“Based on global trends and other projections from medical experts, we feel good to meet in two months,” Upfront said in an email sent to attendees. “But… we don’t have a crystal ball!” Like all of you, we will be keeping a close eye on COVID trends and if we feel it is not safe to come together, of course we will let you know of any updated plans. “
Upfront said in December that it expects 1,200 investors, entrepreneurs and influencers to attend the invitation-only event, originally scheduled for January 26-27 and to be held this year at the Banc of California stadium in Los Angeles FC at Exposition Park. Speakers scheduled include entertainment figures like Natalie Portman and Scooter Braun, as well as tech investors like Alexis Ohanian and Chamath Palihapitiya.
The Upfront Summit isn’t the only major tech event in LA to be delayed this year due to the coronavirus. Several months ago, March Capital announced that it repulsive its annual summit from Montgomery to Santa Monica from March to May 2022, in order to “give more time for immunizations of children and other at-risk groups,” organizers said.
The omicon variant is now responsible for more than 95% of new COVID-19 cases in the United States, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced on Tuesday.
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