C2-MTL: Creative answers to commercial questions – at a price

A glimpse of the fun had at C2-MTL in Montreal in 2012. C2-MTL

MONTREAL – At $3,600, the three-day C2-MTL experience comes at a price.

Designed to inspire creative thinking with a variety of events like talks from renowned speakers, art and fashion exhibitions and workshops, C2-MTL promises to be “a new kind of annual global conference” that explores the relationship and potential between business and creativity.

Jean-François Bouchard, the president of Sid Lee and curator of C2-MTL credits Tourisme Montreal and the Claudine and Stephen Bronfman Family Foundation for helping get the project off the ground.

“They believed, and still believe, as we and many, many others do, that creating a truly immersive and at times unsettling experience for our attendees not only leads to a deeper understanding of the concepts shared by our speakers, but also creates opportunities for deeper connections between attendees.”

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The conference also introduces up-and-coming innovators in a vote-for-your-favourite-idea competition. There are at least three Eye 50 projects from Montreal, including Freddy, the non judgemental health tracker, Electrobac: Recycling electronic waste, one bin at a time and UniYu, the first collaborative and social guide for students.

“There are a lot of success stories out there,” said Nadia Lakhdari, the VP of content and event program, “There is no one right answer; there are many, many answers, and the first step to finding one is to start by asking the questions.”

Organized (or “curated”) by international agency Sid Lee, Cirque du Soleil, Fast Company and Intel, C2-MTL hopes to bring together the brightest and most influential minds from a network of countries and industries.

Here’s a glimpse of what to expect: 

Speakers include Virgin Airline founder Sir Richard Branson, French architect Philippe Starck, cosmetics guru Bobbi Brown, Whole foods CEO John Mackey, model Elle Macpherson, bitly’s chief scientist Hilary Mason, fashion designer Diane von Furstenberg, ING Direct‘s founding CEO Arkadi Kuhlmann and many more.

A plethora of workshops offer opportunities to explore creative problem-solving for industry issues as well as some serious opportunities for networking. The event also takes something else very seriously: partying, with a full schedule of evening festivities that includes many Montreal musicians and artists.

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Follow updates, photos, experiences, quotes, insights and more with Ariane Laezza, who will be liveblogging from the conference for all three days.