09.10.19 / Pause Fest 2020 / Meet Your Speakers


A New Odyssey is upon us; a time to reflect and plan the next decade. Pause Fest 2020 is set to invigorate your senses, serve you the future trends, deliver stories from beyond the generation and, most importantly, prepare you with actionable insights.



Barbara Soalheiro,
Founder, MESA

Barbara is the creator of Mesa, a team-based work system designed to solve complex challenges by unleashing human potential to process more and execute faster.

She has worked with Google, Coca-Cola, Nestlé and Natura, to name a few. Before Mesa, Barbara was Editor-in-Chief of Colours magazine, the groundbreaking publication founded in the '90s by Oliviero Toscani and Tibor Kalman.



David Sheldon-Hicks,
Co-founder & ECD, Territory Studio

Founded on a love of storytelling and technology, Territory Studio has established a reputation for creatively led narrative design.

Today, David's multidisciplinary team thrives on future vision challenges, attracting diverse briefs across entertainment, technology, arts, culture and brand content. Credits include Spy Museum, Ready Player One, 007 Elements, Blade Runner 2049, Ghost in the Shell, The Martian, and more.



Paul Francis,
Global Head of Sport Science, Adidas

Paul is the Head of Sport Science for adidas globally, leading the internal teams and the external network to find new opportunities to change lives through sport.

With over two decades of experience in elite sport with the mindset of a ‘problem solver’, Paul has worked with some of the greatest athletes and performance minds, in the pursuit of making each athlete better.



Sarah Owen,
Senior Editor of Insights, WGSN

Sarah is a sociologist, brand strategist, and trend forecaster with a background in social media and youth trends. She has worked across the USA, Australia and Europe researching global generational trends, key innovations, digital media and communication strategies.

Sarah joined WGSN after consulting with Fortune 500 brands and working across a variety of publications including New York Magazine, Vogue, and The New York Times.



Kate Freebairn,
UX Director, Google NEST

Kate is a design leader who comes from an industrial design education and practice. She has spent her career working on her passion of bringing hardware and software together as a seamless end to end experience.

Kate applies her experience and love of designing for people to leading and running design organisations, empowering multi disciplined teas to collaborate and deliver solutions for businesses and people.



Stephanie Cheng,
Product Manager, Netflix

At Hillary for America (HFA), Stephanie was the Product Lead for the Mobile and Engagement teams, leading the HFA mobile app and the Literally Trump debate fact-checker.

She focused on creating digital tools to engage the campaign's millions of passive supporters. Passionate about using game design to increase user engagement and retention, Stephanie also continues to explore how to translate digital mechanics to physical spaces and products.



Michelle Zatlyn,
Co-founder & COO, Cloudflare

Cloudflare, an Internet security, performance, and reliability company was named to CNBC’s Disruptor 50 List, selected by the Wall Street Journal as the Most Innovative Internet Technology Company for two successive years, and named a Technology Pioneer by the World Economic Forum.

Before co-founding Cloudflare, Michelle held positions at Google and Toshiba and launched two successful startups.



Alastair Simpson,
Head of Design; Platform, Growth & Confluence, Atlassian/Trello

Alastair loves working with multidisciplinary teams to solve complex business and interaction design challenges.

In the last six years, he has helped scale the Atlassian design team – which he leads – from 20 to over 200 and built the Cloud Platform division from the ground up alongside his cross-functional partners.



Haraldur Thorleifsson,
CEO & Founder, UENO

Haraldur (Halli) Thorleifsson started Ueno, a full-service creative agency, as a one-man operation out of his Reykjavik apartment in 2014. Five short years later, it has more than 65 employees, offices in Reykjavik, San Francisco, New York and Los Angeles, and clients that include big names like Airbnb, Facebook, Google, and Samsung, as well as startups you haven't heard of – yet. Halli has won several industry accolades, including numerous Webby's, multiple AWWWARDS and FWA Site of the Day.



Jason Juma-Ross
Director of Technology Strategy, Facebook

Jason is Facebook's Regional Director of Technology Strategy. He works on innovation and commercialisation of Facebook's family of products and services.

He has hands-on experience in tech, analytics, growth, and product development that was gained over 20 years' work in the industry with startups, large enterprises, and the public sector.



Paul Bassat,
Co-founder and Partner, Square Peg/Seek

Paul is a co-founder and partner at Square Peg, a venture capital firm that invests in entrepreneurs across Australia, Israel and Southeast Asia with a focus on Series A and B.

He co-founded SEEK in 1997 and served as its Joint CEO for four years. Paul is a Commissioner of the Australian Football League and also serves on the boards of Innovation Australia, the Peter MacCallum Cancer Foundation and the P&S Bassat Foundation.



Didier Elzinga
CEO, Culture Amp

Didier is the founder and CEO of Culture Amp – the world's leading people and culture platform used by 2,500 customers including Airbnb, McDonald's, Salesforce and Slack.

It is one of Australia's fastest-growing technology startups with offices in Melbourne, San Francisco, New York and London.



David Shing,
Digital Prophet

David Shing ("Shingy") is an Australian futurist, speaker, creative director, strategic digital consultant, and entrepreneur. Known for his performative persona and his bold moniker, the "Digital Prophet", Shingy specialises in advising clients about inventive and effective approaches to optimising brand value within the digital landscape.

He recently served as Verizon Media's digital prophet and prior to that, AOL's European head of media and marketing and was responsible for 11 countries.



Emily Rich,
Managing Director Startups, Microsoft

Emily co-founded Jemsoft, a machine learning and computer vision company whose proprietary software adapted AI frameworks into many different industries like health, IoT, ad-tech, ag-tech and animal conservation.

After Jemsoft, Emily took her passion for startups and went on to become a co-founder for M8 Venture. At Microsoft, she is the Managing Director of Startups for ANZ + Southeast Asia and is committed to establishing initiatives within this region for both startups and scaleups.



All tickets are for 3 DAYS and inclusive of GST and all fees.




For founders looking for new experiences, traction, co-founders, connections, mentors and investors.

Earlybird $95

Full Price $145
Latebird $195




For the pros seeking the next step in their careers, trends, new ideas, collaborators and inspirations.

Earlybird $795

Full Price $995
Latebird $1195




For companies or pros looking beyond the horizon, business growth and development, team building, potential clients and new talent.

Earlybird $995

Full Price $1195
Latebird $1395


3 Days. 3 Stages. 200 Speakers. 30 International Speakers. 24 Workshops. 16 Panels. 30 Startups. 30 Tracks of Content.



You may have heard in the news about the fate of our recently announced venue. Not wanting to take the risk, we've been searching high and low to find us another amazing location, and we're excited to announce we did it!

Pause Fest 2020 will now be held at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre 5-7 February, 2020

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