Think 2018

Are you ready to dream digital reinvention done?

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Now is your time to disrupt. Think 2018 is your wakeup call.

Here are the top 7 reasons you need to attend:

Reason #1: To dream inspiration done | Industry luminaries like astronaut Dr. Mae Jemison will inspire you to reach for the stars.

Reason #2: To turn transformation into reinvention | Start with the data at your core, and never stop.

Reason #3: To innovate on the spot at our IBM Design ThinkingTM workshop with IBM Services experts in your industry.

Reason #4: To glimpse the future of your business model | Don’t miss Mark Foster’s keynote, “The Rise of Platform-centric Business Models.”

Reason #5: To meet people who get your business | Good news: they get Cloud and AI, too.

Reason #6: To hang out with rock stars | Rock bands – The Chainsmokers, Barenaked Ladies, Train, and of course, the true stars of the show, over 800 business leaders, 400 developers and 200 engineers will be at Think 2018.

Reason #7: Because what happens in Vegas doesn’t need to stay there | Come to Think, bring back fresh thinking.



Featured IBM Services speakers
Featured IBM Services sessions
Next Steps – There’s so much more to Think


Featured IBM Services speakers

As you fearlessly reimagine your business, you need to right partner to help you protect what you have and prepare for what’s next. Come to Think to hear what visionary speakers from IBM Services have to say that will matter for your business.

Think with the world’s brightest

Mark Foster, Senior Vice President, IBM Global Business Services

Mark-FosterMark Foster is Senior Vice President, IBM Global Business Services, responsible for the strategy, client value and business performance of IBM’s consulting, systems integration, digital agency, business process outsourcing and application management services businesses across all industries. GBS brings clients the expertise of more than 100,000 consultants and practitioners creating value at the intersection of business insight and information technology. Prior to joining IBM in 2016, Mark built a distinctive record of achievement as a global business leader, a consultant to businesses and governments around the world, and a creative thinker of broad knowledge and wide interests.

During his 27 years at Accenture, Mark handled a variety of leadership assignments of increasing responsibility. Prior to his retirement from the firm in 2011, Mark served as Group Chief Executive, Global Markets and Management Consulting, leading a team of 15,000 consultants. Previously, Mark led Accenture’s industry teams in Retail, Consumer, Health, Transport and Industrial sectors. While at Accenture, Mark chaired the World Economic Forum Global Health Initiative Against AIDS, TB and Malaria and was Vice Chair of the Mayor of Seoul’s International Business Advisory Council. From 2011 through 2015, Mark served the UK government as founding Commissioner for the Independent Commission for Aid Impact, which oversaw the UK’s foreign aid spending around the world.

Mark has served on multiple business Boards including Heidrick and Struggles, Fidessa, Computer Sciences Corporation, Alexander Mann Solutions and Atento. In the not-for-profit sector, Mark chaired the International Business Leaders Forum and has been a Board member of the Royal Shakespeare Company.
Mark graduated with a masters of art in classics from University College Oxford.

John Granger, General Manager, Cloud Application Innovation, IBM Global Business Services

John-GrangerJohn Granger is the Global Leader for Cloud Application Innovation at IBM Global Business Services. In this role, John is responsible for helping clients’ transform their business with technology across their enterprises at scale with quality, speed and consistency. His responsibilities cover large scale Cloud Application migration, next gen Enterprise Application and Mobile and complex system integration. He is charged with building these services end to end across geographies and across delivery centers.
Previously John was General Manager, GBS Europe where he was responsible for the strategy execution and business results of the business consulting, systems integration and application management services business in sixteen countries across Europe.

John is the partnership executive for a number of key clients and also consults with clients in the Defence, Retail and Utilities industries and the Public Sector.

John holds a Master of Arts degree from Oxford University.


Paul Papas, Global Leader, Digital Strategy & iX, IBM Global Business Services

Paul-PapasPaul is the Global Leader for IBM Digital Strategy & iX, a global professional services organization that helps our clients reinvent their business by design.
Paul leads a global team of “Renegades and Realists” who blend strategy, technology and creativity to tackle every client challenge. Strategists. Industry Experts. Researchers. Designers. Developers. Engineers. Artists. Facilitators. They imagine the businesses that will shape tomorrow’s world and help our clients build them.

His team provides next-generation strategy and advisory consulting services helping CEOs and other C-suite executives leverage disruptive digital technologies to reinvent their businesses, by design. They also provide world-class design, creative, consulting and technology services that help our clients imagine and realize deeper customer relationships through new experiences, technologies and communications.

Paul is an inspirational and dynamic leader who has grown every business he has led. In 2013, CRM Magazine ranked him among the world’s top 5 CRM Influential Leaders and named him the “King of Commerce”. In 2014, he was named one of the world’s “Top 25 Consultants” by Consulting Magazine. Paul is a frequent public speaker and blogger on the increasing convergence of the physical and digital worlds, customer experience, and digital transformation.

Before joining IBM in 2002, Paul was a Partner at PriceWaterhouseCoopers and has held multiple leadership roles throughout his 29 years in the industry. He lives in New York City.

Tina Marron-Partridge, Vice President and Global Leader, Talent & Engagement, IBM Global Business Services

Tina-Marron-PartridgeTina Marron-Partridge is the vice president and global leader for IBM’s Talent and Engagement practice. Her team of forward-thinking consultants helps clients in all industries deliver powerful employee experiences enabled by cognitive computing, behavioral science, workforce analytics and design thinking. This expertise helps clients identify, develop and retain the best talent, accelerate employee engagement, assure behavioral change and measurable adoption–all of which are critical to succeed in the digital era.

Tina is an active participant in the talent marketplace on dual fronts: strategically guiding her global team while also serving as a trusted C-level advisor to a number of the world’s leading organizations in their respective spaces. She is also a frequent speaker at HR and talent industry events.

Prior to her current role Tina led Business Strategy & Analytics Consulting for IBM in Europe. Her industry expertise is in banking and financial services, oil and gas, chemicals and petroleum, utilities, industrial products, telecommunications and distribution.


Featured IBM Services sessions

Listed here are just some of the comprehensive sessions that can help you reinvent your business at Think. Use the Watson Session Explorer to add any of these talks to your Think 2018 agenda.

Explore with Watson Session Expert

The Rise of Platform-Centric Business Models

Tuesday, 1:30 PM – 2:10 PM | Keynote Theater, Mandalay Bay Ballroom | Session ID: 8791A

Businesses are entering an era of transformative business models enabled by new technologies that empowers them to operate in new ways. This revolutionary shift will lead enterprises to new platform models they can own, lead or participate in. By adopting new platforms that support data and AI infused workflows, businesses can transform the way employees add value and keep their edge. What will the journey look like and what are the factors for success? Join this session for a view of how business leaders can explore and quickly deploy these new business models to become cognitive enterprises, gaining a significant competitive advantage both within their industries, and by entering entirely new markets.


  • Mark Foster, IBM
  • Bridget van Kralingen, IBM

Will You Lead or Lag? Prioritizing Enterprise Applications to Succeed in Digital Transformation

Wednesday, 10:30 AM – 11:10 AM | Business and AI Large Campus Theater A | Session ID: 8756A

Digital transformation is all around us—every industry worldwide is experiencing it and it’s not a “one and done” event. What separates leaders and laggards in digital transformation? Learn from IBM clients about how they are succeeding at digital reinvention, including key actions they are taking and the quantitative results they are realizing. Also hear from Forrester analyst Liz Herbert and IBM general manager John Granger about a new  joint global study that uncovered the importance of enterprise applications as the critical foundation to enable success in digital transformation. The study documents the best practices and results of organizations that are succeeding at digital reinvention.


  • John Granger, IBM
  • Liz Herbert, Forrester


Intelligent Automation: Retooling Processes to Improve Customer Experience, Efficiency and Scale

Tuesday, 1:30 PM – 2:10 PM | Business and AI Large Campus Theater A | Session ID: 8766A

New forms of digital automation—powered by artificial intelligence—are changing the way enterprises operate by using advances in technology to optimize business processes, personalize customer experiences and enhance decision-making. Industry leaders are applying new developments in machine learning, IoT, robotic process automation, natural language processing and analytics to expand the capabilities and effectiveness of workers in all industries. Join us for a report from the front lines of automation, as several customers share their innovations and lessons learned.


  • Gene Chao, IBM
  • Michael Gilfix, IBM

Creating the Ultimate Customer Experience: Melding Physical with Digital

Wednesday, 8:30 AM – 9:10 AM | Business and AI Large Campus Theater A | Session ID: 8861A

We live in an increasingly digitally connected world, yet physical memories are some of the most powerful: from the roar of the crowd at a sporting event to the immersive experience of browsing the merchandise in-store. The next frontier is melding the two to create intuitive and immersive experiences, harnessing AI and new technologies to engage, surprise and delight customers. Join us as we explore how across industries, with the help of IBM, companies are building stronger omni-channel strategies and reinventing the physical spaces in which they deliver them to create the ultimate customer experience.


  • Paul Papas, IBM


How McLane, CMHC and Sears Reinvented Their Business Operations for Better ROI

Thursday, 10:30 AM – 11:10 AM | Business and AI Large Campus Theater A | Session ID: 8769A

You need collaboration across your organization to achieve true business reinvention. But what’s at the heart of those internal partnerships? Business operations. In this session, you’ll hear from three business leaders about how they transformed their whole enterprises (from marketing to sales) through new, dynamic business operations processes.


  • Jay Bellissimo, IBM



We can’t wait to show you Think 2018

Watch Think 2018 on demand and learn all about the ways your business can put smart to work. We hope you enjoy the keynotes, interviews, and sessions, and we can’t wait to see you in San Francisco in 2019!


VP & CMO Global Business Services

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