Vancouver’s Top 15 Tech Meetups & Events: The Ultimate Networking List – Ray Walia

Everyone in the tech industry is still trying to find the right balance between getting back to the office, working from home, and/or working remotely. But one thing has become very clear, when it comes to networking and connecting with colleagues in the industry, in-person events can’t be beaten.

We recently held our Launch Builders Meetup where we had 100+ attendees join us at the Gastown office of Microsoft Vancouver where we got to see actual live product demos from local tech companies, large and small. As we plan out our next few events at Launch Academy I thought I’d get a list going (in no particular order) of some other companies and teams that organize events and meetups in Vancouver that I think people will not only enjoy but find valuable when it comes to networking in the local tech industry. The caveat, there are lots of different types of events and hosts for events so it is not realistic for me to list them all here. Reach out to us at [email protected] if you feel i’ve missed some good ones or if you want to promote your own events or meetups.


1. Launch Builders Meetup
2. Vancouver Entrepreneurs Forum
3. Vancouver Tech Journal
4. New Ventures BC
5. Panache Ventures
7. TiE Vancouver
8. Rank Up! – Game Dev Meetup
9. React Vancouver Meetup


10. Traction Conference
11. TIAs
12. Tech Exit
13. The Odium Brown Forum Pitch Finale
14. Polyglot Unconference
15. BIV 40 Under 40 Awards Gala


16. Innovate West

Launch Builders Meetup is held every other month. The next one is scheduled for September 20th. Get your tickets here.
It is for those interested in showcasing what they are actually building and those interested in seeing the actual great products that are being built by developers right here in BC. No pitch decks or lengthy speeches, just live product demonstrations and great networking with food and drinks. 

A long-standing staple of events held in Vancouver. VEF hosts eight events per calendar year, kicking off in September and running until June with a hiatus in March and December. Always featuring great speakers and solid networking before and after.

As everyone transitioned back to the real world after covid, there were very few in-person tech events going on. The VTJ team took the lead and started hosting monthly tech meetups in Yaletown, and then started their VTJ Talks series of events. They now host a series of regular events and always draw a great crowd. Note that some of their events are exclusive to their subscribers only, but they still host some great events open to the general public.

Another long-standing pillar of the tech ecosystem in BC. NVBC has grown to be more than just a startup competition. There are many layers to this organization and one of those is their informative event series that typically run from April to September in line with the duration of the actual competition. The events are open to the public and typically focus on topics that benefit early-stage startups and first-time entrepreneurs. 

On the heels of their latest fund, the team at Panache has been very active in engaging with the startup community not just here in Canada but also in the US, giving Canadian entrepreneurs a chance to broaden their networks. They also have a refreshing take on networking events, non-cocktail networking (NCN) events that don’t, as the name indicates, involve alcohol. For example, past events have been breakfast events and even group spin classes. Note that some of these events are invite only for startups that are at a certain stage in their lifecycle.

Another group that everyone should be familiar with, and if you aren’t you should be. Boast partners up with a lot of other groups to help them execute on their events, as well as host some of their own stellar events like their Brew & Bites events. You’re guaranteed to have a chance at some great networking if the team from Boast is involved.

This is the Vancouver chapter of TiE (The Indus Entrepreneurs) which was founded in Silicon Valley in 1992 by entrepreneurs with roots in South Asia and is currently spread over 62 chapters in 14 countries with 15,000+ members consisting of Angels, VCs, Private Equity, entrepreneurs, and service providers. TiE holds networking and educational events throughout the year – most of which are open to the public.

Vancouver is a global leader in the gaming industry, and prior to Covid there were plenty of meetups and events for gamers and people interested in the industry. Quiver Games has been making an effort to bring the gaming community back together IRL. I personally think the gaming community in Vancouver is one of the best and most friendliest. When I was first making my way into the tech industry, some of my best networking experiences as a noob in tech were with the gaming community. 

If you’ve had your fill of suits and talking heads and want to surround yourself with developers and focus on more technical topics then I highly recommend joining this meetup group. React Vancouver Meetup hosts monthly meetups which start off with presentations about React/React Native, and end with social time for people to get to know each other. They also host workshops and hack nights for people from any level of React/React Native.

Another one of Launch’s signature events, Traction has been consistently recognized as one of the top 10 tech marketing conferences in North America. Although on a hiatus for 2023, the Traction team still publishes its weekly podcast series. Traction has a reputation of having some of the best speakers and best content at both the IRL and online events. We’ve also been known for our great networking parties. Keep an eye out for news on our next events.

Although on a hiatus for 2023, the Traction team still publishes its weekly podcast series. Traction co-founder Lloyed Lobo even published a book “From Grassroots to Greatness: 13 Rules to Build Iconic Brands with Community Led Growth” check it out.

11. TIAs


BC Tech’s annual Technology Impact Awards (TIAs) is a signature upscale event where tech leaders come together to celebrate outstanding companies and individuals who have made a significant impact on the BC tech industry. The tickets are pricy, but this is a gala with great food and high-end networking so if you can afford it or score an invite as a guest it will be well worth your time. 

This conference is structured for later-stage companies and founders exploring and learning about exit opportunities for their firms, and the road to mergers and acquisitions. This is another event where you can have a chance to network with senior executives and founders in the industry.

Another signature gala in Vancouver known for its high-end networking and amazing evening celebrating the finalists of the Pitch Program. Pitch is for Canadian self-identifying women entrepreneurs, from any industry, size, or stage of business, who want to grow their businesses by raising capital & expanding their community of supporters.

Polyglot Unconference is an event that encourages software developers and operators from different backgrounds, stacks and opinions to come together for a day of spontaneous sharing, teaching and learning. Polyglot Unconference is an opportunity to celebrate software development diversity and break away from typically language-specific user groups and conferences to come together to talk about the challenges and interests that we all have in common. You’re going to meet people here that actively role up their sleeves and build great software.

Business in Vancouver (BIV) hosts a number of different fun events throughout the year, but one standout event for me is the BIV Forty under 40 Awards Gala. For over 30 years, BIV has honoured the achievements of BC’s young entrepreneurs, executives and professionals by finding 40 outstanding individuals worthy of the Forty under 40 distinction. This is a fun evening of celebration and networking with people really moving the needle in BC from a variety of industries. The awards gala is a great event to leverage to connect with business leaders outside of tech.

This is the newest conference to spring up in Vancouver. Scheduled for April of 2024 so we’re all excited to see how this plays out. They have a large number of local tech leaders on the steering committee, including myself, and the group behind this event are the same people that produce the TechExit conference as well as the SaaS North conference in Ottawa.

There are obviously lots of other events, meetups, and conferences big and small that are hosted not only in Vancouver but in other major tech hubs like Victoria, Surrey, Kelowna, etc. so I encourage you to get out and explore different communities and broaden your network. Some people have heard me preach about how entrepreneurs need to get out of their comfort zone, get out of their bubble and meet new people. Even those not in your industry, because you never know what may come to be. But it all starts with that one first conversation. Happy networking and hopefully I’ll see you at our next Launch Builders Meetup.

About Ray Walia

Ray Walia Launch CEO

Ray Walia is a serial entrepreneur with over 25 years of experience in both the entertainment and technology sectors. Ray founded Launch Ventures which owns and operates a network of private incubators, innovation labs, and investment funds. The most prominent incubator is Launch Academy, Western Canada’s leading entrepreneurship facility, which has incubated more than 6000 entrepreneurs of which 300 have grown their startups to Seed and Series A stage and raised over $2.5 Billion in funding. Launch Academy is a designated provider for the Canadian Startup Visa Program. Ray has invested in over 30+ startups either personally or through his funds and was named Entrepreneur Mentor of the Year for 2014 and 2015, BIV Top Forty Under 40, G20 Young Entrepreneur, BC Tech Person of The Year Finalist 2018, and one of 500 Most Influential Business Leaders in British Columbia for 2021 and 2022.