It all started when I was asked to do a presentation at an event called Google Business Group. Now, I had never heard of this outfit before I met Rohan Jayaweera – Google Sri Lanka, Country Consultant. More on that meeting in a later post. . What’s important is that the second Google Business Group – Colombo meet-up will be taking place this evening, in Colombo. So, what exactly IS this?

According to Google, Google Business Group or GBG, is a group of business professionals who are interested to learn and become more successful in using the internet for their business. This could be for online marketing or sales or even to improve their business processes. This group could be in the form of a small social gathering or a much larger event with the participation of Google speakers. It could also be an online meeting over a Hangout with other GBG members from anywhere in the world.

GBG could be of interest to you if you are an owner of a company, business professional, or just interested in Google products; so just about anyone is welcome to attend these meet-ups. These communities are based on cities and are expected to operate independent of Google, under a GBG Founder or a Manager. GBG is also considered the ideal venue to learn about the latest products and services offered by Google that can be used for business needs. More information is available at www.google.com/services.

GBG Colombo

What about GBG Sri Lanka, also known as GBG – Colombo? They are apparently looking to promote the Internet and online services amongst entrepreneurs, IT professionals, students and various others. Their main focus of course is promoting Google products and services but they also encourage the sharing of knowledge and expertise.

The first GBG Colombo was held at the Tea Lounge on the Regency Wing at Galle Face Hotel on 18th May this year. At this meet-up, Ola Krainska had introduced the concept of GBG and Google. Few others had spoken at this event as well; such as Mario Goonaratne on Building a business in Sri Lanka using the Internet and Charita Ratwatte on Running a social enterprise in Sri Lanka. In addition, Jana Levene from Google had presented how AdWords & G+ can help entrepreneurs grow their businesses.

GBG Colombo manager is Eshan Salpadoru, an enthusiastic individual (going by the few telephone conversations I’ve had with him) whom I’m looking forward to meeting later today. So what can we expect at today’s meeting? Here’s what the agenda looks like:

6.00 – 6.30pm – Arrival
6.30 – 6.35pm – Welcome – Eshan Salpadoru
6.35 – 6.50pm – Legal insight into doing online business in Sri Lanka – Miran Fernando
6.50 – 7.05pm – Lessons learnt from Anything.lk – a Presentation by Reeza Zarook, KonstanzGlobal
7.05 – 7.20pm – Online Marketing, Suranga Priyashantha, Marketing Consultant
7.20 – 7.35pm – Presentation by James McClure, Emerging Market Development Manager, Google, Southeast Asia
7.35 – 7.50pm – How Sri Lankan businesses use social media – Indulekha Nanayakkara, Head of Social Media, Loops Solutions
7.50 – 8.10pm – Q & A and vote of thanks – Rohan Jayaweera
8.10pm onwards – Networking

I’m particularly interested in the 8.00pm-onwards part of this gathering where I’ll be able to network to my heart’s content :) By the way, should you want more information or wondering how to attend the next GBG Colombo, call Eshan on 0777498878 or  email salpadoru@gmail.com

So would you fancy attending GBG – Colombo or are you planning attending this meet-up today? If it’s the second one, do come say Hi if you see me :)

UPDATE:

GBG Colombo meet-up will be held at 6.00pm at Dialog Future World, Colombo 10. Organizers have increased seating, so all are welcome!

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