Cyon Research Announces Saturday Keynote Speakers for COFES 2017

Cyon Research announced today that Scott Foster, partner TAP Japan, Mark Anderson, publisher of Strategic News Service (SNS) and Harry Blount, Founder/CEO of Discern, will deliver keynotes on Saturday at  COFES 2017: The Congress On the Future of Engineering Software. COFES 2017 is being held in Scottsdale, Arizona, April 6-9 at the Scottsdale Plaza Resort.

This year at COFES 2017, attendees will take a deep dive into Complexity and Transformation. The growth of complexity is presenting businesses with new and difficult challenges — from the constantly changing business environment to conflicting requirements of more complex products that must be delivered more simply to the customer. New phenomena result from complexity, often requiring consideration of things that were not previously an issue. Rather than focus on how to design complex systems from scratch, COFES 2017 will challenge attendees to focus on interventions that can transform existing systems to mitigate the effects of complexity.

Foster and Anderson will deliver the keynote on Business Implications of the New International Political Landscape. “We are facing a new political landscape. Putin, Brexit, and Trump are not the only recent disruptions to the global political norm”, said Brad Holz, president and CEO of Cyon Research Corporation., “Our keynote speakers are unusually well positioned to understand the business impact of these and other coming international political disruptions.”

“For over 300 years, the political, economic, and military power were controlled by nation states, said Richard Marshall, CEO of X-SES Consultants LLC. “Increasingly those powers are now being exercised thru the medium of the Internet by non-state actors and private citizens. The impact of this radical change will be profound.”

To set the stage for Scott Foster’s talk, Mark Anderson will provide insight on the global geo political arena. "Almost every aspect of international trade appears to be in flux”, said Mark Anderson. “Not only as a result of the Trump election but because of shifting international political, economic and military programs, including the daunting business climate created by massive swings in (manipulated) currency values,” explained Anderson. “There has not, in recent times, been a more difficult environment facing businesses trying to navigate trade and profit plans than today. We will bring our proven experience in understanding and predicting these exact types of shifts to the COFES audience," he concluded.

Scott Foster will then go into depth the Japanese perspective. "The election of Donald Trump sparked panic and dismay throughout East Asia as people contemplated a throwback to the angry, protectionist and demanding America of the 1970s and 1980”, stated Scott Foster. “Relief has followed with Prime Minster Abe's successful meetings with Trump, the visits of secretaries Mattis and Tillerson to Japan and South Korea, and - ironically - North Korea's ballistic missile tests, which have taken the spotlight off trade. However, the issue of persistent Asian surpluses and the loss of American jobs will be back, most likely with a vengeance. Meanwhile, for COFES attendees, perhaps the most important developments are Industry 4.0 and the eclipse of low-wage manufacturing, which are already transforming East Asia,” said Foster.

In the keynote, Though the Eyes of Data, Harry Blount will share his insights on how to create a sustainable information advantage using Big Data while avoiding the most common pitfalls. Blount will lead attendees through the key aspects of a big data process including targeting the optimal data sources, designing a scalable data model, passive and active insight discovery, persistent improvement in platform intelligence, contextual analytics, and synthesized visualization.

“Companies are just beginning to understand how Big Data can benefit their decision making, “said Harry Blount, founder and CEO of DISCERN. “They need to get ready, as the impact will be swift. Companies building and leveraging these analytical data models will create a sustainable information advantage over those that do not Big Data will force companies to adapt or die."

“Harry is changing the way we can get to insight out of data. It’s more true now than in previous administrations that we need to look at the data to get at the truth,” said Holtz.

Scott Foster is a partner at  TAP Japan, a financial consultancy based in Tokyo; and alliance partner at Translink, a multinational corporate finance network headquartered in Europe. He previously worked for Lehman Brothers, Merrill Lynch, and other investment banks as a research analyst covering electronics, alternative energy, engineering, and other sectors in Japan and Korea. Scott holds a BA from Stanford University and an MA from the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies.

Scott's most recent book,  Stealth Japan, dives into the realties of Japan's global business footprint, dispelling many myths along the way.

Mark Anderson is the publisher of  SNS Global Report on Technology and the Economy and founder and chair of the Future in Review ( FiRe) Conference.

Investment research industry veteran Harry Blount formed the  DISCERN founding team, building on more than 20 years of executive and financial experience on Wall Street, including senior roles at Lehman Brothers, Credit Suisse First Boston, Donaldson Lufkin & Jenrette, and CIBC Oppenheimer. Harry has been named an Institutional Investor All-American in both Information Technology Hardware and Internet Infrastructure Services, and The Wall Street Journal has recognized him as an All-Star covering the Computer Hardware sector. Harry also lent his expertise to the National Academy of Sciences where he served as a member of the Committee for Forecasting Future Disruptive Technologies; and to The Tech Museum of Innovation in San Jose, where he chaired the Futures Committee. Harry graduated from the University of Wisconsin – La Crosse in 1986 with a B.S. in Finance.

Now in its 18th year, COFES is the annual, invitation-only event for the design and engineering software industry. Widely recognized as a think-tank event, COFES ( gathers design and engineering software leaders (vendors, users, press, and analysts) together to discuss the role engineering technology will play in the future survival and success of business. COFES is renowned for hosting leading keynote visionaries that provide a new perspective to the future of the industry. The by-invitation-only COFES is a Cyon Research event. Apply for an invitation at

Cyon Research Corporation is a think-tank providing key information, research, analysis, and consulting to its clients worldwide. COFES (The Congress on the Future of Engineering Software) and ASSESS (Analysis, Simulation, and Systems Engineering Software Strategies) are Cyon Research's primary events.

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