Technology, software and data all have an important role to play in promoting economic equity, ecological responsibility, diversity and inclusion, Robert F. Smith, founder of global investment firm Vista Equity Partners will tell Investment Magazine’s Fiduciary Investor’s Symposium on Thursday.

Smith, who executed and advised on over $50 billion in merger and acquisition activity with companies such as Apple, Microsoft, Texas Instruments, eBay and Yahoo as co-head of enterprise systems and storage M&A for Goldman Sachs based in New York and Silicon Valley before founding Vista Capital Partners in 2000, will draw on his decades of deal making experience to help contextualise the tech and software landscape today.

Vista Equity Partners, the enterprise/B2B software private equity firm founded by Smith in 2000, now manages more than $US 75 billion in assets.

During the Fiduciary Investors Symposium session entitled ‘Software eating the world: Private Equity disruption and digetisation of the economy’, Smith will discuss how technology and software companies can remain at the leading edge of innovation amid rapid and constant disruption in conversation with Conexus Financial’s chief executive Colin Tate.

Smith will also talk about the impact of technology on society, ecological responsibility and the role of technology in inclusion and diversity.

Through his own philanthropic endeavours Smith has promoted scholarships for African Americans and women pursuing technology-related degrees and advocated for companies to take diverse internship candidates in STEM fields.

The software sector will continue to grow and evolve globally as emerging technologies continue to change the way we live and work, involving IoT, nanotech, artificial intelligence, blockchain, cybersecurity, automated vehicles and 3D printing, Tate will explore during his conversation with Smith.

Technology trends are accelerating the use of enterprise software across all industries and workforces, the discussion will highlight.

Smith will draw on his deal making experience to weigh in on some of the big trends in technology and software today relating to valuations, public and private market considerations, disruption, innovation as well as societal and financial markets impacts.

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