Ruben Horbach started his career working for Apple in Amsterdam where he developed a profound interest for new emerging technologies. He continued his passion as a digital consultant and public speaker for a variety of companies such as Axe, Bacardi, Red Bull, Intel and Philips and government entities as the Dutch Ministry of Internal Affairs and Kingdom Relations and the Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs.
Working with the Dutch government resulted in a universal future vision between the different departments around demographic, economic and technologic drivers and trends in education, transportation, sustainability, healthcare and public safety leading up to the year 2020.
His relationship with the government also pointed Ruben towards Prince Constantijn of the Netherlands (the younger brother of the current Dutch monarch, King Willem-Alexander) and Henriette van Notten (Senior Policy advisor) who invited him to participate at the first ideation sessions for an organisation that was later known as Startup Delta. When The Netherlands held the presidency of the European Union in 2016 the week long event was a great success with speakers as Tim Cook (Apple), Eric Schmidt (Google), Travis Kalanick (Uber) and Ruben himself.
Ruben co founded two startups in Amsterdam. WizKid, an on demand services that helps seniors with Internet of Things devices was named one of the most potential IoT startups of 2014 by the Web Summit in Dublin and Weevr, an interactive event discovery platform to bring people, venues and brands together. Bootstrapping startups resulted in learning a lot about adaptability, leadership, and ultimately failure. And while being proud of what was accomplished, the teams were unable to achieve the type of growth necessary to justify the continued operation. Learning a lot from these failures Ruben continues to fully commit himself to new challenges.
Together with Permanent Beta (a not-for-profit organisation) Ruben started a Biohacker / quantified self movement in Europe and had a chip implanted in his arm to research possibilities in both the public as the private sector. This resulted in international coverage and keynote presentations around the globe. One of the highlights was when the Global Action Platform invited Ruben to speak at their Summit in the United States amongst CNN’s Fareed Zakaria and UN’s Ban Ki-moon.
Ruben moved to London in 2015 where he worked for Somo, the leading agency that delivers mobile transformation programmes for global brands including Audi, BP, Shop Direct and The New York Times.
At Somo Ruben made quick progress from Innovation Executive to Head of Innovation while transforming the role of the team within the business. His teams researched the advantage of the latest technology and experimented with mobile, wearables, Virtual and Mixed Reality, Artificial Intelligence and the Internet of Things in response to rapid changes in consumer and employee behaviour to create actionable innovation for clients. This includes demystifying new technologies by creating immersive journeys and stories to help clients understand current technology.
Ruben returned to Amsterdam in 2018 to spend more time with his long term girlfriend (who works for the Dutch government in The Hague) and is currently developing a new innovation proposition for international digital creative agency Isobar.
Ruben is always looking to connect with likeminded people and organisations to connect with.