When your tech conference is best known for paying $40 million to buy its own mountain, it's hard to stand on moral high ground. But Summit Series, the "hipper Davos" is suing Paddy Cosgrave, the creator of another vanity tech confab called F.ounders, aka "Davos for geeks," for damages of at least $2 million.
Back in May, Summit Series—a sort of upmarket Burning Man, or Sun Valley for less important people, depending on your vantage point—raised $40 million from investors like Peter Thiel and Tim Ferriss to buy its very own "Narnian" mountain in Utah. The event organizers are currently hosting their first invitation-only conference there, a four-day hippie-ish affair dubbed Summit Outside.
You might say Summit Series, a bespoke conference of "epic events" for the one percent, has been employing a freemium strategy. Back in 2008, 20-something CEO Elliott Bisnow started by footing the bill for young entrepreneurs like Zappos' Tony Hsieh (fresh off a round of layoffs), Path's Dave Morin, and Facebook's Joe Green (Zuck's former roommate and now lobbyist-in-chief) to frolic in Cancun in the midst of a recession.