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Vox Media’s Code Conference Kicks Off With Ted Sarandos, Gary Gensler, Satya Nadella, and More

The annual technology conference co-founded and hosted by journalist Kara Swisher kicked off today featuring discussions with some of the biggest names in the business

Asa Mathat

Vox Media’s annual Code Conference kicked off today at the Beverly Hilton in Beverly Hills. Co-founded and hosted by journalist Kara Swisher, Code will welcome the biggest names in business and technology from September 27 - 29 for hard-hitting interviews addressing the role of tech in our new reality: the hottest IPO market since 1999, the development of a vaccine in record time, antitrust lawsuits against Google and Facebook, China, the changing nature of work, climate change tech, and so much more.

On stage today, Code kicked off with conversations between Kara Swisher and Ted Sarandos (co-CEO of Netflix); Satya Nadella (CEO of Microsoft); and Lisa Su (President and CEO of AMD). Preet Bharara (Former US Attorney, Southern District of New York and co-founder of Cafe) also joined the stage to interview Gary Gensler (Chair of the US Securities and Exchange Commission).

Highlights from day one of Code Conference are below. For more, follow #CodeCon.

Code Conference on-stage interviews

Ted Sarandos, Co-CEO and Chief Content Officer, Netflix, in conversation with Kara Swisher shared never-before-seen viewership data on stage.

Lisa Su, CEO, AMD joined Kara Swisher and John Fortt, co-anchor of CNBC’s TechCheck where she discussed the ongoing global chip shortage. “We’ve always gone through cycles of ups and downs, where demand has exceeded supply, or vice versa. This time, it’s different,” said Su on stage. She also discussed growing the business from $3 a share when she started to $100 a share today.

Asa Mathat

Gary Gensler joined the stage for a conversation with Preet Bhahara, where he discussed his approach to regulating cryptocurrencies and if there are any existential threats from the SEC: “When the automobile came along, would it be good for Detroit if somebody in the [1910’s] didn’t come along to say we needed traffic lights, stop signs, speed limits and a cop on the beat? It actually would not have been good for Detroit. Detroit would not have sold any cars.”

Asa Mathat

Satya Nadella, CEO, Microsoft was interviewed by Kara Swisher, and he shared more background on Microsoft acquisition talks with Tik Tok

“It was the strangest thing. First of all, TikTok came to us, we didn’t go to TikTok,” said Nadella.

“President Trump had a particular point of view of what he was trying to get done there and then it just dropped off. I mean it was interesting. There was a period of time when I felt the USG had some particular set of requirements and then it just disappeared.”

Asa Mathat

Nadella also shared more on his approach to Microsoft’s hybrid work model.

“I described it sometimes as the hybrid paradox, which is, 70% of the people want to say they want more human connection. And 70% of people say they want more flexibility. And so therein lies the challenge,” he said. “I think we then make sure that we have enough flexibility, but at the same time, you know, norms will emerge which will bring people together.”

“I think I do what we have now stated as a policy test at least while I’ll start which is at least work you know, maybe three days a week in person two days a week you know, remotely. But which three days and two days that’s going to be the balance”