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Bill Ackman, CEOs and Artists Headline WSJ’s Future of Everything Festival

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The second day of The Wall Street Journal’s virtual The Future of Everything Festival continued with top executives, artists and regulators discussing the next chapter of work, technology, finance and corporate culture.

Access to the festival is complimentary for Journal subscribers. Here is a rundown of the day’s interviews:

Investor

Bill Ackman

kicked off the day by weighing in on the sizzling market for special-purpose acquisition companies, the outlook for cryptocurrencies and his firm’s investment in Domino’s Pizza Inc.

The hedge-fund manager explains at The Future of Everything Festival why Pershing Square took a stake in the pizza maker, which has been buoyed by pandemic dining trends.

Mr. Ackman was followed by

Hester Peirce,

a Republican member of the Securities and Exchange Commission, who discussed the latest outlook for cryptocurrency regulation.

The festival then shifted to conversations on the future of tech platforms and digital payments.

Roblox Corp.Chief Executive David Baszucki spoke about building a model of his company’s headquarters to house virtual versions of the firm’s town-hall meetings and the future of immersive entertainment.

Dave Baszucki sees an emerging category of “metaverse” apps and that any savings from App Store fee reductions would be shared with developers, speaking at the Future of Everything Festival.

Mastercard Inc. CEO Michael Miebach then weighed in on the company’s push beyond its legacy credit-card business to its embrace of cryptocurrencies.

The festival continued with a series of conversations on the future of work. WeWork CEO Sandeep Mathrani spoke about going back to the office, cutting costs during the pandemic and the company’s plans to merge with a SPAC after its failed initial public offering in 2019.

Sandeep Mathrani envisions employees splitting time between the office and remote locations, with WSJ’s Kate Linebaugh at The Future of Everything Festival. Photo: Tony Favarula/Andrew Collings Photography/Handout via REUTERS.

Next, an interactive town hall on corporate culture included top diversity and inclusion executives from

Zoom Video Communications Inc.

and Major League Baseball, as well as

Matthew McCarthy,

the CEO of Ben & Jerry’s, who addressed recent calls for business leaders to be outspoken on social issues.

Michele Meyer-Shipp, the organization’s chief people and culture officer, explains move to shift 2021 event from Atlanta, prompted by Georgia’s new voting law, at The Future of Everything Festival.

The agenda then shifted to the food industry with a discussion featuring chef José Andrés and Feeding America CEO

Claire Babineaux-Fontenot

on hunger prevention in America. Starbucks Corp. CEO

Kevin Johnson

then talked about the company’s plans to expand in China and its focus on plant-based items.

Delta CEO

Ed Bastian

addressed the air travel rebound, the outlook for summer travel and recent missteps over speaking out on a Republican-led voting law in Georgia.

Architect

Suchi Reddy

and artist

Ai Weiwei

also spoke on the future of built environments both at home and across urban areas.

The program continued with conversations on social media, sports, music and film.

Paris Hilton

discussed nonfungible tokens and her return to reality television. Soccer star

Abby Wambach

spoke about women’s equity on the soccer field.

The influencer and entrepreneur spoke at The Future of Everything Festival about why she decided to do the coming series, “Paris in Love.”

Grammy winner

Jacob Collier

talked about how technology powers his hit music. Closing the day is a discussion on the future of film and activism with Oscar-nominated screenwriters Kenny and

Keith Lucas.

More From The Future of Everything Festival

  • Bill Ackman Talks SPACs, Domino’s, Inflation, Crypto and New York City
    May 12, 2021
  • WeWork CEO Says Least Engaged Employees Enjoy Working From Home
    May 12, 2021
  • Delta’s CEO Bets on Business Travel: Higher Prices for Better Service
    May 12, 2021
  • Pershing Square Holds Nearly 6% of Domino’s Pizza, Bill Ackman Says
    May 12, 2021
  • Progressives, Conservatives Hone Messaging on Class Divide, Opportunity
    May 11, 2021

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