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Start arrow Agenda arrow 22@Breakfast arrow Past Events arrow 22@Update Breakfast December 2007
22@Update Breakfast December 2007
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.Creating knowledge: the road to entrepreneurship.

University research and development centers are an essential foundation for creating innovative companies as well as a way of giving something back to society in return for everything that is invested in education. However, the global market is bringing about a new form of interaction: the internationalization of companies and professionals is the only option in order to be competitive.



At December.s 22@ Update Breakfast, Vigyan Singhal presented the Elastix Corporation, which he is President and CEO of. This is the first company to establish an R&D center in the 22@Barcelona district, with help from the Landing Program.

Elastix is based in Silicon Valley, California, and was created by European and American entrepreneurs. They specialize in creating CI (competitive intelligence) design tools .with automatization. which are later used by the main manufacturers of semiconductors all over the world in high performance, low consumption microchips. Some of their clients include American companies like Intel, AMD, NVIDIA, Qualcomm and Texas Instruments; European companies like ST Microelectronics, NXP, Infineon and ARM); and Asian companies like Panasonic, Samsung, Renesas and Canon.

Although it.s true that there aren.t any microchip production companies in Barcelona, Elastix is creating technology here that facilitates microchip design. The reason for this can be found in their business profile: innovation and a product directed toward a global market, for which they need talent that also has these characteristics.

As Innovator of the Month, Francesc Solé i Parellada, director and promoter of the UPC.s Innovate Program, presented the Landing Program, led by the business departments of two important technological universities: La Salle Innovation Park and UPC. Moreover, it has the support of 22@Barcelona.

Francesc Solé based his explanation on three main concepts:
  • Companies can be created from knowledge. So, universities play a key role.
  •  All opportunities are not equal, so it.s necessary to focus on the feasibility of a project.
  • The competitiveness of the global market makes it necessary to be well positioned.
In this way, the Landing Program aims to find specialized talent in order to make innovation more competitive in Catalonia. However, above all, it.s a co-incubation project that intends not only to help foreign companies establish themselves in Barcelona, but also to help Spanish companies move abroad. The most important thing is to connect innovation magnets worldwide, putting the knowledge that comes out of university R&D centers at the disposal of global business initiatives. .Our entrepreneurs are born to be global., says Francesc Solé. And for this reason the program offers a strategy for companies to internationalize, helping them from foundation through consolidation. .Basically what we have is paper, trials, and our program moves those ideas from paper to opportunity,. says the director, emphasizing above all the need for resources in order to maintain the structure that turns this paper into a business.

To close December.s breakfast, Josep Miquel Piqué, managing director of 22@Barcelona, noted that, of the 925 companies in the district, 47 % have been newly created and 53.73 % belong to one of the four clusters (ICT, Media, Biotech and Energy). He also pointed out that 32,000 new jobs have been created since the project began.


PARTICIPANTS. OPINIONS

.Very interesting; especially Vigyan Singhal.s talk: everything he explained, the type of company they have..

.I found Paco Solé.s proposal very interesting; it visualizes what the territory needs to generate more wealth for society and, as a result, for the innovation system. On the other hand, Elastix seems like the perfect expression of this program. We need to continue in this way in order to contribute to development..

.I.ve lived here for many years and I love to see this sort of initiatives that promote Barcelona, and Catalonia. Any initiative of this type is positive..
 

EXTRA INFORMATION

  • The UPC.s Innovate Program aims to contribute to developing investigation at the Polytechnic University of Catalonia and to promote innovation culture and the entrepreneurial spirit throughout the university community: investigators, students, professors, administrative and service staff, and graduates, favoring the creation of new companies as well as value-adding instruments, which are the fruit of knowledge.
  • Barcelona.s Landing platform has joined with platforms from other countries like China, Korea, France and Mexico. Landing establishes a channel for international cooperation through an alliance (MoU) with the help of the foreign innovation system, which can detect and offer technology-based projects to be incubated here in Catalonia. The idea is to establish solid and sustainable relationships in order to attract leading technology and business institutions that are connected with international R&D&i technology, so they can work together.
  • A business incubator is a project or a company that aims to create or develop and support small or micro businesses, specifically in the early stages. They must be innovative entrepreneurial projects.
In many cases they are publicly sponsored projects aimed toward creating new businesses in a specific geographic area. They help new business people with the management .business plan, finances, marketing. as well as giving them access to facilities and resources in order to minimize the risk involved. 

In the case of privately sponsored incubators, beyond helping with services, consulting and facilities, new businesses receive financial support in the form of capital investment.

The incubation period depends on the project, but can range from twelve to eighteen months. If the company survives this period successfully they move into the growth phase, which requires additional funding.
 






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