Prepare your skis in the summer, wheels – in the winter, and business partners – constantly
Representatives of Laser & Engineering Technologies Cluster LITEK have participated in 5th Cluster Matchmaking Conference “Bringing Cluster Collaboration to the Next Level” that organized in Stuttgart, Germany, on 21st – 22nd of September, in order to establish new business relations for future projects.
Cluster Matchmaking Conference has become more and more popular every year and the statistics of this year event is impressive: nearly 200 participants from more than 30 countries, around 600 targeted meetings were organized.
During the event, participants had the opportunity not only to connect with potential business or research partners, introduce themselves or update their old contacts, but they could also learn more about popular cluster models, populations and clustering trends. During the conference, the participants of the conference were introduced to the cluster financing activities, which in recent years have helped to develop international cooperation of clusters, and clusters future strategies. The emphasis was also placed on aspects of value added chain creation, combining collaboration between different clusters as well as the development of innovation, technology or industry 4.0 and capabilities.
Lithuania was represented by nine representatives this year, including LITEK. Sector of laser & engineering technologies was represented by LITEX coordinator Julius Paužolis and business consultant of the Science and Technology Park of the Institute of Physics – Giedrius Valuckas. Both participants were pleasantly surprised the scale of the event and the competences and achievements of the gathered participants.
According to G. Valuckas, “such events are useful in promoting cooperation between different sectors and clusters. It was fascinating to see the statistics on how many clusters work together, the growth of joint projects and the involvement of new clusters every year”. Participants participated not only in B2B meetings but also they could reveal their inspirational success stories at organized workshops in which the work was done by simulating and interactively designing cooperation between different clusters, thus creating the infrastructure of services, innovations and products, said Valuckas. After doing some homework, such conferences can be excellent platforms in order to gain experience, find international partners for R&D initiatives and other collaborative activities.
J. Paužolis was impressed by the fact that the conference brought together numerous representatives of clusters from the Scandinavian, Baltic, Central and Western European countries that have Bronze, Silver or Gold labels. “The clusters with whom I made contacts, actively and willingly shared information and experience, searched for opportunities for cross-sectoral cluster cooperation” said coordinator of LITEK.
Representatives of Laser & Engineering Technologies Cluster said that intense B2B meetings helped them to establish new contacts with clusters from microtechnology, biotechnology, IT, optoelectronics, automotive, space, manufacturing technologies and other sectors. According to J. Paužolis, other clusters were particularly interested in the possibilities of cooperation with LITEK companies: “I received offers for our companies to join existing project initiatives, to initiate joint projects under the “Innovation Express” measure. It the future It is expected to make good use out of the received information and contacts and participate in the “Innovation Express” program by sharing experiences with other cluster from different sectors and/or countries in order to engage in international value chains”.