Periodic Reporting for period 2 - TETRAMAX (TEchnology TRAnsfer via Multinational Application eXperiments)
Reporting period: 2018-09-01 to 2020-02-29
TETRAMAX pursues the following objectives to achieve its goals in the domain of CLEC and to support the initiative:
1. Stimulating, organizing, and evaluating different Technology Transfer Experiment (TTX) types: TETRAMAX enables and co-funds three types of TTX, each with a different focus and timeline.
2. Building and leveraging a European CLEC competence centre network: SMEs and mid-caps usually do not have dedicated resources to deeply engage in cross-border technology transfer, which is often initiated via personal attendance of major international conferences, trade fairs, or similar technology marketplaces. Therefore, in order to enable TTX in the most efficient way, TETRAMAX establishes an EU wide network of competence centres, providing easy access to novel CLEC technologies via local (i.e. national or regional) contact points as first-hand “shopping places”.
3. Paving the way towards self-sustainability: TETRAMAX aims to build a long-term and self-sustainable EU network of CLEC competence centres by providing “seed funding”.
Throughout its duration, numerous TTX and network activities will be organized and performed to establish the necessary infrastructures, connections, and mechanisms. Beyond TETRAMAX, based on the results achieved by then, the majority of its competence centres will be well prepared for a profitable and self-sustainable operation.
Since the project start, TETRAMAX launched ten open calls for bilateral, value chain, and entrepreneurial technology transfer experiments (TTX). The strong response to the TTX calls proves great interest of the European community to act within a cascade funding system. Compared to regular Horizon 2020 proposal submissions TETRAMAX offers flexibility and simplicity by following its mission statement “fast track to market and innovation” to:
• Access to advanced digital technologies and competences;
• Short-term experiments (6-18 months) and a quick funding decision (7 weeks); and
• Free provision of technical and business coaching services.
1. TTX proposals submitted and eligible for external evaluation
Spread over the nine calls, TETRAMAX received 181 TTX proposals: 98 bilateral, 54 value chain, and 29 entrepreneurial proposals. In total, 92% of the submitted proposals passed the eligibility check for external evaluation (bilateral: 92, value chain: 52, entrepreneurial: 22), and 152 submitted proposals include SMEs.
2. TTX proposals selected for financial support
Next to eight TTX performed by the TETRAMAX consortium partners, 29 TTX proposals were selected for financial support (bilateral: 15, value chain: 7, entrepreneurial: 7) so far.
3. TTX involving SMEs
In total, 37 SMEs (19 micro and 18 small SMEs) are involved in the granted experiments, and one or even more SMEs are participating in every bilateral and value chain experiment. Particularly worth highlighting, is that 7 experiments are SME-driven and implemented by SMEs only.
By February 2020, approximately 30% of the TTX were completed, and TETRAMAX can report the first impact results generated by these experiments: 23 products and 16 engineering processes improved (with an average 1.6x reduction in power or energy consumption and 3x speed-up), 5 patent applications submitted, 6 start-ups founded, 48 investor pitches performed, and €7m venture capital granted.
Furthermore, a variety of different activities has been established: follow-up TETRAMAX application experiments, collaborations between third parties and TETRAMAX consortium partners, nationally funded projects, and new cross-border technology and research work contracts.
Perform 60+ innovative cross-border application experiments, allowing SMEs, mid-caps, and other companies to benefit from EU-wide CLEC competence and to integrate new digital technologies into their products at low risk. This leads to better (faster, cheaper, and lower energy) products and processes, new business opportunities, and (last but not least) new jobs.
Establish a growing network of CLEC competence centres, all tightly connected within TETRAMAX, covering all EU countries, and each centre having a large “smartly specialized” network of local ecosystem partners and digital innovation hubs. This network catalyses CLEC technology transfer at European scale.
Evolving the TETRAMAX project structures into a self-sustainable CLEC-centric network/ecosystem of competence centres and new digital innovation hubs, based on customized local and global business plans, leveraging existing and new digital platforms proven before via application experiments, and joining forces with regional funds like ESIF through the a “TETRAMAX label” as a quality mark.
Building a strong TETRAMAX brand for CLEC technology transfer support in Europe.
Broadly speaking, the support provided by TETRAMAX fosters the economic growth and technological advancement of SMEs across Europe, thereby having a positive impact on the strategic aims of the EU.