The Federation of Industries of Northern Greece (FING) and Steinbeis-Europa-Zentrum, both partners of the European project DragonSTAR “Dragon – Sustaining Technology And Research (EU-China Collaboration)”, implemented a Travel Grant Scheme.
The Travel Grant Scheme provided funding for European organizations (businesses, research agencies, incubators etc.) to investigate the Chinese market and identify suitable partners for technological and/or research collaboration, with the aim of achieving business, technology or research collaborations with relevant Chinese companies and research institutions.
Altogether FING published 3 Calls for applicants and supported the participation of 36 companies and research institutions from 11 EU countries.
The first Call “Individual Vouchers”, was designed to cover the traveling expenses of European organizations to visit Chinese counterparts of their choice and discuss the possibility of concluding technological and/or research collaboration and agreements.
The second Call supported European organisations to participate in the Brokerage Event during the EU-China Business and Technology Co-operation Fair in Chengdu (21-23/10/2014).
The third and final Call supported companies to visit three different locations in China (Chengdu 21-23/10/2014, Zhongshan 24-25/10/2014, Beijing 27-28/10/2014) and to participate in a number of business and investment events. In particular, the agenda of the organisations participating in the third Call was as follows:
1. Chengdu, Sichuan Province (21-23 October 2014)
Brokerage Event organized in parallel to the EU-China Business & Technology (B&T) Co-operation Fair in cooperation with EU-PIC (Associated Partner of DRAGON-STAR) and the Enterprise Europe Network, which was held in Chengdu, China on 21-23 October 2014. This brokerage event focused on EU-China relevant urbanization industries, environmental protection, modern agriculture, bio-pharmaceutical, general aviation and IT sectors.
The three-day fair included also a Thematic Forum on Cooperation between East Europe and West China, and EU-China Innovation Cluster Cooperation Conference, the EU-China Innovation Cluster Cooperation Conference, the EU-China General Aviation Seminar, the EU-China Modern Agriculture Seminar and a side event on EU-China Collaborative Innovation in ICT.
2. Zhongshan, Guangdong Province (24-25 October 2014)
The following activities took place in Zhongshan:
• Summit Forum of Innovation Driven and International Co-operation
• Science, Technology, and Industry Festival: All European company profiles were translated into Chinese and presented in a poster display for the Chinese companies and investors to read and select
• Roundtable Discussions regarding the creation of a Sino-European Science Park: From the European side, the participants of the round table discussion were Mr. Simon Poulsen from Agro Business Park (DK), and Mr. Pantelis Angelidis owner of VIDAVO S.A. (GR), which offers novel e-service solutions in the area of healthcare and telemedicine. From the Chinese side, the participants were Ms. Kiran Choudhry, Senior Program Manager from Beijing Technology Exchange and Promotion Center, as well as representatives from Guangdong province and Zhongshan Municipality
• B2B Meetings with Investors (VC, PE), Local Companies, Government. Each DragonSTAR delegate made a 5-10 minute presentation that provided the Chinese investors with specific information about: the European company / organization; the technologies / innovations offered; the current stage of development; what kind of Chinese investment they were seeking; and prospects for investment returns for the investor. The presentation session was followed by B2B meetings between European and Chinese counterparts.
• Company visits to the Zhongshan Torch Development Zone International Conference Centre.
3. Beijing, Beijing Province (27-28 October 2014)
• Meetings with Beijing Municipal Science and Technology Commission: The purpose of these meetings was to introduce European partners to Beijing Municipal Science and Technology Leadership and Representatives in order to explore future collaborations within a city-to-city and cluster-to-cluster framework. The theme of this meeting was to explore Platform Partnering Possibilities with clusters and science parks in Europe. The Beijing Municipal Science and Technology Commission has numerous platforms, alliances, and associations, which consist of thousands of businesses and organizations in China. This was a major opportunity to develop bridges of exchange in a range of sectors, in particular: agribusiness, energy, urbanization, ICT, and life sciences. For both sides, this meeting was aimed at discussing and developing viable mechanisms for partnering with the right counterparts. European delegates / speakers were asked to: (a) describe their cluster and relevant experiences (internationalization); and 2) outline steps that could be applied to partnering with Chinese platforms.
• Workshops with speakers from EU SME Centre and IPR SME Helpdesk: The workshops include introductions and discussion on the Chinese market from China-based, EU-funded agencies: the EU SME Centre and the China IPR SME Helpdesk. These agencies provide useful information and on-the-ground knowledge about doing business in China, prospects and challenges for entering the Chinese market, sector trends, and how to protect your IP, for example. Both have numerous tools and in-depth expertise, which they can provide on an on-going basis.
• Business-to-Business Matchmaking Event in China’s Innovation Cluster: In this Business-to-Business Matchmaking opportunity, DragonSTAR delegates met with pre-selected, high-quality Chinese businesses during a B2B matching event. This was an opportunity to present their company and technologies, meet face-to-face with potential Chinese partners, understand their businesses, and discuss options for future collaboration. Each DragonSTAR delegate made a 5-10 minute presentation to provide the Chinese audience with specific information about: company / organization; the technologies / innovations offered; current stage of development; and what kind of Chinese partnership they were seeking. The one-on-one meetings gave the Chinese participants the opportunity to communicate in greater depth with the European company and to discuss how they may co-operate in the future.
• Sino-EU Investment Opportunities – Pitch Meetings with investors in Peking University: In this Investors Pitch Meeting, European technologies were presented to potential Chinese investment partners who want to invest in leading technology and products. After the meetings, DragonSTAR delegates were able to meet face-to-face with Chinese investors who are interested in working with international partners and foreign technology.
Each DragonSTAR delegate made a 5-10 minute presentation that provided the Chinese investors with specific information about: the European company / organization; the technologies / innovations offered; the current stage of development; what kind of Chinese investment they were seeking; and prospects for investment returns for the investor.