Space Florida Signs MOU With European Business Innovation Network

SPACE FLORIDA PRESS RELEASE
Nov. 3, 2010

The European Business Innovation Centre Network (EBN) and Space Florida last week initiated a Memorandum of Understanding to develop new market opportunities and resources for Small and Medium Aerospace Enterprises in Europe and Florida.  Ongoing activities will further business development and job creation initiatives in the aerospace sector for Florida, as well as establish Florida as the threshold to American markets for European SMEs.  The agreement was signed at the European Satellite Navigation Conference in Munich.

Through the Memorandum of Understanding, EBN and Space Florida will identify technology and commercial opportunities for each other’s space-related SMEs including research and commercialization opportunities utilizing the International Space Station, developing collaboration networks, creating mechanisms for cross-continent incubation and business development, trade missions, events and partnership opportunities. To the furthest extent possible, EBN and Space Florida will support each others’ programs and initiatives, making appropriate introductions and arranging networking opportunities with potential strategic partners and investors that might benefit from such collaborations.

“We are looking forward to extraordinary opportunities for small and medium enterprises throughout the European Business Innovation Centre Network to access American markets and share resources,” said Philippe Vanrie, Chief Executive Officer of the European Business Innovation Centre Network.  EBN is a non-profit organization established by the European Commission and industry leaders devoted to the growth of Small and Medium Enterprises located in more than 200 business incubators across Europe.  EBN will focus their efforts on companies that are part of ESINET – a network of incubators it manages on behalf of the European Space Agency.

Frank DiBello, president of Space Florida, met with ESA and members of EBN at the Farnborough Air Show in England over the summer to investigate collaborating with the space technology incubators to enhance access to European markets and resources for Florida small businesses.  “Connecting business to several key European Markets through well-networked incubators will provide extraordinary access to markets and resources never before possible for small and medium enterprises,” he said.  Space Florida is aggressively guiding Florida’s aerospace transition to serve traditional space markets and downstream applications for the state’s aerospace and related target industries.

The goals of the agreement serve the missions each organization has for aerospace related business development. For EBN and its ESA incubator companies, growth and development in Florida as a threshold to American markets is an exciting potential to offer small companies throughout Europe in its ESINET partner incubators. For Florida, the program is part of a new international effort on the part of Space Florida to assist all Florida aerospace businesses capture key initiatives and markets during the next decade that will ensure the state is a global aerospace power, growing three times its current size over the next decade.

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About The European Business Innovation Centre Network (EBN): EBN is the leading pan-European Community of Business & Innovation Centres (BICs) and Innovation-based incubators. As an international not for profit association EBN represents officially the European BIC Network which consists of more than 200 BICs and similar organizations such as incubators, research and innovation centres which all share the same objective of SME support and development. EBN is a proud partner of the European Space Agency and manages ESINET, the European network of space connected business incubators, on ESA’s behalf.
www.ebn.eu
www.esinet.eu

About Space Florida: Space Florida was created to strengthen Florida’s position as the global leader in aerospace research, investment, exploration and commerce. As Florida’s aerospace development organization, we are committed to attracting and expanding the next generation of space industry businesses. With its highly trained workforce, proven infrastructure and unparalleled record of achievement, Florida is the ideal location for aerospace businesses to thrive – and Space Florida is the perfect partner to help them succeed. www.spaceflorida.gov.