ESA BIC to boost Hungary start-ups
The 19th ESA Business Incubation Centre opened this week in Hungary to support entrepreneurs creating new local start-up companies developing services and applications that make use of space technology and satellite data.
ESA Director General Jan Wörner welcomed the new member – ESA BIC Hungary – to “our Europe-wide business incubation initiative to spin off space technology to innovate in terrestrial sectors.”
“One of our key objectives is to improve quality of life here on Earth,” he said, adding:
“We make our knowledge and technology available to be used outside space to support progress and growth across Europe. At our business incubators, young entrepreneurs and start-ups are supported to create innovative solutions through the use of satellite services and space technology.”
Under ESA’s Technology Transfer Programme and its business incubation centres, the Agency has fostered over 600 new companies boosting regional economies and creating many new local jobs.
Director General of Wigner RCP Péter József Lévai said: “The application of space technologies is one of the key solutions for creating energy efficient environments and sustainable conditions on Earth, thereby improving our life and ensuring our future.”
He added: “It is a great honour and a large responsibility to join the family of ESA offices and their teams to fulfil the mission of the BIC network. We are looking forward to participating in new challenges and becoming a successful site of the ESA BIC network.”
Twenty-five new start-ups in Hungary
The ESA Business Incubation Centre Hungary is located in a newly renovated Wigner RCP campus in Csillebérc in the outskirts of Budapest and will support five space-connected start-ups annually over the next five years.
It is managed by the renowned Wigner Research Centre for Physics (RCP), the main research institute in Hungary covering a wide range of topics from particle physics to space physics, and from theoretical physics to applied research. Wigner RCP is already working with ESA on several programmes as well as on technology transfer activities, as it is responsible for the Hungarian National Technology Transfer Initiative.
ESA BIC Hungary was opened on 2 July by ESA Director General Jan Wörner and Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade in Hungary Levente Magyar, together with Director General of the Wigner RCP Dr Péter József LÉVAI, Head of the ESA Technology Transfer and Business Incubation Office Frank M. Salzgeber and Head of the ESA BIC Hungary Zsuzsanna Tandi.
Space industry solutions for Hungarian start-ups
ESA BIC Hungary aims to help entrepreneurs and start-ups develop new terrestrial systems and services through the use of space technology, supporting 25 start-ups in Hungary over next 5 years.
The start-ups admitted to be incubated will receive support for both technical and business aspects of their efforts as well as financial and networking support.
The objectives are to contribute to the economic development of Hungary, to strengthen national business, create jobs and help launch new ventures. Also, networking assistance will support Hungarian entrepreneurs in launching their business abroad.
World's largest ecosystem for
ESA BIC Hungary is the latest to join the pan-European network of ESA Business Incubation Centres operated under ESA`s Technology Transfer and Business Incubation Office.
Today, there are 19 ESA BICs in 16 European countries – Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the Netherlands and the UK, and with Norway to join in 2 month – forming the largest ecosystem in the world for space-related entrepreneurship.
Over 600 start-ups have been fostered and another 160 new start-ups are taken in yearly at ESA BICs to be supported under the two-year business development boosting programme.