Kaunas University of Technology and Italian company Gruppo Fos signed a cooperation agreement for the establishment of a biomedical engineering research centre in Santaka Valley, Kaunas.
Greatly Impressed by Infrastructure and Talent
Supported by foreign investment development agency Invest Lithuania, Italian company Gruppo Fos decided on Kaunas thanks to the advanced scientific infrastructure at Kaunas University of Technology (KTU), the availability of skilled experts with the necessary scientific competences and the huge potential of KTU’s IT and engineering students.
On the initiative of Invest Lithuania, the Italian high-tech enterprise came to Kaunas to meet KTU scientists and visit the National Innovation and Business Centre (NIVC) in June of this year. This fact-finding tour gave Gruppo Fos the opportunity to evaluate Kaunas’ science infrastructure and business development opportunities in the area of bioengineering, electronics and IT. The delegation also visited the Santaka Integrated Science, Studies and Business Valley, which is to open shortly.
According to the director of the NIVC Almantas Danilevičius, the guests were impressed. “I think that the company was greatly impressed by the infrastructure at Santaka Valley, and by the opportunity to work under the same roof as our researchers and students in new premises and state-of-the-art laboratories. We only had to encourage them and ensure we provided the right conditions for them to set up operations here,” Mr Danilevičius said.
Kaunas an Attractive Location for Research Centres
According to Matteo Pedrelli, CEO of Gruppo Fos, the company was looking for a particularly attractive location for its business expansion. “We were looking for an attractive strategic location in Eastern Europe, where we could apply our experience in research and development. Our international expansion plan includes development not only in Western Europe, but also in the Central and Eastern European region. We have already implemented projects in Bulgaria, Romania, China and Germany,” Mr Pedrelli said. “In Kaunas we found the ideal conditions for our biomedical engineering centre: well-developed logistics, direct contact with scientists and students, and modern research facilities. We were also impressed by the help of the various institutions – all the institutions we encountered made a significant contribution towards the implementation of our project in Lithuania.”
At the signing of the cooperation agreement, KTU Rector Petras Baršauskas said that Santaka Valley has become a focal point for progressively minded businesses not only from Lithuania, but also from abroad. “We have agreed to cooperate in the research and commercialisation of science products. I’m pleased with the trend that businesses are investing in Kaunas and our University. Cooperation with business is a strategically important area for KTU.”
According to Arvydas Arnašius, the Director General of Invest Lithuania, the Gruppo Fos investment will contribute significantly to the core of science and research competencies in Kaunas. “Kaunas is attractive for companies that create high added-value, particularly due to the presence of the largest university of technical sciences in the Baltic States (KTU). Private sector investment in science and research provides new opportunities for local researchers and gifted students. Furthermore, increased science commercialisation activity will raise Kaunas to a whole new level on the map of European applied science.”
About GRUPPO FOS
Gruppo Fos, based in Genoa (Italy), is a high-tech enterprise involved in IT and the Internet of Things. The company is focused on R&D and technology transfer, carried out at joint laboratories with leading Italian research institutions: the University of Genoa and ENEA (the Italian National Technology Agency).
Gruppo Fos is one of the founders of Politecmed – a cluster of IT companies of biomedical engineering and the healthcare sector and research institutes. The company was established in 1999, and its annual turnover is 10 M euro.