The Chairman of the Sofia Tech Park, Vassil Karaivanov, took part in the National Cluster Conference which took place on 26 and 27 March in the Innovation Forum “John Atanasov” of the Science and Technology Park. The event is part of the European Cluster Weeks in which participated representatives from 12 countries and it is a platform for creating international contacts and places Bulgaria on the European stage.
During the conference Vasil Karaivanov was a moderator of a separate panel dedicated to the development of the country’s innovative ecosystem and to the achievement of good synergy between its components – start-up environment, organizations providing infrastructure and cluster organizations in the field of high technology, mature companies, researchers and scientists, as well as the Bulgarian innovative community and the European structures in the field of innovation, technology and R&D.
Karaivanov highlighted that the contribution of the ICT sector to GDP in Bulgaria is growing every year and is over 5% in 2018, which places our country second in the EU by this indicator. The real estate sector has also grown in recent years. According to data for 2018, up to 5% of GDP is the share of the outsourcing sector.
Karaivanov presented the activities in support of the start-up community and the innovation eco-system, which are set out in the main goals and tasks of Sofia Tech Park. The Science and Technology Park has about 6,000 square meters of office space for startup companies, where already more than 30 companies have been developed their innovative products and services in of the three focus areas – ICT, Life Sciences, Green Energy.
The upcoming second season of Sofia Tech Park’ Incubation Program is about to start and it is expected to provide shared office space for 60 teams and start-ups, as well as services to support young companies through the process of realization their projects. The focus of the program will be on the development of applied science and the transformation of scientific achievements into successful products. The program will target innovators from all over the country and the Balkan region. Karaivanov pointed out that it is necessary to achieve synergy between science and business. In this direction Sofia Tech Park presents an opportunity for the business to work together with the 11 high-tech laboratories of the park and their teams of highly qualified experts.
Leona Aslanova, founder of Innovation Starter, Anna-Marie Vilamovska, Executive Director of the Bulgarian Outsourcing Association, Ana Panayova, Executive Director of ICT Cluster, Tanya Kosseva-Boshova, Chairman of the Association of Business Builders, took participation in the panel.