Natanail Stefanov, member of the Sofia Tech Park’s Management Board, in an interview for “Economic” magazine: Sofia Tech Park offers a beneficial environment for innovations

10 January 2021

“Here, entrepreneurs and scientists can find the needed support under one roof.“ Assures Natanail Stefanov.

What is needed for a place to become the home of science and innovations, entrepreneurship and business, and to generate high value added? Some of the factors are knowledge, trust, funding and time, said Natanail Stefanov, Vice Chairman of the Management Board at Sofia Tech Park JSC. To great extent, Sofia Tech park is already such place. “Entrepreneurship is important not only as an economic activity but also as a way of thinking that can be helpful for everyone. The problems are seen as potential solutions. That is why, Bulgaria is the perfect place for entrepreneurs – here there is an abundance of challenges waiting to be solved. Besides that, science is not only of public importance but it is also the base for a sustainable economic growth. It said that people pay for what is important for them. Although, it is true that after 1989 science occupies one of the last places of funding statistics, I believe that this will change soon.

Sofia Tech Park aims at supporting the applied science.

Our goal is the R&D-based projects to be commercialized and that is why technological transfer is an important topic of conversation for us. Most Bulgarian companies rarely have the conscious interest to implement science research in their production process because of the needed additional investments, while the foreign companies that have offices in the country have their own R&D centers. We are trying to be the connecting part between the science and the business – that will allow the right people to find the right solutions. We are not the only ones making this type of efforts – Karoll Knowledge Foundation offers the “Entrepreneurs in Science Education” program, the Center for Applied Studies and Innovations of Sofia University “St. Kliment Ohridski” trains and prepares students from scientific specialties for entrepreneurial activity. We are a partner of the “Science with future” program by America for Bulgaria Foundation.

Sofia Tech Park’s goal is to meet the needs of the environment. We provide mentorship and business support.

Frequently, we help establish a contact with investors and organizations supporting the innovations. We have at out disposal 11 laboratories and the scientist working at them are ready to answer the real needs of the business and the community. In February 2020, opened the doors of our coworking space. It is named Groworking Space because offers opportunities and support in the growth process. We are aiming at building a community where science and business have beneficial environment for development and every innovator is welcomed.

Here, under the same roof, entrepreneurs and scientists can find everything they need to make their ideas into a reality – workspace, laboratories, advice, contacts, funding and partners in the face of small, medium and big enterprises. We have

program for innovators

through which we give a head start to the development of the innovative ideas. In the near future, Sofia Tech Park will launch an incubation program in collaboration with the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN). We have many more ideas and projects in development. Our team continues the hard work in order to transform the park in an innovation center not only on a regional level, but also on a world one.”

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