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Croatia – R&D&I projects

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Croatian Business Innovation Agency BICRO

The Business Innovation Centre of Croatia – BICRO d.o.o. was established by the Government of the Republic of Croatia in 1998 for the purpose of implementing the Government’s incentive programme for technological development and is the main institute for the development and advancement of an innovative and technological system. A competitive national economy is the main factor driving development of any society. Successful economies in today’s world are based on knowledge. The core of such economies is innovation and knowledge as the main initiator of accelerated economic development. Science provides an important contribution to strengthening a knowledge-based economy. Scientific research leads to new discoveries and engineering solutions. The ability to transform a scientific result into a successful commercial product is of key importance for the future economic development of our country. In this process, three elements are necessary for an effective transformation of a scientific result into a commercial product or service that finally marketed.

They are:

  • an excellent and strong scientific foundation
  • suitable sources of financing
  • an adequate business and technological infrastructure

The Ministry of Science, Education and Sport has initiated the Croatian Technological Development Project (Science and Technology Project – STP) providing incentives to Croatian industry through various programmes whose purpose it is to modernise the system of science, improve scientific infrastructure, encourage academic entrepreneurship and develop an encouraging environment for development and growth of knowledge-based companies.

The Business Innovation Centre of Croatia – BICRO Ltd. was founded on the basis of Regulation (Official Gazette no. 129 dated 19 November 2010) declared by the Government of the Republic of Croatia. The Regulation provided that BICRO cease to exist as a company and become a public institute titled THE BUSINESS INNOVATION AGENCY OF THE REPUBLIC OF CROATIA (abbreviated agency title: BICRO). The Ministry of Science, Education and Sport has the duty of drawing up the Agreement on Transferring Duties from BICRO Ltd. to the BICRO agency.

The BICRO Management Board adopted the Decision on Re-organisation of the Company by forming sectors and departments for the purpose of optimally preparing effective implementation of structural funds from the European Union once the Republic of Croatia becomes a member of the EU.

 

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Support for Private Sector (SMEs) R&D

The fundamental task is preparation and publishing public calls for financing of projects in the research and development segment in the private sector, choosing the best project in accordance with approved budgets, contact with beneficiaries, monitoring engineering implementation of projects including the receiving and processing of applications for the release of funds.

The sector implements the BICRO PoC programmes (Proof of Concept Grant Fund programme), RAZUM, IRCRO, EUREKA, and activities relating to EEN (European Enterprise Network) and the FINNO project.

 

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Support to Public Sector R&D

The fundamental task is to prepare and publish calls for financing projects in the research and development segment for public companies, choosing the best project in accordance with approved budgets, contact with beneficiaries, monitoring engineering implementation of projects including the receiving and processing of applications for fund payouts.

The sector also implements the TEHCRO and PoC (Proof of Concept Grant Fund programme for scientists and researchers) BICRO programmes, and activities relating to the FIDIBE project.

BICRO is apart from that involved in continual cooperation with domestic and foreign partners in international projects, cooperation with competent bodies for the implementation of EU Structural Funds, programming new schemes within future operational programmes and the implementation of the BIOCentre and FIDES projects.

BICRO nurtures the exchange of experience and strategic cooperation with national and international organisations and persons who actively participate by engaging proprietary potential in numerous national and international professional meetings, lectures, seminars, congresses, conferences, international exhibitions, presentations, and in projects (e.g. the network EEN, FIDIBE, FIDES, FINNO). The future of any company, including that of BICRO, means that knowledge and people are one of the fundamental values. BICRO directs its attention to the process of continual and permanent education and development of its employees, hence investing into personnel and new knowledge is one of the investments that are attributed great importance.

 

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BICRO support programmes

  1. Proof of Concept Grant Fund Programme. The fundamental goal of the programme is financing innovation in its earliest phase and providing grant support to scientists and entrepreneurs in order to verify whether their current research results, newly devised processes or technology are feasible and whether they have the potential for commercial use.
  2. RAZUM is a programme that ensures initial financing of newly established enterprises or initial financing of the development of new products or services in existing small and medium-sized enterprises.
    RAZUM is directed towards providing financial assistance primarily to technology orientated knowledge-based enterprises and assesses the level of technological innovation, quality of management, commercial potential, competitive advantage and quality of the business plan. Only those projects that largely comply with this criteria are selected for financing are placed into two project categories:
  3. IRCRO programme is intended to encourage cooperation between the scientific community and industry in developing projects. The projects are submitted by small and medium-sized companies interested in the transfer of technology from research and development institutions for the purpose of increasing competitiveness by developing new and improved existing products, services and production processes.
  4. EUREKA is an European initiative for financing market-orientated projects in various technological field. The programme is intended for small and medium-sized enterprises that develop new products, services and processes. The enterprises may include scientific and research institutions in the project in order to transfer of technology and knowledge.
  5. In December of 2011, BICRO became the implementation body for the Eurostars programme in Croatia based on a signed bilateral agreement. The Eurostars research and development programme is a common initiative of EUREKA and the European Commission, and managed by the EUREKA Secretariat. The European Commission participates in the Eurostars programme by co-financing up to 25% of the public share of project.
  6. TEHCRO programme assists in initiating, advancing and developing infrastructural institutions such as scientific-technological parks, new technology incubators and those research and development centres. Financing is approved in the form grants, favourable loans for the procurement of specialised equipment or investments in ownership stakes (for large projects) during the period leading up to full self-sustainability of the project, i.e. up to maximum period of 5 years

BICRO has in terms of the Instrument for Pre-Accession Assistance (IPA) – Component 3C – Operational Programme for Regional Competitiveness, in cooperation with the Ministry of Science, Education and Sport, University of Zagreb, and the City of Zagreb, prepared the project The Bioscience Incubation Centre and Technology Commercialisation – BIOCentre. Total investments in the BIOCentre project amounts to € 18,823,995.70 during the time-frame of 2007-2014, of which € 16,376,410.70 covers construction, supervision and equipping which is to be financed via IPA.

The BIOCentre has been devised to be an active factor in ensuring a productive relationship between fundamental and applied scientific research and industry, technological infrastructure and new biotechnology companies in the process of developing new products. On such a basis, its vision, mission and operational profile and goals have been defined.

Setting up the BIOCentre marks the beginning of creating the necessary infrastructural prerequisites for developing entrepreneurship in the bioscience field.

 

Download the Catalogue of Innovative Projects from Croatia 2012 (.pdf, 4,8 MB)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Download the Catalogue of Innovative Projects from Croatia 2011 (.pdf, 1,5 MB)

 

 

 

 

More info on: www.bicro.hr

 

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Aug 31, 2012 by Magda Paolillo AGINNOVAZIONE