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COWIN success in reaching EUR 24M investment in research exploitation

The final review of the Coordination & Support action COWIN welcomed the complete success of the action launched in October 2010

The final review of the Coordination & Support action COWIN welcomed the complete success of the action launched in October 2010


“More than the achievements of measurable targets in commercial exploitation of research project results, COWIN project is today a powerful professional method to be used as a platform for business development of future projects” as stated Emilio Martinez and Nihal Sinnadurai, Project Reviewers for the European Commission.

“Major COWIN contribution has been the development and the proof of a new model dedicated to public funded research and its successful transfer to economic players. This model has been developed for the microsystems ecosystem. But, also, it could be applied in other technological areas and financed through a variety of mechanisms at European, national or regional level”, says Javier Bonal, Project Officer, DG Connect European Commission.

Launched on October the 1st 2010 under the initiative of the Components Unit of DG Connect, COWIN aimed at giving response to the gap from research to market and at attracting private investment in the European smart systems industry.
In conducting 42 months of operational actions, COWIN team successfully engaged more than EUR 24M investment for the commercial exploitation of European research results in smart systems. This action leaded and coordinated by Géraldine Andrieux Gustin, Senior Partner Yole Finance, a business unit of Yole Développement, focused on structuring the value chain from research to market to attract customers and investors. Researchers and young companies exploiting European collaborative research results benefited from COWIN expertise. As stated Jörg Nestler, CEO of BiFlow Systems GmbH: «For our start-up company, BiFlow Systems, COWIN support was essential and helped us to sign a contract with an important customer in a new and promising application area.»

Private investors welcomed also COWIN actions: “As VC company, an improvement of project maturity is important to demonstrate “proof of concept” or even better “proof of product”; a key milestone we, as private investors, require to consider an investment. I also appreciate COWIN contribution to structure ICT technologies value chain in working with the different innovation stakeholders. According to me, it is essential to keep for key technologies full value chains in Europe», said Marc Lambrechts, Capricorn Venture Partners.

COWIN team composed of 5 partners – Yole Développement/ Yole Finance, EURIPIDES², the Eureka cluster for Smart Systems – Zabala Innovation Consulting - VDI/VDE Innovation + Technik and Tartu Biotechnology Park presented its whole results to the European Commission in May 2014. Project reviewers acknowledged the strong leadership and competency as well as the professionalism and commitment by the whole team. They especially welcomed COWIN impact on the smart systems European community with the following results: 1,200 industrials engaged into COWIN activities, about 600 meetings organized between industrials and technology holders to define exploitation plan and analyze business case, 20 start-up supported in their access to market, 12 companies introduced to VCs with up to date 5 successful fundraising achieved.

Moreover, COWIN should have also a longer term impact as highlighted by the project reviewers: “The professional model developed by COWIN is the most important result for all future projects. Maximum impact of COWIN is possible by deploying its method across a multitude of topics. COWIN is now a highly respected concept and team. A COWIN-like process should be embedded into R&D&I programmes, it will be essential to foster innovation in Europe.”

COWIN project officially ended in March 2014, but this is not the end of the story. “COWIN has been a great experience. The whole team started the project with the conviction that we had to enter into a new paradigm to engage commercial exploitation of research results. We believe we have proven our concept and demonstrated our ability to execute”, comments Géraldine Andrieux. “We are currently working to keep the momentum in further applying COWIN approach to generate economic value in Europe, while working with all the innovation stakeholders”, she adds.

About Yole Développement –

Founded in 1998, Yole Développement has grown to become a group of companies providing marketing, technology and strategy consulting, media in addition to corporate finance services. With a strong focus on emerging applications using silicon and/or micro manufacturing, Yole Développement group has expanded to include more than 50 collaborators worldwide covering MEMS, Compound Semiconductors, LED, Image Sensors, Optoelectronics, Microfluidics & Medical, Photovoltaics, Advanced Packaging, Manufacturing, Nanomaterials and Power Electronics.
The group supports industrial companies, investors and R&D organizations worldwide to help them understand markets and follow technology trends to develop their business.

For more information about:
• Consulting Services: Jean-Christophe Eloy (
• Financial Services: Géraldine Andrieux-Gustin (
• Reports business: David Jourdan (
• Corporate Communication: Sandrine Leroy (