Instigated in 2005, “competitiveness clusters” are groupings of companies, research laboratories and education/training institutions formed with a view to developing collaborative, innovative R&D projects and delivering competitive advantages for the resulting products and services.
Both national and local public authorities are involved in the clusters, offering members the benefits of their respective resources for supporting economic activity. The clusters now offer a highly effective business network to the technology companies joining them. These clusters are playing a key role in driving growth within most of the region’s sectors of excellence.
Businesses belonging to the clusters benefit from various advantages:
- Multiple opportunities to share expertise with other members through cluster-generated initiatives (clubs, think tanks, seminars, business meetings, etc.) or initiatives by partners such as trade associations, Chambers of Commerce and Industry and economic development agencies. Professionals can also forge contacts at the major events for trade audiences and the general public in order to test pioneering products and services (such as the Futur en Seine
digital festival, for example)
- Opportunities to step up exports. The proportion of SMEs exporting their products and services is significantly higher than average within the clusters – from 20% to more than 50%
- Special access to training organisations and to the most innovative research laboratories within their sector
- Streamlined access to the public finance for joint research projects. In 2008, the state made €138 million available for R&D projects in the competitiveness clusters. The clusters also organise special opportunities to access private finance from venture capitalists and business angels.
Find more information about clusters in Paris-Region on Econovista, the free interactive economic map of Paris-Region (Ile de France):
-Cap Digital – Digital content
-ASTech Paris Region – Aeronautics Space & Defense
And soon System@TIC Paris Region