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General Information
The date when the cluster organisation was established: 
Monday, 31 January, 2005
Number of staff in the management team of the cluster organisation : 
1-5
Regions: 
Югозападен (Yugozapaden)
Cluster Excellence Label: 
Other
Membership to European Strategic Cluster Partnerships (ESCP-4i or ESCP-S3): 
Membership to other networks/partnerships: 
NameWebsite
3B ICT Clusters' Network
Clusterize
Association of Business Cluster
Cluster Management Team: 
NameSurnamePositionTelephoneEmail
Anna
Naydenova
Cluster Manager
+359 2 489 97 44
anna_naydenova@ictalent.org
Peter
Statev
Cluster Manager
+359 2 489 97 44
peter_statev@ictalent.org
Krasimira
Shindarova
ECCP Responsible Person
+359 2 489 97 44
krasimira_shindarova@ictalent.org
Todor
Mitov
ECCP Responsible Person
+359 2 489 97 44
todor_mitov@ictalent.org
Languages spoken: 
Bulgarian
English
Sectoral and Industrial Focus
Sectoral Industries: 
Communications Equipment and Services
Electric Power Generation and Transmission
Technology fields: 
Automation, Robotics Control Systems
Broadband Technologies
S3 EU priority areas: 
Intelligent inter-modal & sustainable urban areas (e.g. smart cities)
Advanced manufacturing systems
Emerging industries: 
Digital Industries
Logistical Services
Composition of the cluster
Total number of members: 
286
Number of SME members: 
280
Number of research organisations/universities/technology centres: 
6
Entrepreneurship and scale-up support facilities in the cluster's ecosystem (see "Organisation type"): 
Name and link of major players: 
Cluster Strategy
Mission/Objectives: 

Foundation “Cluster Information and Communication Technologies” (ICT Cluster) is a world–class cluster initiative uniting 10 members (Bulgarian ICT associations and ICT clusters), including 280 ICT SME from different segments of the ICT Industry (microelectronics and embedded systems, Telecommunications, Software, Cyber security and etc.) and 6 Bulgarian technical university. 

 

The mission of organization is to increase the competitiveness of Bulgarian ICT Industry through promotion and development of world-class clusters by:

  • creating value chains that cut across sectors; 
  • enabling digital transformation and industrial modernization;
  • supporting  SMEs internationalization on a global markets;
  • promoting cooperation across regions, countries and sectors;

 

ICT Cluster‘s main areas of activities are:

  • Industrial modernization and value chain linkages;
  • Internationalization on a Global markets;
  • Entrepreneurship (start-ups and scale ups), acceleration;
  • Interregional, international and cross-sector collaboration;

 

More the 10 years the organization is promoting use of ICT as a tool for competitive business development, source of knowledge and skills’ enabler.

Do you have a formalised strategy?: 
No
Do you have a specific strategy focus that addresses internationalisation ?: 
Yes
Services
Support services provided: 
Access to the European Internal market
Internationalisation support (= Access to third countries markets)
Access to private funding (connecting to investors, seed-capital, venture-capital, crowd-funding, etc.)
Facilitation of collaboration between members
Innovation Management / Support of innovation processes (internal, external)
Cooperation Activities
International Cooperation
The main countries targeted by the cluster organisation: 
China
Egypt
Morocco
Taiwan
Our cluster organisation undertook the following international activities to support our members: 
Support to collaborative activities/etc.
Trans-national Cooperation
The main countries targeted by the cluster organisation: 
Albania
Greece
Hungary
Romania
Serbia
Our cluster organisation undertook the following trans-national activities to support our members: 
Participation at missions/events/study visits/fairs
Which clusters do you collaborate with?: 
ICT Cluster Bern
Cluj IT
ICT NET
INNOSKART
NI CAT
Automotive Cluster Slovenia
ODTU TECHNOKENT
Corallia
HAMAC
ICT Cluster - Plovdiv
Automotive Cluster - Bulgaria
Vojvodina ICT Cluster
Bulgarian Cluster Telecommunications
Cluster Microelectronics and embedded systems
MASIT
ICT Cluster Central Serbia
AITA
Green Technology Cluster from Latvia
Support Programmes
Participation in Funded Support Programmes: 
European ProgrammesProject NameLinkName & Description (Regional/National)Link (Regional/National)
FP7
H2020
CIP/COSME
INTERREG
Other

Smart Factory Hub - Improving RD and business policy conditions for transnational cooperation in the manufacturing industry 

 

Manufacturing industry represents a generator of R&D, innovation, growth and employment. Based on increasing pressure on manufacturers (increased production capacity in low-cost economies and increased level of sophistication of supply chains in high-cost economies), the manufacturers need to embrace novel technologies, principles and approaches. In other words, manufacturers need to digitize their production, while taking into consideration also improvement in processes and human resource management.

 

SMART FACTORY HUB (SFH) main objective is to improve framework conditions for innovation in the area of smart factory/Smart Manufacturing, based on Research and Innovation Smart Specialization Strategy (RIS3) centred model. The project is financed under Danube Interreg Programme. 

In order to follow project’s objective, we will be oriented to find novel solutions in the following 3 domains:

  • applying novel technologies,
  • applying effective production process and
  • applying effective human resource management systems

Project main outputs are following:

  • 1 common transnational Research and Innovation Smart Specialization Strategy - RIS3 centred Smart Factory Model with Action Plan and
  • 2 testing schemes - pilot implementation of innovative supply-driven (TransferLab) and demand-driven (PolicyLab) actions based on knowledge platform, cooperation profile matrix and learning hub for technology alliances.

 

Green Ict deVElopment 

 

Green Ict development (GIVE) has started on 01.12.2017 and it is with duration of 24 months. General project objective is to build up strategic cluster partnership in the field of smart green technologies among the three vital industries - automotive, renewable energy and ICT. The smart green technologies encompass all industrial and human activities which generate positive impact to the environment applying Information and Communication Technologies (ICT). Today, traditional manufacturing industries as automotive and renewable energy should find smart solutions to answer to global environmental challenge they face by applying ICT.

GIVE partnership is very challenging because it has eight partners from six different countries, two different European regions and three vital industries.

The specific objectives of the GIVE project are:

  • to create a favorable framework for establishing a sustainable cross-industry strategic cluster partnership across Europe among three vital industries- ICT, automotive and renewable energy by implementation of partnership building and collaboration activities.
  • to build up sustainable strategic cluster partnership based on development of GIVE internationalization strategy and implementation roadmap .
  • to promote GIVE partnership and increase online promotion of GIVE partners by implementation of identity shaping,communication, promotion and online media activities.

The GIVE strategic cluster partnership aims to create sustainable cross-industry, cross-cluster and cross – regional collaboration focusing on development of new value chain in the field of green smart technologies focusing on automotive and transport sectors and on the support of SMEs internationalization on the third markets.

The project idea is to establish sustainable long-term framework for value-added partnership among ICT as a backbone of green smart technologies in the automotive, transport and green technologies sectors.

The GIVE partnership will  achieve its goals applying the following approaches:

  • cross – cluster driven approach creating framework conditions for fostering GIVE partnership collaboration based on identification of common goals, common social media performance, common visual identity , organization of common events  and common working groups ;
  • cross – industry driven approach identifying the common industrial niches for collaboration  in the field of green smart technologies;
  • strategy - driven approach fostering collaboration planning activities for increase SMEs collaboration and internationalization on common targeted third markets.  

​Expected results after project implemenation are: 

  • Developing a GIVE internationalization strategy including GIVE strategic cluster partnership agreement, GIVE internasionalization strategy plan, GIVE implemenation roadmap, GIVE draft financial plan. 
  • Build up strong cross-border cluster cooperation based on developing commercially valuable and trustworthy relations among GIVE partners;  
  • Developing a common marketing, communication and branding strategy and visual identity; 
  • Identified targeted third markets of common interest outside Europe;
  • Foster complementarities among ICT, Automotive and Green technology sectors;
  •  Create common knowledge base for internationalization and marketing in cluster managers and SMEs members; 
  • Establishing strong links among  GIVE partners and SMEs;
  • Initiate local awareness and dialogue on cross-clusters and cross-industry collaboration and SME internationalization in the field of smart green technologies, automotive and ICT 
  • Market Intelligence Report including intelligence gathering, assessment of market trends and opportunities in conjunction with the consortium capabilities and needs. The document will include recommendations on:  Internationalization readiness of cluster managers and SMEs,  GIVE areas of cooperation and complementarity among partners( technological, business, R&D, innovation), Target markets outside Europe  ; ​

 

GIVE ESCP consist of 8 partners from 6 European countries:5 ICT Clusters: ICT Cluster Bulgaria, Albanian Information and Technology Association, Cluj IT Cluster, Chamber of Commerce for Information and Communication Technologies – Skopje, ICT Cluster Central Serbia;2 Automotive Clusters: Automotive Cluster Bulgaria and Automotive Cluster Serbia1 Green Technology Cluster from Latvia: Green-Tech Latvia 

The partnership development is coordinated by ICT Cluster Bulgaria and financially supported by COSME programme of the EC. The project preparation was supported by REG USAID Project.

Danube ICT Clusters' Cooperation for smart and inclusive growth - DANUBE ICT

The project Danube ICT Clusters' Cooperation for Smart and Inclusive Growth - DANUBE ICT leaded by ICT Cluster have started on 1 December 2015. The project is financed by the DANUBE START program, supported by the EC and City of Vienna. 

The project duration is six months and its main objective is to create sustainable, strategic trans-national partnership among ICT Clusters from the Balkans and the Danube region by establishing a common strategy for cross - cluster and cross-industrial cooperation in a favor of SMEs.

Partners in the project are: Foundation ICT Cluster, Cluj IT Cluster, Vojvodina ICT Cluster, and Montenegrin IT Cluster. All members of the Balkan and Black Sea ICT Clusters Network will be actively engaged in the process of successful project implementation.

Ventures - Erasmus of Younge Entreprenurs 

From 2010 till now, ICT Cluster is partcicpating as an Intermediary Organization (IO), in different partnerships under the program Erasmus for Younge Entreprenures. 

The projects is an European exchange program aiming to help new entrepreneurs to acquire relevant skills for managing a small or medium-sized enterprise (SME) by spending time working in another EU country with an experienced entrepreneur in his or her company. The program is financed by the European Commission and COSME and operates across the EU with the help of more than 100 local, regional or national intermediary organisations/IOs/ competent in business support.

The program establishes business to business relationships. New entrepreneurs from one ЕEuropean country travel and stay to host entrepreneur to another EU country and get daily entrepreneurial knowledge and experience with him/her in the period of 1 to 6 months.

The matching of the new entrepreneurs with the host entrepreneurs is carried out with the help of the intermediary organisations (IOs).

 

I3E - Promoting innovations in the Industrial Informatics and Embeded Systems Sector through Networking 

The main project objective of I3E project was the promotion of innovation and entrepreneurship in the SEE area, placing emphasis on advanced products and services associated with the sectors of industrial informatics and embedded systems. The project is in-line with the area of intervention 1.1 since it is primarily developed a technology and innovation network of research / academic institutions as well as enterprises and facilitators of innovation in the area related to the aforementioned sectors.  The I3E Project is financed by South-East Transnational Cooperation Program of EU and co-financed by the Ministry of Regional Development and Public Work  of Bulgaria.

The project resutls: 

  • Development of the transnational Strategic Research Agenda that will help align research activities in the industrial informatics and embedded systems sectors towards common goals applicable in the SEE area. The involvement of the public administration in the aforementioned community aiming at the adoption of the SRA at the Structural Fund management level. 
  • A methodology guideline for innovation that will be elaborated taking into account the wiki input and analyzing the applicability of the selected best practices in the SEE area.

 

 

 

Entreprenurship without borders

Foundation ICT Cluster has implemented a project “Entrepreneurship without boundaries”   BG051PO001-7.0.07-0215, financed under Bulgarian Operational Program “Development of Human resources”, co-financed by European Social Fund from European Union. The project partners are Ardino Municipality and Cork BIC.

The main aim of the project is to develop human resources, to improve the quality of life and to promote the social inclusion in Ardino Municipality through development of entrepreneurship, transfer of European best practices and know-how in the field and use of information and communication technologies.

Specific project objectives аrе:

  • To stimulate employment and development of the region through implementation of  trainings in entrepreneurship in the Ardino Municipality;

  • To create an entrepreneurial culture and to stimulate business thinking and communication of young people, citizens of Ardino Municipality, through transfer of best practices and know-how from the Cork Incubator  – CorkBIC, Ireland;

  • To promote the implementation of innovative methods based on ICT technologies  for implementation of qualified entrepreneurial trainings and access to information and education in remote Bulgarian regions ;

  • To create sustainable ecosystem for own business development and to promote entrepreneurial  spirit in Ardino municipality, through the analysis of existing conditions for creation a business incubator in Ardino following the example of CorkBIC;

Target group of the trainees within this project is new and would-be entrepreneurs from Ardino Municipality at the age between 18 – 40 years old. It is necessary applicants to have high school or university degree and to have own business or idea to start own business.

Promotion
Success Story / Achievements: 

Conference "Industry and Digital Transformation: Fears and Hopes"

Learning and Demonstration Seminar and Conference "Industrial and Digital Transformation: Fears and Hopes" took place on19.10.2018 at Microsoft Innovation Center Bulgaria, Sofia Tech Park, The event was organized by ICT Cluster within the framework of the Smart Factory Hub project funded under the Danube Transnational program.

The conference brought together representatives of innovative companies, manufacturing companies, universities, clusters, state administration and research centers from Bulgaria, the Balkans and Central Europe. Innovative Bulgarian companies presented their solutions and good practices for digitization of manufacturing to participants from 10 European countries - Slovenia, Romania, Croatia, Germany, Austria, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Serbia, Bulgaria. At the conference there were demonstration of Bulgarian technologies for optimization and digitization of the water sector, themanufacturing sector, intelligent waste collection, fire prevention systems, smart buildings, etc., as well as 11 intelligent solutions from the Czech Republic.  The Center for Excellence at the Technical University of Sofia and the High Performance Computing Laboratory in Sofia Tech Park also presented their services.

Todor Mitov presented the opportunities that Smart factory Hub project provides to the enterprises for optimization of their production processes. Peter Stattev presented the vision and the future development of the Bulgarian Technological and Innovation Hub -  DigiTech 4.0

The event culminated in a roundtable where representatives of the business, academia, non-governmental sector, Ministry of Economy, OP Innovation and Competitiveness, OP Human Resources Development and PwC discussed the future strategy of Bulgaria and the instruments in the future programming period for supporting digitization of small and medium-sized enterprises.

All presentations from the event you could download at the following link: "Industry and Digital Transformation: Fears and Hopes" presentations

 

Establishment of Balkan and Black Sea ICT Clusters Network 

Conference "Cooperation of ICT clusters in the Black Sea region for growth, prosperity and competitiveness" was held on 10 and 11 April 2014 in Grand Hotel Sofia.

The event was organized by the Foundation ICT Cluster and the Ministry of Transport and Communications in the Bulgarian Presidency of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation. Major Sponsors of the event were VIVACOM, Sofia Tech Park and "Bulgarian Cluster Telecommunications".

The conference was attended by representatives of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation, Ministry of Transport, Information Technologies and Communications, Ministry of Economy of Romania, Ministry of Economy and Energy, representatives of business and clusters of the region. The main topic of the event was the cooperation of the ICT cluster in the region to becoming a more attractive place to invest and a better place to live. The main focus of the conference topics were related to ICT technology in intermodal transport, the development of new-generation broadband, cyber security, etc.

Participants in the event supported the idea that the cluster approach is an essential tool to be applied in the BSEC countries in order to support SMEs and competitiveness and to promote innovation in the region. 

 

Establishment of CoderDojo branch in Ardion region, Bulgaria 

With the support of CorkBIC and ICT Cluster in Ardino was created branch of CoderDojo – an initiative for training in programming for nonprogrammers - children at age 7-17 years.

CoderDojo is a global movement established in 2011 by James Welton and Bill Liao and supported by CorkBIC. 2 years after its establishment the  movement became a global phenomenon!

On June 14, 2014 in the School "Vasil Levski" Anton Tcholakov and Nikolay Chochev organized the first CoderDOJO meeting  in  Ardino, supported by the ICT Cluster and CorkBIC. The initiative was attended by 18 participants. During the meeting, participants created their first web pages.

Danube ICT Project 

On December 1, 2015 the project Danube ICT Clusters' Cooperation for Smart and Inclusive Growth - DANUBE ICT has started, leading by ICT Cluster.

The project duration is six months till  and it is funded by the European Commission and the Danube Strategy. The main objective of DANUBE ICT is the creation of sustainable, strategic trans-national partnership among ICT Clusters from the Balkans and the Danube region by establishing a common strategy for cross - cluster and cross-industrial cooperation in a favor of SMEs.

Partners in the project are: Foundation ICT Cluster, Cluj IT Cluster, Vojvodina ICT Cluster, and Montenegrin IT Cluster. All members of the Balkan and Black Sea ICT Clusters Network will be actively engaged in the process of successful project implementation.