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AdPack - Two years of building a successful European partnership for the advanced and smart packaging sector

At the 1st January 2016, five European clusters started to jointly work within the AdPack project to boost the European sector of advanced and smart packaging by combining their different expertise. This two year Cluster Internationalisation project was founded by BalticNet-PlasmaTec from Germany, Nanoprogress from Czech Republic, InovCluster from Portugal, Packbridge from Sweden and Plastiwin from Belgium. This project is co-funded by the European Union through COSME Programme under the Grant Agreement 688922. The Cluster Internationalisation programmes for SMEs under COSME framework programme (EU programme) focus on reinforcing international cluster cooperation and supporting the shaping of European Strategic Cluster Partnerships – Going International (ESCP-4i) to develop a joint internationalisation strategy and better support SMEs access to global value chains. The starting signal was the building of AdPack’s European Strategic Cluster Partnership (ESCP). The project is now reaching its end, at 31st December 2017.

Within the AdPack project a packaging-, food-, plastic, nano- and plasmatechnology cluster combined their competences in order to support the establishment of a partnership in the emerging industry of advanced packaging, which is considered by the European Cluster Observatory as an industry that is interrelated with nearly every industry sector. This partnership was recognized by the European Clusters Collaboration Platform as an European Strategic Cluster Partnership (ESCP) in the beginning of the 1st year, and has attracted 12 affiliated entities from 9 European countries and different technology sectors, that signed MoUs with the AdPack partners: CzechBio – Association of Czech Biotech Companies (Czech Republic), HTI Cluster – Hi-Tech innovation cluster (Czech Republic), IND-AGRO-POL Cluster – Technical Equipment Construction for Agriculture and Food Industry and in related sectors (Romania), SEVE – Greek International Business Association, largest association of exporting companies in Greece (Greece), VITARTIS – Food Industry Cluster of Castilla y León (Spain), Matikem – Materials, chemical and Green Chemical Cluster (France), Chemical Cluster „Green Chemistry” (Poland), Paper Province, Forest bioeconomy cluster (Sweden), STAR Research & Innovation Cluster (Czech Republic), OMNIPACK First Hungarian Cluster of Packaging Technology (Hungary), Packaging Cluster (Spain) and Associação para o Pólo das Tecnologias de Informação, Comunicação e Electronica TICE.PT (Portugal).

These MoUs were the basis for building the AdPack ESCP Partnership Agreement. The vision of the AdPack ESCP is to combine different experiences, know-how and value chains in order to boost business and innovation in the field of the advanced, smart packaging. The mission is to run a sustainable ESCP with high added value services for SMEs and innovation actors and engage them into long-term business and R&D cooperation with partners and consumers from Europe but also from countries outside Europe. The aim of AdPack’s ESCP is also to strengthen cooperation between clusters and their cluster members across Europe and in long-term beyond Europe. Furthermore, a joint internationalisation strategy was developed during the project lifetime to provide a global perspective and common goals and actions towards Europe and the selected third markets. AdPack’s implementation roadmap was established in order to intensify the internationalisation of cluster SME through the ESCP to develop more competitive SME and also clusters in Europe and worldwide.

Although the project will officially end on the 31st December 2017, the AdPack partnership will definitely continue to work together due to the establishment of a sustainable partnership in form of a legal structure and the follow up project called AdPack² also funded by the European Union through the COSME Programme. The chosen legal structure is a European Economic Interest Grouping (EEIG) and the aim is to assure the long-term cooperation between AdPack clusters and the services for their members. The AdPack EEIG is being created with the participation of AdPack’s partners and the interested affiliated partners that signed already the MoU. The EEIG will assure the implementation of AdPack’s strategy after the end of this project and engage the partnership in long-term cooperation with strategic partners in Europe and also third countries with the aim to support SME to find easier access to global value chains and to support the internationalisation of SME. The follow up project AdPack² will be realised by 6 different cluster: BalticNet-PlasmaTec from Germany, Nanoprogress from Czech Republic, InovCluster from Portugal, Packaging Cluster from Spain, Plastiwin from Belgium and POLE SOLUTIONS COMMUNICANTES SECURISEES from France. This project will continue through two more years, with the aim to implement the joint internationalisation strategy towards defined target third countries (Canada, China and United States) and support AdPack² cluster SME members in establishing long-term cooperation with relevant counterparts in the target countries.

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Project AdPack - Future materials and products for advanced smart packaging, is promoted by 5 European clusters, and co-funded by the European Union through COSME Programme under the Grant Agreement 688922. The partners are Packbridge from Sweden, Plastiwin from Belgium, InovCluster from Portugal, BalticNet-PlasmaTec from Germany and Nanoprogress from Czech Republic.

Within the project AdPack a packaging-, food-, nano -, plasmatechnology- and plastic cluster together with affiliated entities focused in different interrelated sectors joined their competences to support the establishment of a partnership in the emerging industry of advanced packaging, which is considered by the European Cluster Observatory as an emerging industry that is interrelated with nearly every industry sector.

AdPack’s partnership is recognized by the European Clusters Collaboration Platform as an European Strategic Cluster Partnership (ESCP). This ESCP aims to have an impact on European employment, growth, competitiveness and innovation through the combination of different innovation areas for advanced smart and sustainable packaging, the intensification of cluster and business network cooperation across borders, the strengthening of the value chain; and the improvement of visibility of the consortium and affiliated entities SME on an international scale. Moreover, the consortium has accounted for the concept of smart specialisation, with several consortium partners focusing on sectors that are a priority in their respective regions/countries.

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