On Friday, November 10th, the “Clusters Day” event for innovative companies was held at the Parc Bit auditorium. The event was promoted by the Conselleria d’Economia, Hisenda e Innovació of the Government of the Balearic Islands, along with the Fundació Bit and the Innovative Business Associations (AEI).
Mr. Antoni Carmona, Secretary of Innovation and Digital Society, inaugurated the session by expressing gratitude for the attendance of both speakers and listeners and their commitment to innovation.
The first presentation, titled “Clusters as a Competitiveness Factor for Innovative Companies in the Policy of AEIs; Trends in Europe,” was delivered by Mr. Antonio Novo, President of the European Cluster Alliance. During his presentation, he emphasized the importance of clusters in economic policy and the central role that business associations play in the global competitiveness of a country as a basis for economic development.
These concepts were further elaborated upon by Mr. Tomás Iriondo, Manager of Gaia, in his presentation titled “Success Case GAIA in European Cluster Policy,” where he highlighted collaborative innovation as a key factor in achieving objectives in a timely manner.
Next, the first roundtable discussion on “Knowledge Transfer and Cooperation” took place, moderated by Mr. Joan Miquel Matas, Cluster Manager of CliQIB. Participants included Mr. Joan Roig of LEITAT Managing Technologies, who discussed solutions that technology centers can offer to companies; Ms. Loren Carrasco from the University of the Balearic Islands, who explained the “Innova UIB-SMEs” program; and Carlos Garau from Garau Engineers, who presented the Cicero project aiming to improve the quality and transparency of water in port areas using natural processes present in seawater.
The second roundtable, moderated by Ms. Zara Pons, Cluster Manager of BIOIB, focused on “Innovation Financing.” Success cases, financing strategies, and innovation advice were presented by participants including Mr. Guillermo Pérez Solero of Adntro Genetics, Mr. Joan Ramírez of Leyton, Mr. Fernando Barrera of CIRCE Scientific, and Mr. Toni Grunwald of Max Ventures.
The last roundtable, titled “Attraction and Retention of Human Talent,” was moderated by Mr. Diego González Carrasco, President of Cluster.edu. Speakers included Mr. José Alberto Terrassa, Vice President of Digital Transformation at Turistec; Mr. Antonio Doménech from UIB; and Mr. Pedro Suasi, Manager of Balearic Marine Cluster. Concepts such as talent expiration and the need for continuous training for innovation were discussed during this session.
Mr. Pedro Suasi highlighted the challenges faced by the nautical sector in finding qualified personnel and the resulting loss of competitiveness compared to other destinations. Innovation, as explained by the cluster manager, is a tool for retaining and attracting talent, making a business model that embraces innovation more resilient and adaptable to market changes, remaining competitive and efficient over time. “Quality is the price to pay to play… Innovation is the price to stay in the game.”
The event concluded with the presentation “The new Innobal seal and the territoriality of innovation in the Balearic Islands,” by Mr. Omar Beidas, Head of Innovation Service of the Government. After analyzing the current situation of innovative clusters in the Balearic Islands, he introduced the new Innobal seal, a regional distinction recognizing the innovative nature of SMEs and self-employed individuals. The advantages of this seal include access to regional public aid, streamlining the creation of Innovative Business Associations (AEIs) and collaborative sectorial projects, recognition for commercial and advertising purposes, higher scores for accessing Innovative Public Procurement, and inclusion in the regional database of innovative SMEs.
The closing remarks were delivered by Secretary Mr. Antoni Carmona, who presented a lecture on “The Innovation Strategy of the Balearic Islands and Cluster Policy,” proposing an ambitious challenge: to reposition the Balearic Islands in their European classification as an innovative territory through the presentation of the “IMPULSE AND CONSOLIDATION PLAN FOR CLUSTERS. PICEIB.”
Conseller Antoni Costa, responsible for Economy, Finance, and Innovation, concluded the event by emphasizing the commitment of the new government to innovation and the innovative business fabric of the islands.