EPFL Innovation Park celebrates 25 years of innovationWednesday, 5 September 2018
Fritz Schiesser, Martin Vetterli, Marc Gruber, Etienne Marclay, Jean-Philippe Lallement © 2018 EPFL | Alain Herzog
EPFL Innovation Park (EIP) is celebrating its 25th anniversary, and its track record speaks for itself. The complex currently houses more than 2,250 employees, 26 large companies, 116 start-ups and more than 75 entrepreneurial projects at the incubator stage – all this on the edge of a campus containing some 340 laboratories.
Back in 1991, the EPFL Innovation Park’s ambition was to create a space that would stimulate innovation and the transfer of technology by bringing start-ups and companies close to the university campus, its researchers and students. In 1993, there was the official opening of Building A, the first in a blossoming complex that now features 13 buildings, marking the creation of Switzerland's first science park, which was renamed EPFL Innovation Park in 2014.
Over its 25-year history, Building A has housed more than 100 start-ups. The anniversary is also an opportunity for EIP to continue its development, in order to maintain its appeal and address the needs of its various user communities as effectively as possible. “EPFL Innovation Park is now almost full, so it’s important that we foster the innovative spirit of the companies we have here. A key part of our efforts is to create spaces that encourage interaction and provide opportunities to meet”, explains Marc Gruber, chairman of the EPFL Innovation Park Foundation, in a press release.
The aim is to foster contact between entrepreneurs and researchers by creating meeting areas and organizing events. The Foundation plans to create a walkway that shows how scientific ideas born in EPFL’s laboratories have made their way to the market.