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A celebration of innovation and commercialisation

- Research and innovation will solve the challenges we are facing, said Monica Mæland during her speech at BTO the 22nd October.

On the occasion of BTO’s 10 year anniversary, the Minister of Trade and Industry Monica Mæland (H) came to honour BTO and to speak about the importance of research and innovation.

The anniversary was a celebration of innovation and commercialisation, as well as a celebration of what BTO has managed to achieve together with its owners and partners during the last ten years.

Culture for entrepreneurship

During her speech at BTO, Mæland emphasized the importance of building a culture for entrepreneurship.

– We need to cheer for those who have great ideas. A culture for entrepreneurship is important, and especially among the universities and colleges. The potential is great, both in Bergen and in the rest of Norway, and we have to exploit it, she said.

After her presentation, the Minister was challenged on some important questions about her politics for innovation in an informal and humoristic live Kahoot-survey. All guests were invited to answer questions about the newly developed entrepreneurial plan that was recently made public.

One of the questions was:

«How can the government contribute in bringing more commercialisation projects out to society?»

The alternatives were:

  • Ensure good and relevant funding programs
  • Ensure schemes that trigger private capital
  • Support the TTOs and their roles
  • All of the above alternatives

The clear message to the Minister was that we need all of the alternatives. This emphasizes our opinion; there is no easy solution and we need to keep working on different levels and arenas to reach our ambitions.

The entrepreneurial plan

Earlier this month Mæland was in the spotlight for presenting the new entrepreneurial plan. The Government proposes to allocate more than 400 mNOK to make Norway more attractive for entrepreneurship.

Among the most intriguing news for entrepreneurs are the pre-seed fund and the strengthening of the FORNY2020-program. The Government’s entrepreneurial plan has allocated 100 mNOK of pre-seed money for startup companies, and has proposed to allocate 90 mNOK to the FORNY2020-program, which aims at creating value and benefits for society from research results.

Innovation, entrepreneurship and commercialization are in the spotlight these days, and are set to play a big part in the future. The proposed state budget for 2016 appeals to entrepreneurs, and simultaneously Norway needs several additional industries to lean on. BTO both wants to and will be an important part of these coming developments.

Pictures from our 10-year anniversary can be found here.