Links Up organizes a business meeting between start-ups and consolidated companies at Fundació Bit

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15 start-ups and 5 large e-tourism companies have participated in the meeting, been able to exchange knowledge and reach collaboration agreements

In the framework of the 12th edition of INTO – International Tourism Innovation Seminar, the European project Links Up organized a working session with consolidated companies and start-ups from the e-tourism sector. The meeting took place in Palma, in the Balearic Islands, at Fundació Bit.

The three-year-long Links Up project (2016-2019) aims at stimulating growth and competitiveness among new technology companies in south-western Europe. The project has a budget of EUR 1 045 000, 75% of which is brought by from the SUDOE programme (EUR 785 000) and 25% by the partnership itself (EUR 259 500 / EUR 200 000 from the Euroregion).

Links Up (www.linksup-project.eu/en) brings together six partners from three Member States: the Euroregion Pyrenees-Mediterranean, which leads the project; Fundació Bit from the Balearic Islands; ACCIÓ from Catalonia; Castres-Mazamet Technopole from the French region of Occitania; Fundación Universidad Empresa from Murcia; and Centro de Inovação Empresarial da Beira Interior from Portugal. MADEELI (Mon Agence du développement économique de l’export et de l’innovation) is also collaborating as an associated partner.

15 emerging start-ups from the field of tourism participated -as well as 5 consolidated companies- in the meeting of Palma. As coordinator of the Links Up project, Tanit Mir, from the Euroregion Pyrenees-Mediterranean, pointed out that “in the near future, this exchange of knowledge will be translated into important benefits for the companies participating in this project”.

Besides, the director of Fundació Bit, Pere Fuster, said that “the meeting has been articulated with a double objective – on the one hand, to facilitate the exploration of synergies between participating companies and, on the other, to favour future business agreements and to establish the foundations of an Open Innovation programme which will be defined and implemented next year”.

In the first part of the working session, four professionals presented projects that stand out for their ability to pair innovation with tourism. Frank Descollonges, from International Business Machines (IBM), Alix Howard from SQLI Toulouse, Alain Picasso from Électricité de France (EDF), and Alfredo Fernández from Logitravel exposed the latest innovations of their companies and the benefits they can bring to the tourism industry, from smart mirrors (IBM) to floating and self-sufficient houses (EDF).

In a second part of the meeting, the start-ups presented their innovative projects in e-tourism, sustainable tourism, life experiences and personalization; they were Barcelona Zero Limits, Mundiology, Paddle in Spain, Vivelus and Twisters (Catalonia); Irideon, CloudHotelier and Mabrian (Balearic Islands); Drónica and Rucho ut (Murcia); Check-in (Portugal); and La Mochila, Moov’in, Get Moop and Skylights (Occitania).

The meeting ended with a dinner with local products from the Balearic Islands in which the participants were able to exchange ideas and proposals. Many of these start-ups have also participated in a brokerage event organized within the framework of INTO by the Balearic Islands delegation of the Enterprise Europe Network.