Innovate: New scheme to facilitate innovation processes in small and medium enterprises
The Minister for the Environment, Energy and Enterprise Miriam Dalli announced a new scheme to facilitate innovation processes within small and medium enterprises through a partnership between small or medium enterprises, and research organisation, based either in Malta or abroad. The Innovate scheme covers part of the costs so that an individual from the research organisation will be loaned for a period of time with the enterprise. This will lead to further innovative processes. Assistance can serve as a consultation given by the research organisation, or support systems to access software or databases offered online. The scheme was announced by Minister Dalli during a visit at IBG Automation, together with Malta Enterprise CEO Kurt Farrugia. IBG Automation is part of Goeke Technology Group based in Germany and has been operating in Malta since 2014. IBG Automation works on research and development projects for Goeke Technology Group clients such as Tesla, Volkswagen, Mercedes and Ford. Thanks to the assistance provided by Malta Enterprise, IBG Automation will be investing €400,000 in a 3D metal printer and CNC machinery. This investment will lead to an increase in clients, even on a local level. Minister Dalli highlighted that: “Such investments show the trust that foreign investors have in Malta. Such contribution in the Maltese economy will lead to an increase in employees and quality employment. Therefore, together with Malta Enterprise we will continue creating schemes which lead enterprises towards research Left: Malta Enterprise CEO Kurt Farrugia and right, Matthias Goeke, CEO of Goeke Technology Group and development, even towards innovation processes through the Innovate scheme announced.” Farrugia remarked that “this scheme is a product of consultation even with the University of Malta, where it would further facilitate collaboration among our enterprises and research organisations, both in Malta and abroad. Our aim is to continue contributing to more processes based on knowledge and specific technological skills to continue strengthening the talents of our employees within the Maltese economy”. IBG Automation offers holistic services on research and development, leading to product installation and technical testing. IBG products are used in various sectors such as car manufacturing, chemical and pharmaceutical, food production, electrical components and energy and aviation sectors. The company manufactures products which complement automatic systems used in manufacturing processes, assembly, packaging and inspection, through robots and Automated Guided Vehicles (AGVs). Matthias Goeke, CEO of Goeke Technology Group, remarked that “the Maltese team is crucial for the whole operations of the Group, as their capacity, combined with the support from Malta Enterprise and other government entities make Malta an ideal base to set up operations, especially those which are among the most fundamental for the Group”. IBG Automation is planning to double up its employees next year and more than triple employees in the next three years.