The MecaTech Competitiveness Cluster’s international dimension is reflected in different ways:
As the business network’s ultimate objective is to create jobs and activity, the priority is on promoting projects with an international dimension. This approach must also facilitate contacts with foreign business networks, for it makes it possible to build upon actual achievements, to propose industrial cooperation, and to put together international projects (including their financial engineering). Consequently, the business network concentrates most of its resources on project promotion.
In addition, certain more limited actions focus on promoting the business network itself, which is a means of regional development but not an end in itself.
The international dimension of a project is contingent on setting an appropriate marketing strategy. Knowledge of the markets and their competitive structures must make it possible:
The cluster thus supports market studies, sales strategy analyses, and scouting for partners abroad.
This is done
To date, the MecaTech Competitiveness Cluster has been concentrating its promotion efforts on Belgium’s neighboring countries (France, Germany, the Netherlands, and the Grand-Duchy of Luxembourg).
On 3 March 2010 the MATERALIA (France), MECATECH (Belgium), and SURFMAT (Luxembourg) business networks created the first cross-border business network on materials, called INTERMAT, recognized by the EU.
- Organization of joint events.
- Development of the first projects of collaboration involving French and Belgian players (call for projects issued by the Regional Council of Champagne-Ardenne).
- Determination of a project creation approach methodology based on MecaTech’s mapping and the mapping done by the partners.
- First real case in the field of medical devices.
The Intermat group decided to put together a European Interreg project on medical devices. For the needs of this field, it decided to open the working group to other partners, namely,
- Pôle Fibres (French)
- Microtechnologies (French)
- Competence Center for Medical Technology (Swiss)
- Medical Mountains (German)
This biennial event of international magnitude is organized by Liège’s Teaching Hospital Complex. The MecaTech cluster contributed to the 2012 edition by adding a category of industrial films on medical devices.
The TRANSMIT project was cofinanced by the EU under its Leonardo program. The MecaTech Competitiveness Cluster took part in it in order to adapt a training scheme for SMEs on marketing and selling high-tech products that was initially developed by Grenoble University (France) to the situation in Wallonia.
The MecaTech Cluster now offers this training in Wallonia in partnership with HEC-ULg Executive School.
- TEXAS A&M University
- La Grande Région ("the Greater Region:" Wallonia, GDL, Rhineland-Palatinate, Saarland, and Lorraine http://www.granderegion.net/fr/grande-region/index.html )
- Basque Country, AFM (Machine Tool Manufacturers Association of Spain).
- The Netherlands.