Each year, SBE awards a prize for the initiative that represents the best example of how scientific knowledge can be made available to business and society at large; the so-called “Business Development and Knowledge Transfer” (BDKT) Award. Last month, the LimburgMakers initiative at Maastricht University was found to be the perfect example on how to merge academic and practical insights to add value for business and society.
The LimburgMakers initiative at SBE won the award just before Christmas 2014. The program was praised for bringing together university, industry and government to generate, transfer and apply knowledge to address regional problems by supporting small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The main focus of the program is helping companies to successfully transform from a manufacturer to a service-oriented solution provider.
The prestigious jury for the prize was composed of Edward Peters, Managing Director, SBE; Hein Schreuder, former Executive VP Corporate Strategy and Acquisitions Royal DSM; and former Honorary Professor at SBE Wim Weijnen, Director Limburg Employers Association (LWV).
The particpating companies received a variety of powerful lectures and workshops where experts and the companies shared their knowledge, expertise and experiences on relevant topics such as “service design as differentiator” or “a future-proof business model.”
In addition, 150 master students developed strategic solutions on problems that the participating companies were facing. For example, Greijn Form Technics was technically capable of making bioplastic, but did not know how and to whom to market it. The winning student team developed a holistic strategic plan with clear implementation guidelines.
A People’s Choice prize was also awarded to the Breakfastbooster.
The next round of this initiative will start at the end of January, this time even with nine companies.
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