Innovative enterprises active in diverse areas of Photonics related technologies, have joined forces to create the first photonics cluster in Greece, the Hellenic Photonics Cluster (HPhos). HPhos comprises a founding core of knowledge-intensive enterprises and research organizations. Most of these enterprises are based in the broader area of Attica, providing various photonics products and services for industrial manufacturing & automation, telecoms, defense & security, cultural heritage, food, health, environment, energy efficiency and conversion.
HPhos aims to cluster all Greek entrepreneurial, industrial and academic players in order to create a hotbed for the development of new ideas and innovative products. Offering a fertile ecosystem that encourages the transfer of knowledge and expertise, it aims to become a critical support infrastructure to new entrepreneurship and extroversion of Greek enterprises and to provide networking channels to foreign enterprises and investors. HPhos’s ambition is to intensify cluster and network collaboration not only across borders, but also across sectorial boundaries in order to contribute in the emergence of new EU value chains that bring together enterprises from different sectors and better support SMEs in global competition.
The idea for creating a Greek cluster in the field of photonics has been maturing since 2005. Given the rise of Photonics in Europe as a Key Enabling Technology (KET), and the parallel development of clustering as an instrument for enhancing the innovation potential of a country or region, prompted the Foundation for Research and Technology – Hellas (FORTH) to a series of initiatives to organise the Photonics community in Greece. As a first step it initially founded PhotonicsGR in 2008, as the Greek member of the European Technology Platform Photonics21, the main representative body of photonics at European level. In this framework PRAXI Network, a distinct technology transfer unit operating within FORTH, having worked closely for years with a significant number of photonics enterprises and RTOs, identified synergies and links amongst them which culminated to the facilitation and formation in 2011 of a cluster initiative, named Hellenic Photonics Cluster (HPhos).
- 2005: The European Technology Platform Photonics21 was initially founded.
- 2008: PhotonicsGR, the first Photonics Technology Platform in Greece, was founded by 23 members representing major research, university and industrial organizations.
- 2011: The Hellenic Photonics Cluster was initially formed as an independent entity from the PhotonicsGR Technology Platform.
- 2013: The Photonics21 Association was founded as a legal entity to set up the Photonics PPP (Public Private Partnership) under the European Research Framework Programme Horizon 2020.
- 2015: The Hellenic Photonics Association (HPhos) was founded as a legal entity representing the novel photonics enterprises and research institutions concentrated in the broader area of Attica, Greece.