So it is expected that the spaces in Teliana will look. Photos: Innovator Creative Spaces
Small local development centers, prototyping laboratories tailored to the specificities of local industries and hubs around local communities
This is ideally the concept of a national network of technology parks. And if for years the state has gone through these ideas for 14 state-of-the-art technocrats in the country through excellence tables and strategic documents, then there is finally a private initiative in this direction. And she’s going to happen.
In July, in the residential district of Talyana, Varna will open the first Innovator Creative Incubaotor
The pilot space of a national chain of shared creative hubs for inventors and startup entrepreneurs. “Next year there will be at least three of us – we are currently negotiating with Bourgas, Plovdiv and Stara Zagora,” said Zlatin Dubarinov, one of the initiators who attracted the interest of the international Maker Movement network in Bulgaria for MOVE.BG. In the long run, the developer, together with other organizations in the ecosystem, will develop a network of similar spaces in smaller cities in the country.
Meanwhile, a similar project was also launched in Sofia.
The Athlon digital agency plans to open in September a series of thematic laboratories and shared workspace in the former tobacco factory in the capital.
The Maker Movement pilot
The first space of the Innovator Creative Incubator will appear in Varna, and part of the funding is provided by the municipality within the framework of the initiatives of Varna – European Youth Capital 2017. In the new hub in Talyana there will be two laboratories currently equipped, and a place for about five companies, Dubarinov explains. The focus is on securing shared high-tech workshops to develop software and hardware prototypes, developments in various fields of technology, science, life, culture and human life.
The workshops will be equipped with 3D printers, CNC routers, virtual reality labs, Internet of things, laser cutting and other technological innovations as well as conventional equipment, the team explains.
And then what ?
The long-term goal of the team is the realization of a creative network in Bulgaria scattered throughout the country. It is envisaged that each location will be tailored to regional specificities and needs, partly by specializing in field strengths.
“We want to create spaces in the small towns as well, in order to make the most advantageous conditions for entrepreneurship in the country,” added Dubarinov.
“Recently, we’ve seen more and more hardware and software specialists looking for more quiet and clean jobs.”
With this idea, he and his partner Marten Demirev are also associated with the international Maker Movement network, which includes more than six thousand spaces around the world and an active audience of 135 million people.
Creators of Innovator Creative Spaces provide technology labs and workshops, a business incubator, a pre-accelerator, a mentoring program, an academy conducting student and student training, event rooms, a social area, co-working and startup offices and specialists. In addition, start-up companies can also be assisted through consultations on issues related to their marketing, branding, design, legal and administrative issues, provision of initial capital, and more. To do all this, Dubarinov and Demirev will rely on the contacts in their international network.
The initiators are already working with local organizations, MOVE.BG continues to monitor the development of the project with interest.