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The 2005 incubator business of the year has been selected

The winner is Navicore Ltd., which specialises in GPS navigation technology

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Press release 31 October 2005 The network of Finnish technology incubators announced the 2005 Incubator Business of the Year award at a seminar in Helsinki on 31 October 2005. The award went to Navicore Ltd., which specialises in GPS navigation technology. FogScreen Inc. and Neoxen Systems Inc. received honorary mentions. The grounds for selecting Navicore were the company’s swift growth and its excellent products. In two years, the company has attained the market leader position in Finnish consumer markets and is among the leading three companies in Europe. Panu Vuorela, CEO of Navicore Ltd., is happy with the services provided by the business incubator. – The incubator and the infrastructure and office services it provides have been a tremendous support for a growth company such as Navicore, which needs to be able to direct all the input of its own staff into productive operations. The premises are highly suitable for international business, and present a trustworthy and modern image to international partners, although the company might still be in the early stages of development, says Vuorela. Neoxen Systems Inc., which produces software solutions, received an honorary mention for its business partnership skills. During its short history, the company has been able to create partnerships and make co-operation agreements with the biggest operators in the field. FogScreen Inc. has a unique concept and innovation in its fog projection screen, a product that has been enthusiastically received around the world. The Incubator Business of the Year award was presented for the second time. The winner is selected from the eight companies shortlisted by Finnish technology incubators. – The general criteria are innovativeness, competitive factors, growth potential, market potential, company development during the incubation period, and the financial status of the company, says Olli Mankonen, Department Manager, Business Development, Turku Science Park Ltd, and a member of the jury. Third wave of technology incubators The Finnish technology incubator field is undergoing a third wave. On the initiative of the Ministry of Trade and Industry, a joint project directed at the public sector, the Development Programme Business Incubators Yrke, was launched in 2003. The project further strengthens the Finnish network of technology incubators, unique by international standards, and aims at doubling the number of new competence-based companies that emerge through business incubators. – The network works as a team. We don’t need to reinvent the wheel, as the best practices are shared with all those involved. As an example, the incubators have developed a national programme for the best new companies which helps them enter international markets, says Keith Silverang, CEO of Technolpolis Ventures Ltd. Navicore Ltd. Navicore Ltd. is a provider of digital maps and navigators for mobile phones based on GPS technology. The flagship product of the company is the Navicore Personal car navigator, which is substantially cheaper than traditional car navigation solutions and as a mobile phone application is always at hand – without compromising on features or quality. Navicore products are available in mobile phone retail outlets throughout Western Europe. The company has developed navigation products since 2003 and it has offices in Kuopio and Espoo and can be accessed at www.navicore.fi. FogScreen Inc. FogScreen Inc. is a visual technology company focusing on the development, manufacture and sales of walk-through projection screens based on the FogScreen technology. Fogscreen has shown rapid growth and 90% of its sales come from exports. Fogscreen’s main markets are in Europe and the USA. FogScreen has distributors in Japan, Malaysia, Germany, France, Greece, Russia, the UK and the USA. FogScreen has offices in Espoo, Tampere and Seinäjoki and can be accessed at www.fogscreen.com. Neoxen Systems Inc. Neoxen Systems is an international software company specialising in process management and improvement, and information management solutions for global markets. The company works closely with the leading technology providers in order to produce value-adding solutions for our mutual customers. Neoxen Systems helps its customers to succeed by reducing their time-to-market efforts, improving quality and increasing their organisational performance. www.neoxen.com Development Programme for Business Incubators Yrke The aim of the project is to develop and upgrade the operative and funding models of technology incubators as a response to the challenges facing companies in their internationalisation processes. The project is coordinated by Sitra, and the development work is carried out jointly by the Ministry of Trade and Industry, the National Technology Agency of Finland (Tekes), Employment and Economic Development Centres (T&E Centres) and Finnish Industry Investment. Cities, municipalities and regional councils are also strongly committed to the development of incubator services. Companies: Jyväskylä Science ParkTechnology Centre Kareltek Oulutech LtdTechnopolis Ventures LtdLahti Science and Business ParkPrizztech LtdProfessia Ltd, Finn-Medi Research Ltd and Hermia Business Development LtdTechnology Centre Teknia LtdJoensuu Science ParkSeinäjoki Technology Centre LtdTechnology Centre Oy Merinova AbTurku Science Park Ltd Further information Anu Nokso-Koivisto, Director, Sitra, +358 9 6189 9228Navicore Oy, Panu Vuorela: panu.vuorela@navicore.fi, +358 40 5100 952FogScreen Oy, Mika Koivula: mika.koivula@fogscreen.com, +358 50 3888 700Genestia Group Oy – Neoxen Systems, Esa Tervo: esa.tervo@neoxen.com, +358 50 512 6285 The seminar was recorded on video and will be viewable on Sitra’s website (www.sitra.fi > Seminaarit verkossa) after the seminar ends (in Finnish).