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ESNC Boosting Business Links Between South East Asia and Europe

How does the ESNC connect South East Asia (SEA) and Europe? Europe provides the civilian satellite navigation system required and SEA displays a vast growing market with high potential in search of an appropriate GNSS. As this situation embodies lucrative opportunities for all parties involved, the ESNC's BELS Special Prize seeks innovative downstream GNSS applications from SEA and supports them with European incubation. This displays an excellent example of the ESNC's international outreach and its endeavour to provide the maximum benefit to society.

The BELS Prize and the Asia regional challenge organised by GNSS.asia, one of the most active ESNC Regional Prizes, serve as two excellent examples of how Asia and Europe can work together, in order to achieve the goal of boosting GNSS technology use and its awareness worldwide. Ever since its initiation in 2004, the ESNC has been very active on a global scale with the overall aim of boosting innovation based on GNSS applications. In line with this aim, the ESNC is targeting the full exploitation of satellite data all along the value chain and around the globe. The main objective of the BELS Special Prize is to promote EGNSS technologies in South East Asia (SEA) and increase the collaboration between Europe and SEA.

The BELS project focuses on the cooperation between SEA and Europe, funded by the European Union within the Horizon 2020 programme. BELS and GNSS.asia are strong partners of the ESNC - the largest innovation network dedicated to global satellite navigation systems. As of this collaboration, its aim is to use the resulting synergies, in order to generate the most extensive innovations for Asia and Europe. Amongst the numerous world-class partners of the ESNC, the BELS project and the Asia Region represent one of the most active regions pushing GNSS technology and application fields. This is in great favour of the European Commission, aiming at accelerating the cooperation between Europe and Asia. The focus lies in industrial partnership and supporting enterprises no matter what size.

The main objective for this high interest lies in the fast growing SEA market of over 600 million people with great potential, lacking its own satellite navigation capabilities and thus depending on other national or regional systems. In comparison to the other GNSS systems around the world, which are military based or controlled, the European GNSS system has the unique characteristic of being a civilian operated programme.

BELS Prize Seeking Innovative GNSS Applications for SEA
The BELS Prize is specifically in search of downstream applications based on GNSS and addresses smart young entrepreneurs and researchers. This Special Prize is dedicated to the citizens of the ASEAN countries only, including Vietnam, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, The Philippines, Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar, Brunei, Singapore. The winner(s) will benefit from a EUR 2,000 cash award to be used at the winners' discretion and incubation support for six months in a European incubator or research centre, in order to refine and improve the idea and possibly enable a prototype. To top it off, a total budget of EUR 20,000 will be allocated to cover travel and living expenses of two people for a stay of at least six months.

The GNSS.asia Challenge has the aim to facilitate EU-Asia industrial cooperation on satellite navigation applications. Focused on the downstream sector, GNSS.asia and its partners are present in key GNSS events across Europe and the Asia-Pacific region. It organises its own GNSS seminars, workshops, round table conferences and topic-specific events. As for the ESNC's GNSS.asia Challenge, the finalists will benefit from: A travel grant to attend the Awards Ceremony at the Multi-GNSS Asia Conference in Manila 16 November 2016, the opportunity to present during the GNSS.asia Industry Seminar, free business coaching from globally renowned GNSS experts, the chance to meet GNSS industry partners from Europe and Asia, as well as the possibility to win additional prizes.

There are countless ways to use satellite navigation in everyday life - what's yours? Submit your GNSS-based service, product, or business innovation.

Horizon 2020
Horizon 2020 constitutes the biggest EU Research and Innovation programme ever with nearly EUR 80 billion of funding available over the time period of 7 years (2014 to 2020). Thereby, it targets more breakthroughs, discoveries and world-firsts by taking great ideas from the lab to the market.

The approach of uniting research and innovation, Horizon 2020 is targeting to tackle societal challenges and make it easier for the public and private sectors to work together.

The third call that will be opened at the end of the year addresses concrete solutions and applications in the GNSS market segments. There are four topics aimed at supporting innovative applications, products, feasibility studies and market tests: transport, mass market, professional, as well as EGNSS awareness raising and capacity building. These application fields have a substantial impact on the European innovation know-how and economy.

GeoKey - Awarded as GNSS.asia Challenge Overall Winner
The founder of GeoKey, Suresh Babu Mandalanka, was invited to fly to Brunei Darussalam to give an inspiring speech during the GNSS.asia Challenge Award Ceremony in December 2015. This major Ceremony was held as part of the Multi-GNSS Asia (MGA) conference, with a great number of participants from 17 different countries. His presentation dealt with the winning idea he submitted. It was a wonderful opportunity to use the stage in front of the high-ranked audience to drive the reputation of GeoKey.

The Asia regional winner 2015, GeoKey, is an innovative locking system that uses geographic locations as keys. Designed for the logistics, cargo, and personal luggage services industries, GeoKey features a dual security mechanism that can only be unlocked in a predefined location and in combination with a four-digit security code. This characteristic especially tackles issues relating to Cargo security. The lock uses Galileo's Open Service Authentication and a user-friendly mobile configuration application, providing a reliable and affordable solution for cargo theft, which especially represents a widespread issue in the Asia-Pacific region.

Fixposition - Boosts its Reputation and Draws Investors' Attention
The recent success of ESNC ESA Special Prize and Swiss Regional Prize winner 2015, Fixposition, proved to deliver a major boost for its business development and reputation. Developing a low-cost, compact, user-friendly, centimetre-accurate, real-time navigation solution, Fixposition received support from the ESNC and from the ESA technology transfer programme office, which resulted in a granted pioneer fellowship by ETH Zurich. During Fixposition's Zhenzhong Su's recent business trip to China, he presented the Fixposition project to various investors and potential customers in Taizhou, Zhenjiang and Shanghai which was perceived with excitement. It actually drew the attention of two Chinese investment companies looking forward to push Fixposition's potential to a wide extent. The company's vision is to integrate Fixposition into multiple areas of deployment, such as drone-based delivery, autonomous driving, the Internet of Things, and crowdsourced geomonitoring and early warning.

The ESA Special Prize and regional winner 2015, Fixposition, is a low-cost, compact, user-friendly, centimetre-Accurate, real-time navigation solution. Current GNSS navigation and positioning devices have two major challenges to date: either they are not precisely accurate or they are not affordable for a wide range of customers. Fixposition offers an affordable, compact and highly precise navigation solution. Through the combination of powerful differential carrier-phase GNSS positioning algorithms with low-cost GNSS modules, embedded systems, and wireless technology, a real-time positioning accuracy of 1-5 centimetres and significantly lower end-user costs can be ensured. Using multiple GNSS systems (including Galileo) will allow to guarantee a reliable, accurate solution at any time and location.

Are you a young, ambitious and forward-thinking entrepreneur from SEA and do you have an idea for a downstream application relying on GNSS? Then take a close look at the BELS Prize and become the next innovation driver that supports GNSS development and awareness for SEA!

The European Satellite Navigation Competition (ESNC)
The ESNC's annual search for new services, products, and business innovations is designed to encourage the use of satellite navigation in everyday life. Over the past decade, it has evolved into the leading innovation competition comprising partner regions worldwide, the largest space-related incubation network and the most relevant European GNSS stakeholders. Submission is possible each year from 1 April - 30 June at www.esnc.eu




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