Despite the fact that the European and American companies are recognized world leaders in environmental technologies, there is some potential in Russia as well. This was proven by the meeting of the companies Algaecom of the Netherlands and Vortex Technologies of Russia in the science town Koltsovo, Novosibirsk region, Russia. This meeting became the next tangible step towards the creation of a joint venture.

The establishment of contact between the companies, strategic development and organization of the meeting is more than just the outcome of the strong motivation and mutual interest of the two companies. It is also the result of Enterprise Europe Network efforts in supporting entrepreneurship and innovation. When the Vortex Technologies company addressed the Network for the first time, it was looking for a reliable partner for commercialization of its technology. The Network Partner (The Russian Technology Transfer Network) assisted the company in preparation of the Technology Offer, its upload to the intranet. The profile induced particular interest from the part of the Dutch company Algaecom, client of Syntens-the Network Partner from the Netherlands. The Russian Technology Transfer Network and Syntens assisted companies in establishing contact, primary discussions of possible cooperation, then negotiation over NDA, its detailing and signing. Following the cooperation agreement, the meeting of companies in Russia that allowed for direct demonstration of the technology was organized by the Partners.

The subject of negotiations between Algaecom and Vortex centered on microalgae production technology and the development of the vortex aquareactor by Vortex Technologies allows for microalgae to grow much faster than any other system created in the past. Biomass obtained from microalgae can later be processed into feed additives, antioxidants, and other high-added value products, as well as biofuel. The project induced particular interest from the part of Algaecom which is focused primarily in growing microalgae and implementing green projects.

Indeed, microalgae showing incredible potential as a production source of green biofuel. Russia is traditionally lacking behind in this area due the overreliance on conventional fossil fuels such as coal, oil, and natural gas. That is why it is remarkable that a company from the Netherlands, a country where green energy is developing very rapidly, shows a serious interest in the technology created in the Koltsovo, Russia.

“We are genuinely thankful for the assistance of the local EEN contact point in finding such a great partner which was not merely interested in knowing about the technology in details but is actually very active in working out our joint further steps”, said Yury Ramazanov, the head of the Russian company. “Our mission was not only to facilitate entering the new market by establishing relations with a foreign partner, but also to ensure the communications barriers did not present any obstacle for the partnership”, adds EEN contact point expert Maria Pelipas.

The Dutch partners were able to see the aquareactor and were demonstrated its main principles on an experimental and half-industrial installations. At the meeting the parties have embarked on a working plan for the next six months, following which the parties will proceed into implementing the project in the Netherlands for the production of biogas and feed supplements from microalgae grown in the aquareactor developed by the Russian company.