Since its first edition in Nice, France (2007), the ITER Business Forum has been the place where representatives of industry, large or small, can access in-depth information about the ITER Project, its progress, needs and forthcoming tenders.
With a plenary session and 14 thematic workshops organized with the support of the ITER Organization, the ITER Domestic Agencies and their main suppliers, the 2015 edition of the ITER Business Forum provided a broad overview of the status of the project as it enters a new and crucial phase.
It is also the place where a representative from a giant company like Mitsubishi (Japan) or KEPCO (Korea), can sit at the same table as a manager of a four-person business in Holland and discuss business and partnership opportunities. What can you do for me? What can I do for you? Can we combine our expertise for ITER?
The 2015 edition of the ITER Business Forum (IBF/2015) was organized with the support of the European Domestic Agency Industrial Liaison Officer (ILO) network, Agence Iter France, the Marseille-Provence Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and local authorities (the Regional Agency for Innovation and Internationalization, the Bouches-du-Rhône Department Council, the Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur Regional Council, and the Municipality of Marseille).
"We're a small company in Denmark specialized in machining stainless and high alloy steels," explained the sales and export manager for Triplecut A/S, Jacob Hougaard. "Does a project like ITER need our competence? I believe so, but we're small and we lack visibility. So the problem for us is to meet the right people and this is the perfect place: I have 9 one-to-one meetings scheduled with companies that, for the most part, are already involved in ITER. I'm trying to find how we can fit into the big picture."
Senator Jean-Claude Gaudin, Mayor of Marseille:
"For the past ten years, we have all been mobilized to rise to the great challenge that ITER represents. Our efforts have been rewarded. We know that in supporting today's research we are creating the jobs of tomorrow."
Bernard Bigot, Director-General, ITER Organization:
"On 6 March, when I took up my duties, I symbolically renounced my nationality because the most important feature of ITER is its international nature. Hence I now consider myself an ITERnational citizen..."
Jean-Marc Filhol, head of the ITER Department at the European Domestic Agency (Fusion for Energy):
"Long-term studies show that for every 100 euros invested in industry by the European Space Agency, there has been an average return of approximately 300 euros thanks to spin-off activities. We can expect comparable levels of return from the investments being made for ITER."
Jérôme Pamela, director of Agence Iter France, on behalf of Daniel Verwaerde, the new French High Representative for the ITER Project:
"The record crowds - more than 800 participants for this IBF 2015 - are a clear indicator of how well this program is doing, a program that has no equivalent worldwide. ITER embodies one of the greatest challenges facing humanity."