Airbus Helicopters is looking for Innovative SMEs
Airbus Helicopters officially launched its new Open Innovation platform at an event attended by Airbus Helicopters’ Executive Vice President of Engineering, the PEGASE center of excellence and a number of French SMEs. The program gives creative companies looking to break into new markets the opportunity to support Airbus Helicopters in its innovation strategy.
The launch featured an appraisal of the calls for expertise made since 2012 as part of the Helicopter of the Future project. Though responding to a specific set of objectives, these calls have yielded convincing results and have paved the way for Airbus Helicopters’ fresh approach to innovation.
Created to support new technologies applicable to the helicopter industry in the short term, the Open Innovation platform allows innovative companies to offer their services to Airbus Helicopters. Selection is based on predefined criteria, which include the following: a sufficiently high degree of technological maturity, the possibility of a rapid return on investment, the ability to integrate the specific characteristics of the aerospace industry, and a positive impact on customer satisfaction and quality of service.
The Open Innovation platform offers the creators of selected projects a partnership with Airbus Helicopters through a predefined contractual framework encompassing specific aspects of innovation, such as the development of expertise and intellectual property, and the potential for industrial development over time.
Though the program is aimed primarily at small and medium-sized enterprises, it is open to all legal entities possessing a suitable industrial or scientific framework.
Jean-Brice Dumont, Airbus Helicopters Executive Vice President Engineering: “Airbus Helicopters has always sought to make SMEs an integral part of its industrial strategy, and the Open Innovation program is the latest proof of that. Thanks to a mutually beneficial and enriching partnership for all parties, it gives innovative SMEs an opportunity to make themselves known and develop.”
With the support of the European Union’s LIFE+ Program,Airbus Helicopters decided in 2009 to launch the CORINE project, which seeks to reduce the environmental impact of its products throughout the supply chain by supplying SME partners with a simple, innovative and collaborative eco-design tool. A consortium was set up and brought together the European manufacturer Eurocopter, five SMEs (Bonnans.sa, Carbone Forgé, Expiris, REXIAA and Solution F), a company specializing in the development of environmentally friendly IT solutions (EcoMundo), the Regional Center for the Development of Advanced Materials (CARMA), its Italian counterpart LCE, and the Université du Var ISITV TVT.
Currently oriented towards French companies, the program will very shortly be opened up to businesses around the world.
Source : Airbus Helicopters