SUSPACC stands for Sustainable Product and Chemicals Cluster. The objective of SUSPACC is threefold. Chairman Bart Labrie: “With the establishment of SUSPACC, our first objective is to promote the common interests of the SMEs at a local, regional, national and international level. In addition, we want to further develop the green chemistry sector in the region and we also want to contribute to strengthening the mutual relationships between the local SME companies.”
That sounds great, but how are you going to achieve it?
“We will do this in various ways. For instance, we act as the point of contact for governments and knowledge institutions, we coordinate with the northern network of Bio Cooperative North Netherlands, we create partnerships between the members, we share knowledge and jointly we present ourselves at exhibitions.”
The network deliberately focuses on SMEs. Why?
“This is true. The big boys are usually already in a very strong position. We notice that the SMEs have not enough competitive clout and that is precisely what this network provides. Joining forces, gives us a stronger position in the market and positively affects the profiling and visibility of the individual members.”
The focus of your network is on sustainable, bio-based and circular solutions. Why this choice?
“The economy and the world are changing and so is the use of raw materials. Traditional fossil materials are becoming scarcer and the sector is looking for alternatives. We respond to these changes through the application of sustainable solutions in the chemical industry.
The region of Southeast Drenthe is known for its manufacturing industry. Particularly in the field of plastics, polymers, fibres and yarns. A lot of activity in this region is focused on this. These are often SME companies that operate somewhere in the value chain of the chemical industry. These companies have precious little time to spend on matters such as R&D or subsidy requests. It was therefore decided to set up a network to help these companies achieve the desired competitive edge and profiling.
Is membership to the network open to any entrepreneur?
“No. They have to meet certain conditions to be able to join the network. For example, they must be SMEs from the North Netherlands region, active in the manufacturing industry and with an emphasis on chemistry. It covers the entire chain. From raw material supplier to end producer. In addition, the company must be or have plans to be engaged in bio-based development. If a company meets these conditions, it can become a member for a modest contribution of € 200 per annum.”
And what are the other benefits, besides mutual cooperation and profiling?
“The Drenthe Green Chemistry Task Force joined this network on 1 March 2017. The main role of this task force is to promote and support business in Southeast Drenthe. One of the major benefits of the task force is that they help members to get support with regard to project development, business development, accelerated development of test locations, demonstration facilities and pilot plants. Precisely those things for which an average SME company does not have the time. This means that they can concentrate on their core business while the network provides support to help them progress.”
Would you like to know more about the network, or are you considering becoming a member? Please contact Bart Labrie (SUSPACC chairman) by telephone on +31 (0)6-46054869 or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org or Bas Krins (SUSPACC secretary) by telephone +31 (0)6-51106888 or by email to email@example.com.