The project is promoted by CATEC, the Seville City Council and the Junta de Andalucía

The Seville City Council, in a joint effort with the Advanced Center for Space Technologies (FADA-CATEC) and the Junta de Andalucía, has been selected by the Ministry of Science and Innovation to locate an incubator for companies in the space industry within the framework of the program of incubation centers of the European Space Agency (ESA) and which will be based at the Renfe Warehouses, in the San Jerónimo neighborhood.

The Seville project, called SVQ-ANDALUSIA ESA-BIC, was the winner of the call managed by CDTI (Center for Industrial Technological Development) of the Ministry of Science and Innovation of the Government of Spain. The reference promoter for this Seville initiative is FADA-CATEC, an economic operator authorized by the European Space Agency (ESA), which was one of the criteria required by the call. The duration of this project will be 36 months, from January 2024.

“As with the candidacy to be the headquarters of the Spanish Space Agency, which we obtained, the one we presented for the ESA incubator has been a candidacy of excellence. When the public and private sectors come together in a city project, we are unbeatable. This business incubator, which, framed within the European strategy to reinforce its own space industry through ESA, allows Seville to be a reference for ESA on two counts: for being the headquarters of the Spanish Space Agency and for also being the headquarters from one of its incubators”, explained the mayor of Seville, Antonio Muñoz. In the latter case, the Seville City Council, the Junta de Andalucía and top-level business actors united around FADA-CATEC participate in the project.

The Minister of University, Research and Innovation, Jose Carlos Gómez Villamandos, for his part, revealed that the incubator for companies of the European Space Agency (ESA) that will be activated in Seville will come to “invigorate the actions of the most innovative entrepreneurship within the space sector” and will mean the propping up of Andalusia as a benchmark in this matter. Villamandos highlighted the fundamental role that the Junta de Andalucía has played in this project, given that the Regional Ministry of University, Research and Innovation participates in it with 500,000 euros, assuming half of the budget necessary for its operation, while the other 50% It is financed by the European Space Agency. The City Council, for its part, will be in charge of providing the facilities. The counselor highlighted the institutional collaboration that has served to carry out this project that places the fourth incubator of the European Agency in Spain in Seville, along with Madrid, Catalonia and León, which was the last to be selected in 2022. Yesterday, Castellón was also selected to house another of the headquarters of these incubators.

In the case of the one awarded to Seville, its objective in terms of the number of companies incubated in that three-year period will be twelve, at a rate of four companies per year during the three years of the project. The budget of this incubation center amounts to 1,008,000 euros, half of which comes from the European Space Agency (ESA) and the rest is co-financed by the Junta de Andalucía, with the contribution of the Seville City Council in kind: the headquarters in the Renfe Warehouses to house the incubated companies.

“The location in the Renfe Warehouses, right next to the CREA Building, which will be the headquarters of the Spanish Space Agency, and the new business entrepreneurship center, whose works are being completed in the Renfe Warehouses themselves, will create an environment, in in the heart of the San Jerónimo neighborhood, specialized in space industry and technology and that attracts, as driving forces, more investment in the aerospace industry and in technology and innovation”, the mayor of Seville abounded.

This incubator will be in charge of identifying and exploring technology-based companies that are candidates for incubation and providing advice during the preparatory phase and the incubation period; support in the management of the calls for the selection of companies to incubate in collaboration with the ESA; process the financial incentives for the incubation of the selected companies; facilitate mechanisms for access to additional financing (for example: loans, venture capital or investors); carry out regular monitoring of the activities carried out during the incubation period, including monitoring and measuring the impact of the activities in terms of job creation; and promote and position business incubation activities at a local level, through dialogue with scientific and technological agents, as well as organization of events and training. In short, from the selection of a candidate toto initiatives that allow its growth and promotion as an aerospace technology company.

The package of advice and services that the ESA-BIC will offer to the companies to be incubated will consist of scientific-technical support to identify and help companies to train and adapt space technologies that contribute to their businesses; support for the preparation of business plans, market analysis and protection of industrial property; financial support, either through incentives or seeking bank financing and other agents, such as venture capital networks or investors, funds, etc.; administrative and logistical support to house the companies in the incubator and facilitate their access to the corresponding infrastructures, company registration, ICT support, mentoring networks, etc., and, finally, promotion, training, institutional relations and other services that are agreed between ESA and local partners.