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CODE Hub: The first coworking space in Tehnopolis officially opened

CODE Hub: The first coworking space in Tehnopolis officially opened
Published date: 14.05.2018 15:02 | Author: Ministry of Science

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Ministry of Science Ministry of Science

The first coworking space for start-ups, IT companies, individuals, students and digital nomads with creative entrepreneurial ideas has been officially opened at the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Centre “Tehnopolis” tonight. The premises have been equipped thanks to the EU project in which Tehnopolis is a partner, “Cooperation for Development of Cross Border Business Environment – CODE” from the Interreg IPA CBC Croatia – Bosnia and Herzegovina – Montenegro.

- Today is an important day in the development of Tehnopolis, a project of the Ministry of Science that has started its operation in this building a year and a half ago, already largely achieving its purpose today – encouraging entrepreneurship and innovation in Nikšić and providing conditions for enterprises to develop faster. The capacities of Tehnopolis, thanks to a new model of operation, have significantly expanded and are offering new opportunities for networking, cooperation, education and launching joint ventures in order to create new companies that will be able to compete at the global market. Tehnopolis fully opens its doors for dynamic, creative and modern work, above all of younger generations, Minister Damjanović said during the opening ceremony.
Ministarstvo nauke Ministry of Science
Experiences from other similar centres in the region point to some challenges, such as the absence of entrepreneurial culture, lack of communication between the academic sector and businesses that would facilitate the transfer of ideas from those who have the highest level of knowledge to those who are able to commercialize it, as well as administrative barriers removal. In this regard, Damjanović expressed her expectation that Tehnopolis would, with the active support of the Government, local self-government and the business association, contribute to the successful solution of these challenges.

The President of the Municipality of Nikšić, Veselin Grbović, said that the coworking space was intended primarily for young people, who could use all the available resources and space of Tehnopolis to develop their ideas. Also, as Grbović emphasized, cooperation could be exercised with similar facilities already opened in Zadar, Tuzla and Mostar.
Ministry of Science Ministry of Science
In his address to the audience, the Director of Tehnopolis Ratko Bataković emphasized that the coworking space was something new on our market, and that it was developed on the basis of the model of European business environment. Technopolis would, according to Bataković, implement a set of creative contents in the future period, including trainings for 3D printing, programming, writing business plans, start-up community programmes, as well as the organization of Hackathon.

Today’s event was an ideal opportunity to discuss start-ups, issues encountered by their founders, as well as successful Montenegrin start-up examples. A lecture was held by the founders of “BeeAnd.Me” start-up, Elma Hot and Alija Dervić, who recently won an award for successful development at the World Summit Award (WSA) in Vienna. The WSA has become a symbol of quality for digital content with a social impact in more than 180 participating countries, and Hot and Dervić were the first representatives from Montenegro who took part in the WSA.
Ministry of Science Ministry of Science
Hot and Dervić spoke to the event participants about the problems and challenges they faced in their journey to develop their first start-up – which deals with the sensor-based smart beehives system – and which they had successfully overcome. Their beehives already account for 30 percent of money savings and their start-up has the largest quantity of digital data on bees worldwide.

Speaking of Hot and Dervić, Minister Damjanović has stated they should be a role model for young people across Montenegro, as they have shown that education acquired in domestic universities, along with innovative ideas and endless energy and creativity, can produce interesting solutions to global challenges and the global market.
Ministarstvo nauke Ministry of Science 
Damjanović has pointed out that young people and other entrepreneurs from the start-up community of Montenegro should be heard, as well as that we should consider the problems they face and their suggestions in order to jointly develop adequate and feasible solutions in our public policies. The Government of Montenegro plans to adopt the National Programme for the Promotion of Start-Ups in the last quarter of this year and has already received expert assistance of the European Union in this regard.

The second lecture was held by Mr. Janko Burgar, a guest from Slovenia and one of the founders of the fast-growing technology company “CosyLab” from Ljubljana, which has commercialized the knowledge of its founders and now operates on the global market, selling its products and services, inter alia, to CERN. Previously today, Burgar took part in a workshop on establishing the central unit of the Science and Technology Park in Podgorica, as the foundation of the national innovation ecosystem, which was organized by the Ministry of Science in cooperation with the University of Montenegro.

Finally, in separate sessions, discussions with the participants from the academic, economic and civil sectors on the topic of start-ups and opportunities in the Montenegrin market have been led by successful members of the start-up community of Montenegro, Dražen Žujović, Aleksandar Dlabač, Miloš Milošević and Predrag Lešić. In an open conversation, they have exchanged views on start-up culture, financial barriers, legal regulations, potential solutions, and support programmes to be provided by policy-makers in order for their ideas to be brought to life and for products to be placed on the market