Global industry players aim to show investors the new frontiers and market opportunities that light-based technologies are creating within their industries

The fourth edition is on October 9 – 10, 2014, in Bordeaux, France. Since 2008 it has helped photonics firms raise EUR 87m (USD 119m).
Invest in Photonics(R), a two-day international business partnering convention focused exclusively on photonics venture capital investment announced its line-up of top industry speakers. Amazon’s Babak Parviz and other leading executives from Airbus, Alcatel Lucent Bell Labs, Leica Microsystems, L’Oreal and Volkswagen will be among numerous top industry players and analysts discussing the fast-growth developments that photonics is enabling within their respective industries. Invest in Photonics takes place October 9 – 10, 2014 in Bordeaux, France, which is a growing region for lasers, optics and photonics.

Invest in Photonics Chairman Giorgio Anania
Invest in Photonics Chairman Giorgio Anania

Invest in Photonics focuses on providing venture capitalists with a clear perspective on the most innovative, credible and profitable market opportunities in photonics (light-based technologies).

The two-day conference attracts top industry analysts, private investors and financial institutions looking to strike deals, SMEs seeking funding, OEMs and end-users. They come together to network and create profitable business opportunities. A select list of 20 innovative European companies will be invited to make elevator pitches during the conference. Invest in Photonics has helped raise EUR 87m (USD 119m) in funding to date, since the biennial event began in 2008.

“It is an exciting time for photonics, which is bringing significant innovations to many traditional and emerging markets,” said Thierry Thevenin, head of the Invest in Photonics organizing committee. “At this year’s event, we are honored to welcome to Bordeaux top industry players and thought leaders who will share their experiences and insights on how photonics technologies are creating opportunities for growth in healthcare, consumer electronics, efficient energy, aerospace and transport. The two VC roundtable sessions: ‘Photonics Financing – The Shift from VC to Corporate?’ and ‘What’s up in Alternative Financing?’ will be essential to understanding the important changes taking place in financing. Invest in Photonics plays a unique role. We invite you to join the only venue that provides fast-track information on leading investments in photonics.”

Photonics is a global industry currently estimated at USD 480bn (approx. EUR 364bn), according to market data from the International Society of Optics and Photonics (SPIE). In Europe, the photonics industry generates EUR 43bn in annual turnover, employing 245,000 salaried workers (source: CNOP, the French national committee for optics and photonics).

Photonics spans a broad range of applications. In our daily lives, these range from the internet to any device with a display (smart phone, camera). It covers intelligent lighting, LED headlights and self-driving cars to imaging of cancerous cells as well as other health monitoring applications, endoscopy, and laser eye surgery among others.

Invest in Photonics
Invest in Photonics

While photonics is ubiquitous, most users are unaware of its role or significance; it is often invisible in end-use applications. Around 60 per cent of companies in photonics employ fewer than 20 staff. A fair majority of start-ups are still looking for financial support, according to EPIC, an industry association for organizations working in the photonics field in Europe.

This year’s event will emphasize four market segments that extensively use photonics to further raise awareness among the financial community. These are consumer electronics, the life sciences, aerospace and transportation, plus energy and the environment.

Invest in Photonics Speaker Highlights
Steve Anderson, SPIE industry and market strategist, will give the keynote address. He will provide an industry update, showcase industry performance results and the impact on the global economy. He will also cover the underlying trends in key markets.

Consumer market
Babak Parviz, the creator of Google Glass who joined Amazon earlier this year, will introduce the consumer electronics segment. He will discuss displays and imaging and how they are integrated into products like wearable devices to provide new types of experiences. Gildas Sorin, the former CEO of Novaled will join Parviz to present a case study of the photonics company he founded and sold to Samsung for EUR 260m.

“Photonics is present everywhere in the consumer market, from components such as displays and cameras in consumer electronic devices, to fiber networks that push massive amounts of data between data centers or even send them to homes,” said Parviz. “It is mindboggling how photonics is touching peoples’ lives. Without photonics, the digital economy as we know it would not exist.”

Life sciences
Senior researcher Bernard Querleux at L’Oreal, and European sales director for life sciences research Christophe Thumser from Leica Microsystems will lead the life sciences segment. Querleux will reveal how widely L’Oreal uses photonics from the design of smart optical materials for modulating skin and hair appearance to highly sophisticated 3D in vivo multi-photon microscopy of the skin. Thumser will address advanced imaging technology in microscopy that help the understanding of molecular processes in age-associated diseases and other market drivers in life science research for new imaging technologies.

Aerospace and transportation
Denis Chapuis, VP of Airbus will talk about the overall need for more connectivity, bandwidth and other capabilities that is driving the aerospace industry to replace copper based links with fiber optics or free space laser communications. He will discuss how photonics systems are offering future developments in communications, imagery, surveillance, space debris management and power beaming.

Energy and the environment
Jean-Luc Beylat, president of Alcatel Lucent Bell Labs France, will cover the segment on energy and the environment. He will discuss how the network energy consumption is one of the major industrial challenges facing the ICT industry. In the near future, many research efforts will foster energy-related and green innovations.

There will be two venture capitalist roundtable sessions. A leading topic will be alternative financing through crowdfunding. An important speech on the European Union’s views on photonics financing will also take place.

Consult the full program:

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