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PRTEC in Innovation awarded in the West
The family of the Puerto Rico Tecnoeconomic Corridor (PRTEC) celebrated the awards ceremony of its competition, Innovación Empresarial 2009 on May, 14 2009. This is PRTEC’s first competition for business ideas in the western region of Puerto Rico. The competition is part of PRTEC initiatives to promote entrepreneurship, innovation, and economic development of the west side of the island. The organizing committee was integrated by PRTEC, the Small Business & Technology Development Center of San Germán (SBDTC), the West Chamber of Commerce (CCOPR) and the Business Center of the Faculty of Business Administration (ADEM) of the University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez (RUM). The competition seeks for innovative business ideas in 5 specific categories: Information Technology, Bio-Sciences, Renewable Energy, Agroindustry and Tourism. From over 40 ideas submitted, ten were chosen as finalists, and the best three won prizes. The winning team was composed by Dr. Eduardo Juan, Dr. Gustavo Gutiérrez, Dra. Silvina Cancelos, professors at UPRM, and Dr. Jeff Mansfield of SonarMed in Indianapolis. Their project Smart Caths, seeks to create a type of catheter with the capacity to detect obstructions and failures in the systems were it is inserted. The second place went to Gilberto Dávila and Gabriel Cabret, students of the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Agriculture at UPRM respectively, with their project Green Energy & Fuels. This project looks to utilize methane gas that is generated from cattle waste to be used in the generation of energy at a small scale, which will be used by agro - entrepreneurs to reduce their energy costs. Finally, the third place prize went to a team composed by the University of Puerto Rico alumni, Harry Rodríguez, Juan Ramos, Emmary Rodríguez and Dr. Nazario Ramírez-Beltrán, professor of industrial engineering at UPRM. Their project Earthnergy is about a new and more efficient technology of solar panels. The main speaker of the activity was CPA Lizzie Rosso, President of the Economic Development Bank of Puerto Rico (BDE). She emphasized her commitment with PRTEC and their several initiatives in the west; she also presented the new programs the BDE has to support small and medium enterprises, among them a program of guarantees with the private banking industry. Mr. Nelson Perea, Executive Director of PRTEC, highlighted the success the competition at a quantitative and qualitative level. “This project is one of high importance particularly in times of economic difficulty, where we see how these citizens use their creativity to establish innovative opportunities for businesses. With the results of this competition we reaffirm that the western region of Puerto Rico is the center for innovation and entrepreneurship of the island”. Perea added, “We count with an ecosystem of support for this type of project which is unique in Puerto Rico and we would like to take advantage of it to maximize the impact we can have in the creation of new innovative project for our region. PRTEC together with the other members of our entrepreneurial family are committed to help that these innovative ideas become successful businesses in our region and of Puerto Rico”. Perea indicated that the next step would be to meet with each of the winners individually to establish a work agenda that would include group workshops, individual consultations and mentorship alongside the strategic members of the initiative. Visit our webpage:
VITEC2 graduates new company in the West
After two years in the incubation program, REBEXA Group accomplished the incubator graduation requirements and received their Graduation Certificate as a New Successful Company. The graduation ceremony was held at VITEC2 facilities in La Quinta Industrial Park in Mayagüez. Rebexa Group represents the fifth company that the incubator graduates. The preceding companies were: Medirec, Atlasbits, Crawlability and Renewable Solutions. Rebexa Group was founded by Dr. Arnaldo Rodríguez in an effort to improve de efficiency of the Regulatory and Compliance Departments of pharmaceutical companies that conduct business in different parts of the world. Rebexa Group won the first place in the business plan competition EnterPRize 2005. Dr. Hernandez commented: “VITEC2 gave us expert mentoring, technical support and put in our disposition a variety of services and resources that allow us to evolve into company with presence in 10 countries around the World. Héctor Carlo, VITEC2 Managing Director, expressed: “I utilize REBEXA as an innovation model, which uses technology to innovate. Many people think that if new technology is not created there’s no innovation, but REBEXA uses modern technology to develop a unique business model in the regulatory area of pharmaceutical and medical devices companies. VITEC2 incubation program consists of three phases that the company must successfully complete to achieve graduation: 1) Establish the business plan; 2) develop a product/service and 3) Commercialization of that product/service.
COMMUNITIES AT PRTEC… Tecno-Youth III As part of PRTEC education initiatives, the third edition of Tecno-youth started last February and ended on may 2009. Every Saturday for four months, 37 youngsters from 6 municipalities of the region took technology and entrepreneurship workshops. These workshops were given at the same time in three different locations: Interamerican University Cyber Center in San Sebastian, computer labs at the Universidad del Este en Cabo Rojo and at VITEC2 facilities in Mayagüez. The young participants had the opportunity to acquired knowledge in the following areas: Introduction to computers, Microsoft Word, Excel, Power Point, Publisher, Web Pages Creation, Photojournalism, Digital logo creation and an entrepreneurship workshop called FOAMSHIP. These technological and entrepreneurship knowledge will give these adolescents the necessary tools to reduce the digital gap in their communities, and at the same time expose them to the opportunities that bring PRTEC initiatives to the economic development of the western region. This group was sponsored with a grant by the Puerto Rico Community Foundation.
Tecno-Youth IV The fourth edition of Tecnoyouth, sponsored by the Southwestern Consortium with ARRA funds, included 20 youngsters from the Municipality of Hormigueros. As in the case of the previous groups, the youngsters were introduced to the same technology and entrepreneurship concepts, but in addition were exposed to various private technology enterprises in the region at VITEC2 and the Guanajibo Research & Innovation Park (GRIP), and also participated in various occupational workshops. The workshops took place at Universidad del Este in Cabo Rojo, and the Hormigueros Juanita Arenas Amphitheater.
Tecno-Youth V A fifth group is taking place with the sponsorship of Mayaguez – Las Marias Consortium. In this case workshops have being conducted at the Universidad Pontificia Catolica de Mayaguez and at VITEC2. Twenty-five youngsters from Mayaguez are participating until August 29, 2009. With this group, 180 youngsters from the western region have participated in this innovative technology educational program.
Next Activities September 9, 2009 - Second Annual Meeting PRTEC - PRTEC’s Board of Directors presents its 2008-09 goals. Javier Vazquez, Executive Director PRIDCO, primordial orator. September 30, 2009 – Risk Management in the Medical Device Industry – BDTC October 28, 2009 - Actividad Movimiento Empresarial Banco Desarrollo, Mayagüez Resort
PRTEC Board of Directors President
Hon. Carlos Delgado
Ana E. Cuebas
Medical Devices Cluster Representative
Juan Carlos Kuang
Aerospace Cluster Representative
Academia representatives Government representatives
Dr. Jorge I. Vélez Dr. Luis García Feliú DDEC
Affiliated Organizations Northwest, Southwest and Mayagüez-Las Marías WIA Consortiums Movimiento Mayagüezano Pro Desarrollo del Oeste
Management team Executive Director
VITEC2 Managing Director
Héctor M. Carlo
Accounting Officer & Special Projects
“MOU PORTA DEL SOL” The Tourism Company of Puerto Rico and PRTEC signed a collaboration agreement in order to develop the full potential of the Porta del Sol initiative in the West Coast of Puerto Rico. PRTEC will support the establishment of small business in the tourism area, coordinate a unified training agenda with the different universities, small colleges and WIA Consortium of the Porta del Sol Region, support new hotel developments in the region, and provide assistance to municipal governments in their tourism strategic plans. The agreement was signed as part of the inaugural ceremonies of the new Porta del Sol operational office at 100 road in Cabo Rojo. Already PRTEC has coordinated various meetings with representatives from the academic sector of the region to produce an educational matrix that serves as the basis for future training activities and the development of additional courses that might be needed. Also as part of Innovacion Empresarial, 10 business ideas were related to tourism and are being supported by both PRTEC and Porta del Sol staff. In addition PRTEC have met with several municipal tourism directors to assist in their municipal office strategic plans.
Workshops The Small Business and Technology Development Center of Puerto Rico in collaboration with the U.S. Small Business Administration and the Interamerican University of Puerto Rico – San Germán Campus, offer the Match Making Event at VITEC2 facilities on June 3, 2009. This activity gave established companies the opportunity to conduct business with the federal government, local government entities as well as private organizations. The participants had the opportunity to participate in individual meetings with these entities to present their products and services. A workshop on: “Opportunities to business growth”, was also given as part of the activDuring the month of June, a ten day seminar geared towards preparation for the PMP certification was offered at the Hewlett Packard facilities in Aguadilla. The workshop was given by professionals from Executrain and is part of a strategic alliance between Executrain and PRTEC to provide professional certification courses in the Western region. Ten professionals representing several companies participated at the seminar.
Facebook Following the new marketing tendencies, PRTEC created our customized web page in Facebook. Its a informal method of promotion, a good way to keep the contacts aware of new activities and a nice manner to share photos and videos with fans. Follow this link and become a fan. http://www.facebook.com/pages/ Mayaguez/Corredor-Tecnoeconomicode-PR-PRTEC/23247312298?ref=mf
PRTEC is a non-profit organization committed to create a collaborative environment between private industry, government and the academia to promote the economic development of the western region of Puerto Rico with a focus on innovation and high tech industries.
Published on Sep 15, 2009
See the Puerto Rico Technoeconomic Corridor Newsletter. You can see its entrepreuner initiatives and technology projects.