Oct. 26, 2020 — The Barcelona Supercomputing Center (BSC) has created ten spin-offs in the last five years. These companies use results from part of the research and technology developed at the center to offer cutting-edge services in such diverse areas as biomedicine, aerospace and automobile industries’ security or quantum computing.
The launch of these ten BSC spin-offs has resulted in the creation so far of 93 high-skilled job posts. Together, they reach an external funding of 2,5M of Euros, as well as contracts for more than 8M of Euros.
These constitution operations have entailed the transfer of 23 BSC technologies, as well as others from different research institutions such as the UPC (Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya), UB (Universitat de Barcelona), IRB (Institut de Recerca Biomèdica), ICREA institution, CSIC (Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas) or Imperial College London, through the signature of license contracts.
BSC’s associate director, Josep M. Martorell, states that the creation of these ten spin-offs confirms the commitment of the center for the development of not only outstanding research, but also relevant; that is to say, with a high impact on society. According to Martorell, “in the mid and long term, we hope that many companies from our center co-live within our ecosystem, and that they produce quality job posts and attract investment continuously. This would be one of the many ways we have to give back to society what it has offered to us since our creation”.
“The diversity of the technologies exploited by these companies (from life sciences to earth sciences, as well as engineering and computing) shows the wide scope of our research. Supercomputing technologies are one of the most important and enabling ones today, without which many disciplines could not exploit all their research potential”.
The ten BSC spin-offs
The last spin-offs created from BSC have been Energy Aware Solutions, S.L. (EAS) and FRONTWAVE IMAGING, S.L., constituted last September.
- EAS, created together with the UPC (Universidad Politècnica de Catalunya), provides commercial solutions for the task planning and energy management for Data Centers, and it is an initiative of BSC researcher Julita Corbalán, specialized in computer sciences and the development of software for energy efficiency in high computing, with the participation of Luigi Brochard, former distinguished engineer of IBM and Lenovo.
- FRONTWAVE IMAGING, created together with ICL (Imperial College London), develops and commercializes diagnostic techniques through imaging of the breast tissue to improve the detection and diagnosis of breast cancer. It is an initiative of BSC researcher Josep de la Puente, an expert in problems on wave propagation in complex environments and with the support of Lluís Guasch, Óscar Calderón and Mike Warner, ICL researchers, Juan Esteban Rodríguez, BSC researcher, and the experts on venture capital and biotech field Rafael García and Susana Castel, and Marcos Borrell, representing 101 Ventures.
- The first BSC spin-off was Nostrum BioDiscovery, created in 2016, which uses a simulation based on computation and AI methods to accelerate the discovery of new drugs. An initiative by Víctor Guallar, BSC researcher and specialized in protein modeling, with the support of Modesto Orozco and Joan Guinovart on behalf of IRB Barcelona, Emilià Pola on behalf of ICREA, Jordi Naval on behalf of CIC-UB and the Fundació Bosch i Gimpera. It closed a financing round of seed capital of 0,5M Euros.
- Mitiga Solutions (2018) was established together with the UPC to develop and commercialize solutions capable of evaluating and managing the impact of volcanic risks, helping customers of multiple industries to improve their risk management. It is an initiative of BSC researcher Alejandro Martí with the support of researchers specialized in simulating complex problems, Arnau Folch, José Maria Cela and Mauricio Haznich, and institutions. They closed a financing round of seed capital of 1M Euros with Banc Sabadell and other private investors.
- ELEM Biotech (2018), constituted together with the UPC, is a company of biomedical software to create virtual human beings with a technology based on Alya, a simulation code created at BSC used to perform biomedical research “in-silico”. It is an initiative of Mariano Vázquez, BSC researcher specialized in biomechanical simulations, with the support of BSC researchers specialized in simulation of complex problems Guillaume Hozeaux, José Maria Cela and Christopher Morton. It closed a financing round of seed capital with private investors of 0,3M Euros.
- Nearby Computing (2018) was established together with the UPC, as well as with NearbySensors and Cellnex Telecom. It offers advanced technologies of orchestration for edge computing, with applications in IoT and 5G. It is an initiative by BSC researcher David Carrera, specialized in cloud and edge service automation, with the support of BSC researchers Óscar Trullols, Sergio Alonso, Álvaro Villalba, Tom Fenech and the CEO, Josep Martí. It closed a seed capital of 0,5M Euros, and currently, they are closing a new round of funding.
- Maspatechnologies (2020) offers tools for the analysis of temporal behavior and the security of multicore processors for critical systems, such as in aviation or the automotive sector. It is an initiative of BSC researchers, specialized in computer sciences and operative systems, Francisco Cazorla and Jaume Abella.
- Qbeast (2020) is a company that provides a cloud platform for the analysis of Big Data, based on high-performance technologies developed at BSC. It is an initiative of BSC researcher Cesare Cugnasco, specialized in computer sciences and Big Data, with the support of Pol Santamaría, Clemens Jesche and Nicolas Escartín.
- Nextmol (Bytelab Solutions) (2020) develops tools of atomistic simulation and data analysis to accelerate the design of new chemical products. It is an initiative of the Ph.D. and MBA Mónica de Mier and the BSC researcher Stephan Mohr. This spin-off has been accelerated by the Entrepreneurs Fund by Repsol Foundation.
- Lastly, Qilimanjaro (2020) has been created with the UB and IFAE. Its aim is to build a quantum computer, and it offers quantum algorithms to implement in companies. It is an initiative of the research team led by Professor José Ignacio Latorre, from the UB’s Faculty of Physics, and formed by Pol Forn, from the IFAE (Institut de Física d’Altes Energies), together with Artur García, from BSC. The founding team is completed with Víctor Canivell and Jordi Blasco, that provide their executive experience in the computer and fusion fields, as well as in company acquisition (M&A).
You can check all BSC spin-offs at this link.