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Covestro Fosters Open Innovation in China

  • Thursday, 28th March 2019
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  • Reading time: about 2 minutes

China faces a transformation of digitalisation, a booming market need for Electric Vehicles (EV) as well as an increasing focus on sustainability.

In response to these trends, Covestro is further intensifying its cooperation with Tongji University in Shanghai to address the market needs even faster. The Covestro -Tongji Innovation Academy is now expanding its open innovation collaboration by focusing particularly on digitalisation, enhancing EV battery performance, and deriving innovative materials to improve car interior air quality as well as exploring the Chinese robotics industry.

“It’s obvious that China is on its way to become a leader in innovation for many important industry trends,” says Dr. Markus Steilemann, CEO of Covestro. “This we want to support: As a global company, we are committed to innovate in China for the Chinese market as well as for the Asia Pacific region. I’m thrilled to see that our local innovation team is taking over more and more the global responsibility for core technologies. It’s the spirit of open innovation and open venturing with leading Tongji University, that helps us push the boundaries for the industry together with our partners.”

Prof. Dr. Wu Guangming, Vice President of Tongji University adds, “The Innovation Academy has set a good example to the industry-academia collaboration. With Covestro’s substantial support, the Academy has made significant achievements in the past eight years. I firmly believe, with the strengthened alliance, the Academy can help accelerate the industrialisation of innovation results by further promoting business model innovation to the industry.”

The Covestro-Tongji Innovation Academy was inaugurated in 2011. “The academy is intensifying the collaboration in the field of market driven innovation, sustainability and commercialisation,” emphasised Dr. Michael Schmidt, dean of the Academy and Head of Innovation for the Asian-Pacific region at Covestro. “Although we have a strong history of innovation, we cannot rest on our laurels. The academy gives us inspiration on how we can leverage speed, new technologies and new business models to further enable sustainability for the country and beyond.”

The Covestro-Tongji Innovation Academy also offers funding of business model incubation for students of Tongji participating in an annual business plan competition. This is to further develop applications and commercialise students’ projects, as well as to establish their own start-ups


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