Continental automotive which specializes in on board

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Continental Automotive, which specializes in on-board electrical and electronic systems, has long had a base in the Occitanie region and has a 2,500-strong workforce across its Boussens, Foix and Toulouse sites. In 2015, the group embarked upon an ambitious connected car project, for which much of the R&D will take place in France, primarily in Occitanie. The project resulted in the 2016 creation of Continental Digital Services, headquartered in Toulouse. “Whether we are talking about connection via smartphones or a direct connection, the emergence of the connected car is revolutionary,” explains Louis-Claude Vrignaud, Director of Public-Private Partnerships at Continental France. “We persuaded the group that we had all the necessary strengths to expand our company’s operations in this brand new and highly promising field in France, and specifically in Toulouse, due, among other things, to government support for R&D through schemes such as the research tax credit and the ‘National Investment Program’, the high standard of education, training and research and their links with industry through innovation clusters, specialist research institutes and technology transfer accelerators.” Several hundred new hires are planned between now and 2020. MIZAR AT THE COLOMIERS TECHNOLOGY PARK Mizar, a subsidiary of Spanish conglomerate Alcor Group, is setting up a base in Colomiers (Occitanie region) in a bid to become a major player in the French additive manufacturing market. Seven jobs will be created by the end of the year to help the firm target the aviation market and meet the needs of other sectors such as space, medicine and energy. Founded as an additive manufacturing service provider in 2014, Mizar is part of the Spanish industrial group Alcor (600 employees, revenues of €62 million). The subsidiary, which has 16 employees, produces metal and polymer parts for aerospace, the medical sector, and industry in general. In 2016, the company decided to establish a base in France, and in early 2017, it moved in to the Green Park technology park in Colomiers. “When it comes to additive manufacturing, France is three times the size of the Spanish market,” explains Guy Bertrand, CEO of Mizar France. By the end of the year, we will have three polymer and metal machines and a team of seven people. Our aim is to expand nationwide and become a key player in France.” The Spanish firm chose Colomiers for its strategic location at the heart of the Toulouse aerospace ecosystem and the Aerospace Valley innovation cluster, as well as for its proximity to the medical and space hubs of Bordeaux, Toulouse and Montpellier. 2016 ANNUAL REPORT - BUSINESS FRANCE / 57
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EICHROM EXPANDING QUICKLY IN BRITTANY Eichrom’s laboratories, which have been operating in Bruz in the Bretagne (Brittany) region since 2003, perform asbestos and radioactivity analyses on all kinds of samples, including environmental matrices and samples taken during decommissioning.
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