News | 1 February 2019

Brightlands Maastricht Health Campus celebrates its fifth anniversary

Brightlands Maastricht Health Campus is celebrating its fifth anniversary and is proud to present - for the fifth year in a row - great results and steady growth. The number of established companies, organisations and spin-offs has experienced substantial growth in the last five years, and the number of jobs at the Campus rose to an amazing 9,553. This growth will only continue in the coming years. In order to provide housing to accommodate this growth, Brightlands Maastricht Health Campus recently put a third building into use for starting entrepreneurs.

Jan Cobbenhagen, CEO of Brightlands Maastricht Health Campus, announced the new figures and plans today during the anniversary event at the MECC in Maastricht in honor of this auspicious occasion. Together with the 200 guests, he took a look back, but mostly, looked ahead. Brightlands Maastricht Health Campus launched the special anniversary edition glossy magazine at the end of the afternoon. Jan Cobbenhagen: "The motley collection of stories about amazing experiences at the Campus is a perfect reflection of the dynamics of what goes on at the campus. Every story on its own and all of the stories put together make it clear that we have achieved a lot in five years, but at the same time, so much more is on the verge of happening."

Strong community
from left to right: Marja van Dieijen, Joost van den Akker, Martin Paul and Jan Cobbenhagenfrom left to right: Marja van Dieijen, Joost van den Akker, Martin Paul and Jan CobbenhagenIn his welcome remarks, he praised the growing, thriving community at the campus which manages to achieve innovative results time and time again. "As a campus organization, we connect business instincts with advanced knowledge, and we link science to entrepreneurship. The team at the Brightlands Maastricht Health Campus plays an important facilitating and advisory role in this. It does this by bringing the knowledge at Maastricht UMC+ and Maastricht University to the market and by supporting start-up companies in achieving their growth ambitions. We also facilitate incubator buildings at the Campus, the 'nurseries' for starting entrepreneurs. With an occupancy rate of 98%, these buildings were nearly full in 2018. This was the reason that a third incubator building was recently opened at the Campus."

Curative and preventive
Marja van Dieijen, chair of the board of governors for Maastricht UMC+: "This is a hotspot where knowledge and valorisation go hand-in-hand, and where, together with thousands of driven people, we are building on the future of health care and a vital Limburg. This is Brightlands Maastricht Health Campus in a nutshell, and it's a concept that works. We encourage our own health care professionals and scientists to convert their knowledge and skills into valuable applications for society, be this a patent or the structure for a start-up. This doesn't just benefit the economy in Limburg, it offers patients and doctors at our own Maastricht UMC+ new perspectives and possibilities."

From research to practice
"Brightlands Maastricht Health Campus is a real campus. It oversees the entire process involved in developing innovations for Maastricht UMC+ and Maastricht University in the fields of health and life sciences for scientists and researchers, from research to applications in everyday practice," concludes Martin Paul, president of Maastricht University. "By bundling knowledge and skills, an interesting ecosystem is created here, for students and researchers as well as starting and established entrepreneurs active in these sectors. The whole is absolutely more than the sum of its parts here."

Business activity and employment are important areas of special attention for the Province of Limburg. Joost van den Akker, Deputy for Economic Affairs and Knowledge Infrastructure for the Province of Limburg: "Brightlands Maastricht Health Campus is clearly evolving to become the place to be. Both national and international companies are interested in setting up a base of operations here. Every new business and organisation at the Campus makes the total picture stronger and more appealing. The original target for the Campus was to have 1,100 knowledge workers and/or jobs here by 2023, but the Campus had already created 1,400 new jobs by 2018. It goes without saying that this gives a major impulse to the indirect employment situation in the region."