She comments on a significant increase in base funding from Siva, a public funding agency for innovation, owned by the Norwegian Ministry of Trade and Fisheries, and an additional MNOK 2 from the Research Council of Norway.
“These funds allow us to pursue bigger projects in Southern Norway. We will do our utmost to meet higher expectations and to manage the funds in the best possible way”, says Sharma.
Siva is investing heavily in new technology and commercialization of research, and is also building larger and more powerful innovation companies. Innoventus Sør, a joint incubator for the whole Agder region, is a top priority, receiving MNOK 4 out of a total MNOK 32 Siva budget.
Innoventus Sør has also received MNOK 2 from the Research Council of Norway in order to commercialize research projects at the University of Agder and research institution Teknova.
“We are thrilled to see this unfold in our region. Those that stand to benefit are companies, scientists and others who have a great idea or project”, says Sharma.
Innoventus Sør is the operator of the greenhouse for great ideas at Lumber in Kristiansand, an initiative from oil entrepreneur Bjarne Skeie and GCE NODE, supported by the industry, several banks, Kristiansand Municipality and Vest-Agder County.