The Power of Connectivity – Digitally & Physically

28th October 2021

The last few years the world has witnessed – and experienced – major changes in all industries and the evolution of global economy. When examining more closely, the driving force and determining factor behind most changes is the Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) sector. A country with a solid ICT sector cannot but thrive in today’s knowledge digital economy and Luxembourg is proof that this is the case, bringing to the table many opportunities both for businesses of all sizes and association conferences alike.

Words Vicky Koffa

Luxembourg is, in fact, synonymous to connectivity. The small country’s geographical position offers great accessibility and security for many European countries, which is the partly the reason why it has been selected to house many EU institutions, NATO facilities, international company headquarters and major banks. The data collected daily raised the need for a strong digital landscape with extensive bandwidth and an advanced national cyber security strategy. 

The Grand Duchy was already a leader in the field, but as of last year the government has adopted a national strategy to prioritize ICT, investing in infrastructure, research, and the creation of opportunities for companies of all sizes. Extensive broadband networks, public data centers such as the Interdisciplinary Centre for Security, Reliability and Trust (SnT), as well as the Luxembourg Digital Innovation Hub (L-DIH) – which aims to increase the digital transformation of businesses – are major projects launched as part of this strategy.

Cyber Security & Blockchain

Luxembourg is staying ahead of the game keeping all data secure within its borders. The government is seeking to grow trust both in the private and the public sector by proactively bracing for possible threats and breaches. In 2018, they released the National Cybersecurity Strategy III, engaging members of governmental ministries, intelligence and security services, judicial authorities, and the police, in actions enhancing cyber security. Research and education institutions such as Bee Secure, SnT, and Restena; sectorial PPPs like the Luxembourg Commercial Internet Exchange (Lu-Cix); regulatory bodies such as the Financial Sector Supervisory Commission (CSSF); private companies and start-ups all work hard to keep the encryption bar high.

Extending its digital capabilities to the financial sector, the country has also made possible the extensive use of distributed ledger technology (DLT) and blockchain. Cryptocoin exchange Bitstamp, ancillary organization InfraChain and Lëtzblock all create and promote the adoption of DLT and Blockchain technologies in Luxembourg. The law passed by Luxembourg’s Chamber of Deputies in 2019 permitting the use of DLT for the circulation of securities has given businesses extra entrepreneurial vigor to compete in the European and international markets.

Meluxina: Luxembourg’s new supercomputer

The rising demand of big data usage in most of Luxembourg’s key sectors – space, automotive industries, logistics, fintech, and life sciences to name but a few – has generated the necessity for a superpower. This came in June 2021 in the form of a supercomputer called Meluxina and is one of the most powerful computers in Europe, reaching the top 50 of the world ranking of the 500 most performant supercomputers. The new hardware will have a calculating power of 10 petaflops – that is ten million billion operations per second, it will be housed at the new LuxConnect high performance computing (HPC) center in Bissen and powered exclusively by green energy.

The supercomputer will benefit businesses with accurate design of complex parts, reduced time-to-market for products and reduced material costs. Sectors like life sciences will be assisted with personalized medicine and eHealth projects, whereas the financial sector will find a partner in the sustainable transition to a digital economy, offering all in all personalized professional support and technical expertise, research and innovation opportunities across all verticals.

Fit 4 Start

Creating a competitive edge in this digital economy, Luxembourg is also fostering collaboration, fast access to competences and exchanges of best practices among start-ups as well as small to large companies. Initiated in 2015 by the Ministry of the Economy and managed by Luxinnovation with the support of Technoport and the Luxembourg-City Incubator, Fit 4 Start is now launching its 12th edition. 

The acceleration program will last six months, from January to June 2022, and will offer 20 selected start-ups coaching, pre-seed funding and access to key networks. For the first time this year, five of these companies will also gain access to supercomputer Meluxina in the hope it triggers innovative products and ideas across all industries. The main goal of the initiative is to combine actual physical collaboration and knowledge within a strong digital ecosystem in an attempt to bring Luxembourg to the top of the ICT sector in Europe.

An Ever-Present Convention Bureau

Business Events Luxembourg lies at the heart of connectivity. Not only do they pave the way for associations who wish to connect by having a congress or conference in the country, they also are highly active in putting associations in touch with local stakeholders and experts. Such gatherings are bolstered by the proximity of knowledgeable and influential people, ensuring the event makes a lasting impact.

Luxembourg’s ICT sector is clearly very attractive for like-minded associations. In fact, September started in a very promising way with the successful organization of the global tech conference ICT Spring Europe 2021. More than 5,000 attendees from over 72 countries gathered at the European Convention Center Luxembourg (ECCL) to deepen their digital knowledge and capture the value of the fast-growing FinTech. A series of conferences with renowned speakers, exhibitions and demonstrations of the latest tech trends and innovations come together as part of the Digital ICT Week, organized by the Luxembourg Chamber of Commerce and Farvest. Next year’s edition is set to take place between 7 and 8 June 2022.

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