As part of our new business development at GEN3 Partners, we have been steadily expanding our international reach for a variety of innovation services. Our current list of clients includes companies from England, Germany, Switzerland, Russia, Korea, Thailand, China and, most recently, Colombia. Our Colombian connection started in 2014 with a very progressive program sponsored by the Colombian government, one intended to help them accelerate the innovation progress of 20 small and medium enterprises. We setup a local office in Colombia to provide sales, logistics and translation services and supported it with regular help from our in-house training and facilitation staff to provide a series of 5-day company workshops. During each session, participants learned how to use different innovation "tools" and then applied that new knowledge to specific projects they brought to the workshops. Over the course of 8 months, breakthrough results were achieved, and 11 patent applications were filed. Several participating companies are in a process of implementation of the developed innovation solutions. According to Dr. Simon Litvin, GEN3's Chief Scientific Officer and the Managing Director for all work in Colombia, "The response has been overwhelming. The people who have participated in these workshops really 'get it' and are determined to share the ideas they've learned with everyone in their companies. I give great credit to the political leaders who setup this project for their foresight and determination to help Colombian businesses grow their revenues and create new jobs for people in that country." While the original contract issued by Colsciencias has been completed, funding for a similar project for 2015 is making its way through the funding approvals process.
Later in 2014 and continuing in 2015 GEN3 has established in Colombia a network of "Virtual Client Partners" (VCP) covering the largest regional industrial centers in Colombia including Bogota, Medellin, and Barranquilla. These local partners, having been trained in the basic GEN3 TRIZ innovation methodology, are very effective in disseminating information about GEN3 services.
As word of this success spread, GEN3 has been asked by more than a dozen new companies to propose targeted innovation projects for new product and process development. We have already launched two innovation projects in 2015, both funded by private companies and we are awaiting approval of several other proposals. Dr. Litvin continued, "Colombia has been a great surprise for us. This enthusiasm for a systematic, disciplined approach is strong and could amount to 10-15% of our total revenues for 2015."