Nanotech investment fund gets €30m from government


ImecXpand, set up by Leuven’s imec, will help develop start-ups in nano-electronics and sensor technology and bring their products to the market

Wealth of opportunities

The government of Flanders is investing €30 million in an investment fund driven by Leuven-based nanotechnology company imec. The imecXpand fund targets companies in the Internet of Things sector: evolutions in nano-electronics and sensor technology that allow physical objects to connect and react to each other.

The aim is to set start-up companies in this field on the right track. “ImecXpand will support start-ups that want to develop imec technology and bring it to the market, but because of the risks involved they don’t have access to current funding methods,” said Luc Van den hove, CEO of imec. “It will also support ideas from outside imec that can, combined with imec technology, lead to a start-up company.”

The Flemish government is investing €30 million in the initiative. “The Internet of Things can improve the quality of our lives and jobs almost automatically,” said economy minister Philippe Muyters (pictured). “There is still a wealth of opportunities in smart health, smart manufacturing, smart transport and smart cities.”

The goal is to raise a total of €100 million through imecXpand. For additional support, imec is looking to private partners and the EU.

Photo courtesy imec


Leuven-based imec is a world-leading nanotechnology and nanoelectronics research centre. Its main research areas are ICT, health care and energy.
Origins - Imec was established as an independent but Flemish government-backed research centre for microelectronics in 1984.
International - While its headquarters are in Leuven, imec has offices in the US, the Netherlands, Taiwan, China, India and Japan.
Clean room - Imec boasts two cleanrooms – dust-free labs to develop computer chips – and is developing a third.

spin-off companies


million euros in annual subsidy from the government of Flanders

2 000

staff members