Economic development leaders from the St. Louis region have signed two memorandums of understanding (MOUs) with counterparts in France. The agreements are the direct result of relationships that have developed over the last 2 1/2 years between St. Louis leaders, Business France and the Consulate General of France in Chicago.
The St. Louis Economic Development Partnership’s MOU is with the Regional Economic Agency of Bourgogne-Franche-Comté (AER BFC) to increase international connectivity and support innovation exchange and new investment.
Target industries for collaboration include agriculture, agricultural technology and plant science, with a focus on the planning and development of respective ecosystems and related innovation districts. The agreement also identifies the 39 North Innovation District and Helix Center Biotech Incubator as a “soft-landing” for French companies to connect to the North American market.
Click below for Partnership VP Ginger Imster talking about the trip on KMOX Radio (6-17-18)
(Begins at 27th minute)
GlobalSTL’s MOU is with AgrOnov, a leading accelerator of agricultural innovation in France. AgrOnov, located in Dijon, is a business incubator with 32,000-square-feet. The hub features greenhouses, laboratories and experimental fields. AgrOnov is a connector between companies and universities, research centers, farmers and other groups.
The international partnership connects agriculture innovation ecosystems in both locations at the private and public sector levels. It will open doors for French ag-tech and food-tech companies to enter the U.S. market via St. Louis, and for St. Louis-based ag-tech and food-tech companies to access the French market and European opportunities.
St. Louis is located in the heart of one of the largest agricultural production and innovation ecosystems in the world. Home to more plant scientists than any other region in the world, it offers French ag-tech startups a connection to unique and valuable assets, talent, relationships and investors.
France is also widely regarded as one of the world’s biggest agricultural producers.