Photonics industry consortium forms in Canada

June 8, 2012
Montreal, QC, Canada--The Canadian Photonic Industry Consortium (CPIC), the result of a merger of the Canadian Institute for Photonic Innovations (CIPI) and Canadian Photonic Consortium (CPC), has officially launched.

Montreal, QC, Canada--The Canadian Photonic Industry Consortium (CPIC), the result of a merger of the Canadian Institute for Photonic Innovations (CIPI) and Canadian Photonic Consortium (CPC), has officially launched. CPIC aims to accelerate the application and adoption of Canadian photonic technologies across all sectors of the global economy, promising to help increase the productivity and profitability of these firms and create new opportunities to exploit the $330 billion global photonics market.

CPIC brings together 10 inaugural member organizations across Canada, including small- to medium-sized firms that develop novel photonic technologies; multinational corporations that can put these innovations to work; and research centers that support photonics R&D and commercialization. These organizations have fostered different types of photonics expertise and span several end-user sectors, including oil and gas.

CPIC will address the specific needs of Canadian photonics companies, including access to financing, new technologies, talent, and commercial opportunities. As a first priority, CPIC will connect photonic firms to prospective customers in communications; energy and lighting; life sciences and health care; defense and security; transport; and manufacturing. To kick-start this activity, the consortium is currently planning initial workshops such as Photonics for Shipbuilding to be hosted in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and Vancouver, British Columbia, in October. CPIC will also help photonics innovators tap into research-funding opportunities with the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC).

CPIC is undertaking a critical mandate as Canada's photonics industry plays an essential role in the national economy. Comprised of 450 firms that collectively employ more than 20,300 highly skilled people, the photonics sector generated $4.4 billion in sales in 2008. Over the last four years, 74% of these firms reported revenue growth while 65% of companies reported an increase in the number of employees. Moreover, the global photonics sector represents a wealth of opportunity for Canadian firms with a global market with an estimated value of $330 billion in 2008.

The consortium aims to grow its membership by 100% before the end of the year to further broaden its reach and impact. In support of this goal, CPIC will also establish partnerships with international counterparts such as Photonics 21 and the European Photonics Industry Consortium (Europe); the Knowledge Transfer Networks (UK); and the International Society for Optical Engineering (US).


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