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Nathalie Delrue-McGuire - Belgium, Flanders & Belcham USA - Stanford Engineering - 28 Jan 2019


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Talk by Nathalie Delrue-McGuire, Honorary Consul for Belgium (San Francisco), at Stanford Engineering on January 28 2019, Session #3: 'Flanders : From WW1 Battlefields to Global Leadership in Enterprise Software & Semiconductors'.

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Nathalie Delrue-McGuire - Belgium, Flanders & Belcham USA - Stanford Engineering - 28 Jan 2019

  1. 1. Flanders, Belgium From Battlefields to Global Leadership in Enterprise Software and Semiconductors. Hon. Nathalie Delrue-McGuire Honorary Consul of Belgium since 2013 Board Member - Co-Founder, BelCham Bay Area
  2. 2. Belgium – a few Key Facts • Belgium: 30,528 square Kms – parliamentary constitutional monarchy • 3 regions: Flanders (13,522 square kms), Wallonia (16,844 square kms), Brussels (1615 square kms) • 3 languages: Dutch, French and German • Heart of EU Institutions, HQ of NATO • Belgium in UN Security Council 2019-2020 • Catalyst for privacy laws – heart of EU policy decision making • Population: 11.37 million inhabitants (FL:6.552 millions, W: 3.624, BRU: 1.198 million • Between France, Netherlands, Luxemburg, Germany and UK (sea) • Representation and initiatives in California
  3. 3. Regions
  4. 4. Provinces
  5. 5. WWW
  6. 6. On the Strong Innovation Scale
  7. 7. The permanent re-invention: The case of Limburg (Hasselt) • From coal mines to Philips factory to large incubator • From massive unemployment to exponential start-up initiatives and full entrepreneurship: Corda Campus and Incubator
  8. 8. Flanders – Land of Innovation • Role of KU Leuven and Ghent Universities in innovation, engineering quality, job creation • Role of Research Centres such as IMEC (Co- creation, clean rooms) • KU Leuven as Europe #1 Entrepreneurial University • Eco-Systems’ similarities with Stanford • New Incubators • Venture landscape (public and private) • Main sectors
  9. 9. Types of Venture Capitalists in Flanders • Public Venture Capitalists (eg various Flemish Innovation Funds, EU programs) • Private Venture Capitalists (often affiliated with banks or large financial groups) eg: Gemma Frisus Fund, LRM, Biovest, GIMV) • Business Angels (eg. 4 networks of BAN Flanders) • Other private venture funds in other regions investing in Belgian and foreign start-ups: eg VerlInvest based in Brussels
  10. 10. The role of BelCham • BelCham NYC – oldest foreign chamber in the United States, 100 years old • BelCham Bay Area launched in 2014, same Board + organization with NYC • BelCham is privately funded, opened two incubators in the United States between 2013 and 2016 for Belgian scale-ups growing in the U.S. • The Case of the Summer Catalyst Program: BelCham partners with KU Leuven for a fast-paced program catered to the challenges of high- growth tech companies. Weekly topic-specific workshops, office hours with knowledgeable guest experts, group meetings with fellow founders and personalized introductions, several years of learning condensed into one month. In 2018, the six participating companies included: Ivex (safety in autonomous vehicles), RiskConcile (risk management for the financial industry), MyCellHub (data management for cell-based products), n-Auth (login without username or password), MAGICS (integrated circuits for harsh environments) and VersaSense (wireless fabric for industrial IOT)
  11. 11. Major highlights in Q4 2018 (1) • Forbes Shortlist of 25 Machine Learning Startups To Watch in 2018 includes former Most Promising BelCham Company of the Year Award Winners DataCamp (2017) and Showpad(2016). • Atelier Member Guardsquare (SF) won the Deloitte Fast 50 co- organized by Fortino Capital and Netsuite, while THEOplayer (Atelier NY & SF) won the category for media and entertainment. In addition to these two, Atelier members Nanopixel and EyeSee (Atelier NY) also landed in the top 10. Other noteworthy nominees were members Zentrick(Atelier NY), N- Side, Odoo and Showpad. Byteflies (Atelier NY) was named Rising Star 2018. • Imec.istarter Contento (Atelier SF) completed the Y Combinator Startup School.
  12. 12. Major highlights in Q4 2018 (2) • Lynxcare (Atelier SF) graduated from The Alchemist Accelerator and added an additional workspace in Atelier in the Bay. • Our Atelier NY member EasyFairs won the title of Company of the Year by L’Echo with EY & BNP Paribas Fortis. • Fibricheck (Atelier SF) received FDA approval and won the EIT Venture Award. • BelCham members have actively secured funds before the end of the year: Datacamp raised $25M,SweepBright (Atelier NY) raised €2.3 euros, VersaSense raised €1M.
  13. 13. Major highlights in Q4 2018 (3) • Mergers and acquisitions: • Ticto (Atelier SF) was acquired for €14.2M by RightCrowd, • Versele-Laga added to its US activities with the acquisition of Higgins Premium Pet Foods, • Showpad acquired Voicefox, • InSites Consulting was taken over by Mentha Capital, • and Intracto acquired Snackbytes. • Puratos acquired Bakkersonline, the startup founded by Maxim Sergeant who joined BelCham in New York as part of the “Durf Ondernemen” student program in 2015.
  14. 14. Nathalie Delrue-McGuire E-mail: Honorary Consulate of Belgium – San Francisco: Harvard University: Linkedin: Websites:,, Tel: 415 439 3852 Biography: • Born in Mons, Belgium, U.S. and Belgian dual citizen • Education: University of Brussels (ULB), University of Bochum (Germany), University of Vienna and University of Economics of Vienna Wirtschaftsuniversitaet (Austria), Harvard Business School, Harvard Kennedy School • Professional background: software sales, marketing and strategic alliances (U.S. and EMEA), strategic account management, international marketing services, public and economic diplomacy, international relations and public policy expert Frequent speaker: United Nations Symposiums, Global Venture Forum, Harvard Club, European Innovation Day • Board member: BelCham U.S.A. Chairwoman Emerita, SFMOMA’s Modern Art Council and past Trustee • Mother of two