The European Innovation Council (EIC), through its Business Acceleration Services (BAS) Innovation Procurement Partnership Program, is revolutionizing business creation and innovation with matchmaking events. Following the EIC buyers day with the José de Mello Group in March 2021, the Spanish electrical analysis company Sigma Industrial Precision reached an agreement with EUC, one of the companies of the Jose de Mello group.
EIC Buyer Days are tailor-made and highly effective acceleration services that facilitate collaborations between large buyers (procurement and supply management office or department of a company) and EIC-funded innovators. Taking place in March 2021, the EIC Buyers Day with the José de Mello Group brought together an innovative top-notch Spanish company, named Sigma Industrial Precision. Sigma’s way of doing business attracted the interest of buyer CUF, the largest private healthcare operator in Portugal.
Founded in 2017 by Patricio Sáez Morales, Ramón Serra and Carles Paul Recarens, Sigma Industrial Precision’s business analyzes the impact of electricity on machine operation and efficiency. It is the most effective way to know the behavior of processes, machines and infrastructures thanks to intelligent and automatic electrical analysis.
Sigma provides information such as electricity consumption and power quality. More importantly, it prevents overcharging, hot plugging, reverse currents, current spikes, overheating, short circuits, leakage currents, failures and breakages. In addition, it identifies mechanical problems, increases the electrical quality of the industrial installation and calculates the service life of machines.
Asked about the participation in the EIC buyer’s day with the José de Mello Group and the commercial agreement, Patricio Sáez Morales, CEO and co-founder of Sigma, said: “We presented our innovation to one of the buyers present at the time (at the CUF). They were interested in our solution because they wanted to analyze and have a precise idea of the energy performance of their hospital equipment given their high consumption. There is also another trading partner involved called It’s not. They are part of the CUF Group and provide multi-use medical device reprocessing services to hospitals and clinics – also regarding decontamination, inspection, sterilization, etc.”
André Vieira d’Almeida, Engineering & Maintenance at CUF, also reiterated this as they were trying to find a more efficient solution to their problem:
“The main objective of the collaboration with Sigma revolves around the installation of the material to control the electrical system, so that it can then be monitored to obtain the electrical parameters that derive from the installation. By analyzing the quality of the energy in our facilities, we are then able to better understand it and prevent any electrical problems that may arise.
Regarding what the collaboration entails, Patricio said: “The idea is to extend our solution to all CUF hospital facilities and help them assess the energy behavior of key machines inside the infrastructure..” As Patricio pointed out:In less than a year, we discussed ideas for improvement and focused on providing CUF with functional and innovative ideas that would add value). After the summer, we started the operation with the installation of the electric sensors and we made sure that everything was correctly configured and operational, explained some details and were able to start collecting data..”
As for how the negotiations between CUF and Sigma went throughout the process, Catarina Mendanha Moreira, who is part of CUF’s Strategic Planning, Control and Innovation department, explained that:
“The whole process was quite easy. The members of Sigma were all friendly and understanding. Also, they were able to grasp the challenge we were facing, and we were both able to get things working and adjusting them to the speed we needed as we got things moving – hence , the process went smoothly for everyone..”
Throughout their journey, Sigma agreed to do proof of concept for 12 months. In 2022, they will collect data to better understand the behavior of CUF’s machines and keep track of it during this time to monitor potential issues that may arise. Once the 12-month period is over, the CUF will be able to see if this process can be extended – which should happen early next year.
This fruitful business collaboration between Sigma Industrial Precision and CUF has also allowed the company to enter new grounds, as it has enabled them to establish relevant business relationships with companies outside of Spain. As Patricio clarified:As a startup, it is important to present our solution in this way because when innovation calls, and CUF being our first customer in the healthcare system, it can be difficult to enter such markets. However, it is a great starting point for us and it will surely help raise awareness of how relevant our innovation can be for various sectors of interest..”
About Sigma Industrial Precision
In a world where everything is run by machines, ensuring their optimal performance is paramount. When a machine starts to break down or stops unexpectedly: production is compromised, maintenance costs are triggered, performance and quality drop. Sigma Industrial Precision is a Spanish ICT SME specializing in the development of predictive maintenance based on electrical analysis focused on the development and commercialization of Predictive Sigma, a predictive maintenance platform for industrial assets.
With 77 years of experience, CUF is the market leader in the health sector in Portugal and is part of José de Mello SGPS, an economic group that operates in several strategic sectors of the country. The CUF network develops its activity through 19 care units: nine hospitals, nine clinics and one institute, and is present in thirteen municipalities, with a potential coverage of nearly six million Portuguese.
Interested in the EIC Buyer Days?
Since 2020, EIC Business Acceleration Services has developed the EIC Innovation Sourcing Partner Program. It allows companies funded by EIC to boost their network and meet relevant innovation buyers among the most ambitious public or private companies or institutions in Europe. From March 2020 to July 2022, 15 initiatives were organized through the “EIC Procurers Days” and the “EIC Multiprocurers Days” with the participation of +100 public or private purchasing partners. Are you looking for opportunities to connect with some of the biggest public and private buyers of innovation in Europe? Stay tuned and follow our events calendar!