In 2020, Łukasiewicz Research Network generated a profit of 68 million PLN and revenues of about 1.3 billion PLN. – In no year have research institutes, which are not yet in Lukasiewicz, noted a plus. In the first year of our activity, ie in 2019, we earned 12 million PLN [zysku – red.]secondly, more than 60 million PLN, and this is not only the result of optimizing our costs. Surprisingly, some institutions have set a goal for us – 2 percent. reduction, they were able to reduce costs by 10 or 15%, because it turned out that we have large resources, for example, we are buying electricity jointly, which has given us great savings. But above all, our higher incomes are due to the fact that, despite the epidemic, there is great interest from entrepreneurs who have commissioned us to conduct research and development, testing or certification, ”said Piotr Dardzinski.
– Today we have 1,500 in our portfolio. projects and organizations that have issued 4,000 invoices for 2020, but let’s say we have several hundred such contractors with more than 1.5 million PLN – Dardziński added. He also explained how Lukasiewicz’s business partnership worked.
– If an entrepreneur has a problem, there is no need to know the name of the scientist who solves it – a biotechnologist, a solid-state physicist or an electronics engineer. The entrepreneur simply tells us what the problem is, and we provide a project team with the appropriate research infrastructure within 15 days, a schedule for the implementation of a potential project and any associated costs, Dardzinski said. According to him, the reliability and quality of the projects force new entrepreneurs to cooperate with Lukasiewicz. – Since November 2019, more than 300 companies have gone through this process. There were more than 600 problems we faced, and several different technological challenges are still part of the problem. These are more than a thousand technological problems that we have tried to solve with different results during this period, – said the President of the Lukasiewicz Research Network.
30% of the Network’s new customers are companies with no experience in R&D. – These are mainly small, medium and even micro entrepreneurs. We treat the youngest and the old the same. On the other hand, of course, we cooperate with private, large Polish companies such as Eneris or Elemental, but we also have the biggest magnates in our portfolio, such as Orlen, Azoty, KGHM, and by reaching the opposite side, we also have international companies, IBA, LG var. “We are with every entrepreneur who can identify the problem, and we treat every entrepreneur with the same care,” Dardzinski said.
/Photo by Ireneusz Rek /INTERIA.PL
The Lukasiewicz Research Network currently employs 4,500 people. scientists. In an interview with Interia, Dardziński said his dream was to hire 1,000 new employees in the research and engineering department in the next 2-3 years. – Only development guarantees our success. “If there is interest from entrepreneurs, we have projects, our incomes are growing, profits are growing, then you need to hire people and pay them better,” he said.
“Poland must have its own technological valley, and we even claim that it already exists,” Dardziński told Interia. As he explained, we have strong research centers that form the basis of the system, as well as specialized personnel. There are also biotechnology companies in Poland that have great potential.
– What we need to complete, we need to complete the research infrastructure or the relevant laboratories, and apparently, this does not come from first-class laboratories. As Lukasiewicz, we would like to participate in this process, including the establishment of a biotechnology center, led by the Agency for Medical Research, and invest in research infrastructure in the next five to six years. The head of Lukasiewicz explained – to build a campus in biotechnology, which will complement this concept.
He also noted that the most important area for the Network is the area of sustainable economy and energy, which is currently the subject of the most inquiries of entrepreneurs. – The second area is smart and clean mobility, which is quite natural. For us, two small areas are digital transformation, where we invest a lot in artificial intelligence, but if you can say so – for example, it can be used in connection with electric vehicles. The fourth area is health, Dardzinski said.
President Lukasiewicz answered questions about the Science Shield, which launched the Lukasiewicz Research Network at the beginning of the pandemic. One of the projects under the shield involved the production of 2 million masks. – Production lines work. It’s not 3 anymore, it’s really 5 production lines, because we have sold these production lines. One was sold to us and the rest to our partners. (…) Each of these lines – which is important – is different. Important information is that when the pandemic began, most companies focused on the strategy of lowering production lines for masks from China. We had a hard time rebuilding [te linie – red.]because our institutes had knowledge of what these lines looked like. Within 9 months, we managed to design the first line. The other was created after 3-4 months. As a rule, we already have the know-how, and now we are improving this knowledge, “said Dardzinski. According to him, in addition to the production line in the chain, it is important to have a device for the production of non-woven fabrics for these lines.
Another concept of the Science Shield was for highly sensitive screening tests for the presence of coronavirus. – This is an ongoing project. It turned out to be more difficult. This is a project funded by the Medical Research Agency. He later received a grant and is in the process of implementation. The first effects will be expected early next year, President Lukasiewicz said.
Bartosz Bednarz gave an interview