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An Aust-ounding and Finn-tastic Collaboration - Embassy of Finland, Canberra : Current Affairs

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News, 6/2/2017 | Embassy of Finland, Canberra

An Aust-ounding and Finn-tastic Collaboration

Strategic Elements: printed ink memory technology
Strategic Elements: printed ink memory technology

Strategic Elements and VTT (Technical Research Centre of Finland) recently entered into a stage two development agreement, to assist in further developing Strategic Elements' printed ink memory technology. We spoke with Charles Murphy, Managing Director of Strategic Elements, in regard to this collaboration with VTT. What is this technology? What is it like to work with Finns? You'll find the answers below!

What is Strategic Elements all about?

We seek to empower innovation by providing high-risk high-reward opportunities with funding, intellectual property protection, company formation, incubation, scale-up and partnering.

Strategic Elements operates as a registered Pooled Development Fund (PDF) on the Australian Stock Exchange under the code ‘SOR’.

Under the Federal Government PDF program our investors pay no capital gains tax or dividends to compensate for the higher risk of us backing innovative small and medium sized companies.

We strive to take part in developing projects that explore brand new fields of innovation. There is no restriction to any particular industry sector except for those excluded under PDF program rules such as property.

What is your approach to fostering innovation?

We encourage curiosity and seek out skilled people that are thinking differently to everyone else. We strongly believe in the need to keep asking questions at every stage of development.

How did you find out about VTT and why did you choose to collaborate with VTT?


VTT is recognised globally as a world leading research and technology company with over 1200 patents and patent applications whilst also being a trusted partner to some of the largest companies in the world.

VTT was one of the first groups into the Printed Electronics space. We were introduced through the PrintoCent Pilot Factory for Printed Electronics in Oulu. VTT is a founding member of the award winning facility. PrintoCent provides a world class design, development and manufacturing environment for Printed Electronics.

What are Strategic Elements and VTT working on at the moment? Can you explain it for our readers?

Strategic Elements is funding the development of printable memory ink technology. The ink contains tiny ceramic cubes thinner than a human hair that assist it to store and remember information or data.

The memory ink has been Inkjet printed onto glass and plastic substrates and is transparent to the eye.

The goal is to bring memory to devices and surfaces with different shapes and new flexible forms.

The technology was invented at the University of New South Wales by Professor Sean Li and his materials research team. The license is held in a 100% owned company which we have sole funded so far.

How has your team responded to this intercountry collaboration?

We have been very impressed at the level of professionalism shown by the VTT team and others that we have met. Our Company has responded well to this and a strong working relationship is being built.

How have the two organisations assisted each other throughout the collaboration process?

We invited a team from the Printed Sensors and Electronic Devices team based at Espoo to Australia and they spent some time with the inventors in the University of New South Wales laboratories.This was a valuable exercise that enabled scientists and our Company to quickly trade ideas and experience.

Have there been ideas and results that otherwise would not have come about? If they can be disclosed, what were they?

The outcomes so far are confidential, but I can say that VTT has contributed significantly to our understanding of the technology. The team we are working with have exceptional skills and experience in the Printed Electronics space.

What has it been like to work with Finns? What differences or similarities have you noticed (in terms of culture, attitude, ideas etc)?

We have found Finns to be very detail orientated and practical in their approach. There is great deal of similarity with the Australian attitude of being forthright.

What is coming up in the future with Strategic Elements and VTT?

We will be reviewing the outcomes of Stage Two in the next few weeks and will be discussing the future potential strategy to advance the technology further. Our experience working with VTT has been incredibly positive and we will definitely be seeking to keep working together in the future.

Interview conducted by Karen Khoo

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Updated 6/28/2017


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