Silicon Alps Cluster, SAC

Type: Clusters and other supportive networks
Location: Austria
Contact: Veneta Buchegger

Who are we?

The Silicon Alps Cluster is an Austrian technology and innovation cluster for electronic based systems. As a public-private partnership, the cluster brings Austrian players from industry, science and public authorities together to develop and position the electronics and microelectronics sector with a regional focus on the South of Austria. The Silicon Alps cluster equally represents the interests of its partners and public authorities in objective regional development based on facts and opportunities. Our services are geared especially towards SMEs, start- ups and collaboration project development. The goal is to integrate the industry, research and public authorities for cooperation, information, network and communication.

In the context of Europe’s microelectronics industry, Austria provides a highly sophisticated industrial profile, total market potential comprises 130 companies, 30k employees and 15 billion Euros in turnover per year. Carinthia combines superior expertise, advanced technologies and an attractive mix of industries with a highly innovative environment. Its R&D rate has been on the rise since 2009; with 2.9%, Carinthia currently ranks fifth (2013) in Austria. At the same time, Carinthia sees an extraordinary high share of research based in the companies (75%). Leading global enterprises, such as Infineon Technologies Austria, Lam Research, KapschTrafficCom, Mahle or Flextronics International, are key factors in Carinthia’s exceptional technology expertise. No other Austrian federal province brings as many innovative products and services onto the market as Styria. With an R&D rate of 4 percent, Styria has been above the EU targets for 2020 for many years and occupies a top position among all European regions, thanks to an outstanding training, research and business landscape. Five universities with over 40,000 students, an internationally renowned system of universities of applied sciences and numerous research institutions have turned Styria into a veritable technology hub. On top of that, the majority of Austria’s competence centres conduct their research and other work in Styria; university spin offs are ubiquitous, and independent research institutions, such as Joanneum Research, are always open for companies and collaboration.

Which phases of Start-ups do we support?

  • Business idea
  • Seed/ Start-ups
  • Growth (Scale-ups)

Start-ups from which industries are we servicing?

Start-up and established company development have applications in all industry fields, such as described as follows, but is based on the resources and competences available in the SAC-network.
  • Business and Productivity
  • Energy and Utilities
  • Life Science and Agriculture
  • Materials and Manufacturing
  • Mobility and Transportation
  • Other industries

What kind of services do we offer?

Silicon Alps combines the sectors of industry, research and development/training and the public sector under the overall objective of strategic location development in the Southern Austria region. One of its activities is the introduction and intensification of CLUSTER FOCUS GROUPS.
Silicon Alps forms these groups, which jointly coordinate on topics and challenges and work on solutions and activities to address them. Cluster focus groups are generated so that a project or core theme can be handled as efficiently as possible, and can be staffed with qualified experts from research and industry. After the successful foundation of a CLUSTER FOCUS GROUP, it is then populated with interested and competent cooperating partners from the cluster, and works collectively to define its objectives and the necessary measures to achieve them.
Each group is headed by a team member who works in close cooperation with an executive sponsor from the cluster, while the Silicon Alps Cluster acts as the organisational and executive sponsor, providing specialist leadership.

Business know-how
  • Develop the idea in a common way, profit from the experience and know-how of the employees in the cluster and in the cluster-network
Innovating & intellectual property
  • Profit from the knowledge about innovation and IRP in the cluster network
Networking & matchmaking
  • Network access through the huge network of enterprises in different fields (e.g. meet them at focus events)
Access to markets
  • Enterprises force the innovation power of start-ups
  • Enterprises support through their market knowledge and excellence, starting with a customer supplier relationship

What is our vision?

The Silicon Alps Cluster regards itself as a long-term strategic alliance and a tool for cooperative, efficient and business-oriented regional development. The high level goals are to boost the competiveness and innovative capacity of its partners, to add value in Carinthia and Styria, to promote the region’s international visibility and to enhance the region’s attractiveness for start-ups and business establishment.

How can you contact us?

In case of interest, please refer your questions to the office of Veneta Buchegger (


Silicon Alps Cluster GmbH, Europastraße 12, 9524 Villach, Kärnten