“Expand ASML’s role as catalyst of innovation” ASML annual corporate responsibility report 2015, interview with StartupDelta director Sigrid Johannisse

In their annual Corporate Responsibility Report, this year ASML has devoted some of their attention to startups within the growing Dutch startup ecosystem. It is evident that startups are becoming increasingly important in the world of innovation and entrepreneurship. Our Director Sigrid Johannisse was interviewed for a piece in the CR Report since ASML wanted to include important external stakeholders.

Director Sigrid Johannisse was asked in what ways ASML could contribute to the startup ecosystem. And to what extent does ASML already supports the startup ecosystem? Questions like these will help ASML become more aware of the added value startups contribute to the ecosystem, which in turn is relevant to ASML’s ecosystem.

“ASML’s approach to supply chain management is a very relevant theme for us. Nurturing close cooperation with suppliers and sharing the responsibility for innovation with them fits our objective to create the widest possible network of companies and institutions to promote innovation and entrepreneurship,” says Johannisse, whose StartupDelta initiative aims to help position the Netherlands in the top 3 of European ‘startup ecosystems’ where new, innovative companies can thrive. She says companies like ASML will both contribute to and benefit from making the Netherlands more start-up-friendly. “If ASML were to include more start-ups in its network, it would probably have access to more ideas and insights. This could be a way to enhance serendipity; the phenomenon of making a valuable invention you weren’t immediately looking for. In addition, it would allow ASML to make an even bigger contribution to creating an innovative culture in the countries where it operates” Director Sigrid Johannisse explained.

Good example for other companies

“ASML is very focused on specific areas of technology for its lithography machines. This focus is the foundation of its position as a world leader in the semiconductor industry. At the same time, ASML is involved in several initiatives to share its knowledge with local communities, for instance it promotes technology among children and teenagers through volunteer programs and partnerships with schools. It would be good if it could expand these programs further. Also, ASML should probably communicate more pro-actively about these initiatives as awareness seems rather low. These are examples that other companies can learn from.” 

It is evident that the inclusion of startups in future corporate strategies will have beneficial effects on both sides of the fence; an improvement of the startup climate will be an improvement of ASML’s own eco climate.

Source of the interview: ASML Annual Report