Johan Van den Bossche, Chairman of the board
Johan Van den Bossche is a professional serial entrepreneur. Het has founded several high-tech companies, in which he holds management and advisory positions. His interests are in high-tech spin-off creation, management and economy.
Johan received his MSc. in electrotechnical engineering from the University of Leuven in 1986. He started his career as a research assistant at the Mechanical Engineering Department of the University of Leuven and as a researcher at the National Institute for Standards and Technology in Washington, USA. In 1990, he founded Krypton Electronic Engineering NV, a measurement equipment manufacturer, where he was CEO until 2005. He successfully sold the company to the Leuven-based metrology multi-national Metris, recently acquired by Nikon. Johan has been involved in catalyzing the creation of spin-offs based on the knowledge present in Belgian Universities. In 2006, he co-founded SO Kwadraat, a non-profit organization for supporting high-tech entrepreneurs and spin-offs funded by the Flemish Minister of Economy, where he still is part-time manager. Meanwhile, he started several high-tech spin-offs such as Leuven Air Bearings NV, where he holds the COO position, and Vesalius Medical Technologies.
Johan received the AISEC prize “The Golden Idea” with an RF catheter for his bundle Ablation, a life saving new technique.
Maurice Mergeay, Management and strategic advisor
Maurice Mergeay is a serial entrepreneur who has founded several high-tech companies. Currently he holds management and advisory positions in different companies. His interests are primarily spin-off creation, business strategy and business development.
He received his MSc. in electro-mechanical engineering from the KULeuven in 1974. Following his degree, he has been a research assistant at the Mechanical Engineering Departement. In 1979, he founded LMS, Leuven Measurement & Systems, one of the first spin-offs of the KULeuven and was CEO until 1991. In 1992, he founded UTI-Maco Belgium, another spin-off of the KULeuven. From 1994 till 2000, he was a vice-president of MTS, a company with headquarters in Minneapolis, USA, and listed on the Nasdaq stock exchange. After several other positions he was co-founder in 2006 of SO Kwadraat, a non-profit organization for supporting high-tech entrepreneurs and spin-offs funded by the Flemish Minister of Economy. Since 2007 he is actively involved as advisor, coach and teacher in the INNOTEK project “Companies creating Companies”, a European project, helping the creation of spin-offs based on ideas originating from companies.
He is also strongly involved with VlaJO, a project funded by the Flemish Minister of Economy, stimulating entrepreneurship in schools.
Prof. Dr. Michiel Steyaert, Technical and strategic advisor
Michiel S.J. Steyaert is an internationally recognized authority in the field of advanced analog and RF CMOS IC design and IEEE fellow. He is a Full Professor at the University of Leuven where he is doing research in high-performance and high-frequency analog integrated circuits for telecommunication systems and analog signal processing.
Michiel received the MSc. degree in electrical-mechanical engineering and the Ph.D. degree in electronics from the University of Leuven in 1983 and 1987, respectively. From 1983 to 1986 he obtained an IWNOL fellowship (Belgian National Foundation for Industrial Research), which allowed him to work as a research assistant at the ESAT laboratories. In 1987, as IWONL project researcher at ESAT, he was responsible for several industrial projects in the field of analog micropower circuits. In 1988 he was a visiting assistant professor at the University of California, Los Angeles. In 1989, Michiel was appointed by the Belgian National Fund of Scientific Research as Research Associate, in 1992 as a Senior Research Associate, and in 1996 as a Research Director at ESAT. Between 1989 and 1996 he was also part-time Associate Professor. Michiel is now a Full Professor at the University of Leuven and the Chair of the Electrical Engineering Department.
Michiel Steyaert received the 1990 and 2001 European Solid-State Circuits Conference Best Paper Award. He received the 1991 and the 2000 NFWO Alcatel-Bell-Telephone award for innovative work in integrated circuits for telecommunications. Last, he received the 1995 and 1997 IEEE-ISSCC Evening Session Award, the 1999 IEEE Circuit and Systems Society Guillemin-Cauer Award and is currently an IEEE-Fellow.