Photonics Cluster Opportunities in Eastern Germany - Tokyo

Aug 30, 2016
Tokyo | Japan

The photonics industry in the new federal state of Thuringia comprises around 175 companies and institutions with a broad technological base including optics/mechanics, laser/radiation sources, optoelectronics, and light engineering amongst others.

Almost 14,000 employees, mainly in small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), generate annual revenue of EUR 2.85 billion. Another 1,300 people work for research institutions. Products made in Thuringia are top-of-the-line: More than one third of the companies claim technology leadership with their main products, and another 55 percent seeing themselves positioned in the top class of companies within their market segment.

The number of start-ups with promising technologies has also risen in recent years. Those include spin-offs of Thuringia’s universities and research institutions. An average export rate of 66 percent of sales means companies are very international in outlook, with positive sales forecasts identified in last year’s growth report.

The industry is highly dependent on research and development. To that end, around 10 percent of sales revenue is reinvested in R&D activity on average. Generous public funding also helps to reduce development risks, thereby promoting a culture of sustained innovation within the cluster.

The OptoNet cluster provides a vibrant platform for networking, professional exchange and cooperation to all photonics industry players in the state. Over and beyond this, the cluster also promotes internationalization activities and has put in place a number of initiatives and programs for the development of young talent.  

The largely SME industry membership is complemented by the presence of big players of the renown of ZEISS and JENOPTIK. Institutional members include three Fraunhofer Institutes, the Leibniz Institute of Photonic Technology, and a number of universities.

Germany’s photonics industry – and the thriving optics scene in Thuringia in particular – provides a number of attractive investment opportunities for Japanese companies.


Germany Trade & Invest (GTAI) is delighted to invite you to an “Photonics Cluster Opportunities in Eastern Germany” investor event in Tokyo on Tuesday August 30, 2016. Find out more about the region’s thriving photonics sector, the OptoNet cluster, and how your company could benefit from an investment in Thuringia.

Meet representatives of GTAI, the economic development agency of Thuringia (LEG Thüringen) and OptoNet. This event will be officially opened by Iris Gleicke, Parliamentary State Secretary and Federal Government Commissioner for the New Federal States at the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy.

This event is part of a business delegation of OptoNet member companies and institutions to Japan and will also include a B2B matchmaking event for German and Japanese companies. Another investor event will take place in Hamamatsu on Thursday September 1, 2016.

Address: Landmark Square Tokyo, Shinagawa Goos, 3 Chome-13-3 Takanawa, Tokyo 108-0074, Japan

For registration, please follow the link.

You can find more information on the speakers and their organizations in our Online Conference Guide.


10:00 amRegistration, Networking & Mini Trade Fair
10:30 am

Welcome Address

Dr. Stephan Grabherr
Minister and Deputy Head of Misson, Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany Tokyo

Welcome Address

Representative of the Ministry of Economic, Trade and Industry (tbd)

Welcome Address

PSts Iris Gleicke, Federal Government Commissioner for the New Federal States, Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy

Welcome Address

Dr. Benno Bunse, Chairman/CEO, GTAI

Thuringia –  A Pulsating Centre for Photonics and High-Tech Industries

Dr. Arnulf Wulff, Department Head for Investment, International Business and Cluster Promotion, State Development Corporation of Thuringia

11:45 amNetworking, Mini Trade Fair, Lunch Buffet
1:00 pm

The German Photonics Industry

Jerome Hull, Manager Machinery & Equipment, GTAI

1:20 pm

Photonics Thuringia

Dr. Klaus Schindler, CEO, OptoNet

1:40 pmDigital  Production  Industry 4.0 – Challenges in Men-Machine-Interaction
Prof. Dr. Andreas Tünnermann, Director, Fraunhofer Institute of Applied Optics and Precision Engineering
2:00 pmCoffee Break and Networking
2:20 pm

Insights – ZEISS in Japan

Rolf Beyersdörfer, President and Representative Director, Carl Zeiss Co., Ltd. Japan

2:40 pm

High Technology from Thuringia for Space

Dietmar Ratzsch, President & CEO, Jena-Optronik

3:00 pmQ & A, Networking & Mini Trade Fair
Master of Ceremonies: Iwami Asakawa, Japan Representative, GTAI

Our Partners

Partnerlogos Clustervermarktung OptoNet 2016: Logos AHK Japan + LEG Thüringen + OptoNet e.V. + Fraunhofer IOF | © Logos AHK Japan + LEG Thüringen + OptoNet e.V. + Fraunhofer IOF

Stephan Sasse

Contact Us

Stephan Sasse

Senior Manager

‎+49 30 200 099-102

Geschäftsmann telefoniert mobil und schaut dabei auf sein Tablet | ©


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A high density of innovative networks, research organizations and academic institutes allow companies to significantly reduce their R&D costs. Find out more in our latest brochure about industry clusters, future projects and networks in Eastern Germany!