Run West

Runners are CEO, CTO, Director or General Manager from Europe, Canada and the US (Source: EPIC)

Runners are CEO, CTO, Director or General Manager from Europe, Canada and the US. Front row in the suit is local organizer Jose Pozo (Source: EPIC)

Three dozen participants, all from senior executive positions, met at 6:30 a.m. to embark on a five mile run along San Francisco’s Embarcadero. The members of the European Photonics Industry Consortium, EPIC, started at the Ferry Building Marketplace, heading for Fisherman’s Wharf and back again. The runners are CEOs, CTOs, Directors or General Managers from Europe, but also Lumerica’s James Pond, Canada, Asphericon’s President Sabrina Matthias and Samuel Sadoulet, President of Edmund Optics, USA, although the latter had to cancel his participation last minute due to a business obligation.

During the following breakfast at the nearby Focaccia, the “inventor” of the event, Benno Oderkerk, CEO of Dutch company Avantes and member of EPIC’s Board of Directors, explained: “I’m very happy, this is sort of a dream come true. I used to run here alone in San Francisco, but there are so many people that you know from Photonics West or other occasions and I thought, why don’t we run together?”

Judging from the vivid conversations at the breakfast after the finish line, all participants were enjoying themselves and engaged in in-depth discussions about their specific fields of work and the respective industries.

Truly an epic runner's breakfast (Source: Wiley-VCH)

Truly an epic runner’s breakfast (Source: Wiley-VCH)

Oderkerk continued: “And I recognized that my fellow CEOs are very fit. No more old CEOs that sit around, smoking cigars or playing golf or so. Nowadays, they are fit and running! And they can even talk business while doing these five miles!”

Jose Pozo, Technical Director of EPIC and local organizer, summarized: “EPIC proofs once again that it has the most dynamic community in photonics and there is no better proof than see the executives walking or running altogether in the early morning, showing, that were almost some sort of family, discussing and collaborating at decision level.”

EPIC General Manager Carlos Lee added: “Networking is central to EPIC’s activities. I am personally convinced that Europe will remain competitive because all the actors along the value chain will get to know each other’s competences, and the people will trust each other. Then, everything is possible! So a simple event like the jogging this morning, decision makers / leaders of the photonics industry got to build a connection, they got to know each other in a different way. I am sure that in ten years you can ask them about this morning, they will still remember it! I am sure that during the jogging and during the breakfast, they talked business, technology, applications, markets, and exchange other interesting information.” Oliver Dreissigacker

Links: SPIE Photonics West, San Francisco, California, USAEuropean Photonics Industry Consortium, EPIC

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