Innovation & Finance in Dual Use Technologies

Oct 17, 2019, 3:00 – 6:00 PM

Mindspace Business District, BULEVARDUL DIMITRIE POMPEIU 2-4 and 4B, GLOBALWORTH CAMPUS A BUCHAREST, București, 020335

Defense techs rarely make good investments, and VCs wisely tend to steer clear from them. There are exceptions, however, in the case of “dual-use technologies” those that can be used for both civil and military aims. Such technologies become attractive when the civil market opportunities exceed the military ones which are uncertain. Join James Harris and Nicu Iancu for an evening full of insights!

In-person event

About this event

Many products and technologies that we take for granted every day – airbags, microwaves, GPS and the internet to name but a few – were initially conceived as defense sector research projects. These days this trend is reversing, with untapped defense-related opportunities emerging for businesses involved in civilian-specific technologies such as sensors, AI, drones and mapping tools.

At the front line of these dual-use developments are Europe’s small and medium enterprises (SMEs), providing high value-added jobs in sectors ranging from energy and aerospace to telecommunications and navigation. Turning ideas into business opportunities can be a challenge though; time and resources are often in short supply and entering foreign markets can be complicated.

Throughout the world, programs for innovative startups in dual-use technologies started to appear. These programs are designed to strengthen the links between the civilian and defense markets via the collaborative development of the technologies, thus advancing and improving their integration in both markets.

In the new world of great powers competition, the European Commission has made support for Europe’s defense sector a top priority. Ensuring the highest possible level of security for Europe’s citizens is a responsibility it shares with all Member States. As part of this, the European Commission fully recognizes that defense-related SMEs are key enablers of growth, and provides a range of support and funding mechanisms. A key focus is on nurturing innovation. SMEs can receive funding to develop brand new technology and plug themselves into international networks. Other types of funding aim to bolster regional competitiveness and help businesses to migrate innovative technology from one sector to another. SMEs can become valuable players in strategic high tech clusters.

Join James Harris and Nicu Iancu for an evening full of insights!

About James Harris:

After a prolific career in IBM and FBI, in 2013, James joined Obsidian Analysis as a Senior Specialist for Cybersecurity, aiding governments and private-sector companies in understanding the Cyber Threat, and in preparing their own policies and plans for Cyber Incident Management. In 2015, he formed his own consulting company, Nelson-Harris with a former colleague from Silicon Image, and later that year spun off a cybersecurity product company, Eunomic, Inc. Eunomic was a portfolio company for Virginia's Mach37 cyber accelerator, and focused on using Software Defined Networking (SDN) to protect devices and data at the Edge in shared networking environments. In two years, it took a "back of the napkin" idea and developed it into a working cloud-based cybersecurity platform.

Eunomic was acquired by Caveonix, Inc. in 2017, shortly after the first deployment of the UnomicEdge product. Then, James founded Antikythera, a consulting and IT services company based in the US, with partners and developers in Romania. In 2018, he also joined PFP Cybersecurity as their Vice President of Engineering to help them turn a DARPA-funded project into a cloud-deployable commercially-viable cybersecurity platform.

Today, James studies and practice Data Science and Machine Learning, working mostly in R, Python, and C++. Most of my work centers around side-channel analysis, and using statistical methods and machine learning to detect tampering with systems.

About Nicu Iancu:

Niculae Iancu is a national security specialist. He has worked in the field of international military cooperation and strategic planning, having relevant expertise on NATO, multinational operations, integrated planning, and public policies in the security, defense and intelligence areas. He has over twenty years of experience in the fields of defense and security research and intelligence and security higher education.

He was Rector of the "Mihai Viteazul" National Intelligence Academy for the 2013-2017 mandate.

He holds a Ph.D. degree at the Military Technical Academy, a master's degree in Security Studies at the University of Bucharest and a bachelor degree in weapon systems engineering at the Military Technical Academy.

Today Nicu is President of Integrated Intelligence, Defence and Security Solutions, Vice-Chairman of the Advisory Board of TID Group, and Opinion Columnist at the Defense and Security Monitor. Nicu is also Mentor at InnovX - BCR Business Accelerator on topics as Business and Competitive Intelligence and Dual-Use European Funds.

Check out what happened


  • James Harris



  • Nicu Iancu

    Integrated Intelligence Defence and Security Sollutions



3:00 PMWellcome, snaks & drinks
3:30 PMFireside Chat with James Harris and Nicu Iancu with an intro by Mircea Moraru from CMS
4:30 PMPizza, beer & friends


  • Dani Dumitrescu

    Startup Grind Bucharest


  • Mircea Moraru


    Senior Associate


  • Dani Dumitrescu

    Startup Grind Bucharest Chapter

    Chapter Director

  • Diana Dumitrescu

    Startup Grind Bucharest


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