On January 22 the All-Russian Startup Tour got to Penza, a city with a bit more than half a million population, located in the very middle of the Volga region, with deep industrial and agricultural traditions. 12 best innovative projects were on the stage, and governor’s support was also in place.

Several heads of the Skolkovo’s clusters took part in attentive examining of Penza best startups potential. And three of them, just like in other cities of the Tour, finally got invitations to the Startup Village to take place in June in Moscow, at the Skolkovo Innovation Center. Sergei Zhukov, head of the Space & Telecom technologies cluster of the Skolkovo Foundation, was one of the key speakers and experts this time, addressing the audience with his speech, devoted to Penza’s potential in the space industry, which, he said, was quite significant. Penza hosts number of quite important scientific institutions.

One of them is the Scientific Research Institute for Physical Measurements, one of the flagship R&D institutes of the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos). Penza can be also proud for its Penza State University, which, as Sergei Zhukov said, is also among potential partners of the Skolkovo Foundation.

Ivan Ognev, Skolkovo’s regional manager, commented that Penza government strongly backs innovations. In fact, Penza governor Vasily Bochkaryov, took part int the event, boosting additional attention from local media. “Penza is one of the first Russian cities, which built an innovative aerotropolis, Rameev technopark, where the Startup Tour took place. The technopark located some half kilometer away from the Penza airport. I think, given the fact that there’ve been planned so many labs, manufacturing facilities, hotels and other infrastructure in the city, it’s probably currently one of the most promising regional projects to stimulate the innovative activity in Russia,” Ivan Ognev said.

He also mentioned that the Skolkovo Foundation in the nearest future mulls to sign a cooperation agreement with the Penza government. “This agreement will envisage integration of the regional innovative ecosystem of Penza region with regional activities of the Skolkovo Foundation,” Ivan Ognev said.

A significant number of projects, presented in Penza were awarded, both by Skolkovo and other development institutions, which take part in the Tour. The winners, who get invitation to the Startup Village are: Parapharm, CodeInside, and Mikhail Geraschenko, an inventor of an innovative tanometr. Also, among the winners, who were awarded with

The Foundation for Assistance to Small Innovative Enterprises invited to its Umnik (Wise man) program. And Romet, a Skolkovo resident from Zarechny, a Penza region town, received an invitation to attend the Open Innovations forum.