Skolkovo’s newly opened Far Eastern branch has selected its first batch of startups to acquire participant status, marking a new stage in the foundation’s mission to expand into new territories.

Skolkovo senior VP Alexander Chernov, and Vasily Belov, right, with Yury Saprykin, the head of the branch.

Skolkovo’s independent panel of experts has awarded the status to two early-stage companies, while another five will receive the status in the coming weeks.

“Russia’s Far East is fertile ground for innovation, that’s why Skolkovo is here,” said Skolkovo senior vice president Alexander Chernov at a ceremony to mark the occasion in Vladivostok.

“These seven companies are just the tip of the iceberg – we have already received hundreds of applications from other startups, so we are very positive about the potential of the Far East as a source of hi-tech innovation,” he added.

'These seven companies are just the tip of the iceberg' - Skolkovo senior vice president Alexander Chernov

The seven companies, which research everything from IT solutions to nanomaterials, will join Skolkovo’s 1,000-plus participant startups. Biomedical companies account for nearly one-quarter of the total number (17 percent as part of the new agriculture research area), with 21 percent involved in IT and 36 percent in energy and nuclear-related technology.

Among the new Far East contingent is Softvelum, a 4-year-old media-streaming startup that already has clients in 70 countries around the world. Another, MekhatronicServis, offers a positioning system for underwater robotic devices, while Trans-FRK develops lasers for eyesight correction.

The Forum Family of Antifriction Materials has also passed screening for Skolkovo residency with technology that lengthens the life of machinery through the application of a nanomaterial. The team is now preparing a draft solution for the treatment of water pipes, hulls of ships and aircraft, artillery systems, as well as strengthening the enamel of human teeth.

A company named Technological Equipment processes fish waste into fish oil and flour and is the largest integrator in the field of coastal fish processing in the Far East; while Urodinamicheskaya Sistema, founded by renowned Russian urologist Vadim Danilov, provides a cloud-based patient database for doctors to make quicker and more accurate prognoses and diagnoses.

The seventh startup, yet to be named, is creating a super-tough fiber from basalt rocks using new technology.

The companies hail from all over the Far East, from Primorsky Krai on the Pacific Ocean to the mountainous Amur Region and Khabarovsk.

The startups revelling at the party in Vladivostok