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On December 20th, 2005, the Interministerial Committee for Land Use and Development (CIADT) selected the region of Lower Normandy to be a competitiven cluster of the horse industry, allowing France to hold onto the leading position in the horse industry worldwide. Since 2012,  the competitive cluster of the horse industry of Lower Normandy has been called Hippolia.

What is a competitive cluster ? A partnership, based around a specific theme and a specific region
A competitive cluster brings together large and small firms, research laboratories and educational establishments, all working together in a specific region to develop synergies and cooperative efforts.
Other partners may be brought in, such as public authorities, either local or national, as well as firms providing business services.
Competitive clusters think big. The goal of competitive clusters is to build on synergies and innovative, collaborative projects in order to give partner firms the chance to become leaders in their fields, both in France and abroad...

Challenges of Hippolia

In pursuit of improving French competitiveness in the world market, Lower Normandy wishes to continue to maintain French excellence in the horse industry, which will allow this region to hold on to its number one standing across Europe, particularly in breeding quality horses.

In order to implement projects based on this approach, one of the main strategic objectives of the competitiveness cluster is the following :
  • Support the development of companies within the horse industry.
  • Develop the industry in line with international competition.

Hippolia's strategy

The economic strategy is based on the cooperation between professionals and on welcoming all companies to participate in the competitiveness cluster programme. Even though networks and cooperative efforts have already been introduced into the horse industry, they still lack structuring and formalisation. Furthermore, existing structures used by professionals appear, in general, to be poorly adapted to meeting the needs of the horse industry, and inversely, professionals in the sector appear to be unacquainted with how to access these structures.

The horse cluster is focused on three aims : 
  • Health Performance R&D: maintain and develop an international level of excellence in research on horse health and performance, so as to directly support the production of horses of the highest quality (veterinary pharmaceuticals R&D ....).
  • Business innovation in the equine industry: the competitiveness of the French horse industry depends on the innovation of companies which work in the immediate horse environment : food, equipment, transportation, infrastructure, upgrading manure, services and ITC ...
  • Development of the cluster and its environment around three axes: territorial attractiveness, job skills training (skills development support for SMEs), support the adaptation of training to employers' needs, and international development
The goal is to be able to globalise supply by offering a complete line of French equine products to foreign consumers.

Companies are supported in their economic development by the Horses Council of Lower Normandy. It directly supports the organisation of the economic strategy, implementing a network, meeting the needs of the industry and sharing information relevant to economic actors of the industry.
The competitiveness cluster welcomes all economic development projects.

Main projects :

  • SEQUISOL: characterization and fabrication of tracks and surfaces suitable for horse riding.
  • O'HARAS: software development and marketing for horse breeding management.
  • EMBRYO: development of equine embryo transfer.
  • GENEQUIN: genetic diseases affecting performance within equine sports. The project is primarily focused on imaging (radio, ultrasound, MRI ...) and carried out by the CIRALE in partnership with INRA and Liege University (Belgium).
  • Education Center and high-level equine surgery at CIRALE (Dozulé)

The key people of the Equine Industry Cluster :

The Hippolia cluster is open to any professional, professional association, research institution or training group ... involved in a project corresponding to one of the cluster's three strategic clusters fields of action.
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Calvados Stratégie
Espace Gardin
40 avenue de l'hippodrome
14000 Caen
Tel : +33 2 31 15 62 70

Calvados Strategie - Comité d'expansion économique du Calvados - Caen - Normandie - Tél. +33 2 31 15 62 70

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