29-30 March, 2023
EPIC Annual General Meeting 2023
Helsinki, Finland

This is EPIC’s most important event, dedicated exclusively to its members. Attendance of CEOs or contact persons. 1 person per company policy.

EPIC AGM 2023 participants biographies, photos and companies descriptions are available HERE. Photo gallery available HERE.


27 March, Monday

09:00 Departure by the bus transfer from Scandic Park Helsinki hotel  (address: Mannerheimintie 46, 00260) for the companies visits
09:00 – 19:30 Visiting EPIC member companies in Tampere (detailed schedule and registered participants available HERE). Registration closed.
19:30 – 22:30 Dinner in Helsinki @ Toolonrantaan restaurant (address: Helsinginkatu 56, 0026, Helsinki)
22:30 Walk from the restaurant to Scandic Park Helsinki hotel (8 min. walk)

28 March, Tuesday

08:30 Departure by the bus transfer from Scandic Park Helsinki hotel for the companies visits
08:30 – 16:15 Visiting EPIC member companies in Espoo (detailed schedule and registered participants available HERE). Registration closed.

17:15 Departure by the bus transfer from Scandic Park Helsinki hotel to the City Hall of Helsinki
18:00 – 19:00 Welcoming Reception at the City Hall of Helsinki (address: Pohjoisesplanadi 11-13, 00170). Registration closed. Special registration form should be filled in, which is sent to the registered participants. IDs and received QR codes needed for the access. 
19:10 Departure by  the bus transfer from City Hall to Scandic Park Helsinki hotel

19:30 – 22:30 Networking Dinner @ Scandic Park Helsinki hotel, View room, 9th floor

29 March, Wednesday

07:30 – 09:00 Run/Walk and Breakfast (map of the Run/Walk available HERE)
09:00 – 09:45 Registration, networking coffee break & expo at Scandic Park Helsinki hotel

09:45 – 11:30 Finnish EPIC members presentations
09:45 Intro by the EPIC Technology Manager
09:50 Esa Karkkainen, Corporate Sales Manager at Benvenic Oplatek
09:55 Vicente Calvo, CEO and Co-Founder at Comptek Solutions
10:00 Mikko A. Juntunen, CEO at ElFys
10:05 Tapani Ryhanen, CTO & Co-Founder at Emberion
10:10 Jukka Perento, VP Operations and Sales at Inkron
10:15 Seppo Orsila, CEO at Modulight
10:20 Juha Purmonen, Executive Director at Photonics Finland
10:25 Thomas Gädda, CTO at PiBond
10:30 Eero Koivusalo, COO at RefleKron
10:35 Antti Peltonen, Marketing and Business Development Manager at SCHOTT Primoceler 
10:40 Jere Hartikainen, CTO at SPECIM
10:45 Mircea Guina,  Professor of Optoelectronics & Entrepreneur at Tampere University 
10:50 Jyrki Saarinen, Professor at University of Eastern Finland
10:55 Jussi-Pekka Penttinen, CEO, CTO and Co-Founder at Vexlum
11:00 Jukka Hast, Principal Scientist at VTT
11:05-11:30 Q&A & discussion

11:30 – 13:00 Registration, networking lunch  & expo

13:00 – 13:45 Opening of the Annual General Meeting 2023

13:00 Carlos Lee, Director General, EPIC – European Photonics Industry Consortium
13:15 Why Finland is an Excellent Platform for Photonics Companies – Hanna Hyttinen, Senior Advisor at Business Finland
13:30 Juha Purmonen, Executive Director at Photonics Finland

13:45 – 15:15 Conference on EPIC Update

13:45 EPIC Board of Directors Update

  • Benno Oderkerk, President of EPIC – European Photonics Industry Consortium
  • Basil Garabet, CEO at NKT Photonics
  • Shahida Imani, CEO at Chromacity

14:20 Annual Activity Report 2022 presented by the Marketing Team
14:40 Upcoming activities presented by the Technology Team
15:00 Voting approval of EPIC financial accounts 2022

15:15 – 16:00 Networking coffee break & expo

16:00 – 18:00 Conference on Market, Growth, Investment

16:00 Joel Thome, CEO at Piséo
16:30 25 years of TOPTICA – Lessons Learned and Lessons to Forget – Thomas Renner, Member of the Executive Board (CSO) at TOPTICA Photonics
16:50 Reinhard Völkel, CEO at SUSS MicroOptics
17:10 Sven Kiontke, CEO at asphericon
17:30 Rene Kromhof, Investor, Advisor & Business Executive

18:00 EPIC CEO Award 2023
18:15 EPIC Lifetime Achievement Award 2023

18:30 Gather in the lobby to walk to the dinner venue
19:00 – 22:45 Gala Dinner @ Little Finlandia (address: Karamzininranta 4, 00100). Map how to walk from the hotel to Little Finlandia due to constructions happening available HERE.

30 March, Thursday

08:00 – 08:30 Networking coffee & expo

08:30 – 10:00 Conference on Entrepreneurship, Investment, Exit Strategy

08:30 Jyrki Saarinen, Professor at University of Eastern Finland
08:50 Johannes Koeth, CEO at nanoplus
09:10 Tapio Kallonen, CEO at SPECIM
09:30 Seppo Orsila, CEO at Modulight

10:00 – 10:45 Networking coffee & expo

10:45 – 13:00 Conference on Globalisation, Supply Chain, Public Support, Europe

10:45 Jan Goetz, CEO at IQM
11:05 Mircea Guina, Head of the Optoelectronics Research Centre at Tampere University
11:40 Tjin Swee Chuan, Chairman & Co-Director at LUX Photonics Consortium & The Photonics Institute, Nanyang Technological University
12:00 Deglobalization and How It Impacts Sales & Supply Chain – Timothy Paul Kennedy, Vice President of Global Sales at Edmund Optics
12:20 Markus Wilkens, Photonics21
12:40 EPIC Survey & Discussion on Strategy

13:00 – 15:00 Networking lunch
15:00 Official end of the meeting and optional bus transfer from Scandic Park Helsinki hotel to Helsinki airport
From 15:30 Informal agenda:  sauna + ice bear dipping + dinner (full agenda available HERE). Registration closed.


Please book your room at the conference venue – Scandic Park hotel website . Code BEPI270323. Room can be cancelled until 18:00 on the date of arrival. Reservations accepted until 14 March. Contacts: +358 9 47 371, parkhelsinki@scandichotels.com. Prices: 129 EUR / single room.


Basil Garabet (President & CEO) is the President and CEO of NKT Photonics which he has successfully grown since 2015. Basil is a serial entrepreneur with a 38-year tenure in Photonics where he has started, led and turned round a number of International Photonics companies. Basil’s career has spanned leading positions in JK Lasers, EM4, Altitun, Melles Griot and Lasertron. Basil is closely involved in promoting Photonics globally, especially research in new applications such as Quantum, and performs numerous honorary duties including Board seats on EPIC, Bifrost Communication, and the Danish Quantum Community. Basil holds an MSc in Lasers and Their Applications. Basil Garabet is a member of the EPIC Board of Directors.

Benno Oderkerk (CEO) has a background in electronics and medical technology. He studied at the University of Twente, Netherlands and did his master’s thesis at Technion, Israel Institute of Technology in Haifa in 1988. Since then, he worked for 5 years in a small sensor company in Munich and, in 1994, he started Avantes, a spectroscopy company. In the following 26 years Benno lead the company as CEO to a successful worldwide leader in spectroscopy. In 2018, Benno sold Avantes to Nynomic and in 2020 he resigned as CEO. Since then he is in the board of a few photonics companies as well as in the supervisory Board of Photon Delta and Chairman of Photonics NL. Benno Oderkerk is President of the EPIC Board of Directors.

Benno Oderkerk
CEO at Betada Investments
Executive Director at Photonics Finland

Jyrki Saarinen (Professor) holds D.Sc. (Tech.) degree from Helsinki University of Technology (TKK), now Aalto University, where he is Adjunct Professor of Micro-Optics. He also holds an MBA from TKK Executive School of Business. After co-founding and working at Heptagon over 15 years including living in Silicon Valley for 7 years, he got professorship on Photonics Applications and Commercialization at the University of Eastern Finland, where is he also Head of the Center for Photonics Sciences (formerly Institute of Photonics). He is also Deputy Director of Photonics Research and Innovation PREIN Flagship in Finland with main responsibility on economic growth and other societal impact. He is Fellow of Optica (formerly Optical Society of America OSA). He has also continued working as board member or advisor in several startups in photonics industry.

Mircea Guina (Professor of Optoelectronics & Entrepreneur) leads the Optoelectronics Research Centre group at Tampere University. He obtained the PhD degree from Tampere University of Technology in 2002. Since then, he has been a constant contributor to the advance of laser science and optoelectronic technology. His research is focused on technology topics in the field of molecular beam epitaxy and optoelectronics, including the development of novel semiconductor lasers, photonic integration, photovoltaics, and laser applications. He has published more than 260 journal papers, eight book chapters, and has an outstanding record in leading large-scale research projects extending from basic science to technology transfer. He is the recipient of an ERC Advanced Grant, a Fellow of the OSA, and a Fellow of SPIE. Prof. Guina is a renewed promotor of academic-driven entrepreneurship and strategic collaboration with industry. He is co-founder and Chairman of Vexlum Oy, Picophotonics Oy, and Reflekron Oy.

Head of the Optoelectronics Research Centre at Tampere University

Reinhard Voelkel (CEO) Executive with profound background in technology and digital. Strong interpersonal and networking skills, inspirational leadership, strategic thinking, and execution skills. Experienced with all stages of the development cycle of innovative startups, scaleups and tech companies. Fellow SPIE, Senior Member OPTICA (OSA), EPIC CEO Award 2022, Swiss Manufacturing Award 2021, Expert Innosuisse, member of several industrial, conference and company boards.

Seppo Orsila (Chairman & CEO) has 20 years of experience in international business in semiconductor, personalized medicine and telecommunication. Prior to re-joining Modulight he served in various roles most recently CFO of Nokia accessories business unit. Seppo has MBA from Helsinki School of Economics and Master of Science in semiconductor physics from Tampere University of Technology.

Tapio Kallonen (CEO) is the CEO at Specim, Spectral Imaging Oy, the global leader in spectral imaging devices and software based in Oulu, Finland. Tapio is also a member of Global Management Committee at Konica Minolta Sensing Business Headquarters. Tapio holds Master’s Degree in Electronics and Electrical Engineering from Aalto University (Finland). Tapio has completed Executive Training Programme at SOAS University of London and Waseda University (Japan).

Thomas Renner (CSO & Member of the Executive Board) joined TOPTICA Photonics in 2005 and is one of the two presidents of TOPTICA. He is working with lasers since 35 years and has a passion for everything which is related to photonics and light interaction. International business development (with a small personal kink for Japanese food) and the spirit of start-ups/medium sized photonic companies get him excited. He is a believer in the European idea and appreciates the activities, which EPIC is setting up for the European photonics industry.

Member of the Executive Board (CSO) at TOPTICA Photonics

Tjin Swee Chuan (Chairman) was appointed Associate Provost (Continuing Education) and Chief Executive, PaCE effective 1 March 2022. He is the President's Chair Professor of Optics and Photonics in the School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering. He is also concurrently the Co-Director of The Photonics Institute (TPI), and was appointed the Founding Chair of the National Research Foundation (NRF) funded, LUX Photonics Consortium, which is a national consortium involving 74 companies and more than 70 faculty members from NTU, NUS, SUTD and A*STAR. He joined NTU in 1991 as a Lecturer in the School of EEE. He was appointed as Coordinator of the Photonics Research Group in 2000 and became the Founding Director of the Photonics Research Centre from 2003 to 2008. He was concurrently appointed as the Co-Director of the Singapore-University of Washington Alliance in Bioengineering Programme (SUWA) from 2004 to 2007, managing a S$26M research funding from the Biomedical Research Council under the Agency for Science Technology and Research (A*STAR).

Sven Kiontke (CEO) has revolutionized the manufacturing of aspheric components and systems by developing a new technology to control CNC machinery. His professional experience includes more than 20 years of entrepreneurial, technical and management know-how. He is one of the leaders in developing technical standards related to aspheric and free-form surfaces through DIN and ISO and holds an MA in Computer Sciences from Friedrich-Schiller University Jena.

Markus Wilkens (Coordinator EU CSA) has more than 15 years’ experience at the VDITZ in the set up and execution of innovation-oriented initiatives at the interface of research, industry and politics. He managed to grow the European Technology Platform Photonics21 from a 60-member interest group to a European organisation with today more than 3000 members representing 1700 photonics companies and research organizations. He is responsible for the managing the private side operations of the Horizon 2020 Photonics Public Private Partnership which was valued “best in class” by and independent expert group of the European Commission as part of the Horizon Europe mid-term review. Prior to that, he worked as a consultant for the Bayerische Landesbank, Munich, in the start-up technology financing. Markus Wilkens studied Biology and Engineering at the Freie Universität Berlin, Stanford University and University of Bremen.

Coordinator EU CSA at VDI Technologiezentrum

Hanna Hyttinen (Senior Advisor) is working at Invest in Finland, where she has a special focus on Electronics and Photonics, Sustainable Manufacturing and New Space. Her role is to help international companies and investors find business opportunities, set up their business, grow and develop in Finland. Prior to her current position, she managed a program dedicated to increase trade, investments and innovation between Finland and Japan, and coordinated a business development program in digital commerce. Hanna holds a master’s degree in Economics and Business Administration.

Senior Advisor, ICT and Digitalisation at Invest in Finland, Business Finland
Investor, Advisor & Business Executive

Timothy Paul Kennedy (Vice President of Global Sales) joined Edmund Optics in the year 2000 as an optical engineer and took on his current role since 2021. He spent over 19 years living throughout Asia, expanding the market reach and establishing global offices to support the current and future growth of Edmund Optics. Having spent years as a Managing Director in Japan, he also has a unique ability and understanding of what it takes to develop a cross-cultural business for success. He is also passionate about driving the growth of the company by creating a positive impact through the customer’s voice and market needs. Timothy Paul Kennedy holds a B.S. in Optical Engineering from the University of Arizona and a Global Executive MBA from INSEAD of Fontainebleau, France.

Vice President of Global Sales at Edmund Optics
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