Crans-Montana, June 18 th 2020 - Les Roches and the Association of Crans-Montana
Municipalities (ACCM) are joining forces to create an innovation cluster aimed at fostering
the future of Hospitality while developing innovative solutions for all businesses that
place the customer experience at the heart of their strategy. Located within the hotel
school, the new Innovation Hub Les Roches Crans-Montana will be operational as of
September. Both an incubation center and a place dedicated to applied research, the
Innovation Hub Les Roches Crans-Montana brings together a large network of experts
both locally and internationally. This dynamic ecosystem directly contributes to the
economic development strategy of the high-altitude town in the Valais.
A unique multi-disciplinary platform dedicated to innovation
The municipalities of Crans-Montana, Icogne and Lens will soon have an innovation cluster
specializing in the fields of hospitality, hotels and restaurants, tourism and travel, luxury
goods, services and e-commerce. This initiative is in line with the specialization of the
Institut Les Roches Crans-Montana, which is at the origin of the project, whose training
courses are focused on entrepreneurship and innovation.
A multidisciplinary center, bringing together technological and sectoral expertise, the Les
Roches Crans-Montana innovation cluster is an open space where technology experts, Z
generation students, entrepreneurs, innovators, start-ups, global and local companies are
creating the future of Hospitality. Connecting e-business, industry, transport and
communication, the objective is to co-create the services and products of tomorrow's
Hospitality by reinventing the customer experience.
A place dedicated to applied research for entrepreneurs, technology experts, investors,
professors, students, from start-ups to international companies, the innovation platform led by
Pablo J. Garcia will offer a range of support services: start-up coaching & incubation, a
development and testing center for products and services, corporate challenges, along with
vertical technological expertise – Artificial Intelligence, Internet of connected objects,
Blockchain, Robotics, virtual and augmented reality.
Bringing together a network of experts, the Innovation Hub is tasked with initiating in 2020
and 2021 an ambitious program of activities, exchanges and international events focused on
innovation and sustainable development.
The Innovation Hub will have a dedicated 200 m2 area at the heart of the infrastructure of
Les Roches. Visitors and participating companies will have access to dedicated areas. The
Innovation Showroom is a collaborative space, while the Innovation Multimedia Center is
both an ideas lab and a digital production studio.
From hospitality tradition to new technologies
Through this initiative, the ACCM is resolutely confirming its positioning in innovation. This
partnership is indeed part of a territorial development strategy initiated two years ago and
aims to establish innovative companies in the three municipalities. “Participating in the
development of a sustainable economy, beyond tourism” is the common objective described
in the letter of intent for the ACCM- LRCM (Les Roches Crans-Montana) collaboration.
In return for this public-private partnership, the ACCM will benefit from the services of the
Innovation Hub. In addition, it will be able to draw on the solid network of Les Roches with a
view to attracting companies to Crans-Montana. The institution already welcomes hundreds
of the most prestigious companies and organizations every year.
For Mr. Nicolas Féraud, Vice-President of the Association of Crans-Montana Municipalities
and President of the municipality of Crans-Montana: “This is extremely valuable for our
region. Crans-Montana has a longstanding tradition of welcoming customers with tourism
and international events; we are now working to diversify our economy to welcome
companies at the cutting edge of innovation. This innovation cluster brings important added
value to Crans-Montana and comes at just the right time. Moreover, Les Roches has already
proven itself as a reliable partner for us.”
Dr. Christine Demen Meier, Managing Director of Les Roches and member of the InnoSuisse
Board of Directors, notes that: “The Innovation Hub has obtained the recognition of a key
player in the region with the ACCM. Our visions match. For us, it is extremely important to
be able to fit our work into the regional ecosystem, in close proximity to the economic
players. Together, we aim to co-create innovative and viable solutions capable of meeting the
priority needs of the industry”, adding that: "The initiative is also a wonderful opportunity to
promote the image of an innovative territory. This is linked to the extraordinary quality of life
in Crans-Montana and to a favorable and dynamic economic environment.”
Claude Baumann, B4 publishing
Mobile : 076 421 56 56
For more information on the subject:
Rafal Hys, ACCM's Delegate for Economic Promotion
Mobile: 079 770 34 87
About Les Roches
Les Roches is a Swiss institution focused on creating the innovative and entrepreneurial
minds of tomorrow. Founded in 1954, Les Roches offers both undergraduate and graduate
degrees in Hospitality, Tourism, and Event Management following the Swiss model of
education. With three campuses across Switzerland, Spain, and China; a student body of
more than 100 different nationalities, the institution provides students with a unique
culturally diverse experience.
Les Roches ranks world’s top three for higher education institutions in Hospitality
Management, and top two for Employer Reputation (QS World University Rankings, 2020).
Part of Sommet Education, Les Roches is also accredited by the New England Commission
of Higher Education (NECHE).