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Global Alliance South Carolina and Enterprise Estonia Announce S.C. – Estonia R&D Project Award

First Project Approved for Research Funding 

Charleston, SC – September 29, 2019 –  The Global Alliance South Carolina (GASC) and Enterprise Estonia are pleased to announce the award recipient from the first round of South Carolina – Estonia bilateral project proposals.  This project is a result of the collaborative industrial research and development program established in April 2016 between the Government of the State of South Carolina and the Government of the Republic of Estonia.

The current project award will focus on developing a ticket and data authentication capability for on-line secondary ticket markets to increase stakeholder data transparency and provide assurances that tickets are real and that their owners are authorized to transfer them.  Ticket fraud is a $2.3 billion problem in the $30 billion ticketing industry.  When deployed, this capability will reduce fraud while improving visibility of event organizers into the individuals who attend their events.

The project team, consisting of BandwagonFanClub Inc. of Greenville, SC., and Cybernetica AS of Tallinn, Estonia, plans to complete its development effort during a 24-month period of performance.

“When we started building our solution, we knew that there would be global applications for our technology,” said Harold Hughes, Founder & CEO of Bandwagon.  “We’re excited to partner with Cybernetica to commercially deliver an innovative solution solving a problem that directly affects fans and impacts businesses.  Being able to build and deliver here in South Carolina truly shows the opportunities that exist for emerging tech companies here in the Palmetto state.”

“Cybernetica is excited to partner with an up-and-coming company from the US, particularly in a field so relevant for us” said North American Sales representative, Crystal LaGrone.  “Finding companies that are passionate about data security is something we look for, and this collaboration gives us a chance to show that data privacy can be implemented at any level of development.”

“We are delighted to announce the continuation of these joint R&D projects, now expanding for the first time into collaborations between companies in South Carolina and partner companies in Estonia” said GASC Board of Directors Vice Chairman Jonathan Zucker.  “These projects further innovative research and business-to-business partnerships, helping generate economic development and job creation within South Carolina.”

“We believe this joint R&D program proves the benefits of international partnerships and provides a direct connection to accelerating innovation and economic growth,” said Oliver Ratsep, Key Client Manager for Enterprise Estonia.  “We are looking forward to launch additional funding rounds with our partners at GASC to strengthen economic ties between both regions and work together to find innovative solutions to pressing issues in both countries and the global market as a whole.”

The South Carolina – Estonia Industry R&D Program seeks to stimulate generation and development of new or significantly improved products or processes for commercialization in global markets.  The technology sectors that are the focus for this program are:  information and communication technologies (ICT); health technologies and services; and increased effectiveness of resources.  The program is being managed by GASC on behalf of the state of South Carolina, and by Enterprise Estonia on behalf of the Republic of Estonia.

The program has an annual “call for proposals” in which teams from South Carolina and Estonia may submit funding applications.  The next round of program applications will be solicited in the winter of 2020.  For more information, please visit the GASC website at

About GASC
The Global Alliance South Carolina (GASC) was established in September 2016 as a non-profit, tax-exempt organization.  Its mission is to stimulate business, economic growth, and research partnerships involving companies and academic institutions in South Carolina, Israel and Estonia as an independent way to generate economic development, jobs, and university joint programs.  By leveraging existing international relationships, adding private sector resources, and enabling new processes and programs with counterpart entities in Israel and Estonia, GASC seeks to build a tailored support infrastructure that facilitates recruiting small, innovative “high tech” companies and firms to establish operations in South Carolina.

In March 2017 the South Carolina Department of Commerce delegated its authority to administer the State of South Carolina’s “Bilateral Cooperation in Industrial Research and Development” Agreement with the State of Israel, and the “Bilateral Cooperation in Industrial and Technological Research and Development” Agreement with the Republic of Estonia to GASC.

About Enterprise Estonia
Established in 2000, Enterprise Estonia (EAS) promotes business and regional policy in Estonia and is one of the largest institutions within the national support system for entrepreneurship by providing financial assistance, counselling, cooperation opportunities and training for entrepreneurs, research institutions, the public and non-profit sectors.

EAS activities contribute to the achievement of long-term strategic goals of the Estonian economy. To this end, EAS supports the development of companies that have export capacity and create higher added value, with a long-term goal of helping Estonia become one of the most competitive countries in the world.

About BandwagonFanClub
BANDWAGON is a fan identity and attendee analytics company built to help event organizers — sports teams, festivals, etc. — identify and engage the fans that show up on the day of the event.  Their flagship product, Aura, helps their customers and partners  increase revenue, optimize sponsorship value, and improve public safety, all while eliminating ticket fraud.  Their proprietary technology coupled with the IBM Blockchain platform has positioned Bandwagon as a leader in the ticket authentication space.  They are backed by Realist Ventures, Backstage Capital, Black Star Fund, Black Angel Tech Fund, and Capital Factory.

About Cybernetica
Cybernetica is an Estonian-based research and development Information and Communications Technology firm that develops mission-critical software systems and products.  Founded in 1997, Cybernetica has been an active counterpart in developing e-Government systems, such as the Estonian X-Road, i-Voting, e-Customs and others.  Cybernetica’s products include Sharemind, a data analysis system for securely processing confidential information, as well as products for secure data exchange, secure authentication, and radio communications and maritime surveillance solutions.

Click here to view this Press Release:  Global Alliance for SC Fifth Project


Previous Press Releases

South Carolina-Estonia Industry R&D Program Launches Initial Request for Project Proposals 

Columbia, SC – November 29, 2018 – Today, in a ceremony at the South Carolina Department of Commerce, Jim Melville, President and CEO of the Global Alliance of South Carolina (GASC), joined Viljar Lubi, Estonia’s Deputy Secretary General for Economic Development to sign an agreement that formally launches the South Carolina-Estonia Industry R&D Program, and issues the first call for binational R&D project proposals.  This program implements one of the key objectives in the Agreement between the Government of the Republic of Estonia and the Government of the State of South Carolina on Bilateral Cooperation in Industrial and Technological Research and Development, signed in April 2016.

Click here to download this Press Release:  GASC SC-Estonia RD Program Press Release Final

Click here to download the RFP:  SC-Estonia Industry R&D Program RFP


Retired Ambassador James Melville is Named President and CEO of the Global Alliance for South Carolina (GASC)

Charleston, SC – November 20, 2018 –  Recently retired U.S. Ambassador to Estonia, James Melville, has joined the team of the Global Alliance for South Carolina (GASC) to serve as President and CEO.  In this role he will work with the GASC Board of Directors to develop and execute the organization’s business plan in support of GASC’s mission.

Click here to download this Press Release:  GASC Welcomes Retired Ambassador James Melville


Nanobébé Selects Charleston for its U.S. Headquarters

North Charleston, SC – October 30, 2018 – The Charleston region has added a new key player in life sciences, Nanobébé, which has engineered revolutionary new designs for infant feeding systems. Since launching earlier this year, the company has won multiple industry awards. Nanobébé’s product line, including the flagship Breastmilk Bottle, is available at large scale retail chains: buybuy BABY, Target, Bed Bath & Beyond (online), Amazon, and in early 2019 at Walmart, along with hundreds of retail chains and independent stores around the world.

Click here to download this Press Release:  Nanobebe Release


Fifth Project Approved for Research Funding

Charleston, SC – August 6, 2018 – The Global Alliance for South Carolina (GASC) and the Israel Innovation Authority are pleased to announce the award recipient from the fourth round of bilateral project proposals. These projects are a result of the collaborative industrial research and development program established in October 2013 between the Government of the State of South Carolina and the Government of the State of Israel. The first four projects were awarded between September 2014 and August 2016.

Click here to download this Press Release:  Global Alliance for SC Fifth Project