Jun 13, 2023

Indiana Targets Innovation, Industry Advancement in France and Portugal

Governor Eric J. Holcomb and Indiana Secretary of Commerce Brad Chambers concluded an economic development trip to Europe yesterday, wrapping up a week in France and Portugal focused advancing mutually-beneficial investment, innovation and trade across high-growth sectors critical to the future economy. 

“As we work toward Indiana’s role in an ever-increasing future-focused global economy, our relationships with like-minded partners like France and Portugal will be critical to our growth and success,” said Gov. Holcomb. “I’m energized after spending a week strengthening international partnerships in Europe and am confident these academic, business and government connections will help bring new two-way investment, industry innovation, jobs and community growth to Indiana, France and Portugal.” 

“Indiana’s global economic leadership continues to grow thanks to our commitment to international engagement,” said Sec. Chambers. “Last week was yet another opportunity to share Indiana’s story as an innovative leader in the global energy transition, sports diplomacy and innovation, and future-focused sectors like life sciences, advanced manufacturing, technology, and industry 4.0.”

Gov. Holcomb, First Lady Janet Holcomb and Sec. Chambers kicked off the week in Portugal, cultivating diplomatic and industry relationships during the Governor’s first official visit to the country. In Lisbon, the Governor met with U.S. Ambassador to Portugal Randi Levine and Portuguese Secretary of State for International Trade and Foreign Investment, Bernardo Ivo Cruz, to discuss trade and economic ties between Indiana and Portugal and opportunities to increase engagement across life sciences, energy and green manufacturing.










Gov. Holcomb and Sec. Chambers also met with executives of Portuguese businesses with Indiana operations, including Energias de Portugal (EDP), which operates three Indiana facility in Chalmers, Indianapolis and Winchester, and with business prospects and potential industry partners in future-focused sectors, such as mobility-focused A-to-Be and energy-focused GALP, to identify opportunities for shared growth and innovation. 

In Lisbon, Gov. Holcomb and Sec. Chambers co-hosted a business energy roundtable with the American Chamber of Commerce Portugal (AmCham Portugal), joining Portuguese and global businesses to share Indiana’s momentum in energy storage, electric vehicles and clean energy production and highlight key initiatives such as the state’s pursuit of a Midwest hydrogen hub and the Mammoth Solar development in northern Indiana. 

After wrapping up a productive time in Portugal, Gov. Holcomb and the delegation traveled to France to foster strong and longstanding ties with the country. In Paris, Gov. Holcomb and Sec. Chambers focused on partnership and growth opportunities in industry and energy, meeting with U.S. Ambassador to France Denise Bauer and Roland Lescure, Minister Delegate for Industry of France, to discuss shared goals across R&D, clean energy and building the future economy. 

The delegation also led a business roundtable in partnership with U.S. Embassy in Paris, convening representatives of Indiana- and France-based businesses and organizations to highlight the state’s commitment to global engagement and accelerating innovation and key industry sectors through continued two-way investment, trade and partnership. That same day, the delegation met with Phillippe Villeneuve, lead architect for the restoration of the Notre Dame cathedral in Paris. The meeting was secured with the help of the University of Notre Dame in Indiana.

On Friday, Gov. Holcomb and Sec. Chambers traveled to the Pays de la Loire region in Western France to continue building academic, economic and cultural partnerships following the Governor’s first visit to the region in 2017 and Pays de la Loire President Christelle Morançais’ reciprocal visit to Indiana in 2019. There, in the city of Le Mans, the delegation met with President Morançais’ as well as city and regional officials to share economic updates and discuss shared strategies for advancing mobility, hydrogen and workforce development.

The region also organized strategic discussions surrounding green hydrogen and innovation, two critical initiatives for both Indiana and Pays de la Loire, convening French businesses and organizations to share new technologies, best practices and anticipated next steps for growth.













On Saturday, the delegation joined the region as well as French and European diplomats and representatives of the global motorsports sector for the historic 2023 24 Hours of Le Mans auto race, which was held on the 100th anniversary of the first 24-hour race in 1923. Gov. Holcomb participated in the opening ceremony and festivities, representing Indiana’s strong motorsports industry which contributes an approximate $1.2 billion to the state’s GDP. The Governor and delegation also met with executives of motorsports companies and global sponsor companies, including business prospects and those with operations in Indiana, including Chip Ganassi Racing, Penske Racing and Porsche.













Indiana is home to more than 1,075 foreign-owned business establishments, representing more than 40 countries and territories. This concludes Gov. Holcomb’s 15th trip as governor.