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Business Development Manager 'Materials & Chemistry'

  • Mol, Vlaams Gewest, België
Business Development & Sales


Geen Nederlandstalige vacature beschikbaar aangezien een goede kennis van het Engels vereist is.

VITO develops enabling technologies for a more sustainable economy, environment and society. Moving away from fossil-based resources creates major challenges in the chemical industry, for instance in the field of catalysis. Large-scale deployment of renewable energy technologies raises important concerns about availability of critical raw materials essential for energy harvesting, transport and storage. To mitigate climate change, technologies are needed for CO2 capture, conversion and storage in high volumes and at low cost. Innovations linked to materials and chemistry are often crucial to develop solutions for these grand societal challenges.

Job Description

As a Business Development Manager in the Materials & Chemistry unit you help to bring technologies being developed at VITO to the market. This is done by co-developing innovative products and services with companies and transferring technology and know-how to companies.

As a member of the Business Development Team you report directly to the Valorisation Director of the unit. You will mainly support the business development and commercial activities of one or two specific technology teams within the unit. You will gradually broaden your view on the technology portfolio of the unit and across different VITO units to explore synergies and potential R&D collaboration topics.

Initially, you will work closely together with the team specialized in coating and shaping of materials for the chemical industry (e.g. catalysts), the energy sector (e.g. batteries) and climate mitigation (e.g. CO2 capture and conversion). You will support the team by:

  • Familiarizing yourself with the key technologies, competences and intellectual property within the team as well as the current application areas and related products and services.
  • Following-up contacts and contracts with existing industrial partners together with the Lead Scientists and the team Program Manager in order to prepare follow-up contracts to bring the technology to a higher technology readiness level and finally to the market.
  • Registering interactions with (potential) clients in the customer relationship management system and pro-actively monitoring of selected key accounts.
  • Actively participating in external and internal networking activities to scout for new contract research opportunities in existing or new application areas.
  • Taking the lead in the team valorisation strategy, defining, executing, and evaluating a valorisation roadmap and commercial action plans.
  • Initiating and supporting targeted marketing activities for specific products or services together with the Lead Scientists and the central Marketing and Communications team.
  • Supporting R&D proposal preparation together with Lead Scientists and negotiating R&D contracts.
  • Providing support in technology transfer and/or licensing negotiations in close collaboration with the central IP Management and Tech Transfer Office.
  • Regular reporting of the status of the contract research portfolio and valorization tracks to the team and the Valorization Director.


  • You hold a master’s or PhD degree in Science or Engineering.
  • You have proven experience in a commercial (or closely related) role in innovation. Experience in a commercial, business development or valorisation role for R&D is a plus.
  • You are familiar with protection and valorization of intellectual property.
  • You can analyze market and technology trends and customers’ needs and translate these into innovative solutions (services, products).
  • You are a strategic thinker with skills in customer relationship management and key account management.
  • You can translate strategies into goals and concrete actions and plans.
  • You enjoy working with colleagues from different fields and can adapt your style and way of working to the situation at hand.
  • You have excellent communication and networking skills and are a promoter for internal and external collaborations.
  • You have an excellent knowledge of English and knowledge of Dutch is recommended.

What can we offer you?

  • You will be part of a growing research organization with an international reputation, known for its cutting-edge technological research and scientific based advice.
  • You will contribute directly to sustainable developments at local, national and global level through breakthrough innovative applications. In this way, you help to provide answers to contemporary grand societal challenges.
  • A competitive salary supplemented with various extra-legal benefits including allowances, insurance and a modular holiday package.
  • Innovation is our most important asset, so it goes without saying that we give our employees the opportunity to learn and further develop themselves both on the job and through training.
  • We work ‘activity-based’ within VITO. Your activities determine your work location, with your home office as a possible work location (e.g. 1 day a week). Work location in case of physical presence is mainly in Mol and only occasionally in our other offices.
  • As a business development manager you also spent a significant portion of your time (on average 1 to 2 days a week) on external events and company visits.
  • We highly value a good work-life balance at VITO. This is achieved by adopting a flexible attitude depending on your specific needs.