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Action “Establishing services enhancing the innovation management capacity of SME's in the Enterprise Europe Network”

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - INNOVSUPPWALES (Action “Establishing services enhancing the innovation management capacity of SME's in the Enterprise Europe Network”)

Reporting period: 2014-07-01 to 2014-12-31

In order to address the challenges of increasing SMEs innovation potential and enabling them to bring their innovative ideas to the market, new programmes and support systems have been designed. Europe recognises the importance of innovation and SME’s as growth drivers and as such, the aim of this action was to provide specialized consulting services addressing the innovation management capacity of SMEs which possess significant innovation activities. Beneficiaries of the SME instrument shall as well receive support to enhance their innovation management capacity through this action.

The Enterprise Europe Network is embedded in the regional innovation ecosystem within Wales, and will provide support for raising the innovation capacity of Welsh SMEs. This was to be completed under the two types of 7 day packages of support available, which consisted of: 1) Enhancing SME Innovation Management Capacity 2) Key Account Management for the beneficiaries of the SME Instrument. The objective of these services was to increase and accelerating the economic returns from innovation in SMEs. The aim was to strengthen the innovation capacity of SME’s and their contribution to the development and commercialisation of new technology. By expanding relevant networks, increasing the research effort and better exploitation of IP, Wales can maximise the ROI.

Funded under H2020, packages of 7 day support was available to deliver expert innovation services to SMEs with growth potential. The work plan consisted of two packages of support which will become available to Welsh SMEs. Work package 1 is the Key account management for SME Instrument beneficiaries. This service is aimed at supporting successful through Phase 1 and Phase 2 of the SME Instrument. They will be offered support of an external coach who will develop and deliver a bespoke coaching plan. The aim of the SME instrument coaching service is to provide individual companies with an agreed programme of coaching to support their project realisation, leveraging partnerships to connect them with relevant advice and funding support, including the provision of specialised expert coaches. The aim is to facilitate translation of the client’s research/ideas in to profitable commercial growth.

Work Package 2 consisted of Enhancing SMEs innovation management capacity, which was a service for SMEs with real potential for international growth. The aim of this package was to empower SMEs to unlock their potential by better managing the innovation process and to develop the SME innovation management capacity within Wales by carrying out innovation management gap analysis, develop an action plan and implement the targeted actions to address bottlenecks.
Unfortunately, delivery of this action has not been achievable during 2014 due to two key factors. Wales did not achieve any successful SME Instrument applications during the period, and therefore no KAM packages were available in Wales. Also a delay in the signature of the grant agreement until December 2014 reduced the delivery time significantly, and as such it was not possible to deliver any EIMC packages within the timescale.
As a result of the two factors mentioned above, no final results or impact is expected for the action during 2014.