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EEN Northern Netherlands: enhancing the innovation capacity of SMEs

Project description

A boost for SMEs in North Netherlands

The North Netherlands – the most rural area of the country – is home to a growing number of SMEs. The EU-funded EEN Northern NL project will give them a boost in terms of their internationalisation and innovation. Specifically, it will aim to promote export intensity, which is below national average, increase the innovation expenditure and boost access to EU funding. Overall, the project will improve the outlook for North Netherlands SMEs. Specifically, the project will provide key account management services for the beneficiaries of the SME Instrument in the north of the Netherlands. It will also ensure SMEs have access to all the many development opportunities and support services provided by the Enterprise Europe Network for the enhancement of their innovation management capacity.


This is the proposal of EEN Nortern Netherlands for the H2020 workpackage 4 for the year 2019.

SMEs in the Northern Netherlands still lag behind on internationalisation and innovation in comparison with most other regions in the Netherlands. Export intensity is still below national average, as well as innovation expenditure and the use of EU funding. The economic outlook is that the Northern Netherlands will grow considerably less than average.
This proves the need for support for the Northern Netherlands SMEs to realize economic growth. One means of achieving economic growth is internationalisation, which is covered by our COSME 2019 proposal. Another is focus on Innovation.

The proposal at hand describes the two main objectives for the support focused on innovation:
1) Continuing the Key Account Management for the beneficiaries of the SME instrument in the North of the Netherlands;
2) Continuing the EEN services for the Enhancement of the Innovation Management Capacity of SMEs in the Northern Netherlands.
Specific attention will be given to the management of these two services and to the organisation of smart signposting of clients within the consortium. The consortium partners already have many contact moments with SMEs in the region and due to this project, the advice and support given during these moments can be increased.

The consortium aims to assist at least eleven SMEs from the North of the Netherlands region. We expect to deliver our KAM services to one company and the EIMC services to ten companies. Given the limited number of SME Instrument Grants, the synergy with the COSME programme and the client journey, we feel it’s more effective to focus more on the EIMC services. We expect that investing more time in the EIMC services is also the best way to also promote the SME Instrument. We trust this will result in more SME Instrument applications and also more grants in the longer run.


Stichting Hanzehogeschool Groningen
EU contribution
No data
9747 AS Groningen

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Noord-Nederland Groningen Overig Groningen
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Total cost
No data

Participants (5)