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ENHANCING THE INNOVATION MANAGEMENT CAPACITY OF FINNISH SMES BY THEENTERPRISE EUROPE NETWORK IN 2014

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - INNOMNGTFIN (ENHANCING THE INNOVATION MANAGEMENT CAPACITY OF FINNISH SMES BY THEENTERPRISE EUROPE NETWORK IN 2014)

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

Objective of the project was to contribute to smart growth in the European Union by increasing the efficiency and effectiveness of investments in research, development and innovation and by contributing to a better and more efficient connection of actors along the innovation chain.

In proposal actions had planned to identify weaknesses in the innovation capacities of the beneficiary that hinder the realisation of growth opportunities and of the full commercial potential of SME Instrument participants and to identify suitable coaches (based on the assessment above) to address the identified weaknesses and moderating the coach-client relationship, and furthermore to accompany the beneficiary through the SME instrument project.

The first specific objective of the project was to provide Key Account Management services to beneficiaries of the SME instrument. These services aimed to identify bottlenecks to the creation of economic impact in companies benefitting from grants by Horizon2020's SME instrument and address these bottlenecks with the help of capable coaches.

The second specific objective was to provide services, which enhance the innovation management capacity of SMEs. This service increases the efficiency and effectiveness of innovation processes in small and medium sized enterprises with significant innovation activities that could potentially become beneficiaries of European support to research and innovation but would not have effective access to consulting services for innovation management.
The Key Account Management services were performed to all five Finnish SME Instrument beneficiaries in the first cut-off (June 2014). The services included needs and gaps analysis, supporting coach selection and coaching plan preparation and facilitating coach-SME-EASME interaction. The company specified actions depend on the companies' needs and schedule. Because of these schedules and very short project period no service packages were completed before the end of the project. The services continue under the following project period on 2015-2016.

Enhancing SME Innovation Management Capacity service was performed for three SMEs. The services included assessment of the SME innovation management capacity by using the IMP3rove assessment tool, development of an action plan based on the assessment and implementation of actions to tackle the innovation gaps. Because of very short project period no 7-day service packages were completed before the end of the project. The services will continue under the following project period on 2015-2016.
The final results expected are:
1. Strong and efficient service structure to improve companies' innovation management capacity
2. Therefore better exploitation of r&d, more rapid and efficient internationalization, faster growth and on long term better financial results.
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