The European Commission has just announced the beneficiaries of SME Instrumentfunding. As part of the Horizon 2020 programme, the EU has selected more than 150 small and medium enterprises "with a strong growth potential and the ambition to become world-market leaders". All these companies will now further supported with EU funding aimed at strengthening their skills in terms of innovation and global appeal.
In order to transform disruptive ideas into concrete, innovative solutions with a European and global impact, the SME initiatives has been structured in three phases, all supported by EU funding. Phase 1 requires SME to draft an initial business proposal, Phase 2 to further develop the initial proposal through innovation activities, and draft a more developed business plan. Finally, during Phase 3 SMEs will receive extensive support to help polish its concept into a marketable product, and have access to networking opportunities.
The European Commission examined 1,569 proposals under Phase 1, and 161 companies from 23 countries were selected to join the initiative. With 25 SME, Italy is the second most represented country, after Spain (34), and before the United Kingdom (18), Germany (12 ), and Sweden (9).