Today Vice-President Commissioner Kroes awards prizes to the winning SMEs of the Finance MarketPlace Venture Academy and Investment Forum at the Digital Agenda Assembly. 24 SMEs have been selected to develop investment readiness and pitch to investors. The ICT sector is by far the largest investment sector for Venture Capital. Developing investment (or VC) culture and facilitating interactions between entrepreneurs and investors is essential. Making sure that highly innovative small and medium-size enterprises (SMEs) can have access to a more level playing field for (online) markets is a key element of the Digital Agenda for Europe.

Today, Commissioner Kroes handed over awards to the winners of the ICT Finance MarketPlace Venture Academy and Investment Forum. The competition was organised with the help of the European Commission to help SMEs prepare the vital step of pitching to potential investors. The ICT Finance MarketPlace is an initiative delivered by a cluster of 3 EU funded projects in order to develop investment readiness and therefore improving access to finance for innovating ICT SMEs across Europe. It helps SMEs involved in the EU ICT research funding programmes find finance and market success. It is also an entry point for business angels and other venture capital investors interested in accessing investment-ready, innovative ICT SMEs.

Winners of the Finance MarketPlace

Pirim Patrick (BVS)

Soviany Cristina (IDES Technologies)

Van Dijk Paul (SATRAX)


The ICT Finance MarketPlace is an initiative delivered by three EU funded projects (YMIR, VentureGate and ACCESS ICT) which aims to improve access to venture capital and other investment finance for innovative ICT SMEs across Europe. Technology advances at an ever growing pace, opening global markets to big industrial players, but SMEs are often faced with important barriers to their flourishing and market access. In this light the ICT Finance Marketplace aims to facilitate the link between SME’s research results and the investors’ world. The initiative helps SMEs, which are active in EU funded ICT research and looking for financial partners commercialise new technologies and become strong market players.

What is the Commission doing to bridge the gap between technology and business?

The Commission wants to leverage more private investment, better coordinate and pool resources, improve the access of digital SMEs to EU research funds, joint research infrastructures and innovation clusters. In 2011 the Commission will propose measures for ‘light and fast’ access to EU research funds in ICT, making them more attractive notably to SMEs and young researchers. 

More information:

Digital Agenda website

Neelie Kroes' website

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