Support to small companies under the European Innovation Council (EIC) pilot goes far beyond a grant provision. The EIC offers several business acceleration services that help speed up the pace of your innovation. Here you can discover what's on offer.
Business innovation coaching
Business coaching is an important feature of the EIC pilot that singles it out compared to other SME funding schemes. If you are an SME benefiting from grant funding from the SME Instrument, FTI or FET-Open, we offer business coaching to help your business scale up and grow. Beneficiaries can receive up to 15 days of coaching (3 days under Phase 1 and 12 days under Phase2) under the SME instrument. SMEs taking part in FTI or FET-Open are offered up to 12 coaching-days.
Coaches will help the beneficiaries to progress over the life cycle of their innovation, from idea to proof of concept, to first pilot application and finally upscaling and expansion. They will empower the SME to cope with challenges such as developing their strategy and organisation, identifying their market and improving ability to attract finance – read more on coaching under the SME Instrument.
Business support and acceleration services
The EIC pilot focusses on continuous improvement, networking, learning opportunities and facilitating access to business partners and investors. Being part of the programme offers you a life-long privileged access to our user-driven business acceleration services, customized to your needs. In addition, our services are - wherever suitable – closely linked to trade fairs or other business hot spots, so that you maximize time and efforts in your business development.
Here is an overview of the events and services planned for 2017-2018.
Highly innovative SMEs with potential for high growth should take full advantage of partnering opportunities. No matter the size of your company, finding the right partner can generate tremendous competitive benefits for your business. Finding the right strategic partner can be the fastest way to fast-grow your company, it will also allow you more time to focus on the critical activities that make your business unique.
Highly innovative SMEs funded by the EIC pilot have the opportunity to participate in networking events with leading corporates.
Matchmaking with new business partners
Funded companies can participate in dedicated matching events with selected world-leading companies, corporates and procurers, as a distributor, client or supplier. They can benefit from access to top European trade fairs and conferences such as Mobile World Congress, Smart City World Expo, European Sustainable Energy week, and many others.
This service also includes liaison to venture-capital programs, invitations to exclusive investor gatherings and other opportunities to explore new ways of financing your business.
Days are designed to stimulate collaboration, promote mutually beneficial partnerships and straightforward ways for companies to access larger deals, accelerate market penetration and tap into global distribution and marketing channels.
The overall aim of the EIC Community platform is to help SMEs successfully establish themselves on the European and global markets, by creating a shared knowledge base and a virtual meeting-place where SMEs can connect and discuss potential businesses partnerships.
It is an online space where SMEs funded by the EIC pilot programmes can:
- Get support from peers and the EIC pilot eco-system
- Share experience and learn from each other
- Explore business opportunities, expand their network
- Co-create knowledge
- Self-organise online events and learning opportunities
In the EIC Community, you will find additional information and discussion groups related to EIC business acceleration events, coaching and training services. You will also find a smart matchmaking tool – ScaleUp EU – designed to connect investors and companies funded by the EIC pilot.
What's the best approach to gaining the right investment? How can I grow teams that will fit my future plans? If I collaborate with a major multinational, could it overwhelm our company? Is our present business model fit for purpose, or should we change – and if so, what to? How can we develop attractive value propositions, that will resonate with emerging markets?
These – and many other vital questions – need answering, to help SMEs grow quickly and effectively. That's why the EIC Academy has developed a range of essential workshops. Created by European experts, and delivered by respected professionals, these workshops can make a real difference both to your planning and to your execution. Not only will you discover and understand the best ways of achieving sustainable growth – for finance, sales and marketing, team building and more – but you'll also work with SMEs like yourselves, to discuss and create practical solutions.
How to participate
The business acceleration services are offered exclusively to funded companies. The services are accessible both during and after the project with no participation limit to events.
Check out the list of planned events in our events calendar.
The services are demand-driven and customized to best fit the needs of individual companies. The definition of these needs are part of the free support offered to beneficiaries by the Key Account Managers and coaches, through the Enterprise Europe Network. The implementation of the business acceleration services are done with the help of a partner consortium that helps us with the practical organisation of the services. As a company you may be contacted by one of the following partners in the framework of these services:
- EurA AG
- CatCap GmbH
- JIC - South Moravian Innovation Center
- Platinn Innovation Platform
- The Oval Office
- YTKO Ltd
Overseas Trade Fairs
As part of the SME Instruments' support to commercialisation services, we invite you to participate in one of the 15 international Trade Fairs organised in 11 countries outside the European Union. We will support to prepare your visit, guide you and promote your business globally.
Contact our dedicated helpdesks:
- For participants: firstname.lastname@example.org
- For investors: email@example.com
- For corporates: firstname.lastname@example.org
- For information on the Overseas Trade Fairs Programme: OverseasTradeFairs@sme-instrument-otfs.eu
- For information concerning Key Account Managers (KAMs): KAM@phase3-services.eu