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Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs

Supporting entrepreneurship

Transfer of businesses

The European Commission supports transfers of business as they are as important as start-ups to the EU economy.

Family business

The European Commission recognises the significant role family businesses play in the EU economy and promotes the creation of a favourable environment where family businesses can grow and develop.

Insolvency prevention and second chance

Viable companies facing financial difficulties require early warning mechanisms and preventive restructuring frameworks to help them avoid bankruptcy. If a company can no longer be rescued, honest entrepreneurs who went bankrupt should be offered a second chance.

Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs

Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs is a cross-border programme facilitating the exchange of entrepreneurial and management experience. During the exchange, a new or potential entrepreneur stays with an experienced entrepreneur running a small or medium-sized enterprise (SME) in another country.

Migrant entrepreneurs

Within the EU, migrants represent an important pool of potential entrepreneurs, but can face, as other more vulnerable groups, specific legal, cultural and linguistic obstacles. These issues need to be addressed in full to give support equitable to that received by all other entrepreneurial groups.

The European Commission sees entrepreneurship as acting upon opportunities and ideas and transforming them into value for others, which can be financial, cultural, or social. Our entrepreneurship policy aims to support companies, in particular SMEs, throughout their life cycle, promoting entrepreneurial education at all levels, as well as reaching out and encouraging specific groups with entrepreneurial potential.

How we support entrepreneurship

Supporting EU citizens

We improve the entrepreneurial capacity of European citizens and organizations by fostering entrepreneurial learning and the entrepreneurial mindset as promoted by the European Entrepreneurship Competence Framework (EntreComp).

Supporting entrepreneurs in general

We create an environment where entrepreneurs can flourish and grow: supporting start-ups, transfers of business, insolvency and second chance.

Supporting specific groups

We reach out to specific groups whose entrepreneurial potential has not been fully tapped yet, such as women and young people through entrepreneurial learning and Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs.