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Improvement in development of SMEs is supported through measure 3.3 “Innowacje w MŚP” of the Regional Operational Programme of the Mazowieckie Voivodeship 2014-2020.
The main objective of this support measure is to increase companies’ innovation capacity. It is one of the new instruments financed within the Regional Operational Programme 2014-2020. The design of this measure was inspired by a similar instrument implemented during the 2007-2013 programming period that provided support for investment projects in enterprises. Within this support measure, funding is provided for the following types of projects:
Support is provided through grants and financial instruments depending on the level of risks associated with the investment. The target group (final beneficiaries) of this support measure are existing SMEs. Priority is given to enterprises active within areas identified as priorities in RIS3.
As the mid-term evaluation of the regional operational programme report indicates, the expected outcomes of the support measure will be achieved by 2023. In fact, interim progress of the measures’ implementation is advanced, especially considering indicators measuring grant mechanisms (e.g. number of enterprises receiving grants). This stems mainly from the fact that non-refundable support is more attractive to enterprises than financial instruments in the form of subsidised loans. However, indicators measuring outcomes of refundable support are also predicted to achieve their final targets set for 2023. The report stresses that the support measure is met with large interest from enterprises, and in fact demand exceeds available funding.
In summary, the most important “Do’s and Don’ts” when planning a similar measures are as follows:
Due to the fact that refundable financial instruments (subsidised loans) are less popular with enterprises, than non-refundable support (grants), it is important to conduct appropriate promotional and informational activities, which address beneficiaries doubts and caution.