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Attend the SME Assembly online

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Last chance to register now for the SME Assembly 2022

The SME Assembly is the most significant event for Europe’s SMEs and entrepreneurs, and those that support them. It focuses on how to make SME policy work on the ground, in order for Europe’s SMEs and entrepreneurs to thrive.

The SME Assembly 2022, along with the Small and Mid-Cap and European Enterprise Promotions Awards Ceremony will take place in Prague, Czech Republic and online from 28-30 November 2022.

The event will be hosted by the European Commission and the Czech Republic Presidency of the Council of the European Union. This year’s SME Assembly will focus on Europe’s enterprises of tomorrow: Sustainable. Resilient. Digital.

It is free to attend the SME Assembly online, so make sure to register and tune in!

Why attend?

Join the 3-day event to hear the latest insights on all matters related to Europe’s SMEs and entrepreneurs on topics ranging from digital transformation, world of business, sustainable enterprises, upskilling, circular economy, helping SMEs adapt and thrive and much more!

Discover the full programme here.

(Register Now)

What’s included?

  • Keynote session from Jozef Sikela, Minister of Industry and Trade of the Czech Republic and Thierry Breton, Member of the European Commission for the Internal Market.
  • Schumpeter ‘Innovation in Enterprise’ Lecture with Professor Luc Soete, Dean of the Brussels School of Governance (BSoG).
  • Over 90 expert speakers, and 23 sessions.
  • Networking opportunities with other participants on the app.
  • Live polls and Q&As.
  • Watch the sessions live or rewatch any which you missed out on.

How to attend the SME Assembly 2022 online?

It is free to attend the SME Assembly online, here’s the quick and easy steps you need to follow to attend online:

  1. Sign up to the SME Assembly Conference App here via Swapcard.
  2. Fill in your registration details and then click ‘Finish Registration’.
  3. You will then receive an email from SME Assembly 2022 (via Swapcard) – inviting you to finish the setup of your Swapcard account by creating your password and then clicking ‘Access the App”. Please check your junk inbox to make sure you have received it.
  4. Once your account is created on Swapcard, we recommend you to download the Swapcard app on your smart device.
  5. You can access the SME Assembly Conference App in Swapcard or you can access it on the browse via this link.
  6. Then join us online from 28 – 30 November 2022.

Already registered? Make sure to join the SME Assembly 2022 live on the app here.

EEPA 2022 shortlist – Responsible and Inclusive Entrepreneurship

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At the beginning of October, we announced the shortlist of finalists for s year’s European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA). Since then, we have taken a closer look at the shortlisted projects in each category. You have already had the opportunity to learn more about the projects in Category 1, Category 2, Category 3, Category 4 and Category 5; this time, we will take a look at the sixth and final category – Category 6: Responsible and Inclusive Entrepreneurship.

EEPA Category 6 aims to reward projects that create innovative approaches to promote socially and environmentally responsible business. The shortlisted projects in this category come from Ireland, France and Spain. We present them in alphabetical order below. Read on to find out more.

co:worx project – Ireland

Co:worx is an ambitious project that has been implemented by a group of local community volunteers with the support of local and national co-funders. The project involves the repurposing and transformation of a derelict bank building in a rural town, transforming it into a digital hub. Co:worx is an excellent example of voluntary groups collaborating with their local authority and state agencies to develop ambitious plans for their town. The project is creating economic opportunities and providing remote working infrastructure, helping to sustain the town into the future. Co:worx’ values align towards a common goal – the sustainable economic development and participation of rural areas in Europe’s future, while building confidence and creating innovation.

French Tech Tremplin – France 

The French Tech Mission is a unique movement bringing together startups, investors, policymakers and community builders. Its mission is to make France one of the greatest places in the world to launch and grow global companies that make sense for our future. Through the French Tech Tremplin programme, the French Tech Mission enables people removed from entrepreneurship to create a start-up, anywhere in France. The programme aims to identify French-speaking aspiring entrepreneurs from less privileged backgrounds and to welcome them into the French Tech ecosystem. It improves their chances of success through funding, training and mentorship. The initiative is designed to level the playing field by mimicking certain advantages these entrepreneurs would have had easier access to, had they come from more privileged backgrounds.

Innovatia 8.3 – Spain 

Innovatia 8.3 is the result of a collaboration between the University of Santiago de Compostela and the National Women’s Institute of Spain. The initiative has two key objectives – to promote the entrepreneurial spirit of women in the scientific-technological field and to create an intervention model that integrates the gender perspective in knowledge transfer processes and in the process of creating technology-based companies. Innovatia 8.3 is committed to promoting entrepreneurship and the business capacity of women in the scientific and technological sectors in all Spanish universities in order to eliminate the existing gender gap in these areas.

What’s next?

The winners of this year’s competition will be announced at the EEPA Awards Ceremony, to be held at the annual SME Assembly in Prague, Czech Republic, and online from 28 – 30th November. Places are limited at the forum, but you can download the Promoting Enterprise app, which will allow you to follow the event online and revolutionize your SME Week and SME Assembly experience with its many novel features.

We will be taking a closer look at the European shortlist in the other categories on the prompting Enterprise portal soon, so make sure to come back to the News Portal every week to learn more about each of the shortlisted projects that will be competing in the EEPA 2022 finals.

If you would like to find out more about the European Enterprise Promotion Awards, visit the European Commission website. For the latest updates, visit the Promoting Enterprise News Portal – we will let you know soon who the shortlisted projects in the other categories are so make sure to check in regularly, and don’t forget to follow us on TwitterFacebook and Instagram and subscribe to our newsletter.

EEPA 2022 shortlist – Supporting the Sustainable Transition

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Following the announcement of the shortlist of finalists in the 2022 edition of the European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA), we have been looking at the projects shortlisted by the EEPA Jury in each category. We have already introduced you to the shortlisted projects in Category 1, Category 2, Category 3, and Category 4; today we will take a look at projects from Category 5: Supporting the Sustainable Transition.

Previously known as “Supporting the Development of Green Markets and Resource Efficiency”, this category recognises initiatives that promote a circular economy approach or that have specific environmental features, such as encouraging the use of recycled materials or renewable energy. The EEPA European jury has shortlisted three projects in this category, which we present in alphabetical order below. Let’s take a closer look!

Energy Cooperative WEnCoop – Greece 

WenCoop is the first women’s energy community in Greece and Europe, consisting of 66 women entrepreneurs. In collaboration with the Chamber of Chalkidiki, actions were undertaken to encourage female entrepreneurship in the country and underpin the role of women in the economy and in the energy sector in particular. Thanks to the efforts of the cooperative, the first photovoltic park in Halkidiki is expected to start operations soon and, in the near future, WEnCoop plans to develop another 3 MW of generating capacity. The next steps for the cooperative are to ensure that the energy produced is used in electro-mobility initiatives and to allocate free quantities of electricity to vulnerable groups of the population.

ScaleUp4Sustainability (S4S) – Germany 

To achieve the goals of the European Green Deal, cooperation is needed between various economic actors and the sustainable entrepreneurship sector. This approach is the focus of the EU-funded ScaleUp4Sustainability project, in which students and companies have jointly developed innovative ideas for sustainability. More than 270 students and 50 company employees in Germany, Sweden and the Netherlands have developed over 230 sustainable business ideas, while at the same improving the skills required for entrepreneurial thinking and action. Around 20 companies and the environment have benefited from the creative solutions developed.  ScaleUp4Sustainability shows that collaborative learning with students and companies is essential to bring about sustainable change processes in the economy and in society. 

The WaterCampus Innovation Ecosystem – Netherlands 

Due to population growth and increased economic activity, there is a growing worldwide demand for clean water. However due to climate change, among other reasons, the availability of good quality water is under pressure. It goes without saying that innovation is needed to tackle the worldwide water crisis. Since it began, WaterCampus has been dedicated to creating environmental, social and economic impact and solving the water crisis with success. Today, WaterCampus Leeuwarden is the European hotspot of watertech innovation. The ecosystem’s technologies are implemented throughout the world, creating social and environmental impact, while at the same time the economy in the region and beyond is benefitting enormously.

What’s next?

The winners of this year’s competition will be announced at the EEPA Awards Ceremony, to be held at the annual SME Assembly in Prague, Czech Republic, and online from 28 – 30th November. Places are limited at the forum, but you can download the Promoting Enterprise app, which will allow you to follow the event online and revolutionize your SME Week and SME Assembly experience with its many novel features.

We will be taking a closer look at the European shortlist in the other categories on the prompting Enterprise portal soon, so make sure to come back to the News Portal every week to learn more about each of the shortlisted projects that will be competing in the EEPA 2022 finals.

If you would like to find out more about the European Enterprise Promotion Awards, visit the European Commission website. For the latest updates, visit the Promoting Enterprise News Portal – we will let you know soon who the shortlisted projects in the other categories are so make sure to check in regularly, and don’t forget to follow us on TwitterFacebook and Instagram and subscribe to our newsletter.

EEPA 2022 shortlist – Supporting the Internationalisation of Business

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The shortlist of finalists in the 2022 European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA) was announced at the start of October. Since then, we have been taking a closer look at the shortlisted projects in each category. We have already introduced you to the shortlisted projects in Category 1, Category 2 and Category 3 and today we are announcing the projects in Category 4: Supporting the Internationalisation of Business.

It is important for start-ups to have easy access to international markets. Category 4 is crucial to the European Enterprise Promotion Awards rewards, as it focuses on projects that make it easier for enterprises, and particularly small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs), to break into global markets, both inside the EU and globally. The shortlisted projects in this category are presented below, in alphabetical order.

HealthTech Nordic 2.0 – Sweden 

HealthTech Nordic is a world leading community for healthtech start-ups, improving the quality of life and the provision of healthcare services to patients, families, and professionals. HealthTech Nordic changes the way healthcare is provided and received. The solutions offered include care for mental health and chronic conditions, secondary prevention and much more. HealthTech Nordic efficiently resolves individual problems and systematic challenges while empowering the individual patients, their relatives and the professionals taking care of them. HealthTech Nordic 2.0 is stimulating the creation of 1 000 new jobs in the Öresund-Kattegat-Skagerrak region by contributing to the growth of start-ups, accelerating their development and helping them grow internationally. Thanks to the efforts of the initiative, 477 new jobs were created in 2020-2021.

sTARTUp Day – Estonia 

sTARTUp Day is the biggest and most start-up-minded business festival in the Baltic region. It’s a place where business meets celebration. Estonia is a springboard for unicorns, with the most unicorns per capita in Europe. The festival is a great opportunity to learn from world-class performers, network with people around the world, take part in a quick business meeting and find new partners, clients, investors or career opportunities. In 2021, sTARTUp Day brought together over 350+ start-ups, 160+ investors and 3 100+ start-up-minded visitors from 54 different countries. This year’s festival promises to be even bigger!

Ukrainian national project Diia.Business – Ukraine 

Diia.Business is the first Ukrainian national entrepreneurship and export development project operating at national, regional, and local levels. The project covers the full business development cycle, from finding an idea to its internationalisation, including participation in international trade events. The project has two components: an online portal and an offline network of 12 support centres for entrepreneurs. The total coverage of the online component of the project is more than 3.2 million visits. The total coverage of the network of support centres for entrepreneurs is more than 40 000 visitors.

What’s next?

The winners of this year’s competition will be announced at the EEPA Awards Ceremony, to be held at the annual SME Assembly in Prague, Czech Republic, and online from 28 – 30 November. Places are limited at the forum, but you can download the Promoting Enterprise app, which will allow you to follow the event online and revolutionise your SME Week and SME Assembly experience with its many novel features.

We will be taking a closer look at the European shortlist in the other categories on the promoting Enterprise portal soon, so make sure to come back to the News Portal every week to learn more about each of the shortlisted projects that will be competing in the EEPA 2022 finals.

If you would like to find out more about the European Enterprise Promotion Awards, visit the European Commission website. For the latest updates, visit the Promoting Enterprise News Portal – we will let you know soon who the shortlisted projects in the other categories are so make sure to check in regularly, and don’t forget to follow us on TwitterFacebook and Instagram and subscribe to our newsletter.

EEPA 2022 shortlist – Promoting the Entrepreneurial Spirit

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Following the announcement of the 2022 shortlist of finalists in the European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA), we would like to introduce you more closely to the shortlisted projects in each category. Today we will kick off with the projects competing in Category 1: Promoting the Entrepreneurial Spirit.

The first EEPA category recognises initiatives that promote an entrepreneurial mind-set, especially among young people and women. Every year, EEPA national coordinators select the top national projects, which are then narrowed down by the EEPA European jury. Below you can read in more detail about the projects shortlisted by the European jury in Category 1, which are presented in alphabetical order.

Entrepreneurial Kids – Poland

Entrepreneurial Kids supports creativity and stimulates entrepreneurial skills among children aged 6-10. The aim of the project is to shape entrepreneurial attitudes and develop among children the skills that will be sought after on the labor market in the future and that will contribute to the development of their professional careers. The project is implemented by the Faculty of Strategy and Entrepreneurship of the Lublin City Hall and the Faculty of Pedagogy and Psychology of the Maria Curie-SkŁodowska University, in cooperation with the National Bank of Poland. The project is innovative not only in the region, but also in the country. There has also been some international interest – it was piloted in 2021 by a school in Cambridge and, this year, in Lutsk – Ukraine. Further editions are planned in the future.

Entrepreneurial Poreč – Croatia 

Entrepreneurial Poreč is a project that promotes the entrepreneurial spirit in Poreč and surrounding municipalities. The project involves all generations from the youngest inhabitants to older experienced entrepreneurs. It brings together entrepreneurs, institutions, associations and other stakeholders in a spirit of volunteering, under the leadership of the city administration, with a view to strengthening the capacity of the city’s entrepreneurs and creating new jobs. The project has already achieved notable success, from year to year, the number of participants increases and there is a growing interest from people in other cities to participate in the project. Thanks to the project, children and young people want to become entrepreneurs and numerous locations in the city have become places of learning knowledge exchange and networking, which enables the development of joint plans by local entrepreneurs and those who are yet to become entrepreneurs.

The Global Limitless Conference – Austria 

The Global Limitless Conference is series of events dedicated to female empowerment and women in business. Its aim is to close the gender leadership gap and give more women a place at the decision-making table in the business world. The conferences feature high-profile speakers and include a ‘global coffee date’, sponsored by the COO of Facebook, to which more than 100-women specific initiatives were invited. The hybrid initiative, with events in Vienna, New York, Dubai, Singapore and Bermuda, has so far reached over 10,000+ viewers from 75 countries worldwide and gathered 100+ decision-makers from business, including IT entrepreneur Dame Stephanie Shirley, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, Google Country Director Christine Antlanger-Winter and many more. They have shared their know-how with the next generation of female executives, boosting their confidence, competence and connections.

What’s next?

The winners of this year’s competition will be announced at the EEPA Awards Ceremony, to be held at the annual SME Assembly in Prague, Czech Republic, and online from 28 – 30 November 2022. Places are limited at the forum, but you can download the Promoting Enterprise app, which will allow you to follow the event online and revolutionize your SME Week and SME Assembly experience with its many unique features.

We will be taking a closer look at the European shortlist in the other categories on the prompting Enterprise portal soon, so make sure to come back to the News Portal every week to learn more about each of the shortlisted projects that will be competing in the EEPA 2022 finals.

If you would like to find out more about the European Enterprise Promotion Awards, visit the European Commission website. For the latest updates, visit the Promoting Enterprise News Portal – we  will let you know soon who the winners in the other five categories are so make sure to check in regularly, and don’t forget to follow us on TwitterFacebook and Instagram and subscribe to our newsletter.

EEPA 2022 – Meet the European shortlist

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This year almost 200 National EEPA entries were submitted for consideration from 26 participating countries. The EEPA National Coordinators then selected 47 of these projects for the EEPA 2022 Jury to evaluate. The EEPA 2022 European jury met to make their final selections for this year’s European shortlist. 

The decision came after 3-hour deliberations, during which jurors selected some of the most inspiring examples of entrepreneurship and SME-friendly initiatives in Europe. The jury members were very impressed with so many good projects, which made their job difficult, but they were pleased with their choices. 

The selected finalists who demonstrated innovation, creativity and passion for supporting entrepreneurship, will meet at the SME Assembly 2022 in Prague, Czech Republic, on 28 November in the final round of the EEPA. The winners in each category will be announced during a special European Enterprise Promotion and Small and Mid-Caps Awards Ceremony.

Congratulations to all of the selected finalists listed below in alphabetical order in relation to the project’s names.

Category 1 – Promoting the Entrepreneurial Spirit

Category 2 – Investing in Entrepreneurial Skills

Category 3 – Improving the Business Environment and Supporting the Digital Transition

Category 4 – Supporting the Internationalisation of Business

Category 5 – Supporting the Sustainable Transition

Category 6 – Responsible and Inclusive Entrepreneurship

About the EEPA selection process

The competition has two stages. Applicants must first compete at the national level to be eligible to compete at the European level. For the national competition, each country selects up to two entries to be nominated for the European competition.

A shortlist of nominees is chosen by the EEPA 2022 European jury. The shortlisted nominees will then compete at the final awards ceremony, which recognises the winners for their efforts and gives them the opportunity to present themselves in a pan-European environment.

Make sure to come back to the News Portal every week to learn more about each of the shortlisted projects that will be competing in the EEPA 2022 finals.

EEPA 2022 National winners – Responsible and Inclusive Entrepreneurship

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We have already introduced you to the national winners in Category 1, Category 2, Category 3, Category 4 and Category 5 in this year’s European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA). Now it is the turn of Category 6 – Responsible and Inclusive Entrepreneurship. In total, five projects were selected to advance to the European stage of the competition in this category, where they join 423 other projects spread across the six categories of the awards, from which the EEPA 2022 European jury will decide on a final shortlist.

The Responsible and Inclusive Entrepreneurship category aims to reward projects creating innovative approaches for the promotion of socially and environmentally responsible business. Previous projects in this category have encouraged disadvantaged groups to take part in entrepreneurship, or promoted corporate social responsibility among small and medium-sized enterprises, for example. So, let’s take a look at this year’s Category 6 national winners.

  • Bulgaria: Academy for Local Entrepreneurs, from the Rinker Centre for Entrepreneurship and Training, part of the BCause Foundation, is a training programme for people with entrepreneurial ideas who want to start their own business in the tobacco producing regions of the country.
  • France: French Tech Tremplin, from French Tech, has the promotion of entrepreneurial spirit at the heart of its actions.
  • Ireland: co:worx project, from Edgeworthstown Enterprise Hub clg, is an excellent example of social innovators fostering economic growth and digital change in their community.
  • Poland: Business Mentoring Sessions, from Maria Curie-Skłodowska University in Lublin, is a cooperation platform enabling workshops and mentoring between foreign students and entrepreneurs and business representatives to promote an entrepreneurial spirit among young people.
  • Spain: Innovatia 8.3, from Instituto de las Mujeres y Universidad de Santiago de Compostela, aims to promote equal participation of women in science and research and to introduce the gender perspective in knowledge transfer processes at institutions and research centres.

The projects selected by the Portuguese national coordinators will be announced at a later.

All EEPA national winners will receive invitations to the Awards Ceremony at the annual SME Assembly in November, where the winners in each category will be announced. This year the event will be co-hosted by the Czech Presidency of the Council of the European Union and the European Commission. At the SME Assembly, the jury will also announce the winner of the Jury’s Grand Prize. The winner can be from any category and the prize goes to the entry considered the most creative and inspiring entrepreneurship initiative in Europe.

If you would like to find out more about the European Enterprise Promotion Awards, visit the European Commission website. For the latest updates, visit the Promoting Enterprise News Portal – we  will let you know soon who the winners in the other five categories are so make sure to check in regularly, and don’t forget to follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and subscribe to our newsletter.

Galatea, this summer’s chance for EU funding for smart ships, smart ports, smart shipyards and maritime surveillance

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Galatea, which stands for “Grow and AcceLerate your smArt projecTs in nEw value chAins of the European Blue Economy” has launched a call for services related to blue growth, specifically for smart ships, smart ports, smart shipyards and maritime surveillance. Thanks to this project, which brings together the expertise of 7 ICT, Aerospace and Maritime clusters and 1 research and technology organisation, SMEs can get support on elaboration of business models, technological expertise, internationalisation and funding opportunities. The deadline is 30th of September.

Galatea requirements and aims

Galatea’s call is open to members of the Galatea clusters and innovative SMEs from the maritime, ICT, aero-spatial and aeronautic sectors that are established or have a branch office in a country covered by the project: France, Greece, Poland, Romania and Spain. As well as being related to blue growth, their proposals should take account of the digital and ecological transitions and the circular economy.

The coaching services on offer should help to:

  • improve production processes and reduce raw material consumption;
  • enhance development of new value chains;
  • support development of large-scale demonstrators;
  • ensure access to support through vouchers, services and other mechanisms;
  • give SMEs the chance to expand their markets worldwide.

Details of both opportunities are available at the European Cluster Collaboration Platform here and here.

For information on further funding opportunities, keep checking the Promoting Enterprise News Portal and be sure to follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and subscribe to our newsletter.

Celebrate International Photography Day with a look back to SME Assembly 2021

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It is International Photography Day! As we are counting the days for SME Assembly 2022, we wanted to commemorate the memories from 2021.

What a year! Relive more precious moments here.

Want to make your voice heard? Write!

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Making your voice heard is not all about who can shout the loudest. Writing in a clear and well-thought-out manner is often the best way to make people listen to what you have to say and to get your thoughts out to a wider public. To mark International Youth Day 2022, on the Promoting Enterprise Portal we are looking at how writing can help young people to realise their potential and make a greater impact. Indeed, one way this impact can be made is through the SME Week Youth Essay Competition 2022.

Writing helps young people to develop their own voice and express how they feel on a variety of subjects, which in turn helps to improve their self-expression, boost their self-confidence and become more assertive when expressing their opinions. The writing process makes it easier for people to formulate their thoughts and express them in a logical way, which in turn improves communication skills.

As with most things – practice makes perfect. The more you write, the better your writing skills will become. Writing regularly will help you become more organized in your writing, and in structuring your thoughts. At the same time, your imagination and creativity will improve. Writing gives you the opportunity to review your thoughts, expand your perspective and express yourself in a measured and well-structured manner.

What’s more, writing helps you to speak out on topics that you care about, express what is important to you and get your ideas out there. So, have we convinced you of the benefits of creative writing? If we have, why not try out your writing skills by taking part in this year’s SME Week Youth Essay Competition! The YEC gives 18-25-year-olds a platform to share their ideas with key figures and stakeholders involved in enterprise, entrepreneurship and SMEs.

The YEC 2022 challenge

This year the competition asks young people to think about the theme: Our European economies are highly dependent on fossil fuel energies. How can future young entrepreneurs contribute to a more sustainable economy?

Do you have something interesting to say on this topic? Perhaps you could draw inspiration from the theme of this year’s International Youth Day – Intergenerational solidarity: Creating a World for All Ages – and look at intergenerational approaches to resolving our fossil fuel dependency. Let your imagination run free! All you have to do is write a 2,500-word essay in English on this year’s theme and submit it here or e-mail it to smeweek@loweurope.eu before the deadline of 26 September 2022.

The YEC jury will then select three finalists to attend the SME Assembly in November in Prague, where they will present their essays to the 500+ delegates gathered at the assembly. To help you make the best possible presentation, you will receive training from the YEC team before the event. The winning essay will then be selected in a public vote. The essays of all the finalists will be promoted across EU channels.

It’s time to unleash your inner writer and submit your entry for this year’s competition. Before you start, read through the rules of the competition and please contact smeweek@loweurope.eu if you have any questions.

You can find more information on the previous editions of the YEC here. We will also follow with more advice and tips to help you with your entries, so make sure to visit the Promoting Enterprise News Portal regularly, and don’t forget to follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram accounts and subscribe to our newsletter.

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