EEPA 2018 Testimonial: Kasvu Open – company growth sparring programme – ‘Supporting the internationalisation of business’ Winner 2018
The European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA) 2019, are looking for the next winners that will demonstrate the diversity of European projects working to promote enterprise, support entrepreneurs and contribute to the European ecosystem. Here on Promoting Enterprise we have been contacting past winners to share their experiences, winning projects and advice for future applicants.
Today is the turn of Kasvu Open from Finland, the winners of Category 4: Supporting the internationalisation of business, in the EEPA 2018 cycle. Kasvu Open offers sparring to companies interested in growth, free of charge. The goal is to promote company growth and business development, thus improving the SMEs’ chances of achieving international growth. Through sparring the companies’ growth plans are challenged, adapted and supported by experts representing several different fields. The selected companies come from all industry sectors across Finland and receive access to expert networks. The experience also includes a tailored growth path, run by several partners who facilitate free participation at events, provide funded support for the participating SME and ultimately guide the enterprise in the right direction.
How did you first hear about the national competition and why did you decide to enter?
We were already familiar with EEPA seeing as our parent company, the Central Finland Chamber of Commerce, won an EEPA prize back in 2006. We decided to enter because people within our network encouraged us to try and promote our work on a European stage.
How did you prepare your application?
The Kasvu Open method has been in use since 2011 and annual number of companies applying the coaching programme has grown from 35 to 800 during these years. Kasvu Open has sparked the flame of growth in more than 3500 companies, 1652 of which have received free sparring from experts. Based on this we already knew our project results; Kasvu Open is efficient, valuable and successful. For the application it was just a question of clearly writing down the work that we have done, documenting our activities over the years, and presenting the numbers, which speak for themselves.
What was it like to win the award?
Winning the award was a great honour on behalf of the whole growth company ecosystem in Finland. The award is dedicated to all growth companies, experts (“growth millers”), partners and everyone who has been a part of the Kasvu Open journey during the years.
Being recognised with an EEPA award confirmed that we are on the right path towards becoming the best growth company nation in the world.
How did winning the award impact your work?
This win has motivated us to keep working even harder! Now we can say that we have been recognised in Europe, meaning that our next target must be higher. It has also made us humble. We can celebrate our win, but we need to keep developing our processes to maintain our status as a frontrunner in our field.
Why should others enter EEPA 2019? What advice would you give them?
It is definitely worth trying. Submit your project and see what happens! In terms of advice, be yourself, present your project proudly, and you will be noticed. This is the approach we took.
When you are shortlisted for an EEPA prize you get to attend the SME Assembly, which is an opportunity to meet other nominees and hear their stories. This is really valuable because you can get new ideas from hearing these stories. EEPA is a great competition which allows nominees to present their work and build upon what they are doing on a European scale. The event itself is a very well organised and good place for networking, so it is a great experience for everybody.
What are your plans for the future?
We are continuing to develop Kasvu Open by exploring the possibilities of technology and Artificial Intelligence. One of our main focuses is on adapting the digital platform and marketing automation solutions for Kasvu Open processes.
Watch Kasvu Open’s winning moment below and stay tuned for their future updates! Have a look here for more information on EEPA 2019 and get applying!
Around €112 million of EU funding is now available for energy efficiency research, innovation and market uptake. The deadline for applications is 3 September 2019.
The deadline for submission of proposals is 3 September 2019. The call is managed by the Executive Agency for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises of the European Commission. (EASME). All proposals for Horizon 2020 funding are submitted through the EU’s Funding and Tender Opportunities portal.
The specific funding topics were presented at the Horizon 2020 Energy Efficiency Info Day on 22 January 2019, and video recordings as well as the presentation slides are available for viewing. The Info Day also featured presentations on the EU policy context and guidance from EASME on how to submit an excellent proposal.
Horizon 2020 Energy Efficiency is also on Twitter.
Watch the video and discover the benefits of H2020 programme:
Read the original article on the EASME website here.
The European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA) also recognise projects working towards sustainability, clean energy and environmental consciousness through the Supporting the development of green markets and resource efficiency category. Look through previous tetsimonials here on the News Portal and don’t hesitate to contact your EEPA National Coordinator for more information on this category and how to apply!
The European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA) are looking for the next set of inspiring projects that support entrepreneurs and the entrepreneurship ecosystem across Europe. Every year there are hundreds of applications from across the participating countries, so how can you make your application stand out? What will catch your National Coordinator’s eye? What will draw the attention of the prestigious EEPA jury?
Promoting Enterprise has collated advice from both past winners on what they did to prepare their applications, and from past and present EEPA Jury members on what made projects stand out for them.
Making your application stand out
Ensuring that your application is unique and stands out amongst all the other strong projects it will be competing against is key to getting noticed by both your National Coordinator and later the EEPA jury. Being unique is important and can even lead to a Grand Jury Prize win.
“One of the main reasons behind our win was that we presented a new proposition (i.e. festivals as testing grounds for innovators) to add to the entrepreneurial ecosystem.”
- Innofest – Grand Jury Prize Winner 2017
EEPA jurors in particular want to see unusual and innovative projects that creative contribute to the overall entrepreneurial ecosystem.
“In my opinion, the most important characteristic for a project to be special is that it is innovative. It has to bring something new and show creativity.”
- Jesús Casado Navarro-Rubio – EEPA 2018 juror
“An outstanding project combines innovation and cooperation and supports enterprises throughout their life cycle. It has visible and presentable results and helps to improve the role of entrepreneurs in society or to start up a business.”
- Matthias Tschirf – EEPA 2018 juror
Your application is also a chance to tell your project story and give a full picture of your work, how far you have come and the journey that both you and your project have been on. Including tangible results, lessons learnt and successes will ensure your application is complete and robust.
“When applying it is important to ask yourself if others can replicate what you do. Success is always a combination of vision, strategy, trial and error, lessons learnt and results, so be sure to include your project story and journey.”
- Business Generator – Investing in Entrepreneurial Skills Winner 2017
Dedicate the necessary time to your application
Previous winners mention the need to take the necessary time when preparing an EEPA application, to not rush and ensure that all necessary supporting documentation is collected with enough time and included in the final application.
“Prepare well! Be aware that it requires quite a lot of work until your documents are “final”, so advice and help from the national body might be very useful, so make the most of it.”
- Internationalisation 2015 – 2020 – Supporting the Internationalisation of Business Winner 2017
“We spent quite some time on the application to make sure that we got all the right and important information filled in.”
- Lean Landing – Grand Jury Prize Winner 2018
For more support with your EEPA 2019 applications be sure to have a look through previous EEPA winner testimonials for their advice and success stories and contact your National Coordinators for specific country information on your national EEPA competition.
The European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA) 2019 have opened across Europe and national competitions are well underway. Today on Promoting Enterprise we are having a look at one specific country, Belgium.
Belgium has been an active EEPA participant since 2006, submitting many projects at both national and European level. In its first EEPA year, Belgium won the Investing in entrepreneurial skills category with Fondation pour la Recherche et l’Enseignement de l’Esprit d’Entreprendre (FREE) and went on to win the same category the following year (2007) with Cap’Ten, sois capitaine de ton projet. The next win for Belgium came in 2013 when Starterscontracten voor Ondernemers won the Improving the business environment category. In addition to three European level wins, Belgium has also been nominated by the EEPA Jury on four occasions for the European shortlist.
This year Belgian EEPA candidates will have until Thursday 9 May 2019 to submit their projects to be considered for the 2019 national competition.
EEPA 2019 – 13 years of European excellence
The European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA) are now in their 13th cycle and looking for the next winning projects to take their place in the EEPA hall of fame. The awards launched at the end of January 2019 and all of the National Coordinators are working hard to find worthy projects to compete for the national EEPA titles.
In this edition you can find more information on EEPA 2019 as well as all the latest Portal articles answering your EEPA FAQs and providing inspiration for EEPA 2019 candidates.
Let us know what you would like to see in upcoming newsletters and on the Promoting Enterprise News Portal and don’t forget to follow us across social media for all the latest updates.
The European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA) celebrate the best of Europe and allow for the diversity of enterprise and entrepreneurial support schemes across the EU to shine through. As such, each country has its own deadlines and variations for its national competition, all of which is coordinated by a designated national coordinator.
In order to understand the EEPA 2019 requirements in your country you will need to have a look at your national factsheets. Each factsheet (available in your national language) gives a breakdown and explanation of the six active competition categories, as well as the Grand Jury Prize. You can also find the central European Commission website for EEPA related information, as well as all of the specific contact information for your National Coordinator, including their email address and your national EEPA website.
Have a look at your national factsheet, get in touch with your National Coordinator and prepare your EEPA 2019 application today!
Thinking about applying for the European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA) 2019? The first thing you should do is get in touch with your 2019 EEPA National Coordinator to find out about your national competition and for all the details regarding the 2019 entry criteria.
What about all the different categories, do you know what criteria apply? Where does your project fit best? Today on Promoting Enterprise we will take you through each category and have a look at some past winners to inspire your 2019 entries.
Grand Jury Prize
The Grand Jury Prize is awarded to the best overall project for the EEPA cycle that year. This prize is not dependant on category and goes to outstanding projects that are recognised on a higher level than in the category they entered.
- 2018: Lean Landing, Denmark
- 2017: Innofest, The Netherlands
- 2016: Entrepreneurial West Hisingen, Sweden
Promoting the Entrepreneurial Spirit
Projects in this category are recognised for their initiatives that promote an entrepreneurial mind-set, especially among young people and women.
- 2018: Piraeus Blue Entrepreneurship, Greece
- 2017: Enterprise Village, Estonia
- 2016: Lyon Ville de l’Entrepreneuriat (Lyon City of Entrepreneurship), France
Investing in Entrepreneurial Skills
Projects entering this category should possess initiatives that improve entrepreneurial and managerial skills.
- 2018: i2c STARTacademy, Austria
- 2017:Business Generator, Sweden
- 2016: Enterprise Educators Academe, United Kingdom
Improving the Business Environment
This category focuses on initiatives that support enterprise start-up and growth, and simplify both legislative and administrative procedures for businesses.
Supporting the Internationalisation of Business
This category includes an international perspective, and should be considered by projects that encourage enterprises and particularly small and medium-sized businesses to benefit more from the opportunities offered by markets, both inside and outside the EU.
- 2018: Kasvu Open – company growth sparring programme, Finland
- 2017:“Internationalisation 2015 – 2020”, Austria
- 2016: Human Security Finland, Finland
Supporting the Development of Green Markets and Resource Efficiency
After a temporary suspension in 2017, this category came back in 2018 looking for initiatives that support SME access to green markets and help to improve their resource efficiency through, for example, green skills development and matchmaking, as well as funding.
- 2018: Matosinhos Carbon-zero Living Lab enhanced by local carbon market, Portugal
- 2016: Lime Trees & Honey Bees for Sustainable Development of the Danube Microregion, Serbia
Responsible and Inclusive Entrepreneurship
The final EEPA category is for projects that promote corporate social responsibility among small and medium-sized enterprises and entrepreneurship among disadvantaged groups such as the unemployed, legal migrants, disabled, or people from ethnic minorities.
- 2018: ProjectTogether, Germany
- 2017: ADIE (Association for Economic Rights Initiatives), France
- 2016: The Rotterdam Business Case (De Rotterdamse Zaak), The Netherlands
With the European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA) officially launched for 2019 it is time to get to know the important people that run the national awards in each country…your National Coordinators!
National Coordinators ensure that the national EEPA competitions run smoothly and that all applicants are supported throughout the competition process. They also have the very important role of nominating the two lucky projects that will represent their country at the European level of the EEPA competition.
If you are considering applying for EEPA 2019 then be sure to get in touch with your National Coordinator as soon as possible and make your application as strong as possible. Find all of the contact details for the 2019 National Coordinators below and don’t hesitate to contact the EEPA Secretariat for more information.
Find out more about EEPA participation and the national competitions for 2019 here.
Keep coming back to the News Portal every week for the latest EEPA 2019 information as well as the freshest updates from the worlds of entrepreneurship and enterprise.
With the beginning of a new European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA) cycle, many of you might be wondering if you should take the chance and try to secure your place in the EEPA hall of fame. But why should you enter EEPA? What should you prepare?
Promoting Enterprise has collected some advice from previous winners to showcase the best parts of entering EEPA and their advice for prospective candidates. Collect some tips and tricks from our past winners, and don’t forget to watch their winning moments on our YouTube channel!
“Other organisations and projects should enter EEPA because it is a great way to get recognised for the work that each of us put in daily and it is truly a great experience to participate in the ceremony. Furthermore, it is great way to meet like-minded people and expand your network.”
- Lean Landing, Grand Jury Prize Winner 2018
“Any organisation that believes its project has a beneficial impact on promoting entrepreneurship and small business at the national, regional or local level should enter EEPA. It is a great opportunity to make your project known to a wider audience, to have insight into similar ones running across Europe and to be part of a pan-European business promotion environment.
EEPA 2019 candidates should extensively document their activities, carefully assess the effectiveness, sustainability and impact of their initiatives, and present concrete, measurable and usable results. The potential of transferring the project to other regions in Europe is an important asset too. Overall, do not hesitate to participate in EEPA if you have a significant entrepreneurship promotion practice to share.”
- Piraeus Blue Entrepreneurship, Promoting the Entrepreneurial Spirit Winner 2018
“My advice for future applicants would be to work a little more upstream, and to focus on having good national mobilisation around your project and work. Once this is established this can then be complemented by working with the public entities that transmit the EEPA message and that organise the awards.”
- ADIE – ‘Responsible and Inclusive entrepreneurship’ Winner 2017
Firstly, it is always useful to take, from time to time, an “outside view” on what you do, based on the criteria of the EEPA. Taking part in an EU Award means competing with a lot of other projects – so there is also the chance to learn from others.
Secondly, EEPA is a chance for recognition on an EU level. When applying it is important to ask yourself if others can replicate what you do. Success is always a combination of vision, strategy, trial and error, lessons learnt and results, so be sure to include your project story and journey.
Finally, prepare well! Be aware that it requires quite a lot of work until your documents are “final” (based on the requirements of the EEPA). Advice and help from the national body (in our case the Federal Ministry of Science, Research and Economy) might also be very useful, so make the most of it.
- Internationalisation 2015–2020 – ‘Supporting the Internationalisation of Business’ Winner 2017
I would recommend working on the tangible results of your projects. Showing that the submitted project has a positive impact on their territory and that it can help other European countries and citizens!
- Reempresa, ‘Improving the business environment’ Winner 2017
Keep coming back to the Promoting Enterprise News Portal for the latest on EEPA 2019 and don’t forget to follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram!
EEPA 2019 – Nominations open
The European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA) are back again for another cycle to identify and reward the best projects from across Europe. Get ready to see the most innovative and inspiring projects from across Europe compete against each other to win a coveted EEPA 2019 prize.
Don’t forget to have a look at the upcoming EEPA 2018 Testimonials, given by last year’s winners, and have a look at the Promoting Enterprise News Portal for lots of other exciting content!