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EEPA 2020 Shortlist – Investing in Entrepreneurial Skills

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We are back with the next category of the European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA) 2020 shortlist. Over the next few weeks we will be introducing you to each project that has been carefully evaluated and selected by our EEPA 2020 jury.

Today we are meeting the projects competing in Category 2: Investing in Entrepreneurial Skills. This year our finalists come from Ireland, Belgium, Estonia and France. These shortlisted projects focus on providing specific training for local SMEs to promote innovation, raising awareness of stimulating business to work on their online activities, providing opportunities for young people to have hands-on experience in the metal and woodworking sectors, and providing a nationwide service to help entrepreneurs through difficult times.

Ireland: Engenuity Engineering Cluster Midlands

The Engenuity Engineering Cluster Midlands pilot provides local engineering businesses with sector specific professional training, tailored mentoring and action planning, and networking and collaboration opportunities. The Engenuity Programme is an integral part of a structured effort to promote market-led innovation, stakeholder collaboration, best practice transfer, and product and trade development among engineering companies in the region. In total, 20 engineering companies directly benefited from the pilot, which helped them achieve their growth objectives – with 70% of the companies creating new jobs and witnessing an increase in turnover and 15% growth in exports.

Belgium: Het internet. Ook uw zaak., Flanders Innovation & Entrepreneurship

“Het internet. Ook uw zaak” is working to raise awareness of online marketing and e-commerce for businesses and aims to stimulate businesses to work on their online activities. It shows them what they can achieve in the online arena and offers concrete tools and practical tips and information to help them reach their goals. It also provides a forum for peer exchange, allowing businesses to get inspiration from each other. Businesses are seeing a positive effect on turnover as a result – not only online, but in their physical premises also.

Estonia: Mobile Workshops

Merkuur has developed a series of mobile workshops to introduce young people to the various professions, work practices, and tools to be found in the metal and woodworking sectors. It provides an opportunity to gain hands-on experience in these professions, increasing young people’s career awareness and competitiveness in the fields of technology and engineering. In mobile classrooms equipped with modern technology, students can test their engineering skills, try various techniques and tools, and make exciting products. In three years, the Merkuur team has organised over 700 science, technology and engineering workshops for about 7000 young people.

France: Le PORTAIL DU REBOND

The Recovery Portal is made up of associations that together provide a nationwide service to entrepreneurs to help them through difficult times. The associations have unique specialisations across different areas, allowing them to cover the entire value chain, from entrepreneurial failure and its prevention to entrepreneurial recovery and its promotion. The portal provides a single online point of access so that entrepreneurs can choose the association that corresponds to their entrepreneurial recovery needs. The associations help the entrepreneurs navigate necessary measures and authorities, and remove obstacles to their recovery.

Be sure to read about the EEPA 2020 Special Mentions and the finalists for Promoting the Entrepreneurial Spirit, and don’t forget to come back every week to meet more EEPA 2020 finalists!

Want to watch the EEPA 2020 finals? Register for the SME Assembly 2020 and secure your place.

EEPA 2020 Shortlist – Promoting the Entrepreneurial Spirit

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The time has come to meet each project on the European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA) 2020 shortlist! Over the next few weeks we will be introducing you to each project that has been carefully evaluated and selected by our EEPA 2020 jury.

Today we are meeting the projects competing in Category 1: Promoting the Entrepreneurial Spirit. This year our finalists come from France, Greece and Denmark, and their projects focus on providing youth with transferable entrepreneurial skills, creating a national open entrepreneurial ecosystem with state-of-the-art infrastructure in exponential technologies, and formalising collaboration between researchers, investors and private business, to increase the role of research in startup creation.

France: Atlantic Futures

The Atlantic Futures programme, developed by the Atlantic Cities association in 2018, is a transnational programme offering young people opportunities to develop their entrepreneurial skills at European level. Existing initiatives are combined with personalised and targeted support to help the programme participants build upon their ambitions, make their projects a reality, and to develop and nurture their talents. The scheme benefits young job-seekers by providing them with experience and transferable skills that they can take forward into their careers.

Greece: ‘Demokritos’: Innovation Ecosystem for Sustainable Entrepreneurship

Greek public research institution Demokritos transformed itself, with financing from the European Investment Bank, into a smart and autonomous open entrepreneurial ecosystem, with state-of-the-art infrastructure in exponential technologies. This dynamic innovation ecosystem houses numerous programmes and activities that are accessible to all innovative enterprises in the country, such as the Industrial Scholarships Programme, the ‘Lefkippos’ Technological Park and the AHEDD digital innovation hub. The institution’s interdisciplinary environment attracts international investment and research talent from all over the world.

Denmark: Open Entrepreneurship

The Open Entrepreneurship project works to formalise collaboration between researchers, investors and private business, with a view to improving and increasing the role of research in startup creation. By developing a new approach to the commercialisation of research, the project aims to make better use of existing research to fuel innovation, facilitate knowledge transfer to SMEs, and increase the number and quality of startups emerging from universities. To date, the project has led to the establishment of over 35 new companies and increased the knowledge surrounding the commercialisation of research amongst hundreds of students and researchers.

Be sure to read about the EEPA 2020 Special Mentions and don’t forget to come back every week to meet more EEPA 2020 finalists!

Want to watch the EEPA 2020 finals? Register for the SME Assembly 2020 and secure your place.

EEPA 2020 – Meet the Special Mentions

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Last week on Promoting Enterprise we announced the European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA) shortlist, which features all of the projects that the jury have selected to compete in the EEPA finals at the SME Assembly.

The jury also selected projects that they wished to award a Special Mention, which is given to a project that stands out to the jury but has not been awarded in a particular category. This year the EEPA jury has awarded 6 Special Mentions, across the different categories in recognition of their outstanding work.

Montenegro: Stock Market of Entrepreneurial Ideas- IDEALAND

IDEALAND is an event dedicated to encouraging the development of entrepreneurial business ideas, primarily among high school and university students from Montenegro and the surrounding region. Over the past 10 years, more than 1 000 student business ideas have been submitted, and each year the submissions are narrowed down to the top 11. At the event the 11 strongest ideas are presented by their creators in 3-minute pitches. For 10 years now, this event has encouraged young people to produce top quality ideas and solutions to everyday problems.

Cyprus: The Entrepreneurial Journey

Junior Achievement Cyprus is a member of Junior Achievement Worldwide, the world’s largest non-profit organisation addressing, through education, the fundamental social and economic challenges faced by young people. JA Cyprus offers entrepreneurial programmes to young people from primary to post-secondary level, providing access to opportunities for active participation in business and community life. Through its programmes More than Money, Economics for Success, Entrepreneurship in Second Chance Schools, Innovation Camp, Company Programme and StartUp, the initiative has provided entrepreneurial education to more than 2 100 students at all levels of education, all over Cyprus in 2020 alone.

Ukraine: #StartBusinessChallenge (SBC)

#StartBusinessChallenge is a free support tool that provides clear step-by-step instructions on how to start a new business or scale-up an existing one in Ukraine, in compliance with national and local regulations. Launched in 2017, #StartBusinessChallenge contains 176 business instructions for 15 business clusters, as well as localised procedures covering the specific registration requirements of 32 Ukrainian cities. #StartBusinessChallenge was updated in 2020 with verified healthcare instructions and digitising tips for businesses related to the COVID-19 crisis.

Netherlands: ImpactCity The Hague

ImpactCity is a startup and scale-up community in The Hague that helps startups and scale-ups that make a contribution to society to successfully launch and grow their businesses. At its Apollo 14 hub, the initiative connects startups with investors, governments, international companies, research centres, studios, and thousands of creative entrepreneurs. At the same time it offers access to a comprehensive business network, inspiring company locations, and international trade missions and competitions. To effectively address global challenges, ImpactCity facilitates public and private partnerships on themes such as safety, humanitarian innovation, sustainability, renewable energy and food.

Slovakia: Zodpovedné podnikanie prístupné pre všetkých

“Zodpovedné podnikanie prístupné pre všetkých” is an initiative that supports the entrepreneurship of disadvantaged groups such as the unemployed, and in particular the long-term unemployed, migrants, people with disabilities, and marginalised ethnic groups. It aims to provide work for everyone regardless of their origin. It has a special focus on integrating Roma people into the Slovak workforce. This has a knock-on effect of encouraging Roma children to attend school which, in turn, has a positive impact on their future employment prospects.

Slovenia: Slepota ni ovira za podjetništvo

“Slepota ni ovira za podjetništvo” is an initiative being implemented by Technology Park Primorska to identify business and employment opportunities for the blind and visually impaired, in cooperation with the Inter-municipal Association of the Blind and Visually Impaired Nova Gorica. It develops the entrepreneurial competencies of its participants and advises them in setting up a new business. The programme also develops the skills of the blind and visually impaired, who are then motivated to take on tasks independently and either set up their own company or make a more active contribution to the company in which they will be employed.

Congratulations to the 2020 EEPA Special Mentions! Don’t forget to have a look at the EEPA 2020 shortlist and keep coming back to the News Portal to start meeting more EEPA 2020 projects and finding out about what they do.

Want to watch the EEPA 2020 finals? Register for the SME Assembly 2020 and secure your place.

EEPA 2020 – Meet the European shortlist

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This year 185 National EEPA entries were submitted for consideration from 27 participating countries. The EEPA National Coordinators then selected 49 of these projects for the EEPA 2020 Jury to evaluate and compose the European shortlist.

The EEPA 2020 Jury met on Wednesday 9th September to discuss and make their final selections for this year’s European shortlist. With so many outstanding projects to choose from that demonstrated innovation, creativity and passion for supporting entrepreneurship, it was a difficult decision.

Congratulations to all of the selected finalists!

Category 1 – Promoting the Entrepreneurial Spirit

Category 2 – Investing in Entrepreneurial Skills

Category 3 – Improving the Business Environment

Category 4 – Supporting the Internationalisation of Business

Category 5 – Supporting the development of green markets and resource efficiency

Category 6 – Responsible and Inclusive Entrepreneurship

About the EEPA selection process

The competition has two stages. Applicants must first compete at national level to be eligible to compete at 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 2020 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 2020 finals.

Want to watch the EEPA 2020 finals? Register for the SME Assembly 2020 and secure your place.

Meet the EEPA 2020 Jury – Sabine Hepperle, Ben Butters & Bastian Coes

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The European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA) jury is made up of members representing the European Commission, business associations, academia, the current European presidencies and the last Grand Jury Prize winner.

The EEPA jury has the difficult task of selecting which national winners will make it onto the European shortlist, as well as the projects that will go on to win each respective category and the prestigious Grand Jury Prize.

Each year the jury sees experienced returning members, like EEPA jury chair Kristin Schreiber, Thomas Wobben, Professor Thomas Cooney and Anke Wiegand, as well as new faces. Today on the News Portal we are meeting this year’s new members.

The first new jury member for the 2020 edition is Ms Sabine Hepperle, who is Head of the Directorate-General at the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs & Energy in Germany. She also previously served as head of Berlin’s promotional trade programme and headed the Representation of the Association of German Chambers of Commerce and Industry in Brussels. Ms. Hepperle will be representing the German presidency on this year’s jury.

“A winning EEPA project is one that is unique and innovative. It should also have a significant impact on the local business environment. In times of COVID-19 we particularly need innovative and successful projects, which are transferrable to other regions and countries. While evaluating the EEPA projects, I have especially looked at the local impact of the projects as well as on the benefit the projects have on SMEs.”

Our next new member is new to the EEPA jury but not to the SME Assembly, Mr Ben Butters, Deputy CEO of EUROCHAMBRES, will also be joining this year’s EEPA jury. Ben has covered a wide range of issues that are of relevance to chambers of commerce and the European business community, including the single market, SME policy, regulatory reform and skills. Before joining EUROCHAMBRES, he created and for several years ran his own business providing EU advocacy support to small business associations.

Finally our last new face on the EEPA 2020 jury is Mr Bastian Coes, Manager & Business Developer for GreenPAC iLab, the project that won the Grand Jury Prize at the EEPA finals in 2019. Mr Coes and his team impressed the jury with their project which supports new entrepreneurs in the plastics industry to help them start their businesses and achieve sustainable and circular business models.

“A great part of the success of our economy depends on a new generation of entrepreneurs. Entrepreneurs who know how to adapt and can switch between different competences where creativity can make the difference. This creativity can be recognized in the great entries of  the various EEPA projects. They show the need for continuous investment in the entrepreneurs of the future. ”

Welcome to our new jury members! Don’t forget to read about our returning experienced jurors: Kristin Schreiber, Thomas Wobben, Professor Thomas Cooney and Anke Wiegand. The EEPA jury will be meeting soon to discuss and decide which projects will be on this year’s European shortlist so keep coming back to the News Portal and don’t miss the announcement.

Find out more about EEPA 2020 and read about specific updates to the 2020 edition from EEPA jury chair Kristin Schreiber here on the News Portal.

Meet the EEPA 2020 Jury – Anke Wiegand & Professor Thomas Cooney

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Being on the European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA) jury is an exciting yet difficult task. For 2020 we have already met two of our jurors, Kristin Schreiber and Thomas Wobben, but who else will be joining them this year to select the best project for the European shortlist?

Time to meet two more returning members of the EEPA 2020 jury!

Our first returning member of the EEPA jury today is Ms Anke Wiegand, who first lent her expertise to EEPA judging in 2019. Ms Wiegand is Head of Unit Innovation I Funding Financing for the Enterprise Europe Network Berlin Partner for Business and Technology. She joined last year’s jury and presented the Supporting the Development of Green Markets and Resource Efficiency award at the EEPA awards ceremony at the SME Assembly 2019 in Helsinki.

“Under the impression of this year’s pandemic, SMEs all over Europe came up with excellent ideas, digital skills and visions for sustainable, health and climate friendly solutions for the future. Support schemes need to adapt in order to encourage this spirit of resilience. My preferred EEPA projects will help and support these innovations to find their way into our societies.”

Another returning member of the EEPA 2020 jury brings significant experience to the role and has been a part of the EEPA jury for several years. Professor Thomas Cooney is a Professor in Entrepreneurship at the Dublin Institute of Technology, and Academic Director of the TU Dublin Institute for Minority Entrepreneurship. He is also a Director of four businesses, works in a supportive capacity with a variety of organisations and has published widely on the topic of entrepreneurship. As a member of the 2019 EEPA jury he presented the Promoting the Entrepreneurial Spirit award at the EEPA awards ceremony at the SME Assembly 2019 in Helsinki.

Welcome back to Anke Wiegand and Professor Thomas Cooney! Don’t forget to read about the first two jurors we introduced: Kristin Schreiber and Thomas Wobben, and make sure to come back to the News Portal to meet the remaining members of the 2020 jury: Mr Bastian Coes, Ms Sabine Hepperle and Mr Ben Butters.

Find out more about EEPA 2020 and read about specific updates to the 2020 edition from EEPA jury chair Kristin Schreiber here on the News Portal.

EEPA 2020 National Winners – Responsible and Inclusive Entrepreneurship

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The European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA) reward projects from across participating countries that work to promote entrepreneurship and small business at a national, regional and local level through a variety of initiatives. The EEPA have now moved to the European level of the competition and the national winners from each participating country have been selected by their National Coordinators.

So far, we have introduced the national winners for Promoting the Entrepreneurial Spirit, Investing in Entrepreneurial Skills, Improving the Business Environment, Supporting the Internationalisation of Business and Supporting the Development of Green Markets and Resource Efficiency.

Today on the Promoting Enterprise News Portal we will be introducing the top national projects competing in one of the six categories*; “Responsible and Inclusive Entrepreneurship”. This category “recognises initiatives 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.”

Find out more about the different competition categories on the EEPA website

*Due to certain national EEPA competitions being disrupted by COVID-19, this list is still subject to additions. Please keep checking the Promoting Enterprise News Portal for the most updated national winner information.

Congratulations to the national winners of “Responsible and Inclusive Entrepreneurship”!

Don’t forget to have a look at all of the different national winners and stay tuned for the announcement of the European shortlist, chosen by our prestigious EEPA 2020 jury.

EEPA 2020 National Winners – Supporting the Development of Green Markets and Resource Efficiency

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The European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA) reward projects from across participating countries that work to promote entrepreneurship and small business at a national, regional and local level through a variety of initiatives. The EEPA have now moved to the European level of the competition and the national winners from each participating country have been selected by their National Coordinators.

So far, we have introduced the national winners for Promoting the Entrepreneurial Spirit, Investing in Entrepreneurial Skills, Improving the Business Environment and Supporting the Internationalisation of Business.

Today on the Promoting Enterprise News Portal we will be introducing the top national projects competing in one of the six categories*; “Supporting the Development of Green Markets and Resource Efficiency”. This category “recognises 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”.

Find out more about the different competition categories on the EEPA website

*Due to certain national EEPA competitions being disrupted by COVID-19, this list is still subject to additions. Please keep checking the Promoting Enterprise News Portal for the most updated national winner information.

Congratulations to the national winners of “Supporting the Development of Green Markets and Resource Efficiency”!

Come back to the News Portal each week to find out which projects won their national competitions and are being considered for the European shortlist by our prestigious EEPA 2020 jury.

EEPA 2020 National Winners – Supporting the internationalisation of business

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The European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA) reward projects from across participating countries that work to promote entrepreneurship and small business at a national, regional and local level through a variety of initiatives. The EEPA have now moved to the European level of the competition and the national winners from each participating country have been selected by their National Coordinators. So far, we have introduced the national winners for Promoting the Entrepreneurial Spirit, Investing in Entrepreneurial Skills and Improving the Business Environment.

Today on the Promoting Enterprise News Portal we will be introducing the top national projects competing in one of the six categories*; “Supporting the Internationalisation of Business”. This category “recognises initiatives 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”.

Find out more about the different competition categories on the EEPA website

Congratulations to the national winners of “Supporting the internationalisation of Business”!

Come back to the News Portal each week to find out which projects won their national competitions and are being considered for the European shortlist by our prestigious EEPA 2020 jury.

EEPA 2020 National Winners – Improving the business environment

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The European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA) reward projects from across participating countries that work to promote entrepreneurship and small business at the national, regional and local level through a variety of initiatives. The EEPA have now moved to the European level of the competition and the national winners from each participating country have been selected by their National Coordinators. So far we have introduced the national winners for Promoting the Entrepreneurial Spirit and Investing in Entrepreneurial Skills.

Today on the Promoting Enterprise News Portal we will be introducing the top national projects competing in one of the six categories; “Improving the Business Environment”. This category recognises initiatives that support enterprise start-up and growth and simplify legislative and administrative procedures for businesses.

Find out more about the different competition categories on the EEPA website

Congratulations to the national winners of “Improving the Business Environment”!

Come back to the News Portal each week to find out which projects won their national competitions and are being considered for the European shortlist by our prestigious EEPA 2020 jury.

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