Welcome back to the SME Week Newsletter!
As we go into February, it is time to start thinking about the 2021 edition of the European SME Week. Every year this pan-European campaign celebrates entrepreneurship and SMEs through events, initiatives, competitions and the flagship SME Assembly held towards the end of the year. In this edition we have a look at some of the different ways to get involved this year, so make sure that you don’t miss out!
We also want to hear YOUR stories, how are you navigating these challenging times? Share your news and updates to be featured in an upcoming issue or on the Promoting Enterprise News Portal, just like the IPA4SME project or Uplift Albania.
Since the first call launched in May 2019, the IPA4SME programme from the European Commission has been successfully accompanying small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) on their path to intellectual property (IP) valorisation, helping them to protect their valuable IP. To date, over 1.000 SMEs from 30 countries have benefited from the programme.
IPA4SME offers SMEs that have been awarded the Horizon 2020 SME Instrument Seal of Excellence a unique opportunity to acquire IP valorisation and protection by co-financing a range of IP-related services, worth up to EUR 15 000.
These services include free IP pre-diagnostics, where a verified IP expert provides the companies with a customised report on their IP business strategy and advises on how to exploit their assets efficiently and securely. Beneficiaries can also have their IP protection costs reimbursed, particularly IP attorney and European patent application fees.
Cut-off closing date approaching
The closing date for the eighth cut-off in the current call is 25 February 2021. This is an excellent chance for eligible SMEs to receive up to EUR 15,000 to support their IP strategy or patent registration. Interested SMEs can apply here.
Feedback from beneficiaries in the previous cut-offs has been very positive – they found the action to be an excellent chance to summarise, reflect on and improve their IP strategy. In general, thanks to the programme they are more aware of their IP situation and view the recommendations in the IP Diagnostic Report as critical for their long-term business strategies. You can read some of their Success stories here.
Feedback from beneficiaries shows that:
- 97% of applicants are interested in additional support;
- 87% of beneficiary SMEs have a better understanding of their IP and its value than before;
- 90% consider the IP pre-diagnostic report a useful resource; and
- 91% would recommend the IP pre-diagnostic to other innovative SMEs.
IPA4SME also provides detailed information on the different IP valorisation services that are available, in addition to what actions selected beneficiaries should take to access these services. To view the webinars, click here.