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Tag ‘SME Assembly Prague’

The winners of the European Small and Mid-Cap Awards 2022 announced

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This evening, we celebrated the 10th edition of the European Small and Mid-Cap Awards, organised by the Federation of European Securities Exchanges (FESE), EuropeanIssuers and the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs during the SME Assembly in Prague (Czechia).

The Awards highlight excellent SMEs from across the EU that have accessed capital markets via an Initial Public Offering (IPO) in the preceding two calendar years. They display the diversity of European markets and aim to promote stock listings on EU public markets, in particular targeting SMEs and growth companies.
Nominated companies are assessed by an independent, expert jury via four categories:

  • the Star of 2022, awarded to an outstanding corporate citizen that stands out in a broad range of areas (e.g. ESG, financial and economic performances, reputation) as an exceptional leader in its class
  • the Star of Innovation, awarded to a newly listed small or mid-cap company that places innovation (i.e. in corporate strategy and/or marketing strategy and/or the use of new technology) at the centre of its strategy for business development
  • the International Star, awarded to a newly listed small and mid-cap company that boasts impressive results in terms of international sales, profit and market share growth
  • the Rising Star, awarded to an SME with a market capitalisation up to €200m that displays remarkable growth potential

The Jury also assigns a Special Mention, to recognise an initiative, an individual or a company that has had a significant impact on small and mid-cap issuers accessing capital markets.

And the winners are…

Star of 2022

GreenVolt (listed on Euronext Lisbon) is a leading Portuguese renewables company operating across three segments: (1) Biomass; (2) Utility scale wind & solar projects; (3) Distributed generation. In Portugal, GreenVolt operates 5 electricity biomass plants (98 MW installed capacity) using exclusively forestry residues and, in the UK, holds a waste wood plant (42 MW installed capacity). GreenVolt is also a major EU developer of utility scale wind & solar projects.

Star of Innovation

SECO (listed on Borsa Italiana ) is a centre of excellence in the field of innovation and technological integration. It develops and manufactures cutting-edge technological solutions, from miniaturized computers to fully customized integrated hardware-software systems. SECO also offers Clea, a proprietary end-to-end IoT (Internet of Things) AI analytics software suite that allows customers to gather real-time data from their on-field devices.

International Star

NACON (listed on Euronext Paris) was founded in October 2019, following the consolidation of all components of Bigben Gaming Division into a new entity. The company specialises in the development and publishing of so-called AA video game software (games with sales of between 0.2 and 3 million copies) in both physical and digital format across the action/adventure, racing, sports, and simulation genres.

Rising Star

EiDF (listed on BME, SIX Group) was founded in 2008 and is based in Galicia. The Spanish company specialised in photovoltaic (PV) solar energy installations. Its main activity is energy self-consumption aimed at small and large companies in order to offer them an efficient and profitable saving alternative with which to reduce energy costs and improve their competitiveness.

Special mention

Rosinger Group (nominated by Wiener Börse) is an internationally successful financial group, which is operating as both professional investor and independent specialised advisory service, it facilitates access for SMEs to capital, know-how and a network of contacts, focusing on IPOs, listings, financial engineering, corporate finance and strategy.

Merete Clausen, Director Investment, Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs, commented: “Access to public capital markets is key for the growth of EU companies and complements the support offered by private sources. The quality of the nominations this year was impressive, and the Jury has done a great job. The awarded SMEs stood out because of their growth performance, the innovativeness of their business models, the products or services they offer, or their successful internationalisation strategy. I hope the awarded companies will inspire other European businesses to take the leap and seek access to the EU capital markets.”

Petr Koblic, President of FESE, added: “Many congratulations to this year’s winners. Even if ultimately we only crowned one winner per category, being listed on capital markets is already a big achievement – one that makes every public company a winner in their own right. These Awards showcase successful IPOs from all over Europe and provide clear examples of the advantages of listing on exchanges for companies seeking to access finance.”

“SMEs are the foundation of the European economy. They are vitally important in creating jobs, supporting growth and boosting innovation. Supporting companies such as those celebrated last night to grow is essential to the green and digital transitions.”

Luc Vansteenkiste, Chairman of EuropeanIssuers, commented: “Small and medium enterprises are the backbone of the European economy. They are vitally important in creating jobs, supporting growth and boosting innovation. It is pleasing that the CMU Action Plan includes important actions to help these companies support their journey through their access to finance on capital markets. The challenge for the future is to find the perfect balance between the need of European harmonization and the respect of the local SME’s specificities.”

“Today’s award ceremony showcases example of successful small and mid-cap companies, they are an example of vision and courage to go for stock exchange in order to make their companies grow and prosper. So let me congratulate them and wish them a successful future.”

You can find out more about the European Small & Mid-Cap Awards website.

SME Assembly 2022 – Day 1

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The SME Assembly 2022, the most significant event for Europe’s SMEs has finally begun. The three-day programme, packed with panel discussions, workshops, masterclasses and award ceremonies, got off to a fantastic start on 28 November in the beautiful Czech capital of Prague.

The O2 Universum was the first stop for the SME Envoy network, which brought together envoys from across the EU to promote SME-friendly regulation and policy-making in all EU countries.  The delegates discussed how SME cooperatives could thrive during these challenging times.

At SME Assembly 2022, there is an expo which showcases some of the best and most innovative projects from Czech businesses.

The SME Assembly delegates enjoyed an exciting visit to the European Union Agency for the Space Programme (EUSPA). Market and user intelligence, support, officer creation and innovation are just a few of the reasons why SMEs should be innovating with EUSPA, which supports startups to develop solutions, connect with investors, get advice and find customers.

In case you haven’t heard about the EU’s activities in space, it includes (among others) Galileo, the global satellite navigation positioning system (GNSS) & EGNOS, which makes navigation signals more accurate and trustable for safety critical application.

The highlight of Day 1 was the Schumpeter’ Innovation in Enterprise’ Lecture. Professor Luc Soete took the stage at the Municipal house of Prague to give his presentation, which debated the role that small and medium enterprises play as essential drivers of innovation and growth.

Dr Soete’s speech focused on the importance which innovative SMEs play in being engines of transformation for the European economy. The Dean of the Brussels School of Governance asked whether there is today a shortage of new ideas/knowledge on how to achieve sustainable development, or is there rather a shortage of innovative entrepreneurs willing to take risks, and who are prepared, in periods of great uncertainty, to challenge incumbents who are often locked into fossil-fuel modes of production playing for time to write off their capital.

“We do not need political activists gluing themselves to old paintings, but need Schumpeterian entrepreneurs gluing themselves to new ideas,” said Prof. Soete

Professor Soete believes that SMEs and entrepreneurs have a key role in bringing new ideas and innovative ways of thinking to sustainability challenges, which threaten our environment.

You can find all about Professor Soete here.

Follow us online for day 2 of the SME Assembly 2022.

Secrets of Success 2022 – 2023 33 Under 33 List: meet the first 4

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This year, in the spirit of the European Year of Youth and under the auspices of European SME Week, we have launched the new Secrets of Success 2022–2023: 33 Under 33 List. It aims to identify and promote 33 promising young entrepreneurs from across the 33 EU & COSME countries. In this post, we introduce you to four entrepreneurs from the list, who have been selected to participate in a Secrets of Success session at this year´s SME Assembly, which will take place on 28-30 November 2022 in Prague.

The 33 Under 33 List will shine a spotlight on a selection of successful young entrepreneurs, documenting their stories in an effort to inspire others to consider entrepreneurship as a career path.

A highlight of the initiative will be a Stories of Success: 33 Under 33 panel discussion at this year´s SME Assembly in Prague. The four selected entrepreneurs will participate in the session, which will take place at 12.00-13.00 on 29 November and can be followed online.

The purpose of the session is to showcase some of Europe’s best and brightest entrepreneurs, to encourage dreams of entrepreneurship and to celebrate the diversity of Europe’s businesses and businesspeople. The session brings together some creative minds from a new generation of young European entrepreneurs who are beacons of hope against a backdrop of uncertainty and crisis. At the session, we hope to achieve a better understanding of their motivations, the obstacles and opportunities they face, and their attitude towards success and the future of enterprise.

And so, in alphabetical order, the four entrepreneurs that will participate in the SME Assembly session and the first official announcements of this year´s 33 under 33 List are:

Kosima Kovar, Austria

Company: Founder of sgreening and Ada Growth both companies

Kosima is Austrian and has a Master of Arts in Business (Communication & Sustainability). Her heroes are everybody who fights to accomplish the 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Kosima founded two companies (sgreening – a social & green marketing agency, and the female growth platform [Ada]) because she had the feeling that nobody was doing what needs to be done. She is sure that in every sector you can do something good and have a positive impact in this world.

Evi Oivanen, Finland

Company: CEO of Cuitu

Evi is an entrepreneur and a Master’s student at Turku School of Economics, in Finland. She is the co-founder and CEO of Cuitu, a start-up creating modern, urban-style accessories made of upcycled materials, such as cutting surplus from professional diving suit production. Evi is passionate about designing circular products and believes collaboration is the key to reducing leftover waste and building attractive, circular brands.

Marc Rovira, Spain

Company: Founder of Polaroo

Marc is from Spain and has a Master’s in Aerospace Engineering and a Master’s in Innovation and Entrepreneurship. His heroes are his parents and his entrepreneurial spirit comes from this dad’s insatiable willingness to learn and his mom’s passion for helping others. His start-up Polaroo has 10 employees and offers hyper-vertical recurrent expense software as a service (SaaS).

Marzio Schena, Luxembourg

Company: Founder of ANote Music

Marzio is from Italy and has an MSc Finance and BA in Economics and Finance from Bocconi University. His heroes are the US investor Ray Dalio and Winston Churchill and his mentor is his mother, who is always pushing him to be better. He puts his entrepreneurial spirit down to never taking ‘no’ for an answer. Although he is Italian, his company ANote Music, is registered in Luxembourg.
The session will be moderated by Bonifacio García Porras, Head of Unit for “Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs)” in the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs (DG GROW).

Make sure to join us at the SME Assembly 2022 to attend this session and to hear the latest insights on all matters related to Europe’s SMEs and entrepreneurs on topics ranging from digital transformation, the world of business, sustainable enterprises, upskilling, circular economy, helping SMEs adapt and thrive, and much more!

You can join the Assembly via this link and browse the full programme here.

SME Assembly 2022 — A Little Guide to Prague

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The SME Assembly 2022 is nearly here! In anticipation of this year’s event, we’ve listed some of the best things to see, buy, eat, and (of course) drink in the beautiful Czech capital.

What to See

Take a walk along the Royal Route to check out some of the city’s most dazzling sights. Although less than three kilometres in length, the Royal Route is home to such attractions as:

  • The Municipal House — A classic example of Art Nouveau architecture built in the early twentieth century. There’s so Mucha to see here (pardon the pun).
  • The Old Town Square — It might be old and square, but the people you’ll find here are anything but
  • The Astronomical Clock — We bet your watch doesn’t also show you the positions of the Sun, phases of the Moon, astronomical cycles, and Christian holidays (unless there’s a new Apple Watch we don’t know about).
  • Charles Bridge — Visit the oldest surviving bridge built over the Vlatva River for some very pretty views of the capital.
  • The St Vitus Cathedral — Prague’s largest church, which also houses an impressive array of holy relics.
  • Prague Castle — Prague’s most visited monument and the seat of the President of the Czech Republic (and here we are sitting on office chairs …)

What to Buy

Leave some room in your luggage, because there are loads of goodies you’ll want to bring back!

  • Bohemian crystal — There’s crystal, and there’s Bohemian crystal. As Sade would say, this. Is. No. Ordinary glass.
  • Bohemian garnets — A hallmark of royal Bohemian jewellery for centuries, these red stones are truly dazzling. Just make sure to request a certificate of authenticity before buying any, as there are quite a few fakes out there.
  • Oplatky — Wafers that melt in your mouth (but hopefully not in your suitcase)
  • Beer cosmetics — Guerlain, Schmerlain. Dose up on some vitamin B with all-natural cosmetics (as well as shampoos and shower gels) made of beer. Your skin will thank you.

What to Eat

You’ll also want to leave some room in your stomach. Don’t say you weren’t warned.

  • Chlebíček — Scrumptious open-faced sandwiches you can find just about anywhere
  • Koláče — Pastries, traditionally filled with poppy seeds or jam
  • Buchty — These sweet yeast dough buns are straight out of a Bohemian fairytale. Literally. Legend has it that the Bohemian dragon slayers of old would snack on these. If buchty was good enough for them, it’s good enough for us.
  • Svíčková — Whipped cream, cranberry sauce, and beef. It sounds like a recipe for disaster, but tastes heavenly. As far as Czech dishes go, it doesn’t get more iconic than this.

What to Drink

  • Beer — Obviously. A trip to Prague wouldn’t be a trip to Prague without the golden pilsners (named after the city of Pilsen) the Czech Republic is famous for. By all means, indulge in pints of Pilsner Urquell and other local brews; just do so responsibly. Otherwise, you might find yourself constantly asking your friends, like Steve Urkel (no relation), ’Did I do that!?’
  • Kofola — We’d love to buy the world a … Kofola! One sip is all it takes to see why this Communist-era take on Coca-Cola is still around.
  • Moravian wine — Pair a glass with some svíčková and watch the magic happen
  • Becherovka — The Czech are so secretive about the recipe of this herbal aperitif that only two people in the world know it at any given time. Have a sip and you’ll see why.

The SME Assembly 2022 kicks off in Prague on November 28. Although the Assembly is fully booked, you can livestream and participate in the event online via the SME Assembly app. Register here.

SME Assembly 2022 — A Sneak Peek at this Year’s Programme (Part 1)

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The countdown to Europe’s premier SME event has begun! This year’s edition of the SME Assembly will take place between November 28 and 30 in Prague. Here’s a glimpse of what’s in store for those attending in person (and online!).

The SME Assembly 2022 will be hosted by actress Lejla Abbasová (Prince Caspian) and will be packed with educational workshops, masterclasses, webinars, networking opportunities, and inspiring presentations by key European figures in entrepreneurship and innovation. Numerous awards will also be presented throughout the three-day-long event in the picturesque Czech capital.

To kick-off the SME Assembly 2022, attendees will be treated to a tour of the headquarters of the European Space Agency for the Space Programme (EUSPA). Later that day, Professor Luc Soete, Dean of the Brussels School of Governance (BSoG), VUB will deliver the Schumpeter ‘Innovation in Enterprise’ lecture. Jozef Sikela, Minister of Industry and Trade of the Czech Republic, and Thierry Breton, Member of the European Commission for the Internal Market, will also deliver keynote speeches. Attendees can expect to hear from the European Commission’s Director for Strategy, Outi Slotboom, as well as other notable policymakers, on the final day of the event.

This year’s workshops and masterclasses will revolve around subjects like sustainability, digital transformation, and female entrepreneurship, amongst many others.

Throughout the event, the winners of the European Small and Mid-Cap Awards; European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA); and the Youth Essay Competition will be announced. Attendees will also have the opportunity to network with one another during receptions, dinners, and breaks. All attendees both onsite and offline connect and network on the Promoting Enterprise app before, during and after the event.

This year’s event is fully booked. Download the Promoting Enterprise app to livestream and participate in the SME Assembly 2022 online.

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