Small and medium SMEs are facing with many unstructuered information and various forms of support related to internationalization. Support can be found in several places such as supporting institutions, on several portals, at conferences, organized educations etc. The complexity of the support system is one of the goals that the project Everywhere in the International Small and Medium Enterprises (EIS) is trying to solve.
On April 19th, kick off conference was held in the co-working space in Koprivnički poduzetnik. The project, in which Koprivnički poduzetnik is partner is financed through the INTERREG EUROPE program. Project has a total value of € 1.670.615,00 of which 85% covers the European Union. Duration of the project is 4 years.
Under the project there are involved 9 partners from 7 countries – Hampshire County Council from UK (Lead), Central Denmark, Portugal, Poland, Northern Ireland and Italy.
At the kick off conference there were presented detailed activities to be carried out within the project. One of the most important activities is conducting analysis of all existing activities related to internationalization in the area of Koprivnica – Križevci County. Stakeholder support is cruical, so the project includes representatives of institutions that carry out activities related to internationalization. These are the following institutions (stakeholders): MINIGO, HAMAG BICRO, PORA, City of Koprivnica and Chamber of commerce. After that, each partner will draw up an analysis that will show which tools for internationalization are available to SMEs or for those with future plans and motivation for export. Also, partners will study the results of those tools and examples of best practices and make SWOT analysis. After the exchange of knowledge and international seminars and based on the tools, an innovative six step model will be developed.
“Entrepreneurs will find out in one place all the ways and conditions of internationalization of business, no matter what stage they are in. Of course, this is not possible without consistent and co-ordinated support from all involved stakeholders “, Mateja Horvat, EU project manager in Koprivnički poduzetnik.
After completing the action plan, Koprivnički poduzetnik will provide all information to SMEs from the Koprivnica-Križevci County, transfer the knowledge and provide support for better internationalization. Also, entrepreneurs will be involved in the entire project implementation process and have the opportunity to propose new models and programs related to internationalization.
“We are very pleased to be in the consortium of such an experienced partners within the EIS project. Only a few partners in Croatia participate in projects under the INTERREG EUROPE program, so we are very proud to be recognized as an institution that has the capacity and motivation to learn and introduce more advanced services for SMEs “, Martina Golčić, CEO of Koprivnički poduzetnik.
Marija Planinić (HAMAG BICRO), project manager of the European Business Network Vesna Turbarina and Franjo Babić (PORA) participated at the conference and later at the stakeholder working meeting. They are supporting EIS project and expressing stronly will to cooperate with the aim of common influence on National Policy in Croatia.