By stimulating innovation and improving the competitiveness of domestic companies to a better use of European funding programs

Yesterday (Wednesday), February 7, 2018, at 12:00 o'clock at the Holiday Inn Hotel in Skopje, a kick off  conference was held marking the beginning of the project "Enhancing competitiveness of SMEs through improved innovation support (InnoSupport) ", funded by the European Union, within the framework of the IPA program for Transition Assistance and Institutional Building. The implementation of the project started in December last year and will last until June 2019. The project consortium that is composed of  Youth Entrepreneurial Services Foundation (Macedonia) , Foundation for Management and Industrial Research (Macedonia)and the ARC Fund (Applied Research and Communications Fund - ARC Fund) from  Bulgaria.
The project manager Aleksandar Filiposki from the Youth Entrepreneurial Services Foundation, outlined that the project aims to contribute to creating a strong innovation climate in the country by promoting the concept of innovative businesses. Through the development of a toolkit for innovative financing, the competitiveness of small and medium-sized enterprises will be improved and their capacities will be stimulated to undertake and develop innovative projects. The outputs of the project are the following :
  • Online course in innovation management with learning materials and multimedia elements;
  • Toolkit with basic innovation tools for small and medium enterprises;
  • Toolkit for financing innovation for small and medium enterprises
  • The first mobile application that will inform companies about the supply and demand of innovative technologies on a global level and facilitate the transfer of innovative technologies;
The project will include capacity building for innovation and access to finance:
  • Piloting  of an online course for innovation management with 30 companies, students and business consultants;
  • Two-day training in the European Horizon 2020 program for 25 companies;
  • Three-day training in the SME instrument  for 15 companies;
  • Trainings in protection of intellectual property;
  • Promotion of "InnoLab" where students will be able to work on innovative projects.
The following activities will also be implemented as part of the project:
  • National Media Campaign to Promote the Innovation Activity;
  • National award for the best innovative companies "Innovation Enterprise Award".
During the kick off conference Ms. Daniela Chonkova of the ARC Fund Bulgaria shared good practices in the development of innovations in their country as a member state of the European Union, with a special focus on the national award of the Innovative Enterprise which they have been awarding 13 years in a row to the most successful innovative companies across the country.
Good practices: methodologies, detection, promotion and stimulation of innovative companies will be implemented in our country and will be adapted to the local situation and the needs of the domestic small and medium enterprises.
All interested can find information about the activities of the project " Enhancing competitiveness of SMEs through improved innovation support (InnoSupport) ", on the web site: