Final call for €5,000 worth of support available to SMEs in the North East

By Estelle Blanks, Executive Director at Innovation SuperNetwork.

The latest opportunity from the Open Innovation 2.0LAB (OI2.0LAB) is an open call for SMEs in the North East to access cutting-edge support and guidance to help them innovate and businesses have just one more week left to apply. Successful applicants will receive a €5,000 voucher that they can exchange for business support from some of Europe’s most successful organisations. There will also be access support to find a suitable European partner if they don’t already have one, advice on any issues that may arise during collaboration and guidance to identify financial solutions to keep that collaboration going if needed.

The Open Innovation 2.0 Lab (OI2.OLAB) is an exciting three-year Horizon 2020 project. It enables entrepreneurs and small and medium enterprises (SMEs) across Europe to tackle business and social challenges through open innovation collaborations that span beyond their organisational and national borders. It helps SMEs to innovate by providing access to expertise and helping to establish partnerships across European countries.

It’s fantastic for the North East to be a key player in the OI2.0LAB as it allows local businesses to access different markets, diversify their customer bases and helps develop new, ground-breaking ways of working.

We want to see local business take advantage of this opportunity. The North East is one of only two European test-regions for this project so it’s a great chance to access unrivalled support completely free of charge.

All applications will be judged by Ryan Maughan, AVID Technology Group Ltd; Dimitrios Kourtesis, Ideas Forward; Martin McGurk, Innovate UK; Alison Machin, North East LEP and Ivana Zocli, WRS. We want to see pitches that will drive innovation across Europe and drive creativity into the workplace; whether that be new business models, new applications of technology or access to new markets – we want to hear from businesses that are doing things differently.

Applications need to be submitted by 17.00 CET (Brussels time) on 2nd December 2019. For further information on the open call is available on the OI2.0LAB website.

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