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High-growth innovative SMEs

INNO-Grips Workshop: 
Policies in support of high-growth innovative SMEs

1st February 2011, 9:30–16:30 hrs
Hotel Crowne Plaza Brussels “Le Palace”
Rue Gineste 3, 1210 Brussels, Belgium


  Workshop Summary (including list of participants)


09:00 – 09:30

Registration & welcome coffee

09:30 – 10:00

Welcome and introduction

The PRO INNO Europe portal, the innovation policy of the European Commission, and grounds for a special interest in high-growth SMEs.

Peter Dröll, European Commission, DG Enterprise and Industry, Head of Unit “Innovation Policy Development”

10:00 – 11:00

Policies for high-growth innovative SMEs in Europe and beyond

This session discusses key findings from the study for a Policy Brief in the framework of the INNO-Grips. Findings from literature research, secondary data evaluation, case studies, interviews with experts and focused expert discussions will be presented.

Chair: Hannes Selhofer, empirica, INNO-Grips project manager (Bonn, Germany)

Presentations / discussion:

  • Results of the INNO-Grips study on policies for high-growth SMEs
    Dr. Stefan Lilischkis, empirica, Senior Consultant (Bonn, Germany)

  • Discussant statement
    Gabriella Cattaneo, IDC Italia, Research Director (Milan, Italy)

  • Discussion


Coffee break

11:15 – 12:30

Internationalisation and growth of SMEs – policy examples from East Asia

This session highlights approaches to promote SME internationalisation and growth in selected East Asian countries. Key questions to be addressed are: How do the selected East Asian countries promote high growth SMEs, and how successful are they? What can Europe learn from their experiences?

Presentations from correspondents in South Korea and Singapore will be by video statements, either through life connection or recorded.

Chair: Hannes Selhofer, empirica, INNO-Grips project manager (Bonn, Germany)

Presentations / discussion:

  • South Korea: high-growth policies of the Small and Medium Business Administration
    Prof. Yoo Soo Hong, Director of Institute for Global Innovation Economy (IGIE) (Seoul, South Korea)
  • Singapore: activities of the SPRING and A*STAR programmes of the Ministry of Trade and Industry
    Gerald Wang, IDC Government Insights Asia/Pacific (Singapore)
  • Discussant
    Martin Fransman, Professor of Economics, University of Edinburgh (United Kingdom)
      Download [119 KB] 

  • Discussion


Lunch break

13:15 – 14:00

Interactive keynote
High growth SMEs – what can policy makers do to help?
Brian O’Connor, serial entrepreneur (Belfast, Northern Ireland / USA / Hongkong, China)

14:00 – 15:00

How close the finance gap? Current needs and approaches to tackle them

This session highlights finance gaps which growth-oriented SMEs face and what policy makers on national and international level can do to close the gaps. The focus of the discussion will be on venture capital from funds, business angels, public sources and the European Investment Fund.

Chair: Renáta Anna Jaksa, ICEG European Centre, Director (Budapest, Hungary)

Presentations / discussion:

  • Linking government support with venture capital for Canada’s growth-oriented SMEs – exemplary for Europe?

    Allan Martel, Allan Martel Consulting, Director (Ottawa, Canada)
      Download [538 KB] 

  • Discussant
    Jonathan Potter, OECD, Senior Economist, Centre for Entrepreneurship, SMEs and Local Development (Paris, France)
      Download [124 KB] 

  • Discussion


Coffee break

15:15 – 16:15

Conclusions for future policy design

This session discusses practical implications for future policy to support high-growth innovative SMEs, based on the evidence found in the previous sessions.

Chair: Renáta Anna Jaksa, ICEG European Centre, Director (Budapest, Hungary)

Impulse statements:

  • A policy maker’s view: Jan Dexel, Ministry of Economic Affairs (Den Haag, Netherlands)
      Download [289 KB] 

  • A business view: Luc Hendrickx, Director Enterprise Policy and External Relations, European Association of Craft, Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (UEAPME)
      Download [114 KB] 

  • An economist’s view: Philipp Köllinger, Erasmus University, Assistant Professor in Economics (Rotterdam, Netherlands)
      Download [112 KB] 

  • Discussion

16.15 – 16.30

Concluding remarks and outlook

César Santos Gil, European Commission, DG Enterprise and Industry, Principal
Co-ordinator PRO INNO Europe