Stories: From networking opportunities to matchmaking events: Here’s our 2019 wrapped up
As we are coming close to the end of the year, it’s time to take a look at the achievements of 2019. This year, the Business Acceleration Services dove into Corporate Days, Investor Days and e-Pitching events that joint innovative SMEs to compete in global markets. Read the 2019 takeaways, discover our highlights and see how to continue vibrating with the EIC Community in 2020.
After a year filled with networking opportunities, workshop sessions and matchmaking events, it’s important to wrap up before ringing in the new year.
You may be reflecting back on the past 12 months, thinking about the business plan that you’ve made for 2019 and the company’s achievements. We’re doing the same – but for the entire EIC Community. And ahead of the brand-new decade, we also looked back on the last year to understand the best paths for business acceleration.
Here are the key numbers and takeaways from 2019.
18 matchmaking events, more than 380 SMEs involved and a satisfaction rate of 90%
Bridging the gap between SMEs and large companies can prove to be a vital strategy for business acceleration and growth. To this end, and under its Business Acceleration Services line, in 2019 more than 300 SMEs attended the Corporate Days to network and pitch their top-class innovations and business proposals to top managers. These events have facilitated significant business contacts and an unparalleled learning experience.
In 2019, there were 12 editions with big corporates: Equinor, Evonik, Orange, EDP, Man Truck & Bus, Saint-Gobain, Telefonica and BBVA, comdirect Bank AG, OTP Bank, L’Oréal, Galp and a multi-corporate including P&G, AB InBev, Nokia, DEME, Cargill, Umicore, GSK, Belfius, ING and Ingenico, among others. According to the feedback survey from the last 11 events, these Corporate Days registered an overall satisfaction among the participants of 90%.
Support with meeting investors is an important part of the Business Acceleration Services offered under the EIC pilot and more than 80 SMEs took part of the 6 investor’s events organised this year. In 2019, the EIC Investor Days gave the unique chance to join EIC funded SMEs with top investors from Euronext and Nasdaq.
- On 7 March, 15 companies backed by the European Innovation Council (EIC) pilot headed to Stockholm to learn more about the IPO process and pitch to top European investors from Nasdaq.
Niclas Holmberg, Managing Director of Global Listing Services at Nasdaq, spoke about the event and the companies funded by the EIC pilot already floating on Nasdaq: “It’s not all about the investment, it’s about all the other activities the EIC pilot is doing to support the companies. It’s fantastic to see these brave entrepreneurs gathered in Stockholm. We understand the company’s needs to raise capital, but we also want to support them on their growth journey”.
- On 15 May 2019, 40 SMEs funded by the EIC pilot had the opportunity to pitch their business to top European investors at Euronext in Paris.
- And on 4 April, the EIC Investor Day – Empowering Women Innovators – joint 33 innovative companies led by women and funded by the European Innovation Council (EIC) pilot to promote the access of women entrepreneurs to finance. In addition, European Commissioner for Innovation Carlos Moedas announced the 13 finalists for the EU Prize for Women Innovators 2019, two of which are funded by the EIC.
“No matter what way you look at it, it poses a problem. Socially, yes, of course, this is a recipe for an unequal society. But how about economically? We know that start-ups founded or co-founded by women generate higher revenues than those by men, and we are missing out”, commented Commissioner Moedas.
But the meetings with investors were not only physical, and this year the EIC hosted regular e-Pitching sessions based on the company profiles in ScaleUp EU. The EIC e-Pitching on Chemicals and on Renewable energy are just 2 examples of the e-pitches events held in 2019.
On average, attending to an EIC BAS event allowed each SME to start 4 negotiations with Corporates or Investors. This year, and in total, the Business Acceleration Services organised 18 matchmaking events involving more than 380 SMEs and received a satisfaction rate that reached 90%.
The EIC Community platform consolidated as an online meeting spot
The EIC Community Platform is being consolidated as an online meeting spot, where EIC-funded companies, investors, coaches and the support team can interact with one another based on profile, interests and business goals. It also acted as the gateway for all Business Acceleration services, including registration for the events, contacts and feedback. The expectation for 2020 is that the broader EIC Community, online and offline, will have better tools and features to meet the business needs.
Looking ahead to 2020
Winds of change are blowing over the EIC as new online tools are expected already in the beginning of next year. If you’re considering the opportunity to pitch your top-class innovation to top investors and c-level managers of large businesses, stay tuned in the EIC Community and have a look at the upcoming events.