Issue N° 157 - September 2017
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In this Issue:


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Updates on the life of the INSME Network

INSME contributes to the success of the 16th International Entrepreneurship Forum Conference

INSME together with King's College, Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS), the Essex Business School and the International Entrepreneurship Forum was among the organizers of the 16th edition of the International Entrepreneurship Forum Conference that took place from the 14th to the 16th of September in Kathmandu, Nepal.

A wide array of academic researchers, policy makers and practitioners from all over the world, including Mr. Sergio Arzeni - INSME President, intervened over the three-day event through panel sessions, presentations and discussions, stimulating the debate on Sustainable Entrepreneurship and Economic Development. The Conference also provided participants with the chance to study the experience of two social enterprises based in Nepal through a study visit on the last day: Seeing Hands and Higher Ground Community Development Nepal.

The 16th IEF Conference also featured a short filmmaking competition on sustainable entrepreneurship aimed at giving voice to entrepreneurs’ inspirations, challenges, achievements and innovation. The winner was awarded with a Rs. 50 000 cash prize (ca. 500 EUR).

To find out more about this year’s IEF Conference, please click here.

INSME Secretary General at the annual meeting of the OECD WPSMEE’s Informal Steering Group on SME and Entrepreneurship Financing

INSME has been among the participants of the Informal Steering Group on SME and Entrepreneurship Financing of the Working Party on SMEs and Entrepreneurship - WPSMEE of the OECD (INSME Moral Sponsor) that gathered on the 7th and 8th of September in Paris, France. It was an occasion to present country trends and latest analytical work on SME finance and share views in preparation of the 2018 edition of the OECD Scoreboard on SME and Entrepreneurship Finance.

Country representatives were updated on the latest developments on equity financing, non-bank finance and the facilitation of SMEs access to finance in countries such as Canada, UK, Finland, Greece, Israel and Turkey, among others.

The meeting has also been an opportunity to receive relevant information on the ongoing implementation of the G20/OECD high-level principles on SME financing welcomed by G20 leaders at the Antalya Summit in November 2015.

Find out more about the work done by the OECD in favour of SMEs and entrepreneurship at this link.

News and contributions from the INSME Members

Dr. Raimund Broechler, INSME Vice President, gave a speech at the Daejeon Global Innovation Forum

INSME Vice President, Dr. Raimund Broechler (Senior Research & Innovation Manager at INTRASOFT International, Luxembourg), was one of the eminent speakers of the 2017 Daejeon Global Innovation Forum organized by INSME Members, The World Technopolis Association - WTA and UNESCO on the 12th and 13th of September 2017 in Daejeon, Republic of Korea.

Dr. Broechler put his 15+ years of experience in the innovation, consultancy, research and technology transfer field at the disposal of the 1st plenary session on “Global Trends in Collaborative Innovation and Strategy for Activation” and animated the discussion on how the diverse innovation actors such as universities, research institutes, leading companies and organizations can work together on a strategy to spread entrepreneurial collaboration for the development of an organic cooperation system.

The plenary session also featured the keynote presentation of Mr. Ifor Ffowcs-Williams, CEO at Cluster Navigators Ltd., New Zealand and the participation of Mr. Desai Arcot Narasimhalu, Founder & CEO of Simha Innovation, Singapore & Professor of Singapore Management University, Mr. Shahbaz Khan, Director of UNESCO Jakarta Office and Mr. Jong-Tae Lim, Director of the Daejeon Creative Economy Innovation Center, Republic of Korea.

Find out more about the Forum at this link.

Captain Samuel Salloum, Co-Chair at the Global Coalition for Efficient Logistics - GCEL (INSME Sustaining Member) recently interviewed by the G20 Executive Talk Series

“Not one firm, country or region alone can provide the digital economy tools required to unleash their true potential” states Captain Samuel Salloum, Co-Chairman at GCEL (INSME Member from Switzerland) who examines the reasons why Information Technology has not been able to provide the needed tools to achieve sustainable economic growth in this interview for the G20 Executive Talk Series.

Captain Salloum states that the world of Information Technology today is mainly reliant on Non-Validated Data rather than Ultimate Data Quality (UDQ) referring to an action validated through multiple sources of data in the same pipeline. Furthermore, Captain Salloum pinpoints the need for the identification of a global coalition of organizations developing the required digital economy tools to achieve sustainable growth, that must be implemented by a trusted technology network and available to end users free of charge.

Read Captain Salloum’s views on the topic at this link.

Sharakah (INSME Member from Oman) increases SMEs funding

The Fund for Development of Youth Projects - Sharakah (INSME Member from Oman) announced some changes to its funding schemes starting from the 1st of July 2017. First of all Sharakah increased the fund limit from RO 200,000 to RO 350,000 (from ca. € 433,000.00 to ca. € 780.000,00), a decision that was taken considering the growing setup costs for businesses in the market scenario (building the infrastructure, purchasing machinery and equipment etc.) and above all in the manufacturing sector.

Moreover given the high number of existing businesses which have the potential to grow and consequently need to maintain a positive cash flow, Sharakah decided to go for an additional relevant change in its funding scheme: an increase of the credit period for their bill discounting scheme from 90 days to 120 days and a reduction of the interest rate for this scheme.

Last but not least, Sharakah set the minimum amount for financial support at RO 25,000 and previously at RO 10,000(ca. € 54.000,00 and ca. € 21.000,00) as they plan to re-route their efforts to small and medium enterprises rather than micro businesses.

Learn more about Sharakah and its services here.

INSME's Picks in the News

“We should jointly explore ways to boost innovation-driven growth” - Read Chinese President Xi's speech at opening ceremony of BRICS Business Forum

BRICS cooperation benefitted people all over the world and gained appreciation by the international community but time has come to discover new growth paths and overcome the difficulties related to a changing economic structure, mainly due to the shrinking global demand and rising financial risks.

Seeking common ground for cooperation while putting differences aside, taking a result oriented innovative approach and stimulating the growth of the countries by taking the well-being of the world into consideration are three important practices that H.E. Xi Jinping, President of the People's Republic of China, encouraged BRICS countries to carry forward on the occasion of the BRICS Business Forum held on the 3rd and 4th of September in Xiamen, China.

As stated by H.E. Xi Jinping BRICS countries “...should work together with other members of the international community to step up dialogue, coordination and cooperation and contribute to upholding and securing global economic stability and growth. To this end, we should promote the building of an open global economy, advance trade and investment liberalization and facilitation, jointly build new global value chains, and rebalance economic globalization.”

To read the complete speech, please click here.

The Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA) and the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) in Hong Kong cooperate on FinTech innovation

On the 28th of August, the Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA) and the Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) in Hong Kong entered into an agreement to respectively share information and latest developments in the FinTech sector in their markets as well as provide regulatory guidance to innovative firms to each other’s markets.

This is a win-win situation for both the organizations concerned. On the one hand, this agreement represents a further milestone in the DFSA’s roadmap to build a framework that supports innovation in the Dubai International Financial Centre - DIFC: an innovation strategy that perfectly fits the National Innovation Strategy set out by UAE Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, to make the UAE a global hub for innovation. On the other, the agreement also represents a relevant achievement for SFC, that has been devoting considerable efforts to the development and application of FinTech and regulatory technology in Hong Kong recently, for example with the establishment of the FinTech Contact Point (FTCP) in March 2016 to improve communication with businesses working in this sector.

Read more about the terms of the agreement at this link.

About South East Asia

Handling your trade secrets in South East Asia

Trade secrets defined by the World Intellectual property Organization (WIPO) as any confidential business information that is of considerable commercial value to businesses and that provides an enterprise with a competitive edge”, are valuable form of intellectual property that almost all businesses have. Differently from other IP rights that have a finite term, trade secrets can potentially take benefit from an infinite term of protection.

In this article the South East Asia IPR SME Helpdesk explains how to protect a trade secret, which barriers have to be considered and which specific requirements for trade secret protection by law exist in many South-East Asian countries.

To read the full article, please click here.

Tenders, Calls & Consultations

The EU Prize for women innovators

The European Commission has announced the 5th edition of the EU Prize for Women Innovators that will award women entrepreneurs who have developed outstanding innovations and brought them to the market.

Women across Europe who have founded (or co-founded) a company before the 1st of January 2016 are invited to apply. In addition the contestants or the company must have benefitted from public or private research and innovation funding.

The Commission will award up to three "EU Prize for Women Innovators" - the three winners will respectively receive € 100.000, € 50.000 and € 30.000 - while the winner of the "Rising Innovator Award" will receive a prize of € 20.000.

The application process will be open until the 15th of November 2017. Find out more about the EU Prize for Women Innovators and the eligibility criteria at this page.

The Small Business Champions Initiative

The World Trade Organization (WTO) and the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) have recently launched the Small Business Champions Initiative which aims at facilitating the participation of small businesses in international trade.

The initiative will provide a platform for companies and private sector organizations around the world to propose innovative, practical ideas designed to encourage micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) to do business across borders.

The WTO and the ICC are looking for proposals aiming at raising awareness among MSMEs of the opportunities that trade can provide, and how they can seize those opportunities. Proposals can include awareness-raising campaigns, competitions, capacity buildings, training or mentoring programmes.

The initiative does not foresee financial contributions, the WTO and ICC will support the implementation of the selected proposals, for example, by helping to promote initiatives and host events or provide expertise and institutional support. In addition successful proposals will be recognized as ‘ICC-WTO Small Business Champions’.

The call for proposal will be open until the end of 2017.

Visit this page for more information.

InnoEnergy launches a call for business creation coaches and experts

InnoEnergy is looking for business creation coaches and experts to be included in a pool that will offer mentorship and support to startups at different stages of development: pre-seed, early stage and growth.

The pool will include experts in:

  • startup development
  • knowledge of energy markets and connections to help start-ups sell
  • start-up finance and fundraising
  • marketing and sales.

There is no deadline to apply and once the application will be submitted, the InnoEnergy Team will check if the profile matches their needs and will give a feedback within four weeks.

By entering in the pool of experts you will access a network of more than 300 partners and will have the chance to work with high-potential start-ups.

Discover more about the call at this page and apply here.

Interesting Initiatives

Listen to the Dictionary of Finance by the European Investment Bank!

Having a clear understanding of economics and finance is often hard for non-experts. This is the reason why Matt Rees and Allar Tankler from the European Investment Bank have developed a Dictionary of Finance.

Through a series of podcasts, students, business owners and whoever is interested in economics and finance can now easily understand specific aspects related to the finance world.

If you wish to learn more about loan, inflation, venture capital, equity and debt and many other topics click here to access the podcasts.


The future of global value chains - Business as usual or “a new normal”?

The last decades have been marked by a rapid growth of global value chains (GVCs) that notably contributed to globalization, but the changes in nowadays world economy are expected to dramatically affect GVCs in the future years.

The paper ‘The future of global value chains - Business as usual or “a new normal”’ released by the OECD (INSME Moral Sponsor) offers an outlook by simulating how production and trade within GVCs may look like by 2030 under different scenarios: namely trade policy; new (low-cost) producers in manufacturing; growing demand in emerging economies; rising wage costs; the digitalisation (IT) of production.

The analysis differentiates between at the one side factors expected to further promote the expansion of GVCs (business as usual) and at the other side the so-called game-changers or shifts that may re-orient and inhibit the growth of GVCs (“new normal”).

Read the paper downloadable here and discover more insights on the future of GVCs.

Trade Facilitation and Better Connectivity for an Inclusive Asia and Pacific

The Asian Development Bank and the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific has recently released “Trade Facilitation and Better Connectivity for an Inclusive Asia and Pacific”, a publication that investigates the evolution of trade costs in the region, examines trade facilitation and paperless trade implementation and highlights key measures and efforts in the region.

As stated in the report, trade facilitation is a key instrument for reducing trade costs and improving trade efficiency. The results of a global survey on trade facilitation and paperless trade implementation are also included in the publication and reveal an improvement across Asia and the Pacific; data show an implementation of the rate on trade facilitation, paperless trade and cross-border trade from 46.5% in 2015 to 50.4% in 2017. According to the results of the global survey there is a need for further support to trade facilitation for SMEs and women.

“Trade Facilitation and Better Connectivity for an Inclusive Asia and Pacific” also suggests an improvement of the business environment and governance to maximize trade facilitation results and this would require the involvement of all stakeholders on policies, operating systems and institutions.

To discover more insights, read the report available at this page.

The Unitary Patent Guide

The European Patent Office - EPO has recently released the first edition of the Unitary Patent Guide. The publication aims at providing companies, inventors and their representatives with advises on how to obtain, maintain and manage Unitary Patent.

The 40-page document offers a summary of the procedural steps to be undertaken, including references to the primary and secondary legislation applicable to each step of the process. The Guide also includes practical information on the accessory procedures relating to unitary patents - for example the compensation scheme for translation costs - as well as the rules on how to pay the renewal fees.

It is expected that unitary patents will be granted by the EPO in 2018.

The Guide is available in a pdf format at this link.

Recommended Website

SME 4X - The SME’s advisor platform

A portal that brings together the brightest minds from all over the world to share ideas on how the entrepreneurship and SMEs world will look like in the next four years: this is SME 4X.

The platform is a collection of articles, videos, white papers and stories on a wide range of topics, such as industry, technology, artificial intelligence and many others. There is also the chance to join the SME 4X community to propose topics to be discussed, submit articles, suggest speakers.

Visit the website here.


Highlighted events

Mediterranean Workshop 2017

From the 23rd to the 24th of October 2017
Naples, Italy

Organized by
SMR - Studi e Ricerche per il Mezzogiorno (INSME Sustaining Member)

The Mediterranean Workshop 2017 to be held on the 23rd and 24th of October in Naples, Italy will be the occasion to present the studies on Mediterranean Economy released by SRM - Studi e Ricerche per il Mezzogiorno (INSME Sustaining Member).

The two-day programme will consist of a series of workshops dedicated to four work tracks:

  1. Mobility in education, industrial innovation and business creation
  2. Cultural heritage
  3. Sustainable development
  4. Logistics and marine strategy.

The Workshop will be a laboratory to identify opportunities and raise new initiatives for coherent development and will be a platform to share and promote practical proposals.

Discover more at this page.

Future international meetings, workshops, seminars selected by INSME

From the 4th to the 6th of October 2017
India Economic Summit
Organized by the World Economic Forum
New Delhi, India

From the 4th to the 6th of October 2017
Intergovernmental Group of Experts on E-commerce and the Digital Economy
Organized by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development - UNCTAD (INSME Member)
Geneva, Switzerland

From the 9th to the 12th of October 2017
The European Week of Regions and Cities
Organized by the European Commission Regional Policy DG and the Committee of the Regions
Brussels, Belgium

From the 9th to the 11th of October 2017
UNCTAD's Annual International Investment Agreements Conference
Organized by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development - UNCTAD (INSME Member)
Geneva, Switzerland

From the 16th to the 17th of October 2017
EBAN Winter Summit 2017 on “Harnessing the Power of Entrepreneurship, Innovation and Investment: People, Planet, and Profit with Passion and Purpose”
Organized by the European Business Angels Network - EBAN (INSME Member)
Munich, Germany

From the 16th to the 17th of October 2017
INNOVEIT 2017 - The EIT Innovation Forum
Organized by the European Institute of Innovation & Technology
Budapest, Hungary

From the 19th to the 20th of October 2017
Thematic University Business Forum - the event on the cooperation between higher education and business
Organized by the European Commission, in cooperation with the VERN' University of Applied Sciences, the University of Split, the University of Rijeka and the Croatian Employers' Association
Vis, Croatia

From the 24th to the 25th of October 2017
Making Finance Work For Women Summit
Organized by Women’s World Banking
Dar es Salaam, Tanzania

From the 31st of October to the 2nd of November 2017
The World Entrepreneurs Investment Forum 2017
Organized by UNIDO Investment & Technology Promotion Office Bahrain and the Arab International Centre for Entrepreneurship & Investment under the patronage of HRH Prince Khalifa Bin Salman Al Khalifa the Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Bahrain, in collaboration with INSME, among others
Manama, Kingdom of Bahrain

From the 1st to the 3rd of November 2017
Global SME Finance Forum 2017
Hosted by SME Finance Forum
Berlin, Germany

From the 7th to the 9th of November 2017
The 20th TCI Global Conference on "The Future of Clusters Through Cross-Country and Cross-region Collaboration"
Organized by TCI Network
Bogota, Colombia

From the 20th to the 24th of November 2017
Horizon 2020 Project Development Week
Organized by ERRIN, the European Research and Innovation Network, in partnership with EURADA (INSME Member)
Brussels, Belgium

From the 22nd to the 24th of November 2017
The 2017 SME Assembly
Organized by the European Commission
Tallin, Estonia

From the 22nd to the 24th of November 2017
The Mediterranean Week of Economic Leaders
Organized by the Association of the Mediterranean Chambers of Commerce and Industry (ASCAME), the Barcelona Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Services and Navigation and UNIDO (INSME Member)
Barcelona, Spain

From the 27th of November to the 1st of December 2017
9th European Innovation Summit | Week
Organized by Knowledge4Innovation
Brussels, Belgium

From the 7th to the 8th of December 2017
The IP Summit
Organized by Premier Cercle
Brussels, Belgium

From the 13th to the 15th of December 2017
The 4th Annual World Open Innovation Conference
Organized by Haas School of Business, UC Berkeley, ESADE and others
San Francisco, United States of America

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