Small businesses get expert help with the right match
SMEs (small and medium sized companies) play a major role in the growth and employment across all regions. In a changing market it is important, however, to keep up with both technology and business development if you want to survive. It can often be difficult for smaller players to start expensive and time-consuming development projects on their own. As the representative of the Gothenburg region in the Industriell Dynamik (ID) network, Johanneberg Science Park makes sure that manufacturing companies get the expertise they need.
“With our network of partners and the projects we are involved in, we can often find collaborations and opportunities for small and medium-sized companies. We can help them with everything from applying for funding to getting in touch with suitable partners,” says Katarina Nordström at Johanneberg Science Park.
She makes about 70 company visits each year as the contact person for ID in the Gothenburg region. ID focuses on manufacturing companies that face some type of challenge in, for example, production, internationalization or digitization. Katarina Nordström's task is then to identify possible innovations and match these with tailor-made expertise. This frequently leads to the company getting help to apply for funding to start a development project or getting a role in existing projects.
“Recently we have helped an entrepreneur to find funding for a material test that allowed him to move on with his product development. Another example is a company that needed to switch to bio-based dyes and was able to get expert help from the ID network.”
As part of the ID network, small business owners are also invited to a number of annual network meetings and seminars on everything from financing and work by the board to current topics such as the well-attended Nobel Day lecture on the COP24 climate summit in Poland.A number of SMEs: always get to make short presentations at these occasions for increased visibility and encouragement for continued networking and collaboration.
“There is a great deal of strength and energy among the entrepreneurs that is very infectious. This could be seen in connection with the COP24 seminar, where we saw that many entrepreneurs have the drive and ambition to convert to a more environmentally sustainable production and business.This is in line with Johanneberg Science Park's ambitions and goals and something we want to focus more on within ID in the future,” says Katarina Nordström.
Industriell Dynamik is funded by the Västra Götaland region and consists of 15 member organizations that contribute with different types of expertise. The purpose is partly to support the region's small and medium-sized companies, but also to ensure that both public funds and the research institutes' expertise reaches out and makes a difference in combination with the companies’ entrepreneurship and drive.