Internationalisation: DIFASS brings the world within reach

Internationalisation: DIFASS brings the world within reach

The Chamber of Commerce in Seville invited guests from all over Europe to discuss the internationalisation of SMEs and to take part in the second DIFASS Workshop on 21 November. The workshop consisted of good practice presentations on how to stimulate local SMEs to access foreign markets.

The DIFASS project facilitates access to finance for SMEs by exchanging innovative business support measures across Europe. The focus will be on the development and implementation of non-grant based financial support instruments, such as revolving funds, transregional funds and venture capital funds.

Highlights of the Seville workshop included the shared office concept developed by Business Development Friesland (NL), the cross-border approach by the Valle d’Aosta region (IT), the methodology to attract companies from top technology sectors by Beja (PT), the BISNet Transylvania Project by RDA Centru (RO) and the PIPE program presented by the host, the Chamber of Commerce of Seville.

Through the DIFASS project, the successful PIPE initiative will be implemented as a pilot in regions in Denmark, Italy, Romania and Sweden. The programme has already supported over 8000 companies in internationalisation. These companies achieved an average extra turnover of 50% in international markets as a result.

DIFASS has an interactive website with the latest news on financing support schemes for small enterprises, it includes Twitter news feeds @DIFASS and YouTube videos.

The project is supported by the INTERREG IVC Programme. The overall objective of the programme is to improve the effectiveness of regional policies and instruments. INTERREG IVC provides funding for interregional cooperation across Europe. It is implemented under the European Community’s territorial co-operation objective and financed through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). The project is managed in the UK by WSX Enterprise Ltd.