The pilot project LOOK-EU-NET

The pilot project Look-EU-Net, co-financed by the COSME Programme of the European Commission, aims to support European SMEs to help them develop, further expand or improve their international business by creating small networks of 4-8 SMEs belonging to at least 3 Member States aimed at enhancing SME’s capacity to exploit foreign markets for export purposes.
Look-EU-Net project involves 7 Partners from 5 different Countries:
Informest Consulting (Italy) as Lead Partner and the Partners Unioncamere Emilia-Romagna (Italy) Handwerk International Baden-Württemberg and Baden-Württemberg International (Germany), Toledo Regional ​Chamber of Commerce (Spain), Free Entrepreneurship Association Gdansk  (Poland),  Plovdiv Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Bulgaria). The Partners will actively collaborate with The Chamber of commerce of Freiburg and Unioncamere del Veneto.Operating in network, European SMEs will be able to increase their capacity to go international by easing cooperation among them and to improve their competitiveness.

This initiative is therefore meant to implement a pilot project that can identify elements, processes and obstacles in the path that SMEs of different EU Countries need to follow and overcome to start or improve their export capacities within their businesses through the setting up of transnational cooperation networks bringing together potential common interests and fostering potential synergies. Concrete experience_ in business collaboration and aggregation on the basis of shared internationalization projects have shown that participating SMEs improved their internationalization readiness and capacity to export to new markets.

Business networks can improve connections, enhance their capacity to identify new business and new partners for purposes other than strictly linked to selling and buying. For instance, supply chain links can indeed be improved by networking that provides enterprises with better possibilities to identify the right manufacturers, suppliers or retailers.

The activities of the Look-EU-Net project will be focused with priority on the economic sectors corresponding to the Smart Specialisation Strategy main trajectories (S3) drawn by the Regional Administration the Partners belong to:

  • Mechatronics: Industrial Automation; Machineries and Equipments (different fields of application, e.g. with regard to agricultural mechanics); Industry 4.0 applications (among the others: virtualization, IoT, Robotics), machining and subcontracting;

  • Sustainable Living: furniture; domotics; new efficient and sustainable materials;

  • Agri-food industry: bio-products, gluten free products; food processing and packaging; horizontal services (labelling and circular economy);

  • Cultural and digital tourism: tourism based on gastronomy (e.g. wine tourism), sustainability, cultural heritage (e.g. religion), through the exploitation of digital technologies;

  • Smart Health: innovative solutions for well-being, healthy and autonomous life.

As target markets, the project Look-EU-Net will focus on:

  • Respective Countries of origin of Partners: Italy, Germany, Spain, Poland and Bulgaria;
  • Northern European Countries: Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Norway and Baltics;
  • Extra-EU Target Markets: Kazakhstan, Russia and Azerbaijan.

These markets represent some of the most important current markets in the Single Market and the most promising extra-EU markets in the future, in terms of market size and market growth.

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