On 20th- 21st September 2018, partners from Slovenia, Spain, Bulgaria and Italy had a meeting in Coventry at Coventry University Enterprises Ltd and in Birmingham at West Midlands Chambers of Commerce LLP, where regional stakeholders deepened their understanding of identified good practices they would like to transfer to their respective European regions. After analysing close to 100 Internationalisation support initiatives, 16 stakeholders decided to re-visit our region to learn from our experience and to transfer our local expertise. This learning exercise will allow regions to address gaps within current regional development policy with a view to developing recommendations to inform business support strategy going forward.
SME support initiatives such as Coventry & Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) Growth Hub emphasised the importance of regional agencies working together to support SMEs internationalisation, whilst the Department of International Trade (DIT) showcased how they support internationalisation in the region, highlighting specific diagnostics used to assist SMEs. Additionally the importance of IPR protection to gain international credibility was also explored further. Following the visit and the detailed discussions held in the West Midlands, European stakeholders are developing their improved regional strategic plan to better support Enterprises to internationalise.