The Innovation bond is a scheme of small grants to implement small proinnovative projects in SMEs.
In the "Malopolska Region Development Strategy for 2011-2020" the objective is to strengthen the propensity of companies to conduct business innovation by reducing the barriers and reducing the costs of innovation. The number of innovative SMEs in rural areas compared to metropolitanarea of Krakow is limited. So the structural challenge is to help to innovate in micro & SMEs in general and to expand it to those in rural areas. Innovation Bond is implemented in a relatively fast and simple procedure under ROP and is seen by entrepreneurs as a useful and practical pro-innovative instrument for micro and small companies, also in rural areas.
Innovative Bond is a small scale instrument funding 90% of total cost of micro-innovation in the company (as de minimis). In current ROP of Malopolska region the amount of 20 000 000 euro is allocated to the
instrument, to be delivered in subsequent tranches.
Evidence of success
First tranch was very successful. Call started November 2015 – planned until January 2016, extended till April 2016 due to strong interest between beneficiaries. Allocation: 3 515 548 PLN extended to 6 056 908 PLN. Under the first tranch call - 153 applications from MSMEs for support worth of 2 212 326 Euro (9 946 843 PLN) covering 282% of primarily planned allocation.Entrepreneurs opinions on the Bound are very positive – as a simple and comparatively fast instrument with low entry cost.
Potential for learning or transfer
This is an example usefull especially for micro and small and medium enterprises from rural areas. The most important pluses:
1. It is easy to access,
2. it’s construction inforces cooperation between enterprises-beneficiaries and universities or other R&D organisations – they are the only eligible providers of services financed by Innovative Bond,
3. it has practical focus – beneficiary has the obligation to implement the
innovation to the market.
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