Neopolia is an association created and run by Pays de la Loire entrepreneurs in order to strengthen local companies’ diversification and competitiveness
Neopolia accompanies principals in their progress dynamics and acts alongside with regional institutions to enable a stable industrial development of the region.
The purpose of Neopolia is to reach a critical mass and strong back office to be able to build strong partnerships with markets biggest players.
Neopolia is a network of 6 business clusters. It aims to federate and allow companies to work together on business issues in order to develop 6 specific industrial sectors (gathered in dedicated clusters): Aerospace/Maritime and river projects/Maritime Renewables Energies/Nuclear/Oil & gas/ Rail. These 6 business clusters are the concrete expression of Neopolia’s market oriented approach. It translates the regional companies’ will to federate themselves around a shared strategy and a common industrial offer in order to conquest new market in France and abroad.
Neopolia’s 3 main objectives are: To commercialise collaborative global industrial offers; To build a business network and strengthen the links with great market players; To support structuring industrial project development.
Neopolia have built itself methodically through experimentations systematically associating local companies: pooling of equipment, collective promotion, shared intelligence, experts meetings, good practices exchanges, common responses to call for tender, etc. From this organised cooperation based on stakeholders complementarities emerged engaging smooth reactive collaborative dynamics.

Resources needed

A coordinating team is dedicated to projects. Its main task is to manage the back office of the association (organisation, logistics, budget, funding, communication) = 10, 4 full-time equivalent.
Since 1999, Neopolia received 6M€ in public funding

Evidence of success

Neopolia gathers 245 companies representing 32.000 jobs: 51% SME; 31% medium size; 11% very small enterprises ; 7% big companies.
Since its creation in 1999, Neopolia received 6M€ in public funding, generating 33M€ of direct collaborative business for its members. Since 2015 (till July 2018), Neopolia generated a turnover of 22,7M€ for the benefit of 45 companies representing 26 tenders.
Neopolia’s model is really appreciated internationally.

Difficulties encountered

The association is quite known in each business clusters field; however it is mainly focus in Loire Atlantique (1 of 5 Departments of Pays de la Loire): one of its objectives for phase 8 is to be recognised and have more members in the rest of the region

Potential for learning or transfer

The business cluster model is easily transferable and quite usefull for any local ecosystem as it contributes to develop SMEs competitiveness through a collaborative response to importance tenders, a precise market analysis from each cluster and a rationalised functioning process.
Neopolia’s originality is based on:
• An active commitment of entrepreneurs in the cluster’s governance
• A business/market approach
• A shared strategic vision that gather all the cluster’s stakeholders
• Precise objectives
• A capacity to adapt to the environment
• Periodically reassessed functioning process
• Partners and financers support (Pays de la Loire Region, CARENE, Nantes Métropole, Nantes-St Nazaire Chamber of Commerce)

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Main institution
Conseil Régional Pays de Loire
Pays de la Loire, France
Start Date
January 1999
End Date


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