The road ahead: European SMEs and their path to Scaling up
In the State of the SMEs Union plenary session of the European Parliament in June 2021, 25 million micro-, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) have been noted to play a key role in the Union’s economy. SMEs represent 99% of all businesses, employ around 100 million people (providing two-thirds of private-sector jobs), and represent around 56 %of the EU's gross domestic product. Due however to the economic effects of the pandemic, over 60% of SMEs have reported a fall in turnover and around 66 % have delayed investment decisions or downsized investments. Thus, support offered by regional governments to SMEs must be reviewed and tailored in order to facilitate the recovery of losses as well as pave the way once again for these SMEs to scale up and internationalise.
The Final Conference of the SCALE UP project, fully online, will provide a platform for managing authorities, regional development practitioners, and other relevant stakeholders to discuss the current support measures provided to SMEs on their path to scaling up along with future opportunities targeting their growth and recovery from the economic effects of the Coronavirus pandemic. The EU has launched several programmes, calls, and initiatives to address and develop solutions for the problems and obstacles that SMEs are facing on their path to scaling up.