European Enterprise Awards 2009

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European Enterprise Awards 2009

Source Enterprise DG press release, 13 May 2009 MEMO/09/234 (IP/09/753)

The 6 winners of the European Enterprise Awards 2009:

Jury's Grand Prize

The Scarborough Renaissance Partnership

Scarborough Renaissance Partnership, North Yorkshire, United Kingdom

Seaside renaissance brought about through creative and cultural enterprises

Formed in 2002, the Scarborough Renaissance Partnership has transformed the north-east England seaside town of Scarborough by pioneering renaissance – turning a seasonal economy with unemployment in the winter months 50% higher than in the summer into a year-round economy with only a 10% difference between summer and winter employment. Some 100 jobs have been created through public investment, facilitating the creation of another 100 jobs in the private sector in the past two years. And the new entrepreneurial climate is set to boost employment in the next five years.

The project won the 2008 Enterprising Britain award, due to its success in changing the fortunes of the town and making it synonymous with enterprise. This success was based on the active involvement of the community in the decision-making process; and the development of a creative and cultural sector in the town. Development of the Woodend Creative Workspace, a state-of-the-art centre for the creative and cultural industries, and a 40-ha business park offering 100 000 m2 of new business space with room for 2 000 jobs is enabling new business and enterprise development to take place in the town.

Contact: Gabrielle Jandzio, Communications Officer

phone: +44 1723 232306; fax: +44 870 238 4159;



Entrepreneurship promotion award

Winner: Instituto IDEAS Universidad Politécnica de Valencia (UPV), Valencia, Spain

Runner up: A team of entrepreneurship awareness-raising workers Agence de Stimulation Economique, Liège, Belgium

Supporting innovative ideas through co-operation

The Instituto IDEAS helps generate new business opportunities and innovative technology-based companies in Valencia. It focuses on helping young entrepreneurs get their own business projects off the ground.

It works towards its aim by: building networks between stakeholders in the Valencian Innovation System; co-operating with centres and institutions to foster an entrepreneurial spirit; promoting and developing new research and educational projects to do with entrepreneurship and business start-ups; and creating a mindset in the university community for enterprise creation.

The project has had significant economic impact as well as providing training and support for e-commerce through an innovative virtual shopping mall ‘Parque Innova’. Since 1992, the Instituto IDEAS has helped create 400 innovative companies and enabled the creation of 4 000 jobs in the Valencia Region.

Contact: José Millet Roig, Director

phone: +34 963 87 77 26; fax: +34 963 87 77 22;



Red Tape Reduction Award

Winner: ANTI-BUREAU Miskolc Holding Zrt., Miskolc, Hungary

Runner up: Reduction of statistical reporting burden to respondents Lithuanian Statistics, Vilnius, Lithuania

Eliminating bureaucracy in the interests of efficiency

Miskolc Holding Zrt was established in 2006 as a simpler, centralised operation to manage the property of the local government in Miskolc – the third-largest city in Hungary, in the north-east of the country. Responsibilities range from operating heating, sewage and water services, to refuse treatment, and even public transport and parking.

The objective is to operate as a true service organisation, meeting everyday needs and dealing with everyday issues, while making the administration related to the work and services of the whole group of companies clearer for the local residents. As a result, previous often bureaucratic systems have been eliminated, and the group’s operations have become more cost effective.

This is assisted by centralised customer services, where issues relating to half of the member companies can be dealt with in one place, in a concentrated way.

Contact: Judit Szivós, Marketing manager

phone: +36 46 516-482; fax: +36 46 516-451;



Enterprise development award

Winner: Gothia Science Park Enterprise and Community Building Sector, Municipality of Skövde, Sweden

Runner up: Home support programme for entrepreneurs (PAED) Dept. of Industry, Trade & Tourism of the Aragón Regional Government, Zaragoza, Spain

Runner up: Soho Solo: Gers Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Gers, France

Science Park provides fertile setting for growth of innovative businesses

The Enterprise and Community Building Sector of Skövde (NSE) is the driving force behind the Gothia Science Park (GSP). This is an important element in diversification in a region heavily dependent on just two large automotive engineering plants. The goal was to attract companies developing IT services and products and create employment for graduates from the University of Skövde.

To support business development in the region the project introduced three activities. The GSP Inkubator ensures that newly formed enterprises establish themselves on the market as quickly as possible. The GSP Teknikpark offers a creative environment close to researchers, students and other enterprises, making it the perfect setting for businesses to grow. The GSP Projektarena is a meeting place for researchers, companies and the community, and provides support for developing new projects.

This innovative environment has resulted in considerable success, particularly in computer gaming. It now consists of 50 businesses and 300 employees.

Contact: Kristin Eklöf, Enterprise and community building manager

phone: +46 500 44 89 05;



Investment in skills award

Winner: Knowledge, skills, support – from entrepreneur to entrepreneur The Women’s Enterprise Agency, Helsinki, Finland

Runner up: Unternehmergymnasium Bayern Entrepreneurial Grammar School Bavaria (UG Bavaria), Pfarrkirchen, Germany

Special mention: Commune of Bieliny – Our Power Spot Bieliny, Poland

Entrepreneur-to-entrepreneur support levels the playing field for women

Since 1996, the Women’s Enterprise Agency in Helsinki has encouraged and supported women to become entrepreneurs. The agency recognised the threshold to become an entrepreneur is higher for women than for men. Adopting the ‘one entrepreneur supporting another’ operational model, the project has given expert mentoring to rising small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

Cost-free advice has been provided for more than 400 women. Some 250 women planning to start a company participated in 16 ‘introduction to entrepreneurship’ information events; nearly 200 participated in 15 practical information sessions; and 60 took part in four three-month courses on entrepreneurship. The project has also had success with group mentoring, particularly to migrant workers and to those preparing for the Further Qualification for Entrepreneurs exam.

In addition, the agency has worked in co-operation with groups in several other countries – including Lithuania, Latvia and Mozambique.

Contact: Ritva Nyberg, Managing director

phone: +358 400 489 064; fax: +358 9 5422 4455;



Responsible and inclusive entrepreneurship award

Winner: Getting people into work The Waldkirch Employment and Qualification Company (WABE), Waldkirch, Germany

Runner up: Pottery Village, the Nidzica Development Foundation (NIDA) Nidzica, Poland

Achieving real success in the fight against unemployment

Founded in 2004, WABE is a non-profit public-private partnership fighting unemployment in Waldkirch in Baden-Württemberg in south-west Germany. It employs 50 people; 40 of whom were previously unemployed, but benefited from success in the organisation’s training programmes.

WABE is a local network of citizens, private enterprises and government authorities helping integrate the unemployed with special placement problems. A holistic approach of practical training, socio-pedagogical coaching and temporary placements has integrated 300 unemployed people in local businesses. At any time, some 165 unemployed persons are being trained.

Participating companies have good experience with the well-tailored, custom-fit placement of motivated and qualified employees by WABE. By recruiting employees through the organisation, transaction costs in employee selection are kept low for the companies.

Contact: Martin Müller, Chief Executive Officer

phone: +49 7681 4042 33; fax: +49 7681 4042 94;