A new micro-project is set to help health and life sciences SMEs in the UK and France access business opportunities on the other side of the Channel.
The ‘IMPULS’ project, led by South East Health Technologies Alliance (SEHTA) and funded by the Interreg France (Channel) England programme, will provide small firms with networking opportunities and bespoke training on how to enter a new market.
SMEs face several obstacles to exporting such as how to access international contacts, knowledge of how to adapt products for international markets and capacity building. The challenge to export overseas has only heightened during the pandemic.
The project will offer a series of free virtual information and training webinars to help firms better make use of digital technologies for exporting, understand the evolving needs of the healthcare sector in Northern France and South East England and develop expertise in pitching their business online.
The project will also help companies to showcase their products and services internationally during online business matchmaking sessions and through participating in virtual international Life Science trade shows and industry events.
Neil Roberts, COO, SEHTA says “Health & Life Sciences is an important and growing industry sector in the South East and many local businesses have the potential to do well in export markets. This exciting new project will help some of most innovative local companies to find new business opportunities overseas and make new international connections at a time when businesses are looking for ways to recover from an incredibly challenging year”.
Carolyn Reid, Programme Manager, Interreg France (Channel) England programme, said: “This is a timely project that will support economic recovery in the programme area, helping SMEs to overcome a number of barriers to cross-channel trade. Through funding this project, IMPULS will be able to support more SMEs in the region to realise their export potential, increase their innovation capacity and make lasting business connections across the Channel.”
The project has secured €499,454 of EU Interreg France (Channel) England Programme Funding of which €399.563 has been co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund.
Project partners include SEHTA, Kent County Council and French Health & Life Science clusters Eurasanté and Biotech Santé Bretagne.
Please note that there is no direct financial support available to SMEs for this project but a detailed package of network support will be provided as part of this project.