What We Do

SMEs and Intermediary Organisations

 

 

Innovation illustration

The Vanguard Initiative offers a platform for businesses, clusters and knowledge institutes to meet and join forces in finding new innovative solutions.
Together, we aim to increase the competitiveness of companies and scale-up regional businesses in Europe-wide value-chains.
The Vanguard Initiative’s Pilot Projects offer unique possibilities for businesses, clusters, and knowledge centres to connect with like-minded partners across European regions that share a joint goal; to strengthen industrial innovation in Europe. The benefits of interregional partnerships, established through the Pilot Projects, include exploiting complementarities, project development at the demonstration and piloting stage towards upgrading and business exploitation (beyond TRL 5), opening and sharing specialised infrastructure, access to a larger community of end-users, pooling good practices as well as jointly addressing non-technological issues, etc.
The participating stakeholders in the Pilot Projects get access to exclusive networks of pilot plants, demo-sites, and partners, working together to accelerate the market uptake of advanced technologies and methodologies in areas of strategic importance to Europe’s industry.

 

SME success stories

In these unprecedented times, SMEs across Europe are facing profound transformation processes in which the technological challenges are becoming ever greater and, at the same time, the need of embracing the twin (digital and green) transition needs to be tackled quickly and decisively. Therefore, a strong positioning on the national and international market is a crucial success factor for small and medium-sized enterprises. External support through cooperations can be an important factor, but these are rarely free or without strings attached.   

The Vanguard Initiative and its initiated SME Success Stories support program precisely tackles these challenges. Three Enterprises (AddCat B.V., Remembrane Srl. and Bond High-Performance 3D Technology) have been selected and supported by building cross-regional innovation practices. The program aimed to promote the participation of these companies in the activities of the Vanguard Initiative in order to foster interregional value chains and accelerate market adoption of their products and services.   

 The selected companies not only benefited from the strong network and experience of the Vanguard Initiative experts, but were also able to stimulate and expand interregional partnerships and collaborations in the Vanguard regions through an innovation voucher.   

Read more about our voucher winners in our dedicated news features.

 

AI Pilot - Startup BW Summit 2022

The AI Pilot Event 2022 will take place at the Startup BW Summit 2022 in Stuttgart on Friday, 30 September 2022 from 09:00 CEST. 

cup, podium, trophy
The evaluation results of the SME Success Stories are out!

The Vanguard Initiative SME Success Stories evaluation results are finally out and we are proud to announce the winners of this new Vanguard support scheme.

Science Meets Regions: Successful workshop in North East Romania

There were two days full of energy and enthusiasm, June 9-10, 2022, in which representatives of public authorities, hospital managers, doctors, university professors, and

Save the date: SME Success Stories Call Webinar

Vanguard Initiative and Steinbeis Europa Zentrum invite you to join the webinar planned on Thursday 23 June from 10:00 to 11:00 CEST.

VI at the Technology & Business Cooperation Days

The Technology & Business Cooperation Days in Hannover will allow Vanguard Initiative Pilots participants to showcase and promote their activities gaining visibility

The Vanguard Initiative is launching its first SME support Scheme!  

The SME Success Story Call to open on 3 June  The Vanguard Initiative is launching the SME Success Story Call on 3 June.

Annual Report 2021: ESM

The report is available here.

Action plan 2022: Artificial Intelligence

The document is available here.

Annual Report 2021: Bioeconomy

The report is available here.

Action plan 2022: ESM

The document is available here.

Action plan 2022: Nano

The document is available here.

Kick-off meeting of Hydrogen (H2) Pilot

Małopolska Region, Lombardy Region, and Slovenia are organising a kick-off meeting of Hydrogen (H2) Pilot which will be held in

renewable energy, environmentally friendly, concept
CONFERENCE: REGIONAL DECARBONISATION STRATEGIES AND ACCESS TO FINANCE

CONFERENCE: REGIONAL DECARBONISATION STRATEGIES AND ACCESS TO FINANCE

Virtual award ceremony AI-Champions BW 2022

Minister Dr. Nicole Hoffmeister-Kraut will be opening the award ceremony, and Ilka Groenewold will moderate the event. Two exciting keynotes will follow

Smart Health Pilot Info day

On Tuesday 28 June from 09:00 to 10:30 the Vanguard Initiative Smart Health Pilot is hosting an Info Day Webinar to provide an opportunity to EU regions interested in joining the

SME Success Stories Call Webinar

Vanguard Initiative and Steinbeis Europa Zentrum invite you to join the webinar planned on Thursday 23 June from 10:00 to 11:00 CEST.