SMEs’ access to public procurement supported under COSME

EU funding opportunities
In the framework of the EU programme for the Competitiveness of Enterprises and Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (COSME), the call “Improving SMEs’ access to public procurement” (COS-APP-2016-2-05) is now open for submissions.

 General description and objective of the call

Considering the importance of the public procurement market, improving SMEs’ access is an important objective of the European Commission. The general aim of this notice is to contribute to the improvement of SMEs’ participation in tenders, especially across borders, through actions of intermediate organisations.

Project proposals must cover several types of activities, such as:

  1. Exchange of information on procurement between Member States (tender alerts and guides on country specific elements on public procurement)
  2. Training and advisory services to SMEs (e.g. on the changes introduced by the new Directives, use of e-procurement systems, developing a proposal, etc.)
  3. Organising matchmaking events
  4. Coaching/mentoring on bidding in other Member States
  5. Organising business-to-procurers events
  6. Coaching/mentoring on joint bids
  7. Mentoring activities between large companies and SMEs, etc.

Applicants should explain how they will contribute to address the following indicators for the overall action:

  • Number of SMEs reached by these actions (at least 500 SMEs from 5 Member States)
  • Number of guides developed for the Member States specificities (at least 5)
  • Number of ‘meeting the procurers ‘events (at least 5 meetings organised)
  • Number of partner-matching actions (at least 10)

Eligibility criteria and total budget

Proposals must be submitted by consortia composed of minimum 3 legal entities from 3 Member States and countries participating in the COSME programme.

The entities should be organisations having a core activity in business support and/or the promotion of SME participation in public procurement, among which:

  • Chambers of commerce and industry or similar bodies;
  • Business support organisations, start-up centres and incubators;
  • Business associations and business support networks;
  • Public and private entities offering business support services;
  • Public authorities active in supporting SME participation in public procurement

The total budget available for this call is 800.000 euro; the average project size is 250.000 euro.

EASME expects to fund 4 proposals, with a co-financing rate of 75% of eligible costs.

The maximum duration of projects is 18 months.

The deadline for applications is 28 July 2016.

Submissions must be sent electronically via the dedicated section of the Participant Portal.

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