Final meeting of INBETS+ project partners

Final meeting of INBETS+ project partners

22.12.2021

On 16 December 2021 all partners from nine countries involved in the project INBETS+, namely the Baltic Sea Academy e.V (Germany), the Latvian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Latvia), the Estonian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, ECCI, (Estonia), the St. Petersburg Foundation for SME (Russia), the Association of SMEs support centers of the Kaliningrad region (Russia), the Foundation Drivhuset Skaraborg, Stiftelsen Drivhuset (Sweden), the IBC International Business College (Denmark), the Gdańsk University of Technology, Politechnika Gdańska (Poland), the Vytautas Magnus University (Lithuania), the Vocational Academy Hamburg, Berufsakademie (Germany) and the Satakunta University of Applied Sciences (Finland) gathered for final online meeting to conclude what has been done to improve the business transfer in the Baltic Sea region.

While initial support for business transfers within BSOs is already available in Germany, Slovakia, Sweden and Finland, it is largely not available in Estonia, Poland, Lithuania, Latvia and Russia. Still, the number of retiring owners has dramatically increased over the last decade, thus making the need for business transfer support within BSOs more urgent than ever before. BSOs and respective training facilities must therefore be able to fulfil tasks, such as supporting SME business transfers, training their own staff to become transfer coaches, continuing to stay up to date with current developments and implementation of transfer models and tools, and enabling future entrepreneurs and successors to gain the required qualifications.

According to the business survey conducted by St. Petersburg Foundation for SME (Russia) it was revealed that 70% of business owners are willing to keep business in the family and transfer it to future generations, only 30% of family companies stay on the market after transfer to the second generation, only 7% of Russian companies have well-prepared and documented succession plan.

All the partners presented their actions in concrete promotion and consultations of SME business transfers in their regions during the project period.

The project has been listed as a good practice project by the European Commission in 2021. The overall objective of the project is to promote business transfers of SMEs to the next generation. To this end, many companies around the Baltic Sea region were already advised during the project, potential successor entrepreneurs qualified and prepared for a company takeover, coaches trained, and tools created to support the transfer process. All documents and tools are available free of charge at www.inbets.eu.

One more important aim of the project was to ensure a high level of sustainability in order to secure the continuation of the work after project end. For this reason, Memorandum of Understanding were signed by the project partners and other business support organization took part in the project where it was declared by the involved organizations that they support for the project's objectives and are willing to promote the topic of business transfers as far as possible within our scope of operation and region.
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