The Single Market Programme (SMP) covers the single market, competitiveness of enterprises, including small and medium-sized enterprises, the area of plants, animals, food and feed, and European statistics.
The main objective for this call for proposals is to enable local, regional or national “Buy Social: B2B market” in the context of the proximity and SE (social economy) ecosystem by building partnerships (local, regional or national) and facilitating trade relationships between SE entities and mainstream businesses (B2B). The partnerships shall develop a series of actions to boost such as markets.
This call for proposals aims to support actions that enhance an information flow, mutual understanding and learning perspectives between ‘regular’ and SE enterprises, and promote local, regional or national partnerships engaging SE representatives and mainstream business representatives (such as federations, sector federations or similar supporting organisations) and public authorities to foster the creation of “buy social” B2B markets at local, regional, national or cross-border level.
Where needed, the partnerships will support the enhancement of “trade readiness”, meaning empowering SE entities to improve or adapt their capacities (e.g., skills, communication, certification, process, products) and enhance their purchasing attractiveness for mainstream business.
Besides strengthening the business capacity of SE entities, this call aims to develop facilitation, matchmaking, and communication, fostering “buy social” B2B practices in local, regional or national markets. The partnerships will need to create initiatives and actions to bring mainstream business and SE closer together. Market knowledge will be crucial as well as matchmaking functions.
The following types of activities (the list is non-exhaustive) can be implemented by consortia on local, regional, national or cross-border level:
− Provide branding of SE towards corporate buyers in specific local contexts. The branding should focus on raising the profile of concrete SE operating in the proximity and social economy ecosystem. The aim is to showcase and communicate the added value of engaging with SE actors.
− Setting up a centralised “buy social” (online) platform that makes it possible to make the offer of social enterprises known. This can be developed from very basic to very advanced functionalities. For example, mapping sectoral, product or service offer, partnerships such as for public procurement, or conducting market analysis.
− Provide matchmaking and facilitation services. The matchmaking between SEand regular businesses mostly occurs on local or regional level. Fostering a high degree of market knowledge, trends and the functioning of intermediary market is therefore essential in the partnerships.
− Dialogues between local mainstream businesses and SE entities to promote B2B cooperation. − Awareness raising towards mainstream business about the SE added value (e.g., events, showcases, networking, communication, PR support).
− Setup sector or activity specific events to pitch SE offer and exchange business needs (e.g., retail, agri-food packaging, catering, pharma, construction, cleaning, landscaping, maintenance, manufacturing).
− Support in obtaining various types of certifications and standards necessary to engage as supplier as well as various forms of verification services (e.g.,reliability, governance, products requirement).
− Capacity building and advisory (such as improving processes, product and service offer, financial and legal advice, communicating and branding, IT and digitalisation).
− Coaching and mentoring recruitment services, up-skilling, and reskilling of employees.
− Collaboration and experience sharing between more advanced and less advanced members of a consortium (e.g., transfer of knowledge from more experienced local communities, regions or countries to less experienced local communities, regions or countries).
In order to be eligible, the applicants (beneficiaries and affiliated entities) must:
Proposals must be submitted by a consortium of applicants (beneficiaries, not affiliated entities), which complies with the following conditions:
One applicant must be appointed as coordinator of the consortium.
The maximum budget per project is EUR 325 000. The expected number of projects to be funded is 4.
Projects should have a duration of 18 months, as from 1 May 2023 (extensions are possible, if duly justified and through an amendment).