D3.1 Report on functional elements in analysed methodologies of segmenting SMEs

This report discusses approaches to segmenting enterprises for the purpose of innovation support by different institutions. In particular, the document studies existing policies in the SMEthod’s case study countries, that is, Finland, Poland, Spain and the UK, in order to identify functional solutions.

Segmentation can be defined in two ways: 1) in the narrow sense it is very similar to typical market segmentation conducted by businesses, and 2) in the broad sense it is focused on singling out segments of companies based on some criteria. SMEthod adopts the second approach which is in line with the project’s main objectives.

Two interesting examples of segmentation were developed by Business Link and Collaborative for Frontier Finance. While the former seems to enhance only productivity and growth, the latter should be considered by SMEthod more deeply, since it refers directly to innovation-related matters.

Studies on SMEthod’s previous research allow to present a set of potentially functional aspects of innovation frameworks introduced in countries under investigation. Among others, the positive elements are: relative independence, not complicated structure, broad array of supporting measures, individualized multi-level system for supporting start-ups segmented along lifecycle, supporting technology transfers from science to business, importance of societal and regional criteria, relatively strong position of private actors in the innovation framework, networks of incubators and accelerators, regional policies on innovations, funding innovative activities at universities, segmentation by preferred sectors, cooperation between business and universities, tax credits for R&D and SMEs.

Download the full report (PDF) here.