Venice, December 3rd-4th 2009 – Valencia and Veneto delegations met together to discuss the“Financial Engineering ” and “Clusters Programme” good practices.
In order to deepen the good practices presented by the Veneto Region, a two days visit and several specific meetings were organised in Venice on December 3rd and 4th by the Veneto Region, in collaboration with Veneto Innovazione, in order to welcome a delegation coming from Valencia (represented by IMPIVA). The aim of the discussion was to deepen the contents of the two Venetian good practices in order for Valencia partners to analyse concretely how to organise the “import” process.
“The moment is good” said Ismael Abel Vallés, expert in Innovation and Entrepreneurship, as “the actual crisis and economic situation forces everyone to find out new solutions” and moreover “ the commitment of our policy makers is very high”. Valencia region is in fact planning, on one hand, to structure a fund to sustain innovative enterprises and, on the other, to assess the ongoing industrial clusters in order to select the new regional priorities.
Veneto and Valencia share similar economic systems: high number of micro companies, traditional manufacture sectors, low rate of investment in research, incremental innovation. This was also why the Veneto Region decided to structure a support system to facilitate the credit access (“financial engineering” programme) in particular to SMEs and to foster the investments in research and innovation. The financial aid in fact concerns only investment in industrial research, organisational innovation, cooperative research (also in collaboration with Universities and Innovation Centres) and technology transfer. The programme includes three synergic tools: revolving soft loans, guarantee system, venture capital fund. The “Financial Engineering” programme is an efficient system because “it is consistent in time as the financial resources are reinvested in the fund and then keep available for more companies” said Michele Pelloso, Director of the Industry Department at the Veneto Region, and “ the private and public partnership multiplies the effect, sharing at the same time the investment risk ”.
In this system an important role is also played by the Confidi, which, as pointed out by Marco Ronconi, in charge of the business area in Neafidi, “are private consortia, acting as intermediaries among the banks and the companies, giving advices, coaching entrepreneurs and providing the necessary guarantees”. Another way to overcome the dimensional barrier is also enhancing the cooperation among SMEs.
This is also the aim of the “Clusters programme” currently running in the Veneto Region. Pier Antonio Nicoletti, in charge of the District Office at the Veneto Region, introduced to the Spanish delegation the main features of the “District Act” as well as the annual calls to support the Venetian clusters.
Together with the positive aspects of the programme also the weaknesses were arisen and then discussed; in particular the issue of monitoring and assessing the clusters. The Valencia Region is tackling just in this period this topic and a methodology is on process. Maybe the next time will be the turn of the Veneto Region to import practices from Valencia!
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