Creative companies will receive an additional one million euros from the EU Structural Funds to support the implementation of their development plans. The changes related to the use of the additional support have now been enacted in the measure regulating creative economy development.
“We will be able to support ambitious creative entrepreneurs in working out and implementing innovative solutions, as well as developing products, services, technologies and processes as well as personnel. The support can also be used to create new market opportunities and to modernise business models,” explained Anu-Maaja Pallok, Adviser for Creative Industries at the Ministry of Culture. “This business support is not entirely new – a measure of Enterprise Estonia's enterprise development programme has been used as an example, and it has been adjusted to address the specifics of the creative economy sector,” Pallok added.
The support is targeted at ambitious small and medium-sized creative enterprises. The prerequisite for filing an application is the existence of a development plan that must include all the activities and goals that impact the company's overall development. This includes the company's own funds, bank loans or other sources of financing. “The company must have the will and capability to draw up a development plan so that the application can be submitted as soon as possible. The implementation of the activities will be limited by the fact that the budget period will conclude at the end of August 2023,” said Pallok. “If an entrepreneur is ambitious, but the preconditions are insufficient for the desired change to be achieved initially, Enterprise Estonia can come to the rescue. Help can be provided in order to find suitable grants and services from among the support measures, which will help to improve the company's capability in a particular field,” Pallok explained.
The company must have been in business for at least three years before submitting an application and its annual sales revenue must be at least €200,000, of which export sales revenues must total at least €20,000. In addition, the company must have at least two employees at the time the application is filed. Enterprise Estonia will announce the starting date for filing the applications at least 30 days in advance. Applications will be accepted on an ongoing basis and not organised into rounds. It is expected that applications for the new support will be start to be accepted as of mid-April, but in order to apply for support, preliminary counselling must be completed, which Enterprise Estonia will be starting earlier. There are also plans to organise an information day. For more information, see the Enterprise Estonia website: www.eas.ee.
The regulation is available in the State Gazette.
The measure for creative economy development is co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund. The implementing agency is the Ministry of Culture and the implementing unit is Enterprise Estonia.