business support

Best Incubation Practices aimed at supporting Creative & Digital Businesses



This report from Cluster 2020 surveys eight creative sector focused incubation centres from Europe to the Middle East. It identifies the essential components of successful incubators factors as well as finds out what makes each one great. Underlying the report is the question:  Do incubators have to run different programmes and services to be effective for creative businesses?

In terms of facilities and equipmentincubators, as intermediate actors, should ease the access to Fab lab, broadband and other Information Technology (IT) facilities, as well as promote specialist skills training activities.

Regarding financing opportunities, the role of incubators should focus on key aspects such as exploring international financing opportunities, raising awareness before traditional lenders, negotiating with bank and financing institutions and providing assistance on the development of a strategic approach to effective value chains. 

In relation to partnerships and networkingsector SMEs would benefit from collaborative sessions between research centres, industry and entrepreneurs, and from the participation indifferent events aimed at fostering strong links and exploring new partnerships or product/services development. 

Concerning business knowledge, incubators are encouraged to support the sector SMEs in the development of effective business modeling, and to dynamize specific programmes aimed at helping sector SMEs reach an international scale. 

Finally, in regard to incubator’s internal management, incubator managers would benefit from the participation in international projects and networks related to Cultural and Digital Industries to gain a deeper understanding othe sector, and from fostering close relationships with sector entrepreneurs in order to contribute to the provision of a personalized approach.  Read the full report


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This project is financed under the Competitiveness and Innovation Framework Programme (CIP) which aims to encourage the competitiveness of European enterprises.