The FINANCIAL — “KAPPA-Health” endeavours to assess and valorise the success of small and medium-sized biomedical companies (SMEs), which have received funds from the European Union Framework Programmes 6 and 7 (FP6 and FP7) for research and technological development.
KAPPA-Health means: “Key Performance Factor Assessment and Valorisation for Successful EU-FP Project Participation of Innovative SMEs in the area of Health research.”
In the European economy, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in biomedical sectors such as healthcare, biotechnology and medical technology are important contributors to competitiveness and growth. Despite the incredible potential of these SMEs to provide solutions for the cure of debilitating diseases and to improve citizens’ quality of life, public and private funding for biomedical research and design is declining – a trend that could jeopardize efforts to develop improved treatments against life-threatening illnesses.
The overall objective of the EU-funded project KAPPA-Health is to enhance the competitiveness of European research by contributing to the creation of the most favourable support environment to SMEs and to accelerate the process of bringing new products/processes/services to the market.
In particular, the project will evaluate what makes a biomedical SME successful in terms of its participation in an FP6/FP7 EU co-funded research project and how this joint research can lead to successful commercialisation of the results.
Through survey and in-depth interview of biomedical SMEs participating in FP6 “Life sciences, genomics and biotechnology for health” and FP7 “Health” theme, the KAPPA-Health project participants will identify the major performance factors by considering quantitative elements such as the number of out-licensing/new products on the market and taking into account longer term qualitative impacts in terms of sustainable growth of companies and establishment of winning business strategies.
A special focus will be put on the correlation between FP6/7 collaborations and attracting complementary funding investments e.g. financial services, venture capital and/or additional governmental funds. When performing the in-depth interviews, financial training/coaching will also be provided on how additional innovation capital can be acquired.
There is a need to access and have feedback from all SMEs that participate in FP6/FP7. As a first part of the study a special questionnaire has been developed. The answers to this questionnaire are very important and will contribute to the design of future EC funding initiatives and to increase the effectiveness of the support of the EC.
The identified success factors will be used as criteria to develop a methodology for the assessment and valorisation of project outcomes for SMEs. It will facilitate the evaluation of projects with more chance for success and help policy makers to define objectives and intermediate performance targets.
The KAPPA key success factors aim to become a “check-list” to take into account to better exploit the research resulting from EU Health research projects in the near future.