Call for Proposals: Procedure “Implementation of Innovations in Enterprises” 

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Application period: November 2, 2023 – January 31, 2024. 

Total budget: BGN 100 000 000 

The current procedure is in implementation of Priority 1: Innovation and Growth and Priority 2: Circular Economy under the program “Competitiveness and Innovation in Enterprises” 2021-2027.

The purpose of the procedure is to provide focused support to Bulgarian enterprises for the implementation of product innovations or innovations in business processes in the thematic areas of the Innovation Strategy for Smart Specialization 2021-2027.

Eligible candidates:

1) To be merchants within the meaning of the Commercial Law or the Law on Cooperatives or to be an equivalent entity within the meaning of the legislation of a member state of the European Economic Area.

2) To be registered no later than 31.12.2020.

3) To be micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) within the meaning of Art. 3 and Art. 4 of the Law on Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and Annex I “Definition of SMEs” to Commission Regulation (EU) No. 651/2014, or small companies with an average market capitalization (Small Mid-Caps).

4) To have realized net revenue from sales for the 2022 financial year depending on the category of the applicant enterprise, as follows:

  • for micro enterprises ≥ BGN 100 000.
  • for small enterprises ≥ BGN 300 000.
  • for medium-sized enterprises ≥ BGN 1 000 000.
  • for small companies with an average market capitalization ≥ BGN 2 000 000.

Eligible activities:

  • ELEMENT A “Investments” (mandatory):
  • Activity 1. Implementation of product innovation (good or service) or innovation in business processes by means of acquisition of machinery, and equipment representing long-term tangible assets.
  • Activity 2. Implementation of product innovation (goods or services) or innovation in business processes by means of acquisition of specialized software (including development), patents, licenses, know- how” etc., representing fixed intangible assets.

IMPORTANT: Project proposals may include only ONE or BOTH eligible activities under the mandatory Element A “Investments”.

  • ELEMENT B “Services” (optional):
  • Activity 1. Protection of industrial property rights on the implemented innovation.
  • Activity 2. Consulting and support services to support innovation.

2.1. Consulting services in support of innovation include activities for services performed by a legally competent industrial property representative related to the protection of industrial property at the national, European and/or international level, incl. studies (for “state of the art”, “novelty”, “inventive step” and “technical applicability”) related to the innovative products/processes implemented under the project.

IMPORTANT: Service activities under item 2.1) are admissible ONLY if they are related to the protection of one’s own industrial property rights for the innovation implemented under the project.

2.2. Auxiliary services to support innovation include:

— activities to provide access to databases and libraries to be used in connection with the improvement of the product (good or service) or business process implemented under the project.

— activities to provide services from laboratories for conducting research, measurements and tests.

Eligible expenses:

1 ) ELEMENT A “Investments” (mandatory):

  • Costs for the acquisition of tangible fixed assets – machines, facilities and equipment necessary for the implementation of the project.
  • Costs for the acquisition of long-term intangible assets – specialized software (including development), patents, licenses, know-how” etc., necessary for the implementation of the project.

IMPORTANT: The total eligible costs (aid plus own co-financing) for specialized software (regardless of one or more), including software licenses, must not exceed BGN 400 000.

IMPORTANT: For small companies with an average market capitalization, expenses for intangible assets are only allowed up to 50% of the total eligible expenses under Element A “Investments” under an applicable state aid regime – “regional investment aid”.

2) ELEMENT B “Services” (optional):

  • Costs for fees for application and registration of industrial property rights on the implemented innovation before the relevant competent department at the national, European and/or international level – up to BGN 10 000.
  • Costs for consulting and support services to support innovation

– Costs for consulting services in support of innovation include costs for external services (through an award contract, civil contracts, etc.) performed by a legally competent industrial property representative related to the protection of industrial property at national, European and/or international level, incl. studies (for “state of the art”, “novelty”, “inventive step” and “technical applicability”), for innovative products/processes implemented under the project – up to BGN 10 000.

– Costs for support services to support innovation include:

  1. a) costs for fees for access to databases and libraries to be used in connection with the improvement of the product (goods or service) or business process implemented under the project – up to BGN 30 000;
  2. b) costs for external services (through an award contract, etc.) related to the provision of services by laboratories for conducting research, measurements, tests, etc.

IMPORTANT: Costs for Element B “Services” should not exceed 25% of the total eligible project costs.

Amount of the grant:

  • minimum amount of BFP: BGN 50,000 .
  • maximum amount of BPF depending on the category of enterprise:
  • for micro and small enterprises – BGN 500,000.
  • for medium-sized enterprises and small companies with an average market capitalization – BGN 800,000.

In addition, the maximum amount of the requested grant for a single project proposal should NOT exceed:

  • for micro-enterprises : 100% of the average annual net sales revenue realized by the applicant for the three-year period 2020, 2021 and 2022.
  • for small businesses : 60% of the applicant’s average annual net sales revenue for the three-year period 2020, 2021 and 2022.
  • for medium-sized enterprises and small companies with an average market capitalization : 25% of the average annual net sales revenue realized by the applicant for the three-year period 2020, 2021 and 2022.

Funding percentage:

  • Maximum intensity of aid under the selected regime “regional investment aid” for activities outside the SSR (NUTS-2):
  • Micro and small enterprises – 50%
  • Medium enterprises and small companies with an average market capitalization – 45%
  • Maximum intensity of aid under the selected regime “regional investment aid” for activities in the SSR (NUTS-2):
  • micro and small enterprises – Sofia city (capital): 40%; Sofia region: 45%; Blagoevgrad District: 45%; Pernik District: 40%; Kyustendil Region: 45%
  • medium-sized enterprises – Sofia city (capital): 30%; Sofia region: 45%; Blagoevgrad District: 45%; Pernik District: 30%; Kyustendil Region: 35%
  • small companies with medium market capitalization – Sofia city (capital): 20%; Sofia Region: 45%, Blagoevgrad Region: 45%; Pernik District: 20%; and Kyustendil Region: 25%.
  • The maximum intensity (percentage) of the grant funding under the selected “minimum aid” mode (de minimis):
  • Micro, small, medium enterprises and small companies with an average market capitalization – 50%
  • The maximum intensity (percentage) of grant funding under the selected mode “innovation aid for SMEs” :
  • Micro, small and medium enterprises – 50%.

Duration of projects: up to 15 (fifteen) months, counted from the date of entry into force of the administrative contract for the provision of grant-in-aid.

For advice on eligibility, required documents and assistance in applying under this procedure, contact our team of professionals through our contact form: www.tetra-solutions.eu/en/contact or by phone +359 898 573 914.

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