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Commentary – David Moule and Graham Coultas on ‘the future of global innovation support’

In March 2018, our Enterprise Europe Network (EEN) team attended the EEN Network partner’s conference in Edinburgh, where our CEO, David Moule, was part of the strategic panel discussion looking at “The future of global innovation support”. Here is what David had to say:

We start with our clients. A lot of businesses are confident and see the opportunities out there. They are able to get on and make decisions; however there will be hurdles in the road in front. We have to ensure we give businesses confidence in terms of what we “bring to the party”. We recognise that there is a huge amount of expertise within the EEN network; it is almost taken for granted, that we have so much expertise around innovation and how this is applied to supporting clients.

What surprises me constantly is the wider expertise and capabilities of partners in the network – whether that is finance investment, business angels, equity finance, working internationally as part of Department for International Trade (DIT) and other key parts of business support. We know what is happening out there even though it is a complex world. We must continue giving confidence to our clients and we shouldn’t lose sight of the core capability beyond EEN delivery.”

Our Innovation and Programmes Director, Graham Coultas, also provides his perspective on how the Network helps businesses make sense of the ever changing landscape:

“We start with gaining a good understanding of the business’s needs, both in terms of clarifying their immediate needs and to determine how their needs might evolve in the future. We then look to provide them with the information they need, where they can find out more and try to explain the reasons and implications of any changes. I would like to think that it’s similar to watching the news. The newsreader says what has happened (e.g. interest rates have increased) and the expert correspondent explains the reasons for it, the implications and what is likely to happen moving forward. Helping our clients make sense of the ever changing landscape entails, giving them the facts in a way that they can easily understand, explaining the implications of any changes and finally giving them the tools to keep up to date – safe in the knowledge that if they need additional support we are on hand to support them further.”