Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) are the backbone of Europe’s economy, representing 99% of all companies operating in the EU. SMEs represent the highest share of our exhibitors.
European exhibitions represent the most efficient and cost-effective marketing tool for SMEs. We help them build more business contacts in a limited period and at minimal cost. We provide a platform for their potential business partners and customers to experience their products and services.
European exhibitions enable SMEs to access new markets and generate growth outside the EU by offering them the internationally leading sector exhibitions at their doorstep where the most influential international buyers are keen to discover their products. Our industry also paves the way for SMEs to access growing markets worldwide by organising exhibitions abroad and taking European companies to these target regions.
By empowering SMEs to develop their activity both within and outside Europe, our industry represents an important asset for them to increase their internationalisation and access third markets.
While we welcome the European Union’s strategy aimed at helping SMEs expand their business outside the EU, we suggest to increase funding to also support exhibition organisers who provide the platforms where companies take their first steps into internationalisation.
Considering their expertise on the field, exhibition organisers should be included into the eligible proposers for all relevant programmes. Funding for targeted services like tailor made exhibition matchmaking and hosted buyers programmes would increase the positive effects for SMEs to expand their business.