The SME instrument is targeting “Highly innovative SMEs with a clear commercial ambition and a potential for high growth and internationalisation”. The key question that arises from this statement is: is there any common pattern for these companies?


This is the objective of this report based on an in-depth analysis of more than 50 real SME instrument phase 2 winning proposals in the first four years of the instrument implementation (2014-2017).

For this analysis, the project has collected information on SME covering the 5 key dimensions that determine the international scalability potential of a SME: Company current status, company value proposition, market knowledge, business scalability and business model.


The report presents the main findings identified for this kind of companies along three basic dimensions:


•             What type of business fits best within the SME instrument?

•             What type of target market fits best within the SME instrument?

•             What type of teams fits best within the SME instrument?


The patterns identified across these three themes do not guarantee a 100% successful application, but it really gives real clues to intermediaries aiming to support companies within this instrument to define which companies to focus and/or help companies to develop in the right direction to become the real target of this instrument.

The report is available here.