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Innovation, Opportunity, Training and Advice Programme (iOTA)
End date: May 30, 2015 PROJECT  FINISHED 

The aim of the Partnership is to implement a Regional Cross Border Innovation Strategy to meet the different needs and capacities of individuals and SMEs in the region to encourage and support their progression along an innovation spectrum.This strategy comprises a series of structured and inter-connected initiatives and activities to deliver 2 distinct innovation Strands namely:Strand A Innovation Awareness Raising and Pre-Incubation SupportStrand B Innovation Awareness Raising and Support to Existing SMEsThe aim of the iOTA Programme is to have implemented by May 2015 a Regional Cross Border Innovation Strategy which will target 360 SMEs, micro-enterprises and individuals to enhance their innovative capacity and thus contribute to the competitiveness of the East Border Region.Its goal will be to positively impact on those individuals, SMEs and micro-enterprises by a combination of appropriate assistance under the East Border Region iOTA Programme (estimated at 286 cases, made up of 110 new businesses assisted to come into existence under Strand A and 176 existing businesses assisted to overcome defined innovation challenges under Strand B). A further 74 businesses will be referred to Enterprise Ireland, Invest NI, InterTradeIreland or other suitable support programmes. Achievements: Out of 350 businesses assisted 72 developed new products, 49 entered new markets, 58 participants created a new business, 29 new jobs were created and 177 jobs sustained. With results like these it is evident that the positive effects of the Iota Programme will be felt throughout the region for many years to come.
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