Project summary

What is TRINNO?

TRINNO brings together 5 pro-active regions (4 learning /1 Advisory) to address a common challenge. In areas suffering from effects of the economic crisis, traditional industrial models cannot compete. Partners note the need for a dynamic business support system, helping enterprises and aspiring entrepreneurs to apply benefits of digital innovation (digital manufacturing, Internet of things, big data, etc) to traditional sectors.

The overall objective is to promote competitiveness in EU regions through improving policy instruments for business support systems that focus on applying digital innovation in the local economy.

Policy Change

Changes are expected to policy instruments (ERDF ROP, measures for SME competitiveness) and, in turn, to local business support systems. Partners exchange Good Practices (GP) to improve projects financed by the policies and provide input to possible management improvements.

Interregional Learning Approach

They achieve this with an interregional learning approach starting from 2 GP (Barcelona business support ecosystem / Tuscan measures to promote innovation in traditional manufacturing) and integrating them with experiences from other partners. Using workshops, visits, staff exchanges and communication, partners develop Action Plans that result in;

  • Improved policy instruments, focused on business support ecosystems merging the traditional economy with innovative models/tools;
  • Better targeted funding for business support;
  • Increased capacity among partner staff and political/technical stakeholders;
  • Consolidated partnerships of technical / policy stakeholders, maintained as part of the business ecosystem.

Who will benefit?

Policy makers, business support providers and end beneficiaries (enterprises/aspiring entrepreneurs) will benefit. TRINNO lays the foundations for a system to support local economies by taking advantage of digital innovation. A new generation of highly trained business support actors will be able to support a new generation of innovative workers in traditional sectors.

Addressing the appropriate support for SMEs in traditional sectors to innovate digitally!


from 1 Apr 2016
to 31 Mar 2021

SME competitiveness

What policy instruments does the project address?


The objective of Priority 3 of the BMW Regional OP is to foster and grow a cohort of entrepreneurs in the BMW region with the skills and resources to accelerate the start-up and expansion of their enterprises. This should increase employment in supported entities.

The priority is being delivered through the Local Enterprise Offices, housed within each of the Local Authorities in the Region and in collaboration with other enterprise agencies.

One of the key challenges being addressed is to promote the uptake of digital opportunities by traditional firms especially in predominantly rural regions. International studies show that SMEs with a strong web presence grow more quickly, export more and create more jobs those who have a minimal web presence.

In parallel, the National Digital Strategy seeks to ensure Ireland's transition to a more digitally engaged economy and society. To promote greater levels of take-up of high speed broadband, and to complement the investment under the National Broadband Plan (Priority 2 of the BMW Regional OP), the National Digital Strategy sets out a wide range of measures, including promotion of e-business and web-based trading opportunities for indigenous firms, including artisans and traditional manufacturing firms.

 This interregional project, TRINNO, provides an opportunity to greatly enhance the policy instrument in terms of funding for an ecosystem to engage artisan/traditional firms with the digital economy.

Which partners are working on this?
  • Innovation & Management Centre Limited / WestBIC
  • Northern and Western Regional Assembly (NWRA)


TRINNO addresses Regional OP 2014-2020, Axis 3 Promoting SME Competitiveness. The OP is directed towards EUROPE 2020 target for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth. It focuses on high quality production by incorporating high-tech contents of progress and knowledge into the regional economy. As well as SMEs, it supports research, technological development and innovation, access and use of ICT, low carbon economy, environmental protection and urban development.

TRINNO focuses on Axis 3, particularly the objective to support creation and growth of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) and the specific action 3.5.1 - Interventions to support the birth of new enterprises through direct incentives, by offering services  and microfinance. The OP stresses that, in relation to industrial enterprises, interventions to support new companies regard emerging and traditional sectors with potential markets. It links to the S3 and the emerging sectors in which Tuscany invests, including digital innovation. Funding proposed includes loans, guarantees, direct finding and micro-credit.

We believe this ambitious policy measure can be further improved by: linking different funding instruments / support services into an integrated business support eco-system, thus ensuring that MSMEs have  the support necessary to be launched and grow; supporting aspiring entrepreneurs /existing enterprises in the complex link  between the traditional Tuscan manufacturing system and emerging sectors.

Which partners are working on this?
  • Arezzo Innovation


The policy instrument supports regional competitiveness, economic growth and employment. It supports lagging regions, building on their social and economic potential. The two axis (1 and 5) that can be improved by TRINNO have SME competitiveness as a horizontal concept.

In Axis 1, applicants are local governments and organisations. Funding supports operation of the ELI Science Park. ELI is not only a physical infrastructure (other investment funds available for this), but the potential Business Ecosystem. Indicators to measure the Axis confirm this: no. enterprises settling in the area / no. receiving support. Axis 5. focuses on education and support of employees, with strong SME connection. The main issue is to understand and fulfil the needs of the actors in the economic sector and find/train the perfect employees. Projects are explitly connected to Axis 1 (focus on stakeholders related to this axis).

The whole operational programme has local and regional coverage. Csongrád County has dedicated sources of money, from the policy instrument, to implement its regional programme and SMEs in this area can receive (indirect) funding.

There is no tradition and no efficient institutional structure to help SME competitiveness in Hungary and in Csongrád County. This is a new task for this period and County Governments have limited experience. They can learn from more experienced partners and mobilise a regionally efficient group of stakeholders who really care about SMEs.

Which partners are working on this?
  • ELI-HU Research and Development Non-profit Ltd
  • County Government of Csongrad-Csanad


The Operational Programme is the main document for coordinated development in Slovenia, in accordance with EU guidelines and the country's needs.

Priority axis 2.3 is particularly relevant to TRINNO: Dynamic and competitive entrepreneurship for green economic growth. The main challenge Slovenia has in maintaining economic growth and competitiveness, is competence and capacity building of enterprises and their ability to respond to societal challenges.

Particularly relevant sub-sections are:

2.3.3: Promoting entrepreneurship, in particular by facilitating the economic exploitation of new ideas and fostering the creation of new enterprises, including business incubators (focus on creation of new undertakings, especially start-up and operation of new enterprises, is crucial for economic growth and jobs);

2.3.4: Developing and implementing new business models for SMEs, in particular for internationalisation (especially one action, aiming to increase SMEs’ international competitiveness - development of new and innovative tourism products and services, including cultural tourism, enhancing quality, and development of tourist destinations).

 There are several actions aimed towards creation of business ecosystem and support for SMEs, but limited emphasis is given to business support that links between tradition and innovation (upgrade and use of traditional knowledge and skills, in connection to handicrafts). They would be relevant to the needs of the region (see state of the art).

Which partners are working on this?
  • Development Centre of the Heart of Slovenia