PROfessional Framework for Innovation in Tourism | 2 Mers Seas Zeeën

PROFIT

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PROfessional Framework for Innovation in Tourism

Priority Axis

Technological and Social Innovation

Specific objective

Framework Conditions for Innovation

Lead partner

Westtoer APB

Contact

Start Date

01/10/2016

End Date

31/03/2020

Project budget

2 915 773

ERDF amount

1 749 464

ERDF rate

60%

    About

    Common challenge

    In the EU’s Blue Growth Strategy, the coastal and maritime tourism sector is identified as an area with special potential to foster a smart, sustainable and inclusive Europe. The fragmentation of the sector (tourism industry is an industry dominated by SMEs), the lack of innovation and diversification, the increased worldwide competition and the volatility of demand and seasonality are factors that prevent that this potential is exploited. To fully capture the potential benefits generated by tourism, the framework conditions for innovation, to be delivered by tourism SMEs, need to be improved.

    Main Achievements

    PROFIT focused on stimulating new investments in coastal tourism SMEs across the 2seas region by helping to create new products and services.

    2019 was characterised by an ambitious SME focused innovation programme that identified a number of specific challenges including “Product Development”, “Digital Marketing”, “Business Management” & “Collaboration”. It involved over 647 SME representatives participating in 35 Master Classes from which 164 tourism SMEs were able to benefit from customised 1-2-1 coaching, 95 bespoke innovation plans with support of 119 experts. 44 supporting experts shared their findings at a cross-border think tank with participation from all regions.

    The innovation plan journey involved inspiration. This took the form of 2 inspiration visits in 2019 that benefitted rapid knowledge acquisition, sharing costs and developed a first-class programme that showed how increased collaboration between SMEs can be a powerful driver for change in the tourism sector.

    The digital innovation platform hosts content from all 5 regions. The platform received 23,500-page views, 3,100 registered users and 5,480 separate visits.

    PROFIT issued 53 newsletters, hosted 10 networking events hosted involving 721 SMEs to interest others in the process. 5 videos were produced, one of which underlined succinctly the benefits of being involved in an innovation project for tourism SMEs.

    PROFIT has been a great example of the power of collaboration, highlighting that great things can be achieved by working together on a cross border level. SME engagement grew during the project as a result and will improve the way we work with our SMEs in the future. We set out 3 years ago with some ambitious targets that we have achieved and in addition we have made a real impact on the innovation and growth capacity of both those SMEs that participated and our own organisations.

    Partnership

    Partners

    Visit Kent Limited

    Essex County Council

    ADRT Pas-de-Calais Tourisme

    Organisation internationale du tourisme social (OITS)

    Chambre de Commerce et d'Industrie Côte d'Opale

    HZ University of Applied Sciences

    N.V. Economische Impuls Zeeland

    Outputs

    Theme
    Type
    Target
    URL / Download
    30/09/2019

    Approach for training and coaching businesses

    Theme: Innovation - Tourism
    Type: Method/tool
    Target: Business support centres and agencies - Regional development agencies, Chamber of Commerce - SMEs /enterprises
    30/09/2019

    Strategy with action plan to stimulate innovation in SMES

    Theme: Innovation - Tourism
    Type: Strategy/action plan
    Target: Business support centres and agencies - Local, regional and national authorities - Regional development agencies, Chamber of Commerce
    30/09/2019

    Cross-border innovation network for SMEs

    Theme: Innovation - Tourism
    Type: Network
    Target: Business support centres and agencies - Local, regional and national authorities - SMEs /enterprises
    31/12/2017

    Digital interactive data-analysis platform consultable by SMEs through personalised dashboards

    Theme: Innovation - Tourism
    Type: e-Infrastructure
    Target: Local, regional and national authorities - Organisations representing SMEs - SMEs /enterprises
    30/09/2018

    Sustainable Innovation methodology (service design) for SMEs in the visitor economy

    Theme: Innovation - Tourism
    Type: Method/tool
    Target: Business support centres and agencies - Regional development agencies, Chamber of Commerce - SMEs /enterprises
    30/09/2017

    A digital Innovation Toolkit with practical advice and inspiration for SMEs

    Theme: Innovation - Tourism
    Type: Method/tool
    Target: Cluster organisations - Organisations representing SMEs - SMEs /enterprises