This is a joint programme supported by three partner organisations:
•Scotland Food & Drink
•Irish Exporters Association
•Northern Ireland Food and Drink Association
The aim of this project is to provide a wide range of Food & drink SMEs with the skill-sets, professional marketing assistance and logistical support to successfully supply to the main markets in the UK and other major international markets.
Within the partners areas we will recruit SMEs from the Interreg IVA region, which encompasses the West coast of Scotland, Northern Ireland, and the border regions of the Republic of Ireland.
The key activities of the project will be:
•Creation of a series of six marketing clusters of SMEs focused on different UK and international markets. At the centre of each cluster will be a major distributor / wholesaler or retail multiple (known as Channel Partners) to enable the producers in the Region to reach consumers in these markets. The nominated geographical clusters are:
- North America
- London/SE England
We will recruit 15 SME’s for each of these six clusters, evenly distributed between the 3 partners.
• Within each cluster we will appoint a mentor to provide SME’s with local business expertise to successfully do business in that region.
• Provision of study tours to clusters to ensure SMEs have a good understanding of local market conditions.
• Create a logistical support system, improving ability of SMEs to competitively reach the major markets.
• Provision of a training tool kit to ensure that SMEs (within the cluster programme and without) have the basic management skills required to expand their businesses internationally. This tool kit will be made available to a wider group of 400 SMEs within the programme.
This scope of this brief is focused on the delivery of the last point above.
Project is largely funded by the EU and project funding runs until June 2015.