Friday, 7 June 2013

Search for Scotland’s Greenest Businesses Continues

In this post, we welcome Gillian Bruce, VIBES chair, who tells us more about the Vision in Business for the Environment of Scotland Awards and how green Scottish companies can get involved.

The race is on to find the country’s most environmentally-aware businesses as the Vision in Business for the Environment of Scotland Awards (VIBES) opens for the fourteenth year.

VIBES is Scotland’s leading Government-backed environmental awards scheme. It aims to recognise businesses that have improved environmental performance and its bottom line through incorporating best practice into the management of their operations; or through the production or supply of environmental products and services.

For more than a decade, the free-to-enter awards have produced winners from across Scotland, drawn from a range of sectors including: manufacturing; food and drink; transport; oil and gas; environmental services and leisure.

The aim of VIBES is to recognise businesses operating in Scotland that are trying to help make the country more environmentally aware and that are working towards Scotland’s 2020 carbon reduction targets.

There will be a total of ten awards this year, including two new categories: the Hydro Nation Award and the Circular Economy Award. Details of the award categories can be found at:

The deadline for this year’s entries is Friday, 5 July at 5pm.

VIBES is a strategic partnership between Energy Saving Trust, Green Business Partnership, Highlands and Islands Enterprise, Scottish Enterprise, Scottish Environment Protection Agency, Scottish Government, Scottish Water and Zero Waste Scotland.

For more information or to obtain an application form for the VIBES Awards visit

Join the converstation:

Twitter: @VibesAwards #VIBEScot

Wednesday, 22 May 2013

Find the right matches for your business to grow

The Enterprise Europe Network Scotland is hosting a Matchmaking Event at Scotland's Technology Show - where thousands of technology professionals will gather for business inspiration, networking and learning. 

Don't miss the opportunity to find the right matches for your business to grow - at the Scotland's Technology Show!

The Matchmaking Zone brings together organisations seeking to collaborate and is an ideal way to source new suppliers, new technology or research partners and new customers by allowing companies to meet and screen potential partners in short 20 minute sessions.

The Matchmaking Zone brings together organisations seeking to collaborate and is an ideal way to source new suppliers, new technology or research partners and new customers by allowing companies to meet and screen potential partners in short 20 minute sessions.

Industry innovators and technology professionals from a broad range of sectors will be at the SECC in Glasgow on 11 June 2013 for Scotland’s Technology Show (STS13).

As well as keynote speakers, there will be cutting edge technologies from companies such as pureVLC, SELEX ES and Holoxica, which recently demonstrated its 3D holographic software on Channel 5’s, Gadget Show. Other demonstrations include Mode Diagnostics and Touch Bionics, whose i-limb software allows users to control their prosthetic with their phone.

You have the unique opportunity to make valuable connections for your business!

Following last year's success, Enterprise Europe Network Scotland will again host the Matchmaking Zone at Scotland's Technology Show 2013. Last year 365 meetings took place on the day.

Participation is FREE and will provide you with the opportunity to feature your company profile on the Matchmaking website. However, you must register for Scotland's Technology Show in order to take part.

Register now and don't miss this opportunity to make valuable connections for your business.

For more information or help registering contact the EEN Scotland team.

Wednesday, 27 March 2013

Just a thought

I was working in Scottish Enterprise's Dundee office yesterday. Sitting in a different
location with a stunning view of the Tay was a great way to break up the working week and shake up my routine.

On my borrowed desk for the day I found this list:

Five Global Consumer Megatrends

1) The Inmates Have Taken Over the Asylum
How have you given your customers more control over your brand?

2) Know Your Sausage
What's the most potentially dangerous ingredient in your sausage?

3) Send Lawyers, Guns and Money
Who will be the public face of your business if there's a crisis?

4) Strange Bedfellows
Say hi to the person sitting next to you. Discuss what opportunities you have for collaboration.

5) All Hands on Deck
What's the problem? How can you make your customers part of the solution?

At first glance I just thought it was just a funny list. But the more I considered it, I realised it's great advice for all organisations regardless of size or sector. 

So, that's my thought for the week. Despite, or maybe because of, the amusing titles I think it's powerful stuff.

My question for you is: what would you add to this list? 

Note: I'm not sure where this list originates so I'm unable to properly give credit. If anyone knows please let me know:

Monday, 4 March 2013

March blows in

March gets off to a windy start with a funding opportunity in the offshore wind sector. But be quick the deadline is just around the corner!

Offshore wind funding call
The large-scale development of offshore wind represents one of the biggest opportunities for sustained economic growth in Scotland for a generation. 

Scottish Enterprise and Highlands and Islands Enterprise have launched a research and development funding call to support project ideas with the potential to reduce the cost of producing energy from offshore wind.

Under this call Scottish Enterprise and Highlands and Islands Enterprise are primarily looking to support project ideas that develop novel offshore operation and maintenance approaches including:
  • higher wind speeds, and minimising the corrosive effect of saltwater which makes structural and component failure more common offshore, especially where off-the-shelf components designed for onshore applications are transferred offshore
  • the most frequent outages are due to sensor, wiring and control system faults
  • gearboxes, generators and blades are the source of highest unplanned maintenance costs
Whilst these ideas form the core of near term priorities, they also welcome any project idea that meets the objectives and addresses wider industry challenges.  

Who can apply?
Assistance is available to businesses of all sizes located within the Scotland and those planning to establish a base here.  

How to apply 
Interested companies should express interest by completing the online form.

The closing date for expressions of interest under this call is Friday, 29 March 2013.

More information
Please visit the Scottish Enterprise website for full details or call 0845 607 8787 or with any questions.

Interested in business partnering opportunities in Renewable Energy? Join us on 18-19 March for a Business Partnering Event at the Scottish Renewables Annual Conference.

Electrifying partner opportunities at Scottish Renewables Annual Conference

The Enterprise Europe Network Scotland is hosting a Business Partnering Event at the Scottish Renewables’ Annual Conference – an industry event focused on the development of renewable energy in Scotland.

We’re bringing together companies from across the sector looking for collaborative partners on 18-19 March 2013 at the EICC in Edinburgh.

What’s the opportunity?
The Scottish Renewables Annual Conference is a two day event exploring the “Big Issues” for the industry and introduces four conferences under one roof: Electricity Market Reform, Grid, Planning and Skills. With some 600+ participants across two days, the event will offer various networking and meeting opportunities including an exhibition area, quick-fire showcase sessions and drinks reception.

With so many people across all sectors in the industry coming to the Conference, there is a wealth of experience for you to access.

Business Partnering aims to link participants through 20 minute pre-scheduled meetings to exchange information and experience on topics of interest across the Scottish supply chain.

Please visit the Business Partnering website to register and book your meetings.

How does it work?
The Enterprise Europe Network has a track record for organising Business Partnering at Europe’s largest conferences and trade fairs: 
  • You register, outlining your organisation's key areas of expertise and the types of business contacts you'd like to meet.
  • Your profile is published in our online catalogue, giving you increased visibility.
  • You select other organisations you would like to meet, and can accept/decline meeting invitations from others.
  • We pre-arrange meetings for you in advance of the event, so you have a schedule.
  • At the event, you meet and share views with others, present, discuss and develop new projects.
  • After the event, we are on hand to help you follow up contacts.
You must register for the Scottish Renewables Annual Conference to take part and there is no additional fee for the Business Partnering.

Working in the offshore wind industry? A funding call has been launched around research and development to support project ideas with the potential to reduce the cost of producing energy from offshore wind. 

Friday, 11 January 2013

Help Grow and Innovate via Innovation Vouchers

Anis Mourad
The EEN in Scotland is very lucky to be working with some truly innovative companies, delivering free support to Scottish organisations looking to connect and grow in Europe and beyond. However, sometimes a little bit of funding to allow businesses additional access to expertise does come in rather handy so I'm delighted to recommend the Technology Strategy Board's Innovation Voucher Scheme!

The ultimate aim is to allow the business to gain new knowledge to help it innovate, develop and grow so the type of assistance 
really does vary depending on company need. It could include advice on an innovative idea, learning more about using design within a business or the management and use of intellectual property.
  • The business should be a start-up, micro, small or medium-sized business located in the UK
  • This should be the first time that the SME has worked with the chosen knowledge supplier
  • The idea requiring support should be a challenge that really needs specialist help
  • The business idea should be applicable to one of the priority themes
  • The business should not have not had an Innovation Voucher from the Technology Strategy Board before.

Essentially, an Innovation Voucher provides funding so that a business can work with an external expert for the first time. These experts include the likes of universities, further education colleges, research & technology organisations, technical consultancies and Catapult centres, design advisers and intellectual property advisers.

With all funding, there is of course a set of criteria! Don't be too alarmed though! Like a Christmas trifle, it's easily digestible!

Before I forget... the priority areas! These are: Agrifood, Built Environment, Energy, Water & Waste, Space and Open Data & Inventors.

Vouchers are allocated following a draw from all applications, and if successful, businesses will be awarded up to £5,000 to work with an expert!

If you feel that your business could benefit from the Innovation Voucher scheme, you can find more info and details on application processes etc on the following website:

To get in touch with myself at the EEN in Scotland, you can drop me an email on

Wednesday, 5 December 2012

5 reason to come to the Life Science Partnering Event

On 7 February 2013 we’re holding our annual Life Sciences Scotland Partnering Event in the Caledonian Waldorf Astoria Hotel, Edinburgh. It’s a fantastic event that we've run for several years now with some great successes.

In fact, it’s such a good event it doesn't even need a catchy strap line. (The best ones Argon anyway.) But here’s five reasons why I think you should join us.

1) Meet potential partners
We’re bringing together innovative biotech, medtech, pharma, e-health and service providers looking for collaborative partners.

If want to out-license technology, are interested in new R&D or technical co-operations or maybe looking to source new products, services or suppliers then this event is for you!

2) Innovative format
Often described as “speed dating”, our partnering events allow you to book pre-arranged meetings based on a profile submitted to the event’s website. This gives you the opportunity to meet potential customers, suppliers or partners face-to-face to explore business opportunities through targeted 20 minute meetings.

3) Keep up to date
The focus of the day is the Partnering Event, of course, but we have a full agenda that includes:
  • Life Science Funding Den
  • Open Forum led by the Scottish Enterprise Life Science team
  • Update on Horizon 2020 and Eurostars
  • Plus the opportunity for debate, collaboration and innovation with partners from across Scotland, UK and Europe. 
4) Timed with Scottish Enterprise Life Sciences Awards & Dinner
This was intentional! So, if you’re going to be in Edinburgh for the Life Sciences Awards & Dinner you may as well make the most of the day and join us for the partnering event, too.

5) It’s FREE and easy to register
All organisations in the Life Sciences sector are eligible to attend this event. Visit the website and create your partneringprofile.

We look forward to seeing you on 7 February but if you need any assistance registering or preparing for the event please contact the team: