Subsidy no.1: WWCom – companies in the North of the Netherlands
This subsidy is aimed at companies who have no more than 10% of their turnover coming from business across the border, but who want to step up their exporting activities. Sending in an application is easy: get your customer to fill in one A4 to apply for funds for having their website or export brochures translated. Then go an extra mile and point out to your customer that this subsidy can be used for taking part in trade fairs abroad and for international business trips. Just a couple of buts: only one single application allowed, so the customer needs to include all of his plans. If approved, 40% of the total amount invoiced will be paid out. This subsidy is only for exporting to one country, but translating to multiple languages is allowed.
Here’s what the Dagblad van het Noorden wrote on 04-05-2004:
“The export project WWCom from the northern Chambers of Commerce has resulted in an extra turnover of in excess of € 163 million in three years, creating almost six hundred new jobs. Our northern companies have done especially well by gaining a firm footing in Scandinavia.
These are the conclusions from the latest WWCom2 figures – a follow-up from the export stimulating project “World Wide Commerce”. This programme was started in January 2001 because export from the North of the Netherlands used to be minimal in comparison to regions with more industry.
WWCom is intent on helping small and medium sized companies to promote their products across the border.
Over the last four years, a total of 885 companies have participated in WWCom activities. These can be divided into four categories: market orientation trips (twelve countries visited), support with foreign trade fairs, help with internationalising websites and lastly, network meetings.
Thirty times as much
Notably, business trade trips and trade fairs bring in a lot of extra commerce. The high scores in Scandinavia back this up. According to Export Advisor Ed Slagt from the Drenthe Chamber of Commerce, efforts in Denmark, Finland and especially Sweden have brought in more business than from Germany, traditionally the trade partner for (North) Netherlands business.
According to Slagt, the extra €163 million support the WWCom has awarded its participants, amounts to about thirty times as much as the northern provinces have put in via the Samenwerkingsverband Noord Nederland (SNN). This result would seem to justify the expansion of WWCom to the rest of the Netherlands. Slagt goes on to say, “Considering that 8.4% of all companies registered at the Chamber of Commerce is from the North, gives an idea of the potential national results”.
More info on www.wwcom.nl and on www.capital-translations.com (still working on the English pages, but info on Dutch pages is complete)
Subsidy no.2 : PSB (for companies in the rest of the Netherlands)
More on this later.