SMEs are the backbone of the European economy. While a lot of emphasis both on the EU as well as the national and regional level is put on founding start-ups, a lot less attention is directed to business transfers that help to keep alive already established companies. This is despite the European Commission's emphasis that “it is just as important to support transfers as start-ups because they are equally important to the EU economy.”
The challenge of business transfer failures has been on the EU agenda since the early 90s. Many viable companies close due to hindering regulations or because of the insufficient attention dedicated to the business transfer process. There are both challenges on the overall policy and regulatory framework level as well as various struggles on the company level.
In order to achieve more successful business transfers, the complexities of the process should be taken into account, awareness needs to be raised and advisory, as well as matchmaking services, should be established and developed further. This policy brief contributes to the ongoing discussion by focusing on some of the business transfer challenges and by presenting good practices from Interreg Europe partner regions as potential solutions.