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İzmir Network and Innovation Centre Project

The İzmir Network and Innovation Centre (İzmir NIC) Project is carried out under the Competitive Sectors Programme, financed within the framework of the financial cooperation of the European Union and the Republic of Turkey and implemented by the Ministry of Industry and Technology. The project, implemented with partners as İzmir Institute of Technology (İYTE) and the Software Industrialists Association (YASAD), is planned to be completed in 3 years with a budget of 3 million Euros.

The İzmir NIC project’s purpose is to enhance the commercialisation and internationalisation of innovative products, by fostering networks and strategic partnership among relevant stakeholders. Focusing on the renewable energy sector with information and communication technologies, which are among the pioneers of economic development, the project improves the capacity of ecosystem actors (SMEs, Start-ups, TTOs, TDZs, R&D Centres etc.) in İzmir, with training, consultancy and networking activities.

Project Structure

The Project is structured around three core and two cross-cutting activities. The core activities are:

Under this activity the project will conduct a Needs Assessment Analysis for two focus sectors, ICT and Renewable Energy. From this analysis, three Capacity Building programmes will be developed for:

  • İzmir NIC Staff
  • Other Interface Organisations (technoparks, TTOs, incubators etc)
  • Start-ups, SMEs and Entrepreneurs

A number of Sectoral Networking Events will be delivered under this activity to enable start-ups, SMEs and entrepreneurs to connect with organisations that can help their businesses to develop, such as corporates, investors and international groups.

The NIC Hub Digital Platform is a new tool designed to enable Teknopark İzmir to design, deliver and manage calls to various support programmes, such as acceleration and mentoring, both during the project and for sustainability after the project has finished. The platform will allow calls to be presented and promoted, applicants to respond to calls, evaluators to see applications and complete evaluation grids, etc. Communications between the NIC and applicants will take place through the platform.

This activity is the core of the Project. 50 innovative companies, in two cohorts, will be supported with a 16-week acceleration training programme and 24 hours of mentoring across 32 weeks. Furthermore, each company will receive an audit of their intellectual property needs, and around 7 will receive support with national patent applications. Additional services are available to some companies who have particular needs or show specific promise in certain areas. For example, 20 companies will enter the internationalisation programme, 30 companies will get support with investment and 20 companies will receive detailed marketing plans and marketing support.

The cross-cutting activities are:

Legal services will be provided in the form of a library of templates and documentation in the form of:

  • İzmir NIC Operations Legal Library (NDAs, Contracts, MoUs etc.)
  • Open Call Legal Dossier (Application Forms, NDAs, Grant Agreements, Investment Contracts, etc.)
  • Standardised Legal Kit for Start-ups (Contracts, MoU, NDA, Term sheets)

The promotion and visibility of the project defines the branding and style guide for the operation. Open and closing events will be delivered and awareness events promoting the acceleration and mentoring programme will take place across the duration of the project. The Project’s online and digital presence is created under this activity and the project will make full use of social media and other appropriate tools.