Big Buyers meet the European Innovation Council (EIC)

04 November 2021

On 25 October, the Big Buyers working group on digital solutions in the healthcare sector had the chance to discuss collaborative opportunities offered by the European Innovation Council to accelerate their search for innovative and sustainable healthcare products and services in Europe. During the one-hour session, Bertrand Wert, Innovation Procurement Portfolio Manager & Innovation maker, EIC and Oana Popescu, Communications & Community Adviser, EIC presented the European Innovation Council and provided a deeper insight into the newly developed Challenge Platform.

The group discussed how to bridge the gap between EIC supported SMEs and the (unmet) needs of public buyers in order to drive innovation. Bertrand Wert presented different pillars within a new EIC programme to support public buyers. First, they are invited to apply for financial support in order to identify their specific needs. Secondly, the EIC helps with consulting the market by organizing e-pitching sessions with well-selected SMEs. The programme goes even a step further in providing public buyers the possibility to work closely with EIC companies through co-creation. Together they refine, adapt and try solutions prior to the real procurement. As the fourth pillar, the EIC provides legal advice to public buyers for their preparation of innovation procurement.

During the second part of the meeting, Oana Popescu presented the new challenge platform, which is integrated in the well-established EIC community platform that is already running since 2018. The challenge platform makes innovative challenges and solutions accessible to all EIC Community Members. It gathers EIC challengers with problem-solvers eager to develop and implement innovations in different sorts of fields.

The session ended with a lively discussion as well as an invitation to the upcomingEuropean Innovation Council Summit on 24-25 November 2021 in Brussels and online to follow up on the presented opportunities.