Structured Procedures of Establishing Regional SME Agencies: Suggested Concepts Potentially Benefiting Rural Development

Structured Procedures of Establishing Regional SME Agencies: Suggested Concepts Potentially Benefiting Rural Development

DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-2641-5.ch003

Abstract

In modern business conditions there are a large number of limiting factors for the development of small and medium-sized enterprises. These factors can be both internal and external and are treated both as opportunities and threats. Given the need to overcome many barriers in the development of entrepreneurship in order to stimulate the improvement of business performance of existing SMEs, one of the forms of extending business support is the so-called entrepreneurial infrastructure within which the key institutions are also the regional enterprise and development agencies. In Chapter 3, the author proposes structured procedures of establishing regional SME agencies as precursors of regional development and rural agencies. Proposed is a set of forms in an underlying universal process of strategic planning for these institutions having rural development in hindsight. The discussed regional SME agencies can essentially be replicated on other support infrastructure of this kind. This chapter completes the first section of the book.
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Significance Of Some Main Specific Activities Of Sme Agencies

Establishing SME agencies is only one way, and can be the first step in supporting start-ups and continuation of development of rural businesses which is the ultimate objective of this book. These institutions can help to establish a stable structure (North 1990, p.6) and space for new, “immature”, undeveloped, small businesses (Bradford, 2010). However, agencies are not just brokers as the term corps intermédiare implies, but provide comprehensive support that helps rural businesses to survive and thrive on the market. An agency can provide a range of services from free consulting services, functional business premises, joint use of infrastructure, equipment, and use of technical, IT, financial and marketing programs. Agencies also offer customers the option of concluding a short-term contract to help them evaluate and develop a rural idea, or to find new ideas that will have a better market potential.

Some other typical services at this stage are as follows:

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