Europe is growing ever closer together and it is important now above all for small and medium-sized enterprises to participate in the economic growth of the southern European countries of Bulgaria, Romania, Croatia and Serbia, to develop new sales and procurement markets, to intensify contacts and to make use of other advantages.

Europa-FitplusSOE offered small and medium-sized enterprises demand-oriented and pro-active assistance as well as practical support in the exploitation and utilisation of market opportunities in the new EU Member States of Southern and Eastern Europe. The programme was targeted at enterprises in the Objective 2 territory in North Rhine-Westphalia which wanted to make the most of these opportunities. Each enterprise was personally mentored and given individual advice with regard to the initiation of business contacts and the development of partnerships in these markets. An attractive programme of country-specific consultation days, delegation visits as well as coaching in exhibition and co-operation skills complemented this comprehensive service offer.

Twelve enterprises from industry, the service sector and the trade craft sector were mentored in the framework of this project up until 2008. The project was a joint initiative of RKW NRW and ZENIT and followed on from the successful partnership launched in the Europa-Fit and Europa-Fitplus programmes. It was funded by the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Energy of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia and the European Union (ERDF).