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Evaluation of internationalisation support: a final report to Scottish Enterprise Lanarkshire


SEL’s range of internationalisation support programmes aimed to assist and encourage firms to overcome the relatively high risk they perceive when considering entry to a new international market. The evaluation aimed to: establish the rationale for the support; review the success of the programme in meeting its objectives; comment on the effectiveness of the targeting and delivery; identify the characteristics of firms participating in the programme; assess customer satisfaction with the support; assess the overall economic impact; identify sustainable benefits; identify strengths and weaknesses; establish likely future demand; identify potential improvements; and inform future European applications.


The methodology consisted of interviews with 29 firms. The sample was slightly weighed in favour of Account and Client managed firms.


ERDF activity has been significantly above target but impacts have been below target. SEL has exceeded its own activity targets. SEL has exceeded its target expenditure by 26% and has generated an extra 5% of activity but with a projected net sales increase of around £35 million (circa two thirds of the target level). Considers SEL’s rationale for assistance to be sound. The programme has been active in supporting firms and customer satisfaction appears to be high for most types of support.


Recommends that SEL: review whether the balance of activity across its three main client groups is appropriate; encourage firms to take decisive action; advise SE Account, Client and Business Managers to provide pre and post-course support; set out a sliding scale of financial support for firms’ attendance at exhibitions; promote its in-market research services and consider training for those who have limited/no experience of events; consider using ‘peers’ to coach firms; and encourage firms to look regularly at the strategic positioning of their businesses in the market and review their selection of exhibitions.

Author GEN Consulting; O’Herlihy and Co Ltd; Research Resource
Published Year 2009
Report Type Evaluation
  • Enterprise
    Support to existing/growth businesses
  • Internationalisation
    Internationalisation of Scottish businesses