For Business Leaders

Take advantage of the rich IT potential of the region

Venture capitalists and technology companies can take advantage Southeast Europe’s wealth of engineering and coding talent, creating a hub of innovation to provide back-end services to both start-ups and emerging global technology players. The region has a wealth of aptitude and human capital that can be tapped through coordinating efforts across universities by country to create a new regional hub of tech talent. Businesses looking for cost-effective software development and engineering services should consider Southeast Europe, which presents a viable alternative to other IT centers, such as India. There is a growing, well-trained, low-cost pool of tech talent with high levels of English-language proficiency waiting to be tapped. In addition, the opportunity exists to support private and academic accelerators and incubators to grow tech support and services as an export.

Increase profits by developing licensed business models that connect innovative products and technologies in the United States with local businesses in the region

U.S. companies fund and develop innovative products and services that generally stay within the U.S. market. Although the U.S. venture capital ecosystem supports innovation and development through both financing and commercial models, these technologies often do not make it to other regions of the world. There is an opportunity to connect these emerging U.S. companies with entrepreneurs in the region, setting up new companies that will license fully developed business products and business models to market locally. The parent company secures either an upfront licensing fee or royalties from sales in the region. The new local company provides local market knowledge, including sales, marketing, and distribution expertise.

Businesses with developed, innovative, patent-protected products and services should explore Southeast Europe as a potential market for their products. While healthcare is one sector that can benefit from this business model, any business featuring venture capital-backed technologies that target innovation are candidates. The ideal profile of a company for which this in-licensing business model may work is one that comes from any sector, but that has a product based on intellectual property that is already developed or in early-commercial to fully commercial stages, that has a disruptive technology or business process, and which has venture funds or private equity.

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