Record-breaking year for support to industry and commerce: Innovation Norway was able to contribute a total of NOK 12.5 billions to development and innovation in the business sector in 2020. This is more than a doubling from the previous year and is mainly due to extraordinary allocations due to the corona pandemic.
Record year in number of applications: Innovation Norway received more than 12,000 applications for support in 2020. That is 88 per cent more than the year before. Of these, 8,366 projects were allocated funding, which is an increase of 75 per cent from 2019.
Decisive: Innovation Norway's contribution became more important for enterprises’ innovation and development work in 2020. As many as 96 per cent of the companies surveyed in the Customer Impact Survey believe that Innovation Norway's contribution has been decisive for implementation of projects. 2020 thus represents a significant increase, after several earlier years with a relatively stable percentage score of approx. 90.(Source: Oxford Research).
Triggering effect for funding: One krone from Innovation Norway in the form of capital or advice is matched by 1.5 kroner in self-financing or other sources of funding for development projects and investments. In addition, Innovation Norway also triggers many other innovation and internationalisation activities by providing expertise and networking.
Environmental impact: The number of projects with positive environmental impacts doubled compared to 2019. Of all the projects Innovation Norway supported in 2020, 49 per cent had a positive environmental impact, which is a slight decrease from 51 per cent the year before. The decrease is mainly due to increased allocations of extraordinary innovation grants, which were an emergency measure during the corona pandemic, where no guidelines were laid or criteria set for projects to have an environmental impact.
Crucial for internationalisation: Innovation Norway’s Customer Impact Survey conducted by Oxford Research shows that 48 per cent believe that the service their company received from Innovation Norway was decisive for the implementation of their internationalisation process. This is up seven percentage points from the survey the previous year. The same survey also demonstrated that 91 per cent of the companies that have exports will make use of Innovation Norway’s services in international projects in the future. This is up six percentage points from the year before. (Source: Oxford Research).
More from the EU: Norwegian enterprises raised a total of NOK 725 millions in grants and equity from the European Innovation Council Accelerator. This is more than double the figure reported in 2019, when the figure was approx. NOK 300 millions. Innovation Norway guides Norwegian enterprises in the application process.
Higher growth in turnover: On average, enterprises that receive support from Innovation Norway grow more than comparable enterprises without such support. Over a three-year period, enterprises with support had an average annual growth in turnover of 10.3 percentage points. The corresponding figures for value creation and productivity are 8.7 and 4 percentage points, respectively. Given that industry and commerce has a total annual productivity growth of 1 to 2 percentage points, an increase in growth of 4 percentage points is considered good. Measured in full-time equivalents this shows an annual increase in growth of 3.7 percentage points.(Source: Economics Norway).
Entrepreneurs grow the most: Start-ups (enterprises that are less than three years old) that received funding from Innovation Norway had an increase in sales revenue of 15.8 percentage points in 2020 compared to enterprises without such support. Correspondingly, value creation increased by 16.6 percentage points, productivity increased by 10.2 percentage points, and full-time equivalents increased by 4.9 or 6.0 percentage points (Source: Economics Norway).
Growth for established enterprises: Established enterprises (enterprises that are more than three years old) that have received support from Innovation Norway experience a 6.2 percentage point increase in sales revenue compared to enterprises that do not receive such support. Corresponding figures regarding the increase in value creation and productivity are 5.2 and 2.5 percentage points, respectively. (Source: Economics Norway).
Networks create growth: At the end of 2020, 39 clusters and a total of 2,164 members were involved in the Norwegian Innovation Clusters programme. Enterprises participating in networks and cluster communities have an average increase in sales revenue of 15.8 percentage points during their first three years compared to enterprises that do not participate in such networks. For value creation, corresponding growth is 16.6 percentage points (Source: Economics Norway).
Funding doubled: Innovation Norway approved more than NOK 3.2 billions to start-up companies (younger than three years). The corresponding figure for 2019 was NOK 1.6 billion.
Two-thirds for growth companies: Two thirds of the funding from Innovation Norway in 2020 were allocated to enterprises with growth potential (older than three years). In 2019, this share was 50 per cent. Enterprises with growth potential received NOK 8.2 billions in grants and loans from Innovation Norway. The corresponding figure for 2019 was NOK 3.3 billions.
Threefold increase in inquiries: Innovation Norway's Growth and Entrepreneurial Centre in Førde handled a total of 15,000 inquiries related to sparring and funding last year. This is almost a threefold increase from the previous year. Around half of the inquiries were related to start-up companies and entrepreneurial support.
Creates and secures jobs: Regional restructuring is an extraordinary effort for municipalities or regions where local industry and commerce is being significantly downscaled. The results are measured in terms of created or secured jobs. In 2020, the scheme contributed to the creation of 162 new jobs and secured 254 jobs that would not have existed without the projects. The corresponding figures for the entire project period are 873 new jobs and 636 secured jobs in the affected areas.
Crucial for agricultural customers: 94per cent of Innovation Norway’s agricultural customers respond that Innovation Norway was crucial for getting their project started. (Source: Oxford Research).
Renewable energy: The value creation programme for renewable energy and technological developments is instrumental in ensuring that the energy needs of agriculture are becoming ever more climate-friendly and eco-friendly. In 2020, the programme contributed 37 GWh of climate-and eco-friendly energy, equivalent to the energy needs of 2,500 detached houses.
More for travel and tourism companies: In 2020, NOK 724 millions was allocated in loans and grants from Innovation Norway to travel and tourism companies, an increase of 137 per cent from the previous year. Of this amount, NOK 249 millions is described as extraordinary funding for the travel and tourism industry. The remaining NOK 475 millions has been allocated to industry-neutral business support. The funds have largely been used for restructuring activities.
Decrease in overnight stays in Norway: In 2020, there were 23.7 million commercial overnight stays in Norway, a decrease of 33 per cent from 2019. The number of Norwegian commercial overnight stays declined by 17 per cent, and foreign overnight stays by 69 per cent. The corona crisis is the explanation.
New contacts: The exhibition window for green Norwegian solutions - The Explorer had more than 100,000 visitors on average per month in 2020. At the end of the year, the platform included 400 solutions from Norwegian enterprises. User feedback indicates that one in four enterprises have made new contacts through the service.
Norwegian partners in EEA projects: Norway co-finances business programmes that support cooperation between Norwegian and European enterprises, and Innovation Norway manages around NOK 1.9 billions to be allocated to relevant projects by 2023. In 2020, a total of NOK 355 millions was allocated to 102 projects. Thirty-nine of these projects include one or more Norwegian project partners.