«2020. június»

INSIST - ERASMUS+ Strategic Partnership Project

INSIST - INtergenerational Succession in SMEs' Transition

Hivatkozási szám: 2014-1-HU01-KA200-002307

This project has been funded with support from the European Commission.

The European Commission support for the production of this publication does not constitute endorsement of the contents which reflects the views only of the authors, and the Commission cannot be held responsi­ble for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.


ERASMUS+ KA2 Strategic Partnership


 INtergenerational Succession in SMEs' Transition – INSIST



Genesis of the project

25 years after entering capitalist operating mode, Hungary's business community, and certainly those of the other post-socialist countries, is facing a new challenge, the first generation change in small and medium size companies where owners and managers are approaching retirement age.

Along the last two decades the coordinator, the Budapest Business School (BBS), has become one of the major training providers in the field of entrepreneurship in Hungary. Soon after the change of the regime BBS realised that it was not enough to open the door before entrepreneurial endeavours, but also support from the training community is indispensible for the very different would-be entrepreneur populations.

At this genesis of the present proposal BBS has found little evidence of political or scientific preparatory work to help intergenerational succession in the Hungarian SMEs and even less training offers supporting this sensitive period. This aslo applies to the transmission and development phase of SME's.

Overwhelming proportion of new entrepreneurs launched their small, very often family company without the necessary knowledge, competences and skills of entrepreneurship. This revelation gave birth to intensive search of experience in partner EU countries and also at OECD and EU level. So BBS looked for experience in entrepreneurial training development in countries with long standing entrepreneurial culture and launched a number of bilateral and European projects in order to adapt trainings and pedagogical approaches. These efforts resulted in defining training modules and solution – face-to-face or virtual – for a variety of target groups, which is the objective of the INSIST project.


Aims and objectives

The participant institutions have a rich course offer in the field of entrepreneurship but they have no special training solution targeted to the target groups involved in generational succession or transmission.
The INSIST project will enrich initial and vocational curriculum and training systems of the partners, university partners as well as the SME / entrepreneur federations and support services.

The largest target group to be impacted by the project is composed of SME owners and managers who are facing the challenges of the generational changes and are forced to take care of the succession process. The help offered to these SMEs in form of training seminars and/or practical mentorship will facilitate the generational transition, avoiding firm dissolutions, and will impact on firms' survival rates.

Governmental bodies are also expected to be impacted by the results; preparatory international analysis points out the important potential role for governments here in terms of providing tailored support to the succession process. The results of the project, in form of a study to be prepared by the research working group, will define the possible activities and roles of governments to support SME succession /transmission thus protecting investment and jobs. The extreme importance of this is shown by the fact that existing companies maintain, on average, five jobs whereas start-ups generate, on average, two jobs.

Another impact (short term on the participants of the pilot training seminars and long term on the general student body in economics) will be exerted on the student population who is in entrepreneurship Master and will have a new specialisation of this Master as an option.

The local impact of the project will be exerted on the local SMEs, mainly in Hungary and in Poland,facing the imposing need for generational change:

  • The project dissemination activities will reach them with the information of the existing learning, mentoring and support possibilities.
  • Their participation in the training seminars will facilitate their transition period.
  • After the project's lifetime (end 2016), the succession process will be helped by the mentors trained during the INSIST project through the new training offer.

Impact at national and European levels is foreseen also by two other channels:

  • INSIST partners plan larger follow-up activities to be supported by the Knowledge Alliance strand of Erasmus+ and by the European Social Fund in the same field;
  • In addition, different governmental bodies are to be informed about the training possibilities and are to receive the final study with recommendations on how these governments can help the SME succession and transmission process through their regulatory measures.
  • These follow-up projects will be open to and conceived with larger partnership and with wider geographical coverage.



  • Budapest Business School, Budapest, Hungary
  • AdInvest Development, Avignon, France
  • Leeds Beckett University Leeds, UK
  • Cracow University of Economics, Cracow, Poland
  • MAC-TEAM aisbl, Brussels, Belgium
  • Business Hungary - Confederation of the Hungarian Employers and Industrialist, Budapest, Hungary
  • Employers Union Lewiatan of Malopolska, Cracow, Poland

A multi-actors partnership has been established with 3 higher education institutions and 4 non university partners. Two of the universities are from the newest Member states (HU and PL) where generational succession and transmission of enterprises comes across the first time in the life of enterprises.

These Hungarian and Polish partners have extended research work around topics touching upon SME issues, but they have no experience in how to help SMEs directly when they succession time occurs. These partners certainly have no appropriate training solutions facilitating the succession for the different interested target groups (the main expected result of the project). Both are experienced in European projects, their initiation and management as well.

The third university, Leeds Beckett University (UK), has a rich experience in research and curriculum development in entrepreneurial issues. This university is considered as an innovation resource, but it is also  interested in the joint development of new curricula around succession problem.

One of the non university partners is a French multi-entrepeneurs company (Adinvest) operates a network of mentors who work in the field and help SMEs in different kinds of problems which may occur also around succession or transmission. Adinvest accepted to share its experience with the partnership of the project and also to develop its experience, practical and theoretical, into training material around mentoring approaches. So this partner is an important source of innovation for the project.

Mac-Team, the Multi-Actors Cooperation network, is a Belgian international non-profit organisation with rich experience in different kinds of European projects and, in particular, in quality assurance and monitoring issues. It will take in charge these activities on the project.

The remaining two partners are Hungarian and Polish SME associations having experience in curriculum development for enterprises as well as piloting the new courses and disseminating and exploiting results.

For the exploratory research two highly reputed researchers of the central field of the project are engaged as sub contractors of the Hungarian partner. Beyond their general contribution to the project they will introduce the Italian and the Finnish experience in the partnership. Most of the partners have long standing cooperation with the coordinator Budapest Business School as an institution and others have long established personal contacts around research or educational projects. Most partners have been involved several times in similar projects.


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