1 Million Liras to support the digitalized enterprises, offered by KOSGEB (Small and Medium Industry Development Organization), attracted great attention. KOSGEB President Cevahir Uzkurt who said that SMEs in the industrial sector adapt themselves to digital technologies is important for the value-added production-oriented transformation of the industry’s workforce and industry, declared that Covid-19 outbreak has a triggering effect for the use of smart digital technologies in the industry
KOBİGEL – SME Development Support Program was determined as a basis support mechanism in digital change of industry. At the interview we did with KOSGEB President Cevahir Uzkurt, we found answers of questions about digitalization and support process and details.
1 million liras digitalization support, given to the digitalized enterprises by KOSGEB got attention. What do you think about influence of digitalization on the enterprises?
We anticipate that the Industry 4.0, the new industrial concept, will take production to countries and continents, having technology. Production will not be done in cheap places or some places, having location advantage, but it will take place in the places, where smart production systems are used. If developing countries do not realize the structural transformation based on digital technologies in the manufacturing industry and workforce, they will soon see that the cheapness of production and geographic location will no longer be an advantage. In terms of our SMEs in the industry sector, due to digital technologies, it is necessary to know that results and gains that directly affect competitiveness will be achieved, such as increasing productivity, decreasing waste and costs, decreasing dependency on manpower and skills, increasing the speed of introduction to the market, and producing quality products that are fully compliant with standards.
According to the importance given to the digital transformation of the industrial sector in the 11th Development Plan, we have included the issue of “digitalization in the manufacturing industry” among the priority themes of KOSGEB since 2019. We have determined our KOBIGEL- SME Development Support Program, customized according to thematic areas and where we select projects with a competitive method, as our main support mechanism for the digital transformation of the industry. The adaptation of our SMEs in the industrial sector to digital technologies is important for the value-added production-oriented transformation of both our industry and our workforce in the industry.
Covid-19, affected the whole world, made it necessary for many companies to continue their business with digital means. In this context, can we say that the pandemic process has an impact on your support program?
The Covid-19 outbreak triggered the use of smart digital technologies in the industry. Integrated and automated smart systems in factories reduce the need for high volume workforce. Intelligent digital technologies that enable machine-machine and machine-human interaction minimize the need for close contact in facility and business management. After Covid-19, the need for digital transformation has become very understandable. It is now clear that factories must be equipped with digital production and decision-making technologies.
What are the application conditions for the SME Development Support Program? Does the project cover all sectors?
In order to ensure digital transformation in the industry with a focus on domestic opportunities, SMEs which are both technology suppliers and technology users of smart digital technologies started to be supported by KOSGEB. In 2019, 71.5 million TL of support was approved for 258 projects.
Within the scope of the 2020 applications of the program, the following two invitations for proposals with the theme “Digitalization in the Manufacturing Industry” were announced on 22 July 2020:
2020 – 01 Project Request for Proposal: “Supporting domestic technology developer SMEs that can contribute to the digitalization process in the manufacturing industry sector”
To this request SMEs, technology developers in electronics, informatics, machinery manufacturing sectors that develop smart digital technologies which are applicable in the manufacturing industry, can offer projects to make value-added improvements in their existing products and to commercialize their products.
2020 – 02 Project Request for Proposal: “Increasing the level of utilization of digital technologies in production and related business processes of SMEs operating in the manufacturing industry”
To this request, SMEs in the manufacturing industry, having 500 thousand TL net sales revenue in 2019 and keep books according to the balance sheet method, can submit projects to adapt smart digital technologies to production and related business processes. If the rate of meeting the technologies of the manufacturer SMEs from domestic companies is high, this situation is taken into consideration in a positive way in the evaluation of project applications.
8 smart digital technology subjects were taken in the concept of KOBİGEL Program 2020 year Project Request for Proposal:
1 Processing Big Data with Analytical Methods and Its Use in Manufacturing Industry
2 Internet of Things in the Manufacturing Industry
3 Industrial Robot Technologies in Manufacturing Industry
4 Smart Sensor Technologies in Manufacturing Industry
5 Cyber-Physical Smart Factory System and Components Based on Artificial Intelligence
6 Cyber Security in Manufacturing Industry
7 Smart and Flexible Automation Systems in the Manufacturing Industry
8 Virtual Reality / Augmented Reality in Manufacturing Industry
Could you give brief information about the project support rate and project duration? What is the deadline for the project application and what course should companies want to apply?
Within the scope of the 2020-01 and 2020-02 Project Request for Proposal, up to 300,000 TL non-refundable per business and up to 700,000 TL refundable, a total of 1,000,000 TL support can be provided.
The support rate is 60% (excluding personnel support). 30% of the support to be calculated at this rate will be non-refundable and 70% will be paid as a refund support. For personnel expenses, non-refundable support will be provided in an amount determined according to the education level coefficient (without applying the rate).
The support will be paid for the procurement of personnel, machinery – equipment, service and software required for the realization of the project. The amount of 50% to be calculated over the reimbursed support amount appro- ved by KOSGEB can be paid before spending under the name of “early payment” in return for guarantee upon the request of the enterprises that started the project.
The duration of the projects to be submitted can be at least 8 months and at most 20 months.
Enterprises registered in the KOSGEB Database and meeting the application requirements can make their applications with the e-government password of the business official from the “E-services” menu at the same address after reviewing the Project Proposal Calls at www.kosgeb.gov.tr.
In order to increase the accessibility of digital technologies through domestic and competent technology suppliers, we will continue to support the cooperation between technology developing SMEs and industrial SMEs who will adapt digital technologies to business processes, with new calls in the coming years within the scope of our budget possibilities.