The Second National Innovation Forum which ARC Fund organized jointly with the World Bank office in Bulgaria, DG Enterprise of the European Commission, the Ministry of Economy, the Austrian Embassy in Sofia, EPIQ Electronic Assembly and the Center for the Study of Democracy on October 25, 2005 featured the awards ceremony for the Second National Contest recognizing the most Innovative Bulgarian Enterprise of the Year 2005.
The main objectives of this contest were:
• to encourage the innovation activities of Bulgarian enterprises; and
• to promote the companies participating in the contest and the results achieved by them in the field of innovation.
Innovative companies from all sectors of the Bulgarian economy were eligible to participate in the contest.
A company was considered to be innovative if it had developed and marketed new or advanced products (goods or services) and/or processes over the last three years. Innovation was defined in broader terms as application of new approaches or technologies that improve the economic performance and competitiveness of the respective company.
The innovation performance of participant companies was evaluated by an expert panel against a set of criteria and data collected on the basis of a special application form – an entry questionnaire which companies participating in the contest completed and submitted at ARC Fund.
The ranking of participant companies was performed on the basis of a set of criteria combining quantitative and qualitative indicators, measurable against a scale of 1-to-5.
1. Technical level of the new products/processes: assessment of the basic technical parameters of the new products/processes developed by the contestant as compared to the respective analogue of new products/processes of competing companies.
2. Turnover: relative share of new products/processes in the total sales of the company
3. Exports: relative share of the new products/processes placed on foreign markets in the overall export of the company. 4. Prospects: opportunities for further development of the new products/processes.
5. Intellectual Property Rights protection over the new products/processes: intangible assets acquired (patents, IPR certificates, licenses, etc.)
6. R&D expenses: relative share of R&D expenses in the total amount of revenues.
7. R&D personnel: relative share of employees involved in R&D in the overall personnel (this criterion is only valid for large enterprises).
8. Number of new products/processes: number of new products/processes placed on the market in the last 3 years. 9. Connectivity/Networking: company’s linkages/cooperation with universities; scientific, research and engineering organizations, participation in international programs, etc.
10. Level of production and management in the enterprise: implemented certification and quality control systems, preservation of the environment, product safety; utilization of computers, software products, network devices, online services offered, e-commerce, etc.
The ranking of companies per their final evaluation was ultimately thoroughly analyzed by the expert panel.
In order to ensure comparability with the accepted EU enterprise categories, two groups of companies have been defined:
- innovative small enterprises (of up to 50 employees);
- innovative medium-sized or large enterprises (of over 50 employees) .
The awards ceremony took place during the National Innovation Forum on October 25, 2005 at the Sheraton Sofia Hotel Balkan. The awards were presented by Mr. Plamen Vachkov, Chairman of the newly established Agency for IT and Communications.
The Daisy Technology Ltd. company was presented with the Award for Innovative Small Enterprise of 2005. The SD ELTA – R company won the contest in the category for medium-sized and large enterprise. They were followed by five other SMEs also recognized as innovative which received Certificates for Innovative Enterprise of the Year 2005: Trapen SP, Coattex Ltd. , Antipodes Ltd. , Orgachim Co. and Optix Co.
Small Enterprises Category
Daisy Technology Ltd. was ranked first for the following new products it had introduced to the Bulgarian market:
- mp3 players
- Digital Multimedia Cameras
Trapen SP participated in the contest with its microprocessor system for automation and optimization of different kinds of mills for grinding of cement, raw materials, ores, etc., in the cement, dressing and power industries and a number of related branches.
Coattex Ltd. is specialized in the field of technologies and techniques for powder polymer coatings, metallic coatings, enamelling and talcking and was nominated for its product for electrostatic powder coating machine APEN® - 30 G 1(2) .
Antipodes Ltd. works in the field of system architecture and software design, web and database development, application and system development for a variety of hardware/software platforms and complex solutions. The company participated in the contest with the following products: a system for visual modeling and automation of business procedures in the Workflow.Cubes, company, and with an innovative software solution that provides professionals and amateurs in the field of interior design with the opportunity to prepare proficient interior solutions - 3D Spacer.
Medium-Sized or Large Enterprises Category
SD ELTA – R was ranked first in this category with its product for development of digital telecommunication network in lowly populated regions. ELTA R is a company with experience in development, manufacture, engineering and trade in products in the communication industry.
Orgachim Ltd. was awarded for the DEKO professional products for construction and interior design.
Optix Co. operates in the field of designing, manufacturing and testing quality optical components and systems, encompassing the capabilities required to undertake opto-mechanical and opto-electronic assemblies and devices meeting the needs of the medicine, military and commercial markets. The company participated in the contest with 13 innovative products .
Members of the expert panel and jury (available in Bulgarian, PDF, 104 KB)
Evaluation criteria (available in Bulgarian, PDF, 91.7 KB)