What are the investments in R&D in Italy? What is the amount of interventions in this direction by companies in the private sector?
A recent report by Confartigianato – available here for members of the association’s portal – photographs the current situation. And what emerges is that SMEs are the protagonists.
As shown by ISTAT data, spending on R&D in Italy in 2018 amounted to around 25.2 billion euros: the private enterprise sector, responsible for more than 63% of investments, played a decisive role.
The most striking figure concerns the leading role played by Italy’s small and medium-sized enterprises: compared to 2017, the latter increased R&D spending by 15.8%, eight percentage points more than the average for companies (7.4%).
The long-term figures for the five-year period 2013-2018 are also remarkable, with an average annual increase of 18.5% for small businesses and 12% for medium-sized enterprises, while those of large companies have increased by +3.2%.
Despite the difficulties experienced by the manufacturing sector at the moment, there continues to be a strong presence on foreign Made in Italy markets: exports continue to be one of the strong points of the Italian economic fabric, as we reported in an article published in recent weeks and dedicated to forecasts for Italian exports in 2021.
Of particular note is the increase in the average unit value of our exports, which in June of this year was +2.7%: a clear sign of the strengthening of local production on foreign markets, capable of being an ideal destination for the products and services offered by Italian entrepreneurs.
SMEs have been able to demonstrate a considerable capacity for adaptation in this difficult scenario: a spirit that certainly stems from the desire to invest in innovative solutions to boost their productivity.
The lion’s share is certainly taken by the digitalisation of decision-making and operational processes: new technologies have also made their way into small and medium-sized enterprises, allowing them to improve the output of their activities.
As the report highlights, it is precisely the micro and small enterprises that have developed digital strategies – including e-commerce channels for example – that have reacted best to the current situation in the global economy.
The strategic use of data also plays a major role: the ability to develop efficient investments within the right markets and with the right partners is now a necessity for every type of enterprise.
The issue of Big Data also emerges in the report: in particular, it underlines the need for Public Administration, which, thanks to advanced technological processes, could accelerate the provision of its services, making the bureaucratic machine more efficient.
The private sector, on the other hand, has long understood its importance: Business Intelligence, whose advantages we have described in this article, is preparing to become a reality also for small and medium enterprises.
The development of new products and services with advanced functionalities and the continuous improvement of the offer, thanks to a reduction of inefficiencies, is increasingly facilitated by the ability of companies to carry out in-depth analyses of their activities, enabling them to develop reliable forecasts on their performance.
Matchplat has made Big Data and Artificial Intelligence the heart of its business, developing a series of complementary services that allow companies to design revolutionary strategies to support their marketing and supply chain management.
Thanks to advanced market analysis, Matchplat makes available to its clients a wealth of over 30 billion in commercial information on companies in 196 countries: a huge resource, capable of covering every business need, including the optimisation of research and development processes.
How? The fields of application in this case are numerous.
Through a strategy based on the use of data, it is in fact possible to find commercial contacts in target with one’s own needs; map foreign markets to identify new suppliers able to offer innovative raw materials; identify new geographical areas in which to concentrate one’s export activity, obtaining feedback on one’s product and adapting it to the market.
In this way, each company can further improve its internal processes, further reinforcing the positive trend experienced by R&D in Italy in recent years: a strong point of our SMEs that Matchplat wants to further enhance through solutions and solutions that will be implemented in the future.