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The first EC – Cluster House BBS ClusNet meeting in Nis, Southern Serbia

Since 2013, the Cluster House, an exit strategy of the Danish Ledib Program, is a fully self-supported and self-sustainable, non-governmental and non for profit, private partnership organization. The Cluster House is an unique business development model and meta cluster organization in the Balkan and Black Sea for cluster-based cross regional and transnational development.  According to our model, many international organizations have established similar business networks, platforms and organizations.

After 5 years 'fighting' for strategic cluster development in the BBS region in the framework of the seven Days of Clusters conferences, which gathered over 1500 experts from 33 countries from 5 continents, it seems that cluster time in the Balkans is finally coming.

The clusters are mediators between three economic development pillars: business community, academia and public sector. Clusters are not companies, they are non-governmental and non for profit HUMAN based entities. The Cluster House Model is developed based on trust and respect building between members what is the key for sustainability. We are not motivated by funds to develop our region.Funds are coming from our outcomes and impacts. We are motivated with creating better overall environment in our beautiful and traditionally turbulent region. Almost all new networks and platforms are initiated by funds and probably will stay alive as long as they are funded. We are not register of clusters, we are family, know each other, help each other and deeply believe in our synergy will enable us a long professional life and prosperity in the region.

After five years fighting for strategic cluster development in the Balkans, the Cluster House efforts and outcomes became visible and potential useful to European cluster-based institutions.

The Cluster House has been visited by Dr. Anna Sobczak, EC officer yesterday August 16, 2017.  The new cluster development perspective is coming on the Balkans. The Cluster House BBS ClusNet is ready to support the new EU cluster strategy for the Balkans. Details will be discussed on the Greece Cluster Round Table between 38 clusters, the Cluster House as a meta cluster and the EC officers in September.

The Cluster House is happily looking forward to proposals which should outcome from this meeting and the ECCP Cluster Matchmaking event in Greece.

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The Cluster House founded upon the initiative of seven clusters from SE Serbia with technical support of the Danish Programme for Local Economic Development in the Balkans LEDIB in 2011. It is non-governmental and non-for-profit innovative business development organization for support to cluster – based economic development in the Balkan and Black Sea Region, fully self-supported and self-sustainable since 2013.

Due to lack of National strategy for SME development from 2013-2015, in 2014 the Cluster House Management decided to primarily focus its business development strategy on cross-board and transnational cluster collaboration waiting on time to be able to contribute cluster-based economic development in Serbia. In the meantime the Cluster House initiated and developed the following cluster development networks:

The ⦁ Balkan and Black Sea Cluster Network since 2012 which includes over 170 members – clusters and supporting institutions in the region.

The Serbian Cluster Community Network, based on the signed MoU with the LEDIB Programme and the Serbian Chamber of Commerce and Industry in 2012. The Cluster House is a facilitation manager of the ⦁ Serbian clusters collaboration platform of 47 Serbian cluster organizations. There are more than 80 clusters in Serbia with more than 47.000 cluster members – around 85% SMEs and about 120.000 employees.⦁ The ⦁ Balkan and Black Sea Cluster Network since 2012 which includes over 170 members – clusters and supporting institutions in the region.

The Cluster House is coordinating the ⦁ Balkan Clusters – an electronic platform for cross border cluster cooperation between Bulgaria and Serbia including over 35 cluster members and the ⦁ CZ-RS SME Trade Bridge – an electronic platform for export-oriented SMEs and clusters between Czech and Serbia.

⦁ The Cluster House Info Centre has developed business network which consists of over 3000 contacts with experts in the field of economic development, institutions and entrepreneurs in the region and on the global level.

The mission of the Networks is making of the cluster synergy in the Balkan and Black Sea region in order to develop transnational cluster-based sustainable economic development projects, approach development funds and appear on new markets.

The Cluster House Model is a proven way of supporting and accelerating cluster development in countries in transition.  The model fosters collaboration through networks, meetings, advisory services, inter-business networks, matchmaking events, and training sessions. The model covers business support for clusters, SMEs - start-ups and existing companies, which includes business information, consulting, training, communication, B2B C2C matchmaking and promotion.

The Cluster House is founder and leading co-organizer of the Balkan and Black Sea Conference Days of Clusters (DofC), the biggest cluster event in the SE Europe and worldwide well known cluster brand name. Since 2010 the seven DofC Conferences had been attended by representatives from 5 continents: Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia with Oceania and North America;  33 countries.

The Cluster House is proud on its volunteer efforts to organize the seven “Days of Clusters” conferences, the leading cluster event in the SE Europe with the worldwide recognisable brand name, contributed in making new partnerships and friendships, in creating the new jobs and peace in the region…

The Cluster House Training Centar for Cluster Development in the Balkans is located in Leskovac, Sothern Serbia since June 2017, as one of conclusions in the framework of the Serbian Cluster Day in May 2017, organized in partnership with  the Danish Embassy in Belgrade.

…currently there are a lot of regional cluster events and projects accelerated by the Cluster House mission, now for the Cluster House it is time for new cluster development in the Balkans...