Aram Gasparyan works in printing and production of outdoor advertising boards in the city of Goris in Armenia. Since December 2017, his business has grown from amateur level to specialised production, with the help of EU4Business, through the EU-funded project on 'Boosting the Competitiveness of regional SMEs', implemented by the Small and Medium Entrepreneurship Development National Centre of Armenia.
To help him launch new production capacities for high quality souvenirs, Aram Gasparyan took part in September 2017 in the project's 'Successful Start' start-up business support programme in Goris, acquiring significant knowledge and skills needed for business development.
He also received received credit and EU grant funds, allowing him to invest in a new digital programming laser machine and other equipment necessary for new types of souvenir production.
As a result, both the variety of souvenirs and production volumes have sharply increased, product quality has been improved, and one new permanent job has been created.
“Seven years ago I could not imagine that my hobby could be turned into such a specialised production,”said the entrepreneur. The company has now entered the market under the 'ReRaise' brand, andis now working on its branding.
To facilitate market access and promote his products, Gasparyan has benefited from specialised advisory services provided under the project by the 'Strategic Development Agency' NGO, including branding, packaging design, and sales management.
Boosting Competitiveness of Regional SMEs is a project funded by the EU under its EU4Business initiative. The project works to boost the competitiveness of regional SMEs and to create employment opportunities in the Armenian regions of Lori, Syunik and Armavir, focusing on the sectors of food-processing and tourism. It promotes the development of entrepreneurship by creating favourable conditions for start-ups and strengthening the capacity of local SMEs, while also providing relevant skills to job seekers, and developing local capacity to encourage the further promotion of economic development initiatives.