FAQ: Natif-Tekes Call for Joint Proposals

Basics and technicalities of the call


Q:What is the purpose of the call?

A: To encourage and enable the creation of high-impact-oriented Finnish-Vietnamese business creation partnerships. The objective is to demonstrate the power of shared strategic interests in innovative industrial co-creation.


Q:Who are eligible to apply?

A: An eligible joint proposal has at minimum one Finnish and one Vietnamese business entity as a co-lead-partner. There can be partners also from other countries, but only Finnish and Vietnamese businesses will be funded from this call (Note: Vietnamese enterprises who have not had Finnish partner can request IPP and Tekes to help for partner searching and matching and vice versa).


Q:When is the call for proposals open?

A: Proposals can be submitted between 15 October until 15 December


Q:What is the timeline for final funding decisions?

A: The evaluation process and funding decisions will be finalised before Tet 2017.


Q:What is the role of Natif and Tekes in the call?

A: Natif and Tekes are the financiers in this call. Natif provides funding for those Vietnamese companies in successful joint projects. Tekes does the same on the Finnish side for Finnish companies in selected joint projects.  


Q:What is the role of IPP2 in the call?

A: IPP2 provides procedural support for the implementation of the joint call process in Vietnam. In practical terms, IPP2 will manage the evaluation of joint project plans and monitoring of selected joint projects according to its established procedures. IPP2 provides matchmaking services for Vietnamese companies to find Finnish counterparts.


Q: We are a Vietnamese company. Can we get funding without a joint proposal with a Finnish partner?

A: Not from this joint Call. This is first and foremost a cross-border partnership and business co-creation program, not traditional national funding. You must submit a joint project plan with a Finnish partner when applying for funding in Vietnam.


Q: My company is the Vietnamese lead member in the consortium. How do I submit my application for this call?

A: The Vietnamese lead consortium member sends its funding application to Natif and the joint project plan to IPP2 by the deadline of December 15, 2016.

  1. Submit your funding application and necessary appendices to Natif according to instructions http://natif.vn/vi/tin-tuc/chuong-trinh-ho-tro-hop-tac-doi-moi-sang-tao-cua-doanh-nghiep-viet-nam-va-phan-lan-659.html
  2. Submit the Joint Project Plan to IPP via email grants@ipp.vn and register the consortium on  IPP Digital ePlatform, an online, secure co-working space for the consortium members, according to instructions which can be found within this page.


Q: My company is a Vietnamese supporting consortium member. How do I submit my application for this call?

A: The supporting consortium member submits their own funding application to Natif, according to instructions,  in case they are applying for funding. If you are not seeking any funding, there is no need to submit any application.


Q: I am a Finnish consortium member. How can I apply for funding?

A: Finnish company will send application to Tekes. Instructions for Finnish applications are on the Tekes site: http://www.tekes.fi/en/whats-going-on/application-schedules-2016/finnish-vietnamese-call-for-companies/


Q: What are the funding principles in Vietnam and in Finland?

A:  The funding in Vietnam and in Finland is subject to terms and conditions of each engaged financier.

Funding details in Vietnam:

NATIF as the primary financing partner in this call can award grants covering between 30%-50% of the total costs of the Vietnamese company’s part of the joint project. At the beginning of the project, up to 30% of the approved grant can be paid in advance. The rest of the grant will be reimbursed upon the completion of project’s milestones.  Eligible costs that NATIF accepts are the following: Salaries, wages and personnel costs for implementing the approved activities of the project; Overheads; Travel expenses; R&D costs; Conferences and workshops; Costs of materials and supplies; Machinery and equipment purchases (limited); rental of equipment and services.

See detailed funding terms and conditions of NATIF from this link.


Funding details in Finland:

Successful projects will be funded by Tekes in Finland. On the Finnish part of the project, company projects will be funded by Tekes according to funding terms of Tekes and the BEAM programme.




Matchmaking for the call


Q: My company is interested in the call but does not yet have a partner in Finland/Vietnam. What should I do?

A: You may send an Expression of Interest in order to receive introductions to potential partners. Vietnamese applicants should send their EOIs to Natif or IPP2 and Finnish applicants to Tekes.

The Expression of Interest form can be downloaded HERE!

In Vietnam: please send the EoI to MOST via eoi@most.gov.vn or to IPP2 via grants@ipp.vn

In Finland: please send the EoI to Tekes via kati.lahtinen(at)tekes.fi


Q: We have not sent EOI, can we send a proposal for open call?

A: Yes you can, EoIs are used for partnering and matchmaking.


Q: How long is the matchmaking process?

A: Matchmaking is up until the close of the call in mid December.


Q: How large is the joint fund / funding program?

A: There is no limit on the amount of grant, depending on the size of the project.The amount of grant received for Vietnamese and Finnish counterpart under the joint innovation project shall be considered separately by MOST and Tekes under the funding rule of each agency.



The Scope of the Call


Q: We are in health, as a pharmaceuticals company, but not in food or water safety. Can we be eligible?

A: The key objective is to find good, industrially relevant joint proposals, rather than proposals that maximally fit the initial guiding thematic framework.


Q: We are a social enterprise, a non-profit, in the agriculture space. Can we be eligible?

A: This is a Call for joint business creation, a grant for growth, and non-profit orientation does not optimally fit the bill.


Q: We have tested and proven product lines and want to find an export partner to Europe. Can we be eligible?

A: This is a Call for innovative joint business creation. Mere distribution partnership would most likely not fulfill the criteria.


Q: We are rural water supply, distributing water to poor people, with problematically low revenues. Can we be eligible?

A: Unless a sustainable profit sharing model with, for example, beneficiary farmers can be established, most likely not.


Q:We are a university with research in the food and water safety space. Can we be eligible?

A: This is a Call for business creation and university interests do not easily fit the bill.


Q: We are a pre-revenue startup with a prototype device on food safety. Can we be eligible?

A: If there is clear evidence of demand and user satisfaction, and sharp specs for what is wanted from a Finnish partner, quite possibly.