Open Access

Challenges for Romanian SMEs: A Study of the Romanian Central Region SMEs


The 21st century is certainly the century of SMEs which represent, according to the Annual Report on SMEs for the years 2019-2020 prepared by the European Commission, over 99% of non- financial businesses at EU level, and which provide 66% of total jobs and 57% of value added in the EU non-financial businesses sector. SMEs are considered to be” vectors of innovation that contribute significantly to increasing long-term labor productivity and sustainable economic development. ” (CCE, Raport special, 2020). The need for permanent support for the development of the sector is recognized at EU level, especially for newly registered micro-enterprises, the support being decisive for the socio-economic changes that take place in society. The reality has unequivocally demonstrated the interdependent relationship between the activity of SMEs, economic development, and the creation of new jobs. In our country, the size of the sector and its importance are indisputable. Thus: Romania (Vasiliu, 2021) has around 500.000 SMEs, which account to 99% of the total companies in the economy – nonfinancial sectors. The general objective of the research that we present in this paper is to offer an overview of the current state of the regional economic environment of The Central Region (Central Region), the tendencies and external factors that act upon it, providing at the same time an analysis of the impact of de minimis funds on the companies financed through the Start-UP Hub: the Entrepreneurs’ Laboratory, following the interpretation of data collected through questionnaires for identifying the requirements and challenges that the entrepreneurs encountered. A specific objective of this research is to identify the solutions suggested by the entrepreneurs involved in the program Start-Up Hub: the Entrepreneurs’ Laboratory for overcoming the difficult challenges for the start-ups registered in the past two to three years which could apply to the entire SME sector.