Today, 13 April, technology company Google launched its new program “Izaugsme ar Google” (Grow Latvia with Google) aimed at promoting the digital development of Latvian companies. Representatives of Google and the Latvian Ministry of Economics signed a Memorandum of Understanding on cooperation in fostering the growth of businesses and strengthening their resilience in an ever-changing globe. The new specialised program Grow Latvia with Google will provide free courses to at least 3 000 small and medium-sized enterprises by the end of this year, enhancing their knowledge and skills in areas such as e-commerce, export, digital marketing and technology integration in business. The registration opens today.
Grow Latvia with Google program aims to help Latvian small and medium-sized enterprises improve their digital skills and applications, and to help Latvian citizens take full advantage of digital opportunities. It will also help the Latvian economy. As the research by Connected Commerce Council shows, small businesses in Europe with a sophisticated use of digital tools were able to build a ‘digital safety net’ during the pandemic, resulting in 80% better sales and 60% better revenue. Such companies are also more likely to be job creators, hiring 3 times more employees than others. The Ministry of Economics and the Investment and Development Agency of Latvia (LIAA) have expressed their support for the programme.
"In cooperation with Google, we invite entrepreneurs and everyone to join a free training programme in order to strengthen their digital skills and protect their businesses in the face of change. The level of digitalisation of businesses has a major impact on their ability to adapt to different situations and take on new challenges, which is particularly important today", emphasizes Jānis Vitenbergs, Minister of the Economics, inviting everyone in Latvia to join online trainings.
"We want to help Latvian businesses and employees use the full potential of what the digital tools can do to help grow their companies and carriers. It is particularly important today that Latvian businesses improve their resilience, expand internationally and prepare for the future of the labour market. Increasing the use of digital tools at a company and making sure that employees have the necessary level of digital skills are a key to success - and Google wants to help Latvians achieve that success" says Marta Poślad, Google’s director of public policy in Central and Eastern Europe.
"According to the EU Digital Economy and Society Index (DESI), Latvia's small and medium-sized enterprises are not digitizing as fast as large companies. Google's program will be a great opportunity to stimulate companies to improve their efficiency through digital marketing. State co-financing is already available for these activities, but in the autumn we will offer a new support programme for businesses, which will enable them to integrate various digital solutions into their operations on a much larger scale," said Kaspars Rožkalns, Director of LIAA.
What opportunities does the new Google program offer?
The program Grow Latvia with Google will provide Google-funded online courses, a wide range of tools and educational programmes not only for existing entrepreneurs and their employees, but also for those who are at the beginning of their business journey or want to pursue a new career in this field.
In cooperation with local partners - Digital Journey, a digital marketing training centre, and eCOMHUB, an e-commerce growth support platform, Google will provide training in areas such as export, e-commerce, digital marketing and integrating technology into business.
The trainings will equip participants with knowledge necessary to grow their companies by teaching them how to use digital platforms to expand their business, find new export markets and ways to reach new customers online. Additionally, in light of the current situation part of the programme will also offer trainings in the topic of cybersecurity, helping to familiarize people with the common security threats online and practical ways of how to protect the business data, devices and websites. The trainings will be suitable for all employees of small and medium-sized enterprises who wish to improve their digital skills.
To attend the trainings, you simply need to register on the website https://www.ecomhub.lv/izaugsme-ar-google, indicating the desired course topic, date and time. The trainings will start on April 19 and will be delivered online by experienced trainers. All trainings will be conducted in Latvian.
More information on Grow Latvia with Google can be found at https://www.ecomhub.lv/izaugsme-ar-google.