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Virtual Incubators and Online Business Tools for Agro-Food SMEs

In: Operational Research in Agriculture and Tourism


  • Christina Diakaki

    (Technical University of Crete)

  • Nikoleta Banani

    (Technical University of Crete)

  • Evangelos Grigoroudis

    (Technical University of Crete)


Due to their limited access to resources, experts, and integrated business tools, the SMEs, which comprise the major part of the agro-food sector, struggle to start and develop their business in the highly competitive environment of our days. A recent survey suggested a need for support with respect to information, learning, networking and use of business tools. Such support can be offered via online tools and services, and has been the aim of the work presented in this chapter to search and provide a relevant review. Since such services and tools are typically provided by business support agents such as incubators, accelerators and innovation/entrepreneurship centers, a literature review of these agents and the business services they offer is also provided. The reviews reveal that there is a number of online platforms offering services and tools along the aforementioned four axes of interest, but no platform exists to fully cover all the expressed needs, being also specialized in the agro-food sector. This lack reveals a hidden potential for the sector, which can be elaborated through the development of online business platforms and tools tailored to its special requirements and needs.

Suggested Citation

  • Christina Diakaki & Nikoleta Banani & Evangelos Grigoroudis, 2020. "Virtual Incubators and Online Business Tools for Agro-Food SMEs," Cooperative Management, in: Evangelia Krassadaki & George Baourakis & Constantin Zopounidis & Nikolaos Matsatsinis (ed.), Operational Research in Agriculture and Tourism, pages 27-48, Springer.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:comchp:978-3-030-38766-2_2
    DOI: 10.1007/978-3-030-38766-2_2

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