In a recent speech, European Commission Vice-President Neelie Kroes put the emphasis on the need to encourage innovation here in Europe. The Digital Agenda drew attention to the fact that much of this innovation in Europe will in turn be driven by small and medium sized services companies. Innovation is now occurring in the deployment of technology and the ways that systems are used by sophisticated customers. Cloud computing in particular has shown itself to be a key growth driver.
But progress on this front will require more than the major suppliers improving their ability to adapt new technology to customers’ needs. It will require more than helping European entrepreneurs find capital and support. It will also mean clearing away accumulated barriers to competition that all too often prevent entrepreneurs and small businesses from bringing new products, new services and new ideas to market. A recently filed complaint by a small European provider of cloud-based network maintenance services named Multiven brings these two issues into sharp focus.