About Early Warning Europe

What is Early Warning?

The overall objective of Early Warning Europe is to promote entrepreneurship and growth of SMEs across Europe. A key element is to create strong framework conditions for entrepreneurs and businesses across sectors that can help them face key challenges, including managing a crisis, dealing with bankruptcy and getting a second chance.

The Early Warning Europe network is providing advice and support to companies in distress. Such interventions can help prevent bankruptcies and their negative consequences such as job losses, increased economic risk for suppliers in the company value chain, and a potential economic, social and personal deroute for the company owners and their families.

An early intervention will increase the likelihood of a turnaround of the company resulting in a stable economic situation for the company and even sustainable growth. Moreover, if a company in distress is closed down at an early stage of the crisis, the intervention can help avoid an unsurmountable debt for the company owner thus giving him or her the chance to start a new venture (2nd Chance).


In 2016, 15 organisations from seven European Member States formed a partnership to develop Early Warning Europe as a project organisation under the call “European Network for Early Warning and for Support to Enterprises and Second Starters“ under the EU COSME programme. The call was an integral part of the European Commission’s efforts to improve framework conditions for SMEs and entrepreneurs across Europe.

From late 2016 to late 2019, the partnership implemented the project together, set up Early Warning organisations in four countries, ensured their continuation after the project stage, assisted six new countries in setting up Early Warning mechanisms and developed a strategy for the continuous cooperation. This cooperation is shaped as an international network organisation of Early Warning operators and partners working for supporting and advising new and existing partners with an interest in Early Warning in the interest of companies in distress across Europe.

The Early Warning Europe Network focuses on

Raising awareness on all levels

The Early Warning Network incentivises European, national, regional or local events to raise awareness on early warning, second chance and bankruptcy.

Encouraging networking at European level

The Network organises events and workshops at European level to facilitate interactions between stakeholders and to gather experts from all member states to discuss policy questions on early warning, second chance and bankruptcy.

Facilitating capacity building

The Network strengthens the capacity of public and private organisations in member states and candidate countries to facilitate the establishment of early warning mechanisms.