Results of SME Investment Activities: A Comparative Analysis among Enterprises Using and Not Using EU Subsidies in Poland
The need to pay some attention to the issues of investment processes undertaken in enterprises and explore this topic is a direct result of the important role that enterprises play in the economy—with particular emphasis on the SMEs. From the company's point of view, it is crucial to obtain economic effects as a result of the implemented investment. The aim of the study was to analyze the results of tangible investments in enterprises in Małopolska province in Poland, in two groups of
... groups of entities—those that implemented investments using EU subsidies and those that financed investments from other sources without using EU aid. This is a unique research in the field of analysis and presentation of investment data in enterprises, especially in relation to companies using EU funds. There is no comparative assessment of investments in enterprises on this topic in the scientific literature (concerning EU subsidies). For this reason, comparing the effects of investment activities between the two groups of enterprises studied—using and not using EU subsidies—fills the research gap in this regard. The study was based on the critical analysis of domestic and foreign literature, and quantitative and qualitative analyses of the results of a survey among 160 enterprises using the CSAQ method, additionally extended by interviews with selected respondents. Data presentation uses a descriptive approach in combination with statistical analysis. A multiple linear regression model (MLR) was also used to verify hypotheses. Research results show that undertaking investment activities contributes to obtaining favorable results in enterprises, regardless of the source of investment financing. The source of financing the investment is not important for the results achieved in the enterprise. However, representatives of companies who received EU subsidies assess their market position higher after investment relative to companies that used other sources of financing for this purpose. Entities that have received EU subsidies have a stronger perception of investment as an important factor determining the company's development. In addition, variables were identified using the MLR model that affect the assessment of the financial position of enterprises in both groups of entities. This article supplements the knowledge on the economic effects of investments implemented by enterprises in the SME sector in Poland in a situation where these entities used and did not benefit from EU subsidies during 2007–2015.