Pricing information

Pricing of the processes to obtain a label related to the “European Cluster Excellence Initiative”

The European Secretariat for Cluster Analysis (ESCA) exclusively operates the labelling processes in cooperation with a broad network of specifically trained international experts.* For specific purposes in the context of the labelling processes ESCA selects and proposes the experts to be involved. An agreement is found with the cluster organisation, which expert is going to be involved. In any case a contract with ESCA needs to be concluded according to the following processes:

Standard Process I is based on an involvement of experts only for content related aspects of the labelling process. The cluster organisation (or any other organisation on behalf of the cluster organisation) concludes a respective contract with ESCA.

Service Fee Standard Processes I:
ESCA organises and conducts the entire labelling procedure. Any expert(s) will be sub-contracted by ESCA.

a) ≈ 3 hours benchmarking interview on-site at the premises of the cluster organisation: EUR 2,250 (excl. VAT)
b) ≈ 3 hours benchmarking interview via video-conference (or face to face, if the distance the expert has to cover is less than 50 km or at the premises of the expert): EUR 1,650 (excl. VAT)

  • SILVER label process, new or renewal process (self-assessment benchmarking and ≈ 5 hours on-site assessment of the improvement areas at the premises of the cluster organisation): EUR 3,620 (excl. VAT)
  • GOLD label process, new/first time (2 full days on-site assessment of two experts at the premises of the cluster organisation): EUR 8,250 (excl. VAT)
  • GOLD label process, renewal of expired GOLD Label, within the first year of the expiry date of the label (1 full day on-site assessment of two experts at the premises of the cluster organisation): EUR 6,765 (excl. VAT)

Standard process II is based on an involvement of experts for content related aspects (similar to Standard Process I) and additional administrative aspects. These processes are subject to certain restrictions and can only be performed by experienced experts with prior consultation and approval from ESCA.

Service Fee Standard Processes II:
In order to be able to organise a labelling activity according to the Standard II processes, the expert must have concluded a contract with ESCA in advance, as ESCA must agree to the planned procedure and the selection of other experts to be involved, if necessary. Furthermore, ESCA is responsible for the provision of the respective forms and documents to the expert/cluster organisation, a quality check, the validation of the results, data analysis and the final approval as well as awarding the labels to the respective cluster organisation.

    • Cluster Benchmarking (leading to the BRONZE label, if the Eligibility Criteria have been met) – provision of the benchmarking report (and if applicable the BRONZE label certificate): EUR 1,100 (excl. VAT)
    • SILVER label process, new or renewal process (provision of benchmarking report upon receiving a full set of benchmarking data self-assessment, pre-check of the eligibility of the selected improvement areas, provision of the certificate SILVER/BRONZE depending on the result of the assessment, analysis and quality check of the assessment report): EUR 1,900 (excl. VAT)
    • GOLD label process, new/first time and renewal (analysis and quality check of the assessment report, GOLD Label approval procedure, provision of the GOLD certificate): EUR 2,700 (excl. VAT)

ESCA is the only organisation for operating and facilitating the processes to obtain a label related to the “European Cluster Excellence Initiative”.

Travel expenses (within Europe) of experts – Charged additionally

In case that experts need to travel (> 50 km) to the premises of the cluster organisation, travel costs for the expert are charged additionally, consisting of 0.5 – 3 per diems per expert** (depending on the specific assignment) and evidenced transport costs (by the most appropriate means of transport given the distance involved).

For assessments outside Europe, the total travel time of the expert is calculated. If experts from Europe are involved in labelling activities outside Europe, the costs are correspondingly higher and should be requested from ESCA in advance.

The abovementioned prices and additional costs are net prices. If applicable, VAT will be due.

Value-added tax (VAT)

With regard to VAT, the supplied services are subject to the reverse charge in the country of receipt, provided that the customer has a valid VAT ID number. Otherwise the supplied services are subject to German VAT (currently 19 %) or in countries that do not belong to the EU and if applicable, the customer is responsible for paying the country-specific finance authorities the country-specific VAT at the current ruling rate.

Special cases are possible and up to discussion

In specific cases, where intermediaries or governmental implementation agencies, etc. or even single cluster organisations taking efforts to bring together an interested group of cluster organisations jointly planning their labelling efforts, discounts on the standard prices can be agreed.

ESCA encourages to be contacted by interested parties in such cases to discuss and present feasible alternative models aiming for adding additional value to the planned processes and at the same time finding ways to reduce costs for each single label process.

The above stated standard fees are valid for cluster organisations originated in Europe. Cluster organisations from outside Europe are in general eligible as well to apply for one of the labels. Terms, conditions and prices need to be specifically discussed. In any case, please contact ESCA for details.

Status: March 12, 2020
(Prices are subject to change)

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* As result of the “European Cluster Excellence Imitative – Phase 2” (2017-2019) it is planned to transfer the full responsibility for the Cluster Excellence Labelling Scheme to a new European legal entity. The conditions and prices of the various labelling processes will then be redefined. The transition from ESCA to the new legal entity will be carried out in a smooth manner. All awarded labels will remain valid as stated on the certificate.

** per diem rate according to: Per diem rates - 25 July 2022.pdf (