ZABALA is a Spanish SME (over 400 employees) with wide experience in supporting entities in the management of their RTD and innovation activities, as well as in technology transfer projects and activities. It is a consolidated RTD and Innovation consultancy firm working across Europe on these fields since 1986. Its headquarters are in Spain (Mutilva, next to Pamplona), having offices in Madrid, Barcelona, Bilbao, Seville, Valencia, Vigo, and Zaragoza. In Europe, ZABALA also has its own offices in Brussels (Belgium), London (UK), Paris and Bordeaux (France), and Lisbon (Portugal). It currently provides, on a contract basis, consultancy services related to RTD and innovation management to a portfolio of 600 organizations (including SMEs, big companies, RTD centers, universities, and public organizations). As part of its services, ZABALA is specialized in providing services to public administrations in the definition of new support innovation tools (definition of new rules related with public procurement as a relevant tool to support the innovation – CPI and PPI) and in supporting the exploitation of R&D results in regional, national, and European projects.

Its international project department is comprised by a remarkable team of specialists (technical staff, lawyers, economists) with vast experience in project and tender management and in supporting the companies in the participation process. The core tasks of the international team comprise the preparation, negotiation and management of R&D and innovation projects, the establishment of big consortia, the communication with EC and other public administration authorities as well as the development of studies for public bodies. ZABALA currently provides this kind of services to coordinators of around 60 projects, being also involved in twenty-two different projects whether as partner or as coordinator. Since 2000, ZABALA has been involved in several European projects where the main aim is to support the organizations to bring their research and innovation project results to the market. In these projects ZABALA has participated in assessing how close the project results are to the market and prioritizing them. Additionally, ZABALA has participated providing the following services to the organizations to support them in this process:

  • Elaboration of a public funding roadmap to support the next steps to be carried out by the organization to reach the market. ZABALA has extensive experience in public funding for innovation at regional, national, and European level.
  • Training for business plan elaboration and IPR.
  • Training for elaboration of pitching elevators.
  • Support the access to private funding: VC, Business Angels.
  • Support the access to corporates and first clients in B2C environments.


Juan José Candel

Innovation manager & EU projects operational coordinator, ZABALA

PhD in engineering and production with more than 8 years of experience in the preparation and management of European H2020 and Horizon Europe projects. He is operational coordinator of European projects at the Valencia office and an expert proposal evaluator.

Juanjo participates as Innovation Manager in PRE-HLB and ToNoWaste European projects.

Carla Sala

Communication and dissemination of European Projects, ZABALA,

Degree in Journalism. For more than four years, she has been directing and designing the dissemination and communication strategy of a variety of European projects in which ZABALA is involved, focusing on energy transition, biology and health, the start-up ecosystem, finance and the agri-food sector. She has also organised and planned the communication of events both for European projects and for local entities.