Category: Financeinvestment

UK and USA - Innovation in Global Composites Market

Under the UK Research and Innovation Funding for International Collaboration (FIC) the UK and USA are running a joint grant funding competition.

The competition will focus on collaborative research and development (CR&D) projects, which should result in a new product, industrial process or service. Projects must be innovative, involve a technological risk and target large global markets.

We welcome proposals from UK organisations who can collaborate with existing US partners in the field of composites manufacturing.

US projects are being run by the Institute for Advanced Composites Manufacturing Innovation (IACMI) and their industrial partners. These projects are already funded. Successful UK applicants are funded solely by UKRI FIC through Innovate UK.

This competition closes at midday 12pm UK time on the deadline stated.

Opened: 29 May 2019

Closes: 21 August 2019

To find out more click here

Gigabit Voucher

Gigabit vouchers can be used by small businesses and the local communities surrounding them to contribute to the installation cost of a gigabit-capable connection. Businesses can claim up to £2,500 against the cost of connection either individually or as part of a group project. Residents can benefit from the scheme with a voucher worth £500 as part of a group project. 

Closing date - ongoing

To find out more click here

Interreg VA France

The France (Channel) England Programme has five Specific Objectives. If your project idea falls under one of these objectives and is in the eligible region, then please contact us with your idea to see if we can help.

Objectives are : Innovation, Social Innovation, Low Carbon Technologies, Natural and Cultural Heritage, Coastal and Transitional Water Ecosystems.

Closing date - ongoing

To find out more click here

CITB Grants

Apply for a grant or project funding, and learn how CITB supports training for the construction industry.

Closing date - ongoing

To find out more click here

Forward Enterprise Fund

The fund offers a combination of different type of support, depending on the needs of your enterprise. If successful the Forward Enterprise Fund will work with you to design a package of support to help your organisation develop and grow. Support could include a mix of:

Business Support : Pre-investment business support gives you the chance to work with specialist advisers to grow your business and become investment-ready.

Crowdfunder Support: You can get support to set up a crowdfunding campaign through Crowdfunder to raise capital for your business.

Loans: You can access loans to assist your business in its development.

Closing date - ongoing

To find out more click here

The Start-up Series: £150,000 of Equity Investment Funding

We aim to pick one business every month to receive investment from an EIS & SEIS fund.

Startups.co.uk are in partnership with experienced investment promoters Worth Capital. The series throws the doors wide open for companies to submit their applications from the 1st to the 14th of every month. From an initial simple application, businesses will be assessed through multiple stages and winners will be offered investment at a fair valuation in exchange for an equity stake in their business (subject to due diligence carried out by the Fund Manager).

Ongoing competition

To find out more click here

Goldman Sachs - 10, 000 Small Business Programme

Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses is an investment to help entrepreneurs create jobs and economic opportunity by providing greater access to education, capital and business support services. 10,000 Small Businesses is funded by Goldman Sachs and the Goldman Sachs Foundation.

Closing date - Ongoing

To find out more click here

The Creative Enterprise New Ideas Fund

The Creative Enterprise New Ideas Fund is a programme designed to help screen-based businesses move away from working project-to-project and develop more sustainable businesses.

Through the Fund, Creative England is able to offer small seed funding to sole traders, start-ups and small firms for their creative business ideas. The programme aims to support untapped talent and allow talented people to find finance for their ideas.

Investments of between £500 and £15,000 are available for emerging and new screen-based storytelling business proposals, including new business ideas, business proposals and business costs.

Date: Applications accepted on a rolling basis

To find out more click here

Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme (SEIS)

Though not strictly a grant funding, we felt SEIS was very relevant to add to this list. SEIS is a tax relief designed to encourage investors to invest in UK companies. In essence, investors can claim eligible investment against their tax bill, significantly reducing capital risk. Many professional investors and business angels now require SEIS at Angel Stage before they even look at a company. You can apply for SEIS status with HMRC here.

Funding: The relief allows investors to claim back up to 78% of their investment through tax in the first year (up to £150K, as of Jan 1st, 2014). Once companies are approved for SEIS status, there’s a process you must go through with HMRC to claim on behalf of your investor.

Closing date - ongoing

To find out more click here

R&D Tax Credits

The research and development tax credits scheme allows you to claim back a significant amount of your development costs back in cash each year! If you are a startup heavily focused on development, then this scheme is well worth checking out. The paperwork itself is not too complicated to fill in; there are also a few expert agencies about who can help you with filling it out for a price. You can find guides, more information and how to apply here.

Funding: You can claim back up to 32% in development costs each year; this even includes staff/contractor costs

Closing date - ongoing

To find out more click here

European Research Council (ERC) - Advanced Grants Call Open

The European Research Council (ERC) aims to provide attractive, long-term funding to support excellent investigators and their research teams to pursue ground-breaking, high-gain/high-risk research. Research funded by the ERC is expected to lead to advances at the frontiers of knowledge and to set a clear and inspirational target for frontier research across Europe.

The ERC provides Advanced Grants to support excellent Principal Investigators at the career stage at which they are already established research leaders with a recognised track record of research achievements. ERC Advanced Grant Principal Investigators are expected to be active researchers and to have a track record of significant research achievements in the last 10 years which must be presented in the application. Applicant Principal Investigators must also demonstrate the ground-breaking nature, ambition and feasibility of their scientific proposal.

In most fields, Principal Investigators of Advanced Grant proposals will be expected to demonstrate a record of achievements appropriate to the field and at least matching one or more of the following benchmarks:

Advanced Grants may be awarded up to a maximum of €2.5 million for a period of five years. Up to €1 million can additionally be requested to cover eligible "start-up" costs for Principal Investigators moving to the EU or an Associated Country from elsewhere as a consequence of receiving the ERC grant, and/or the purchase of major equipment, and/or access to large facilities.

The closing date for applications is 29 August 2019.

To find out more click here

IUK Announces Energy Catalyst Round 7 - Early, Mid & Late Stage Competitions

Innovate UK (IUK), The Department for International Development (DFID) and the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) are investing up to £22 million in innovation projects through the Energy Catalyst Round 7 Competition, as part of the Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) and Transforming Energy Access (TEA) programme.

Reliable energy services are crucial to human wellbeing and to a community’s economic development. They can transform people’s lives, and yet more than a billion people globally go without access to electricity; a further billion experience intermittent access; and around 3 billion people still cook on traditional biomass. Most of these people live in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) and South Asia (SA).

Innovation projects that can help countries in SSA and SA access secure, low cost and low carbon energy, are being funded through this competition. The aim is to support highly innovative, market-focused energy solutions in any technology or sector or international market.

There are three options to apply to this competition. These are referred to as strands and will be run in parallel. The strands are dependent on the stage the project is at:

The Energy Catalyst is open to any energy technology from any sector. Proposals must also address all three elements of the energy ‘trilemma’: Cost - affordable; Emissions - clean; and Security of supply and energy access.

IUK will fund organisations from anywhere in the world. To be eligible, applicants must be a business, academic organisation, charity, public sector organisation or research and technology organisation (RTO) and intend to exploit the results to help deliver clean energy access in Sub-Saharan Africa or South Asia.

There is up to £22 million of funding for R&D projects across all three strands. Early stage projects can have total costs of £50,000 to £300,000 and last up to one year. Mid stage: £50,000 to £1.5 million over 12 to 24 months. Late stage: £50,000 to £5 million, over 12 to 36 months.

The closing date for applications is 18 September 2019.

To find out more (early stage) click here

To find out more (mid stage) click here

To find out more (late stage) click here

Enhanced Financial Support Package for UK Exporters

An extensive new financial support package for small to medium-sized business (SMEs) exporting to fast-growing markets has been outlined by the Secretary of State for International Trade.

Overseen by UK Export Finance (UKEF), the package will include:

Dr Liam Fox said:

"These announcements are potential gamechangers for our export industry, and will help us to tap a fresh vein of potential from within our economy.

"Building a truly Global Britain takes real investment. It cannot be done on the cheap.

"If we want to become an exporting superpower, with greater influence, selling more goods and services abroad and encouraging more British investment overseas, then we will have to invest in the capabilities required.

"UKEF’s work would be at the very forefront of this investment strategy."

To find out more click here

Hello Tomorrow Global Challenge Launched with €100,000 Grand Prize for Deeptech Start-ups

The Hello Tomorrow Global Challenge is a worldwide start-up competition designed specifically to address the needs of deeptech entrepreneurs across several different industries and technologies. Deeptech is defined as technologies based on tangible engineering innovation or scientific advances and discoveries.

The Challenge gives scientists and deeptech entrepreneurs from around the globe a platform for their research and projects, providing equity-free prize money as well as other funding opportunities, global visibility and connections with key players in the deeptech innovation network and other fellow entrepreneurs.

There are 14 main industry or technology focus areas under 2019 the competition: Medical biotech; Digital Health & Medical devices; Drug discovery; Food & Agriculture; Industrial Biotech; Energy; Environment; Advanced computing & AI; Cybersecurity & Communication; Industry 4.0; Smart City; Mobility; Aeronautics; and New Space.

The prize package includes a €100,000 Grand Prize for the best early-stage start-up and 13 x €15,000 prizes for the best early-stage start-ups in each track. All prizes are offered on an equity-free basis, with no strings attached.

Hello Tomorrow aims to empower deeptech start-up entrepreneurs from around the world. The project must be in its early stages of development or about to be spun-out from an academic lab, as long as there is a strong proof-of-concept.

The project should be based on a scientific discovery, an advanced technology, a complex engineering process or an innovative application of an existing technology.

The deadline for receipt of applications is 13 September 2019.

To find out more click here

Stelios Awards for Disabled Entrepreneurs UK - 2019 Round Open

Sponsored by Sir Stelios Haji-Ioannou and administered by Leonard Cheshire Disability, the Stelios Awards for Disabled Entrepreneurs UK identify and celebrate business ability by recognising exceptional disabled entrepreneurs.

The competition is open to disabled entrepreneurs on the management board, and with ownership, of any business in the UK.

Awards are open to all forms of entrepreneurship (including pre-revenue start-ups). Applicants can be:

Prize money totalling £100,000 will be available in 2019. This year, the overall winner will receive £30,000 to further the growth of their business. They will also benefit from significant media coverage. Four shortlisted applicants will each win £10,000. Four prizes of £5,000 will also be available and a Judges’ Prize of £10,000 to be distributed to one or more applicants at the Judges’ discretion.

The money is to be reinvested in the winners’ businesses. Winners can spend this money however they choose, for example they could:

The 2019 Awards are now open to applications and Stelios will present the winners at a ceremony in the winter.

The deadline for entries is 5pm on Tuesday 10 September 2019.

To find out more click here

Pre-call announcement: Canada-UK Artificial Intelligence Initiative

The rapid development and ever-growing global investment in Artificial Intelligence (AI) illustrate the undeniable impact that these technologies are having, and will have, on our economies, health and societies. Given the expertise of researchers in Canada and the United Kingdom, the Canadian agencies and UKRI are jointly supporting the development of a collaboration in AI between stakeholders in Canada and the UK aimed at building competitive and resilient economies, and maximising the social and health benefits.

This is a unique collaboration which will require each project to include a principal investigator (PI) based in Canada and a PI based in the UK who will share equally leadership and project management responsibilities. The Canadian and UK applicants will develop a common research plan and jointly prepare the full proposal. Proposals will be required to demonstrate a significant degree of, or novel approach to, interdisciplinarity with research that cuts across at least two of the following research domains:

In addition to promoting interdisciplinary AI, this call will support the development of responsible AI while establishing new partnerships and enhancing infrastructure and training between researchers in Canada and the UK. The outputs and outcomes of the research should allow for uptake by relevant stakeholders where possible.

e and UK-based research organisations.

Closing date: 19 August 2019.

To find out more click here

IUK Launches EUREKA: Singapore Open Competition

EUREKA, in partnership with Enterprise Singapore, are coordinating this GlobalStars funding competition for research and development (R&D) projects under the EUREKA programme, which is administered by the UK's innovation agency, Innovate UK (IUK).

IUK is investing in UK businesses leading collaborative research and development (R&D) projects which will develop innovative proposals with Singapore and other EUREKA countries.

Projects should result in a new product, industrial process or service, be innovative and involve a technological risk. The competition scope is open, however, applications are encouraged in:

Projects must focus on industrial research but can include experimental development activities if IUK considers it appropriate.

Applications must be collaborative. UK-based businesses of any size should lead a project. They must involve at least one UK-based SME, unless the lead themselves is an SME. The lead applicant should collaborate with a lead organisation in Singapore.

IUK has allocated up to £1 million to fund innovation projects in this competition. Total eligible costs per project are expected to be between £100,000 and £1 million. This includes costs from all partners, from the UK and all other countries. The total grant available to the UK applicants is up to £350,000 per project.

Closing date: 26 September 2019.

To find out more click here

Analysis for innovators round 5: phase 1 expression of interest (de minimis)

UK Businesses will work with Innovate UK, part of UK Research and Innovation, to invest up to £1 million in innovation projects.

The aim of this competition is to match the best UK experts and cutting-edge facilities with companies that have analysis or measurement problems. Your application must describe the problem and estimate the value to your company of solving it.

Successful applicants at this expression of interest (EoI) phase will be invited to brokerage sessions with relevant analysis for innovators (A4I) partners, arranged by the Knowledge Transfer Network (KTN). These will focus on approaches to solve the applicant’s problem.

This is phase 1 of a 2-phase competition with de minimis state aid funding.

Phase 1 is an expression of interest.

Phase 2 is dependent on the success of phase 1. Successful applicants in phase 1 are invited to work with A4I funding partners to suggest joint projects to develop solutions for phase 2.

There is a similar A4I competition running under article 25 of state aid which awards eligible project costs between £25,000 and £300,000 for longer projects between 3 and 12 months.

Opened: 29 July 2019
Closes: 4 September 2019

To find out more click here

Analysis for innovators round 5: phase 1 expression of interest

UK Businesses will work with Innovate UK, part of UK Research and Innovation, to invest up to £3 million in innovation projects.

The aim of this competition is to match the best UK experts and cutting-edge facilities with companies that have analysis or measurement problems. Your application must describe the problem and estimate the value to your company of solving it.

Successful applicants at this expression of interest (EoI) phase will be invited to brokerage sessions with relevant analysis for innovators (A4I) partners, arranged by the Knowledge Transfer Network (KTN). These will focus on approaches to solve the applicant’s problem.

This is phase 1 of a 2-phase competition.

Phase 1 is an expression of interest.

Phase 2 is dependent on the success of phase 1. Successful applicants in phase 1 are invited to work with A4I funding partners to suggest joint projects to develop solutions for phase 2.

There is a similar A4I competition running under de minimis state aid funding which awards eligible project costs between £25,000 and £50,000 for smaller projects up to 3 months.

Opened: 29 July 2019
Closes: 4 September 2019

To find out more click here

Innovate UK Smart Grants

Your proposal

Your proposal must demonstrate:

Specific themes

We give preference to applications that demonstrate realistic, significant potential for global markets.

Proposals from innovation-based businesses with significant ambition and potential for growth or scale-up are welcome.

Where possible, projects should take customer and user needs into account to deliver more desirable and useful solutions.

Research categories

We are looking to fund projects, across a variety of technologies, markets, technological maturities and research categories.

This competition provides funding for innovative research and development (R&D) from:

Please see the general guidance for further information on these.

Projects we will not fund

We will not fund proposals that do not:

Opened: 25 July 2019

Closes: 16 October 2019

To find out more click here

Key technology components for local energy systems

UK Research and Innovation will invest up to £3 million in important technology components that can enhance the efficiency of local energy systems. These should deliver cleaner, cheaper energy services and create more prosperous and resilient communities across the UK.

We are looking for specific innovations that are listed in more detail in our ‘specific themes’ section.

Your project must align with the overall objectives of the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund’s Prospering from the Energy Revolution challenge. You are also expected to share data with the Energy Systems Catapult’s Energy Revolution Integration Service (ERIS) and the Energy Revolution Research Consortium, EnergyRev.

This funding is from the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund’s Prospering from the Energy Revolution challenge.

Opened: 22 July 2019
Closes: 9 October 2019

To find out more click here

Accelerating the building of housing using geospatial intelligence: SBRI competition

This is a Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI) competition with funding provided by the GovTech Catalyst Waltham Forest Council.

The aim of the competition is to investigate how technology can be used to monitor developments of all sizes and types, building an accurate picture of development status from permission to completion and occupation.

The outcome should be solutions which create an accurate timeline of development. The developed tool will be tested to ensure it enables planners to make more informed decisions.

The overall programme will be delivered over 2 phases. This is phase 1 of a potential 2-phase competition. A decision to proceed with phase 2 will depend on the outcomes from phase 1. Only successful applicants from phase 1 will be able to apply to take part in phase 2.

Phase 1: research and development contracts, feasibility study

The first phase involves research and development contracts being awarded to demonstrate technical feasibility of the proposed solution.

Phase 2: research and development contracts, prototype development and testing

The second phase involves up to 2 R&D contracts being awarded to businesses chosen from the successful phase 1 applicants.

Funding type: Procurement

Opened: 15 July 2019

Closes: 21 August 2019

To find out more click here

Innovation loans: July 2019 open competition

Innovate UK is offering up to £10 million in loans to micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). Loans are for highly innovative late stage projects with the best game changing and/or disruptive ideas or concepts. There should be a clear route to commercialisation and economic impact.

Projects should aim to develop new products, processes or services (or innovative use of existing ones) believed to be significantly ahead of anything similar in the field.

Your proposal can come from any technology and any part of the economy.

Projects must focus on commercialisation, growth or scale up. Priority is given to proposals likely to lead to growth and gains in productivity.

Projects should last up to 5 years, of which up to 3 years can focus on late stage research and development (R&D), and up to 2 more years on establishing a clear route to commercial success. Loan repayments will be required over a further period of up to 5 years.

Businesses must be able to show that they:

Opened:  8 July 2019

Closes: 11 September 2019

To find out more click here

Newton-Ungku Omar Fund Grand Challenge 2019: phase 1

Innovate UK, part of UK Research and Innovation, and the Malaysian Industry-Government Group for High Technology (MIGHT) are working collaboratively under the Newton-Ungku Omar Fund. Together we will invest up to £2 million (RM 11 million) for innovative projects that provide collaborative solutions to the challenges of urban mobility and waste to wealth in Malaysia.

Innovate UK will fund the UK partners only and MIGHT will fund the Malaysian partners.

The overall programme will be delivered in 2 phases. This application process is for phase 1. Only successful applications from phase 1 will be able to take part in phase 2. Phase 2 will open 15 June 2020.

Phase 1 is for collaborative feasibility studies only. This is to help UK and Malaysian businesses investigate:

During phase 2, your project must provide economical and sustainable solutions to be demonstrated in environments that represent real life operating conditions.

The competition closes at midday 12pm UK time on the deadline stated.

Funding type: Grant

Opened: 8 July 2019

Closes: 16 October 2019

To find out more click here

Enabling data access in accountancy, insurance and legal services: Innovation Lab

Innovate UK, part of UK Research and Innovation, will invest up to £3.5 million to develop responsible data access or sharing methods in the accountancy, insurance and legal services sectors. These will enable the application of artificial intelligence (AI) and data technologies.

Individuals can apply to take part in a 3-day residential Innovation Lab on behalf of their organisation. The Innovation Lab will run from 14 to 16 October 2019. The participants will work together to develop collaborative proposals for research and innovation projects.

After the Innovation Lab, the project consortia will have 4 weeks to finalise their proposals before submitting them for assessment.

Not participating in the workshop does not exclude organisations or individuals from joining collaborations formed during the workshop as partners.

Opened: 1 July 2019

Closes: 4 September 2019

To find out more click here

Enterprise Hub Announces 2019 Launchpad Competition

The Launchpad Competition invites early career engineering entrepreneurs to submit a business plan based on their engineering innovation for the chance to win seed funding, training and mentoring.

Each year, the programme will support one engineering entrepreneur to start a business.

The winner will receive:

These awards support an individual, who may be part of a team, based in the UK, who has an engineering innovation they wish to commercialise by leading a start-up company.

The lead applicant must be based in the UK and be between the ages of 18-25 on the application closing date.

Stage one applications must be submitted by 2 September 2019.

To find out more click here

£100m Initiative to Help UK Firms Capitalise on Offshore Wind Market

The UK is said to be well suited to exploiting wind power, with turbines having been erected in over 30 locations. However, it is widely accepted that the sector has produced too few jobs. By 2030, the offshore wind power market is expected to be worth £30 billion per year, with the UK generating a third of its electricity from wind.

The Offshore Wind Growth Partnership (OWGP) is a £100 million initiative designed to help UK businesses maximise opportunities in the global offshore wind supply chain market.

Activities will initially focus on helping supply chain companies with strategy and leadership, project management, people excellence, process excellence, health and safety culture, and quality management. It will also work with the offshore wind developers to provide greater long-term visibility of project pipelines that will help supply chain companies to plan and, if necessary, to invest in new capability or capacity.

Support will include a range of services, such as expert advice on manufacturing and commercialisation, as well as funding for innovation. This will:

The programme is expected to support over 650 UK companies to access the domestic offshore wind market.

Industry Chair of the Offshore Wind Industry Counci, Benj Sykes, said:

"The offshore wind industry is offering multi-million pound opportunities to hundreds of innovative companies throughout the UK in the years ahead – including new entrants to the market, as well as firms already working in this area.

"The Offshore Wind Growth Partnership will provide practical help for UK companies so they can compete successfully for contracts in this thriving global market."

Companies will be invited to apply for support on a regular basis, with the first pilot opportunity anticipated to be launched in September 2019.

To find out more click here

Horizon 2020: what it is and how to apply for funding

Horizon 2020 is the largest ever European funding programme for research and innovation. It has a budget of 79 billion euros and will run until 2020.

It aims to:

This guidance is designed to help people in the UK understand and access the funding opportunities available, in order to innovate and grow both in the UK and abroad.

What is Horizon 2020?

The Horizon 2020 programme was established by the European Union (EU) as a collaborative financial instrument that would help secure Europe’s global competitiveness in research and innovation.

The programme – running from 2014 to 2020 – is seen as a means of putting Europe at the heart of world-class science and innovation, making it more competitive, creating economic growth and new jobs. It offers an open, simple structure for accessing funding in order to remove barriers to collaborative innovation, get new projects off the ground quickly and achieve results faster.

Funding calls are based on 3 areas:

Excellent science

This area focuses on raising the level of excellence in Europe’s science base by:

Industrial leadership

This area stimulates the growth potential of European companies by:

Societal challenges

This area aims to tackle the biggest challenges facing modern society. It reflects the policy priorities of the European Commission and covers all stages of research and innovation, from concept to market.

To find out more click here

Commercialising quantum technology: large collaborative projects round 1

UK businesses can apply for a share of up to £27 million to collaborate on developing quantum products and services. This funding is from the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund.

The aim of the competition is to advance the commercialisation of quantum technologies in the UK through the investment of up to £27 million in innovation projects. Projects should focus on one or more of the following technical challenges:

The projects must exploit second generation quantum techniques.

Projects must demonstrate how the technology can be brought to market (as hardware, software or a service) in the UK and how it fulfils an end user need. Projects must include the development, manufacture (if applicable) and application of the technology.

Applications are expected from consortia led by a business but in exceptional circumstances applications from consortia led by research and technology organisations (RTOs) will be considered.

Opened: 5 August 2019

Closes: 30 October 2019

To find out more click here

Commercialising quantum technology: feasibility and industrial research projects round 1

UK businesses can apply for a share of up to £6 million for quantum technology innovation projects funded by the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund.

The aim of the competition is to advance the commercialisation of quantum technologies in the UK. This is achieved through the investment of up to £6 million in innovation projects which address one or more of the following technical challenges:

Projects must:

Applications can be single or collaborative and must be led by a business. All applications must include a micro, small or medium sized enterprise (SME).

Opened: 5 August 2019

Closes:  30 October 2019

To find out more click here

August Expressions of Interest for Aerospace Technology Institute (ATI) Programme

The Aerospace Technology Institute (ATI) Programme represents a £3.9 billion joint government and industry investment to maintain and grow the UK’s competitive position in civil aerospace.

This programme is co-ordinated and managed by:

We work in collaboration to deliver a portfolio of projects to meet the objectives of the Aerospace Technology Strategy, ‘Raising Ambition’.

This is an expression of interest competition. There are 3 stages and the whole process takes at least 6 months.

More information is on the ATI website.

Opened: 5 August 2019

Closes:  21 August 2019

To find out more click here

Driving the electric revolution: accelerated supply chain development, strands 1 and 2

Innovate UK, part of UK Research and Innovation, will invest up to £19 million across 2 strands in innovation projects to support the creation, development and scale up of supply chains in power electronics, machines and drives (PEMD) in the UK. This is the first competition as part of a new Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund: Driving the Electric Revolution.

The aim is to support the transition towards a low carbon future in transport, energy and industry. This competition will fund business-led projects that enable electrification through the development of UK supply chains for PEMD.

Your proposal should clearly state how your project will develop PEMD supply chains in the UK. This can be by filling gaps in current UK based supply of PEMD components or scaling up existing supply chains through innovation.

This competition is split into 2 strands.

Opened: 29 July 2019
Closes: 25 September 2019

To find out more click Strand 1 and Strand 2

Manufacturing made smarter: round 1 (fast start)

The Industry Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF) will invest up to £30 million in projects that focus on the use of industrial digital technologies (IDTs) to transform the productivity and agility of UK manufacturing. The challenge will support innovation and deployment of IDTs across industry sectors via cross-sector collaboration and learning.

We welcome a variety of project types, from feasibility studies to large innovation and/or demonstrator projects.

Projects must be able to achieve rapid technology development and deployment.

We will use a portfolio approach to achieve a balance between the 4 challenge themes, industrial sectors, project types and company sizes.

All projects must be ready to start on or before 1 December 2019, with a defined consortium agreement, agreed industry match funding and a project plan.

Projects must be business led and collaborative, with all consortia involving at least one SME. Projects led by SMEs are encouraged.

Opened: 24 July 2019

Closes: 28 August 2019

To find out more click here

Enabling integrated diagnostics for early detection

The Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF) has a programme in data to early diagnosis and precision medicine. The programme is led by Innovate UK and the Medical Research Council (MRC), part of UK Research and Innovation.

Innovate UK will invest up to £17 million in the research, development and evaluation of integrated diagnostic solutions. An additional investment of up to £3 million is available for oncology-focused projects from Cancer Research UK.

Integrated diagnostics are disruptive innovations that link technologies, data, care pathways and systems to create new diagnostic and precision medicine solutions. The aim is to detect and diagnose earlier in the disease course, more sensitively and specifically, and with more nuanced information on prognosis and/or therapy selection.

This competition aims to accelerate development of innovative diagnostic tools and technologies by multi-disciplinary and cross-sector consortia.

Your project can focus on early development of new modality combinations (such as the combination of imaging and genomic information with new algorithms) and their detection technologies, to later stage refinement of more established tools. However, even in earlier stage development you must consider how your proposed solution could be used in clinical practice and be integrated into NHS care pathways.

Your project must involve collaboration between industry and the UK’s supporting healthcare and research infrastructure. This will be critical in ensuring new products, processes and services are fit for purpose and solutions can be translated into clinical settings. Your project can include health economic studies, modelling of care pathways and the generation of evidence to support adoption

Opened: 22 July 2019

Closes: 25 September 2019

To find out more click here

Eureka Eurostars 2: round 12

UK SMEs can apply for a share of up to £2.5 million to collaborate in research with partners across Europe and associated countries.

This competition is aimed at small or medium sized enterprises (SMEs) working on high-quality research and development (R&D) projects across national borders.

These enterprises often find it difficult to attract public-sector funding. EUREKA Eurostars was set up to overcome this barrier to innovation. With its market-led approach, it encourages international collaborative research and innovation projects that will be rapidly commercialised.

Eurostars supports SMEs in leading international collaborative research and innovation projects by helping them get access to guidance and funding.

A Eurostars project must have a civilian purpose and be aimed at the development of a new product, process or service.

Projects must be led by a research-performing SME

Opened: 15 July 2019

Closes: 12 September 2019

To find out more click here

Backing Youth Ambition - New Support for the UK’s Young Entrepreneurs

Almost two thirds of young people have, or would consider, starting their own business but many say a lack of funding and experience is putting them off, according to research commissioned by The Prince’s Trust and Lloyds Development Capital (LDC). Following the publication of this research, the two organisations have come together to launch Backing Youth Ambition, an initiative designed to support youth enterprise across the UK.

The three-year programme aims to help over 1,200 young people explore and launch their own businesses through start-up grants and additional funding for The Prince’s Trust Enterprise Programme. LDC is also providing support through fundraising, volunteering and mentoring activity across its regional offices, employees and investee companies.

Young entrepreneurs from across the UK may be eligible for support through the programme.

Nick Stace, UK Chief Executive of the Prince’s Trust, said:

"Starting a business can transform a young person’s life and is a brilliant way for them to fulfil their potential and gain a greater stake in our society.

"Together with LDC, we will help to break down the barriers these young people are facing and give as many of them as possible the confidence and opportunity to become their own boss."

Martin Draper, CEO at LDC, said:

"Young entrepreneurs are essential to a thriving economy.  What is clear, is there is no shortage of ambition amongst young people to be their own boss.

"We’re excited to join forces and support their mission, helping to back the ambition of young people and create a new generation of entrepreneurs."

Applications can be submitted at any time.

To find out more click here

Industrial 5G Testbeds & Trials: Manufacturing and Logistics Sectors Projects

The Industrial 5G Testbeds and Trials competition is making available UK Government investment to trial new 5G services and applications in the vertical industry sectors of manufacturing and logistics. The aim of these projects is to demonstrate the value of 5G, beyond enhanced mobile broadband, by targeting industrial uses that can help deliver efficiency, productivity, and other benefits in the UK economy, and help the UK lead the development of enterprise applications for 5G.

This competition is aimed at consortia led by private sector companies and requires the participation of at least one small or medium sized enterprise (SME). The application should be submitted by the lead project partner. Leading a consortium will include development and leading the delivery of the project and proactively encouraging participation from small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs). The details of project roles and eligibility are provided in the Competition Guidance and supporting documents.

These projects will explore 5G deployment and industrial use cases in the areas of manufacturing and logistics. We are seeking involvement from a range of companies that have the potential to contribute to the testbeds and trials, such as manufacturing and logistics companies, system integrators, mobile and fixed network operators, and equipment suppliers. Public sector, Academic, and Research and Technology Organisations may also be involved.

To apply for DCMS grant funding from this competition please complete the Application Form provided and return to industrial5gtt@culture.gov.uk.

The Competition Guidance, Programme Overview, Application Form and supporting documentation are available below. Instructions on how to apply are available in the Competition Guidance.

The 5GTT Programme is making available funding for this competition, subject to the outcome of the upcoming Government Spending Review. Funding will come from the National Productivity Investment Fund, via the £200 million allocated to the 5GTT Programme.

Opened: 18 July 2019

Closes:  10 October 2019

To find out more click here

Launch of £3m Fund for Businesses Redistributing Surplus Food

The FareShare Surplus with Purpose Fund is aimed at offsetting the costs faced by food producing companies seeking to redistribute their edible surplus comestibles to charities and community groups helping vulnerable people.

The programme has an overall budget of £3 million. Businesses could be eligible for up to £50,000 worth of funding. Greater sums can be negotiated, where appropriate, for high volumes of surplus food.

The money can be used to cover the additional staff costs needed for packing and sorting edible surplus food, or in building, implementing and managing new processes. It could also cover packaging and transportation costs, or lost income from the sale of surplus to animal feed or anaerobic digestion.

Food production businesses in the UK that are seeking to redistribute additional surplus food items may qualify for support.

FareShare CEO, Lindsay Boswell, said:

"This fund will be instrumental in making sure companies who want to do the right thing with their surplus can quickly and safely divert their surplus to frontline charities, in a way that’s cost effective.

"It's a win-win for industry – tackling the issue of food waste at the same time as making a real and measurable impact in the communities they operate within – putting good food on the plates of people who need it."

Applications may be submitted at any time.

Interested parties are asked to complete a form on the funder’s website. They may also email foodoffers@Fareshare.org.uk or call the funder on 020 7064 8911 to discuss participation in the programme.

To find out more click here

Entries Open for 2019 Enterprise Nation Female Start-up of the Year

The Enterprise Nation Female Start-up of the Year competition has been created to showcase early stage female start-up entrepreneurs who are excelling in their industry. Whether it's creating an innovative product or disrupting a traditional marketplace, participants should have a clear vision for the direction of their business as well as ambitious plans for growth.

Enterprise Nation will shortlist three business owners to pitch live on stage at the Festival of Female Entrepreneurs event in Bristol on 18 October 2019. Each company will make a pitch in front of a panel of judges. The chosen Enterprise Nation Female Start-up of the Year winner will be announced live on stage at the event and receive prizes to help them and their business flourish and grow.

The 2019 prizes are as follows:

£1,000 Facebook advertising credit.

The latest Dell laptop.

'Power your business with Square' which includes a Square Reader and Dock, plus £1,000 worth of free processing.

Two hour mentoring session from Enterprise Nation adviser members.

Two tickets to Enterprise Nation's StartUp 2020 event in London.

Profile on the Enterprise Nation blog and social media.

The title of Enterprise Nation Female Start-up of the Year 2019.

The competition is open to female entrepreneurs who are eligible to work in the UK. The applicant's start-up must be a UK based company that is less than five years old with no more than 10 employees.

Closes: 13 September 2019

To find out more click here

IUK Announces Developing the UK's Low Carbon Automotive Capability Competition (APC 14)

The Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC) is investing through the ‘Developing the UK's Low Carbon Automotive Capability (APC14)’ funding competition, in partnership with the UK's innovation agency, Innovate UK (IUK) and the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS).

APC 14 is looking for projects that support the UK’s long-term capabilities through securing long-term R&D investment, or that can be achieved through its associated supply chain in the design, build and manufacture of zero tailpipe emission vehicles. Preferably projects will deliver both, to ensure the UK meets the future demand of vehicle-makers.

APC has allocated up to £20 million to match fund innovation projects in this competition. A project’s total eligible costs must be 50% match funded and between £5 million and £40 million. Applicants must request the minimum amount of funding needed for their project.

Projects must be led by a business working in partnership with others and must include an SME and a vehicle manufacturer or tier 1 supplier. To collaborate on a project, an applicant must be a UK based business, academic organisation, or research and technology organisation (RTO). They should carry out the project work in the UK and intend to exploit the results from or in the UK.

Opens: 19 August 2019

Closes: 16 October 2019

To find out more click here

Mechanising and improving advanced therapy manufacture

UK businesses can apply for a share of up to £3.7million for research and development projects to improve manufacturing of advanced therapies. This funding is from the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund.

Innovate UK, as part of UK Research and Innovation, will invest up to £3.7million in innovation projects. These will be to allow robust process design for the manufacture of advanced therapies.

The aim of this competition is to encourage inventors of advanced therapies to introduce affordable technology during early innovation stages. This technology will enable them to reproduce the manufacture of their product at a commercial scale.

Your proposal should describe how new tools will make the manufacture of the product less dependent on human operators. Industry co-funding must be contributed at a rate of no less than 50% of total project costs. Your application must be collaborative.

Opens: 27 August 2019

Closes: 25 September 2019

To find out more click here

Automation Prototypes: Invitation to Apply

We are looking to invest in prototypes that use creative technologies to deliver original processes, experiences, products, services or platforms within the field of automation.

We are looking to fund ideas that are brave and distinctive, that open up the field of automation to new voices and challenge the status quo within the field. We anticipate awarding grants of between £10k and £40k.

Please read the full Automation Prototype call: Automation Prototypes: invitation to apply

We will continue to update our Automation Prototype Call FAQ’s

We will let you know if you are invited to the Pitch and interview by the 8 November 2019. Shortlisted applicants will be invited to present their idea at the pitch and interview day on the 27 or 28 November 2019 in Exeter. Get in touch with Charlie Tapp, Producer at Kaleider (charlie@kaleider.com) if you have any questions or want to talk to us about your application.

Opened: 29 July 2019

Closes: 16 September 2019

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