Innovate UK, part of UK Research and Innovation, is investing up to £25 million in the best game-changing and commercially viable innovative or disruptive ideas. All proposals must be business focused.

Applications can come from any area of technology and be applied to any part of the economy, such as, but not exclusively:

  • the arts, design and media
  • creative industries
  • science or engineering

Whilst we welcome projects that overlap with the grand challenge areas this is not a requirement, as we are also keen to support projects in other areas.

Projects of 6 – 18 months must have total eligible project costs between £25,000 and £500,000 and can be single or collaborative. Projects of 19 – 36 months must have total eligible project costs between £25,000 and £2 million and must be collaborative.

Your project must:

  • include at least one micro, small or medium-sized enterprise (SME) as the lead or a collaborative grant claiming partner
  • start by 1 November 2021
  • end by 30 November 2024
  • follow specific rules dependent on its duration

If your project’s duration is 6 to 18 months:

  • it must have total eligible project costs between £25,000 and £500,000
  • it can be single or collaborative

If your project’s duration is 19 to 36 months, it must:

  • have total eligible project costs between £25,000 and £2 million
  • be collaborative

To lead a project you must:

  • be a UK registered business of any size or a research and technology organisation (RTO)
  • be an SME if you want to work alone
  • include at least one SME if you are a large business or RTO and wish to collaborate with other UK registered businesses, research organisations, academic organisations, public sector organisations or charities
  • carry out all your project activity in the UK
  • intend to commercially exploit the project results from or in the UK

Academic institutions can be involved in a project, but cannot be the lead or work alone.

Your proposal must demonstrate:

 

  • a clear game-changing, innovative, disruptive, and ambitious idea leading to new products, processes or services
  • an idea that is significantly ahead of others in the field, set for rapid commercialisation
  • a strong and deliverable business plan that addresses (and documents) market potential and needs
  • a clear, evidence based plan to deliver significant economic impact, return on investment (ROI) and growth through commercialisation, as soon as possible after project completion
  • a team, business arrangement or working structure with the necessary skills and experience to run and complete the project successfully and on time
  • awareness of all the main risks the project will face (including contractor or equipment failure, recruitment delays, etc) with realistic management, mitigation and impact minimisation plans for each risk
  • clear, considerable potential to significantly impact either or both, the UK economy and productivity in a positive way
  • sound, practical financial plans and timelines that represent good value for money, which will always be a consideration in Innovate UK funding decisions

We strongly encourage applications to demonstrate realistic, significant potential for global markets.

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

An online briefing will be held on 5th February at 11:30am – join here (direct Zoom link to meeting – click this on the day)

If you want help to find a project partner, contact the Knowledge Transfer Network.