The Transforming Foundation Industries (TFI) Challenge fund will work with Innovate UK, part of UK Research and Innovation, to invest up to £1.5 million in innovation projects. This funding is from the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF).Projects must address the resource productivity or energy performance opportunities of the sector and its supply chains.

The aim of this competition is to improve the competitiveness of our Foundation Industry sector by helping it to become more environmentally sustainable.

Your proposal must focus on the development of new:

  • markets
  • business models
  • products and services manufactured by the sector
  • products and services created by suppliers to the sector
  • processes

This competition is split into 2 strands, these are:

Your project must:

  • have total eligible costs between £25,000 and £250,000
  • start on 1 February 2022
  • end by 31 January 2023
  • last from 3 months to 12 months
  • carry out its project work in the UK
  • intend to exploit the results from or in the UK
  • For strand 2, the project must be collaborative and must involve at least one SME.

For strand 1, to lead a project or work alone your organisation must be a UK registered SME business. (Strand 1 projects do not need to be collaborative.)

For strand 2, to lead a project your organisation must:

  • be a UK registered business of any size
  • collaborate with UK registered businesses, academic institutions, research organisations, not-for-profits, or research and technology organisations (RTOs)
  • involve at least one micro, small or medium-sized enterprise (SME)

To collaborate with the lead, your organisation must be one of the following UK registered:

  • business of any size
  • academic institution
  • charity
  • not-for-profit
  • public sector organisation
  • research and technology organisation (RTO)

A business can only lead on one application but can be included as a collaborator in a further 2 applications across both strands of this competition.

Organisations not leading a project can collaborate on any number of applications.

The aim of this competition is to improve the competitiveness of our Foundation Industries sector by helping it to become more environmentally sustainable.

Your project must address the resource productivity or energy performance opportunities of the sector and its supply chains.

Your project must focus on the development of new:

  • markets
  • business models
  • products and services manufactured by the sector
  • products and services created by suppliers to the sector
  • processes

Your project can focus on one or more of the following:

  • energy costs and optimisation such as heat or energy recovery and reuse
  • process measurement, optimisation and digitisation, such as sensor technology or digital tools
  • waste recycling, utilisation and symbiosis, such as reuse of waste or industrial symbiosis

This list is not exhaustive, and other technologies or projects that clearly fall within scope of the Challenge will be welcomed.

Innovate UK are not funding projects that:

  • focus on fuel switching or greenhouse gas capture technology
  • do not focus on foundation industries and their immediate supply chains
  • respond only to the skills needs of foundation industries
  • are capital or infrastructure projects
  • have total eligible project costs of below £75,000 or above £250,000

An online briefing event will be held from 10.30am-noon on Tuesday 17th August: click here to register for a place.

If you want help to find a project partner, contact KTN’s Materials team.