Opportunity to apply for a share of up to £25million to deliver ambitious or disruptive R&D innovations with significant potential for impact on the UK economy.
Smart is the new name for Innovate UK’s ‘Open grant funding’ programme.
Innovate UK, part of UK Research and Innovation, will invest up to £25m in the best game-changing, innovative or disruptive ideas with a view to commercialisation.
All proposals must be business focused, rather than pure research. Applications can come from any area of technology (including arts, design, media or creative industries), science or engineering and be applied to any part of the economy.
While Innovate UK welcome projects that overlap with the grand challenge areas, they are also keen to support projects that are entirely outside these. Working in these areas is not a requirement to be eligible.
- All applications must include at least one micro, small or medium-sized enterprise (SME)
- Project durations between 6 and 18 months must have total eligible project costs between £25,000 and £500,000. They can be single or collaborative projects.
- Innovate UK will not accept projects with a duration below 6 months and/or costs below £25,000.
- Project durations between 19 months and 3 years must have total eligible project costs between £25,000 and £2million. They must be collaborative projects.
- Projects must start by 6 January 2020 and end no later than 6 January 2023.
To lead a project you must:
- Be a UK-based business of any size or a research and technology organisation (RTO)
- Carry out your R&D project activity in the UK
- Intend to commercially exploit the project results from the UK
- Be an SME if you want to work alone
- Include at least one SME if you want to collaborate with others (businesses, research organisations and/or charities)
An academic institution cannot lead on an application or work alone.
Single applicants must claim funding. If the project is collaborative, the lead and at least one other organisation must claim funding.
To collaborate on a project you must fulfil the criteria above and include an SME. Collaborators can be UK-based businesses, academic organisations, charities, public sector organisations or RTOs.
Projects can include partners that do not receive any funding (for example, non-UK businesses). Their costs will count towards the total project costs but they will not count as collaborators.
Innovate UK will not fund proposals that:
- Do not meet the competition scope
- Do not address the size, potential and access to market for the innovation
- Do not evidence the potential for their idea or concept to lead to significant return on investment (ROI), positive economic impact, growth and scale-up of the business
Innovate UK have allocated up to £25million to fund a number of innovation projects in this competition.
The knowledge providers or research organisations in your consortium can share up to 30% of the total eligible project costs. If your consortium contains more than one research organisation, this maximum is shared between them. For feasibility studies and industrial research, you could get funding for your eligible project costs of:
- Up to 70% if you are a small business
- Up to 60% if you are a medium-sized business
- Up to 50% if you are a large business
For experimental development projects which are nearer to market, you could get funding for your eligible project costs of:
- Up to 45% if you are a small business
- Up to 35% if you are a medium-sized business
- Up to 25% if you are a large business
Cresco Innovation works with companies to develop and implement innovation strategies. We help client companies identify opportunities to develop new products and services, and then create a package of support to ensure that the idea is turned into a commercial reality.
Our services include securing grants (as a team we have raised around £40million over three years), business planning, IP advice, access to finance and funders, project management and IP commercialisation support.
We regularly act as the interface with the funding bodies and help clients ensure that their projects are properly managed to ensure the best outcome for all.
Phil holds an honours degree in mechanical engineering and has worked as a technologist, project manager, research funding bid author, key knowledge holder, bid manager and funding acquisition quality manager. He has delivered more than £19million to clients.