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SBRI – Digital transformation of Hanoi Metro Line 5, Vietnam


Organisations can apply for a share of £300,000, inclusive of VAT, to deliver feasibility studies to support digital innovation for the Hanoi Metro System in Vietnam.

This is a Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI) competition funded by Innovate UK and jointly delivered by Innovate UK and Crossrail International with support from the Department of International Trade in Vietnam.

The aim of the competition is to support organisations to undertake feasibility studies, that demonstrate how innovation can support Hanoi Metropolitan Railway Management Board (MRB) with their digital transformation.

This is a single phase competition. Successful delivery of a project is intended to demonstrate innovation for the digital management of Line 5 for Hanoi Metro. It may provide opportunities for further support to establish the innovation into the client’s business.

Any adoption and implementation of a solution from this competition would be the subject of a separate, procurement exercise with MRB and does not guarantee future work.

This competition does not cover the purchase of any solution.

Projects must have maximum total eligible costs of £75,000, inclusive of VAT.

Open Date:


Close Date:


You must undertake a feasibility study, that demonstrates how your innovation can support Hanoi Metropolitan Railway Management Board (MRB) with their digital transformation of Line 5 of the Hanoi Metro System.

MRB may consider this approach on further metro lines being planned. All future contracts will be subject to a separate commercial procurement process.

A digital strategy for MRB is being developed by Crossrail International (CI), a specialist advisory practice, wholly owned by the UK government’s Department for Transport (DfT). CI will be working with MRB to develop the digital strategy and is positioned to assist successful applicants to develop their innovative proposals in association with MRB. You must be able to work with MRB directly in order to develop the innovations in your chosen project theme.

You must be able to demonstrate a deep knowledge and understanding of the theme you have chosen and ideally show application experience in the UK market.

Due to the current challenges for international travel, it is not anticipated that significant travel to Vietnam will be required for your project. Travel and material costs are expected to be a small proportion of your total R&D services cost. You should plan to deliver your project remotely as far as practical, with provision for no more than two trips to Vietnam.

Applicants must read the technical annex to this competition before submitting their proposal.

Specific themes

This competition focuses on delivering feasibility studies targeting the digital innovation challenges of the Hanoi Metropolitan Railway Management Board (MRB) in Vietnam.

Your project must focus on one of the following themes for this programme, identified by Crossrail International in association with MRB:

Theme 1

Digital Project Management Office (PMO)

Theme 2

Efficient data management (Common Data Environment)

Theme 3

Digital environmental acceptance

Theme 4

Digital asset information management

You can find further detail on the themes and background of the challenge in the technical annex and the competition briefing event.

Crossrail International will be able to support successful applicants to understand the needs and context of the individual themes and assist with introductions with MRB.

You can apply for multiple themes, but you must submit a separate application for each theme.

Research caregories

Objective: technical feasibility studies

This means planned research or critical investigation to gain new knowledge and skills for developing new products, processes or services.

The supplier will work closely with the stakeholders to develop and deliver the identified deliverables. The objective is to support organisations in developing an understanding of the requirements of the MRB’s digital strategy and then deliver their project.

Projects are expected to start on 1 January 2022, end by 31 March 2022 and can last up to three months. Projects must have maximum total eligible costs of £75,000, inclusive of VAT.

To lead a project, you can be an organisation of any size.

Contracts will be awarded only to a single legal entity. However, if you can justify subcontracting components of the work, you can employ specialist consultants or advisers. This work will still be the responsibility of the main contractor.

Number of applications

You can submit multiple applications but must submit a separate application for each specific theme.

A total of up to £300,000, inclusive of VAT, is allocated to this competition.

Contracts will be up to £75,000, inclusive of VAT, for each project for up to three months. Innovate UK expect to fund up to four projects.

The total funding available for the competition can change. The funders have the right to adopt a ‘portfolio’ approach‘ across the competition themes, and technologies.

Research and development

Your application must have at least 50% of the contract value attributed directly and exclusively to R&D services, including solution exploration and design.

R&D does not include:

  • Commercial development activities, such as quantity production
  • Supply to establish commercial viability or to recover R&D costs
  • Integration, customisation or incremental adaptations and improvements to existing products or processes

Innovate UK will not fund projects that:

  • Do not offer deliverables aligned to MRB’s challenges
  • Are not within a year of being ready for market
  • Do not create a significant change in the level of innovation available in the Vietnamese rail industry
  • Have total eligible costs or project terms outside of the eligibility guidance

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.

Call to find out more

If you’d like to know more about this competition, please give us a call on 01509 261182 and one of our team will be delighted to help you access this funding opportunity for your business.