UK registered organisations can apply for a share of up to £25 million for game changing and commercially viable R&D innovations that can significantly impact the UK economy. This funding is from Innovate UK, part of UK Research and Innovation.
Programme: Innovate UK
Award: Share of up to £25 million
Opens: 15th Jun 2023
Closes: 27th Sep 2023
Innovate UK, part of UK Research and Innovation, is investing up to £25 million in the best game-changing and world-leading ideas, designed for swift, successful commercialisation. Ideas need to be genuinely new and not just disruptive within their sector.
The Innovate UK Smart grant supports SMEs and their partners develop the best game changing and word-leading innovative R&D projects. It offers funding where other opportunities are not available or appropriate, and where timing is key to ensure swift and successful commercialisation post-project completion.
To be in scope your proposal must demonstrate:
Your project must focus on:
If your application does not meet the eligibility criteria for this competition it will not be sent for assessment.
Your project must:
The end by date is the date by which all funding for this round of the competition must end. Your contracted project end date will not be extended.
If your project’s duration is 6 to 18 months, it must:
If your project’s duration is 19 to 36 months, it must:
Under current restrictions, this competition will not fund any procurement, commercial, business development or supply chain activity with any Russian and Belarusian entity as lead, partner or subcontractor. This includes any goods or services originating from a Russian and Belarusian source.
To lead a project or work alone your organisation must:
More information on the different types of organisation can be found in our Funding rules.
If the lead organisation is an RTO it must collaborate with 2 businesses (one SME, and one business of any size) and there must be a credible route to market for the output of the project. Since the purpose of RTOs is to speed up the progress of those using their services this is expected to be through the other project partners, rather than through the RTO itself.
Academic institutions cannot lead or work alone.
To collaborate with the lead, your organisation must be one of the following UK registered:
Each partner organisation must be invited into the Innovation Funding Service by the lead to collaborate on a project. Once accepted, partners will be asked to login or to create an account and enter their own project costs into the Innovation Funding Service.
To be an eligible collaboration, the lead and at least one other organisation must apply for funding when entering their costs into the application.
Subcontractors are allowed in this competition.
Subcontractors must be based in the UK for the duration of the project and their portion of the project work must be carried out in the UK. Subcontractors can be from anywhere in the UK and you must select them through your usual procurement process.
All subcontractor costs must be justified and appropriate to the total project costs. For the purposes of this competition the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man are crown dependencies and not classed as part of the UK. Subcontractors located there would be ineligible.
A business, research and technology organisation (RTO) or charity can only lead on one application but can be included as a collaborator in a further 2 applications. Any subsequent applications submitted with the same lead will be ineligible and will not be forwarded for assessment.
All project partners can collaborate on any number of applications.
You can use a previously submitted application to apply for this competition.
You can make a maximum of 2 submissions to Innovate UK with any given proposal. If Innovate UK judges that your proposal is not materially different from your previous proposal, it will be counted towards this maximum.
If your application goes through to assessment and is unsuccessful, you can reapply with the same proposal once more.
Innovate UK will not award you funding if you have:
Innovate UK are not funding projects:
Innovate UK will not fund commercialisation activities such as marketing and sales.
Innovate UK cannot fund projects that are:
Up to £25 million has been allocated to fund innovation projects in this competition. Funding will be in the form of a grant.
If your organisation’s work on the project is commercial or economic, your funding request must not exceed the limits below. These limits apply even if your organisation normally acts non-economically but for the purpose of this project will be undertaking commercial or economic activity.
For feasibility studies and industrial research projects, you could get funding for your eligible project costs of:
For experimental development projects which are nearer to market, you could get funding for your eligible project costs of:
For more information on company sizes, please refer to the company accounts guidance.
If you are applying for an award funded under State aid Regulations, the definitions are set out in the European Commission Recommendation of 6 May 2003.
The research organisations undertaking non-economic activity as part of the project can share up to 30% of the total eligible project costs. If your consortium contains more than one research organisation undertaking non-economic activity, this maximum is shared between them. Of that 30% you could get funding for your eligible project costs of up to:
Book an appointment to speak to one of our advisors to discuss your eligibility to apply for this Grant Funding opportunity.