Innovate UK Smart Grants: April 2019

Submissions open: 26/04/2019
Final Bid Deadline: 24/07/2019
Funding body: Innovate UK

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 £25 million 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.

Whilst we welcome projects that overlap with the grand challenge areas, we are also keen to support projects that are entirely outside these. Working in these areas is not a requirement to be eligible.

  1. All applications must include at least one micro, small or medium sized enterprise (SME)
  2. 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.
  3. We will not accept projects with a duration below 6 months and/or costs below £25,000.
  4. Project durations between 19 months and 3 years must have total eligible project costs between £25,000 and £2 million. They must be collaborative projects.
  5. If you want to submit a project between 19 months and 3 years with total project costs between £2 million and £3 million as a permitted exception, you must email support@innovateuk.ukri.org with full justification at least 10 days before the competition closes. We will decide whether to approve your request.
  6. Projects must start by 6 January 2020 and end no later than 6 January 2023.

This competition provides funding for innovative research and development (R&D) from feasibility (including market research), through to technology or prototype testing and development stages up to (but not including) commercialisation.

Your proposal must demonstrate:
  • a clear game-changing, innovative and/or 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
  • sound, practical financial plans and timelines
  • awareness of all the main risks the project will face (including contractor or equipment failure, recruitment delays and so on) with realistic management, mitigation and impact minimisation plans for each
  • clear, considerable potential to significantly impact the UK economy and/or productivity in a positive way
  • good value for money, which will always be a consideration in Innovate UK funding decisions
More details on the official website