Innovation loans: September 2018 open competition

Innovate UK is to offer up to £10 million in loans to micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). Loans are for highly innovative late stage projects with the best game changing and/or disruptive ideas or concepts. There should be a clear route to commercialisation and economic impact.

Projects should aim to develop new products, processes or services (or innovative use of existing ones) believed to be significantly ahead of anything similar in the field.

Your proposal can come from any technology (including arts, design, media or creative industries) and any part of the economy.

Projects must focus on commercialisation, growth or scale up. Priority is given to proposals likely to lead to growth, gains in productivity and/or access to new overseas markets through export.

Projects should last up to 5 years, of which up to 3 years can focus on late stage research and development (R&D), and up to 2 more years on establishing a clear route to commercial success. Loan repayments will be required over a further period of up to 5 years.

Businesses must be able to show that they:

  • can cover interest payments
  • will be able to repay the loan on time
  • need public funding

Funding type

Loan

Project size

Loans of between £100,000 and £1 million are available. Projects should last up to 5 years and are expected to start by March 2019.

Innovation loans competition briefing events will be held in:

Liverpool, Sensor City on 10th October

Oxford, Begbroke Science Park on 15th October

Port Talbot, on 16th October

Belfast, TechStartNI on 18th October

London, America Square Conference Centre on 19th October

Online webinar  on 19th October

Glasgow, Strathclyde University (TBC)

To register, click on the relevant event above.

Each briefing event will provide background information on innovation loans and the approach to credit decision-making from Innovate UK, advice on how to prepare a compelling project application from the Knowledge Transfer Network and discussion on sources of funding for growth through innovation from the Enterprise Europe Network and local members of the innovation ecosystem.

Open competition for innovation loans

Innovate UK is to offer up to £10 million in loans to SMEs for innovative late stage projects.  The aim of this competition is to provide loans to help SMEs to undertake game-changing innovations with strong commercial potential across any sector or industry.  Innovation loans will offer affordable, patient, flexible, repayable funding for later-stage research & development projects with a clear route to commercial success.  More information can be found here.

This is the final scheduled competition in Innovate UK’s £50m innovation loans pilot programme.

The deadline for registration for this Open Innovation Loans competition is 14th November and the application deadline is noon on 21st November 2018.

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