Innovate UK have allocated up to £15 million to fund innovation projects. Successful applicants can attract grant funding towards their eligible project costs. The competition is open to the best business-led ideas or concepts. These can be drawn from any technology, engineering or industrial area.

Priority will be given to proposals that are likely to lead to sustainable gains in the productivity and/or access to new overseas markets through export led business growth.

The percentage of costs that Innovate UK pay through a grant varies and depends on the type of research being carried out and size and type of organisation involved. The competition is split into two streams, dependent upon the length and size of the project. Expected project lengths are between 6 to 36 months and total eligible costs can range from £25,000 to up to £1 million.

Projects can focus on:

  • feasibility studies, which may include a proof of market
  • industrial research
  • experimental development depending on the challenge identified and proposed solution


To lead a project you must:

  • be a UK based business
  • be a business of any size
  • carry out your project in the UK
  • work alone or in collaboration with others (businesses, research base and third sector)


The competition opened on 6 June, with the following dates to note:

  • REGISTRATION must be made before noon on 31 August 2016
  • APPLICATIONS must be submitted before noon on 7 September 2016
  • DECISION to applicants will be made before the end of November 2016

There are briefing webinars available:

  • WATCH a briefing webinar recording
  • Register for briefing webinar scheduled for 1 July 2016
  • Register for briefing webinar scheduled for 5 July 2016

The competition’s briefing note can be found here and further guidance can be found here