The missing million and other (less ethereal) sources of R&D funding and business support - PKF Francis Clark
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The missing million and other (less ethereal) sources of R&D funding and business support

I tried again today to find out more about the “Up to £1m of innovation funding earmarked for businesses in Cornwall to support their development of technologies, products and processes in energy efficiency, power generation and energy storage” promised by the Prime Minister in the lead up to last month’s G7 meeting.

But again I drew a blank, beyond a reference (in Energy Digital) to this funding being ‘earmarked’ to be delivered through a “future round of its Energy Entrepreneurs Fund.”  I will look again for details in the next couple of weeks but if anyone comes across meaningful information in the interim please let me know…

Innovation funding

In more positive news to South/South West based businesses looking to (grant) fund R&D projects and/or other support with R&D, my research indicates there are a number of schemes currently live or opening soon, including:

Region Fund News (or reminders)
Great Britain and Northern Ireland Net Zero Innovation Portfolio The Net Zero Innovation Portfolio provides funding for low-carbon technologies and systems.  Focused on 10 priority areas including:

  • Future offshore wind
  • Nuclear advanced modular reactors (supported through the aligned Advanced Nuclear Fund)
  • Energy storage and flexibility
  • Bioenergy
  • Hydrogen
  • Homes
  • Direct air capture and greenhouse gas removal (GGR)
  • Advanced CCUS
  • Industrial fuel switching
  • Disruptive technologies
UK Innovate UK/UKRI Innovate UK is part of UK Research and Innovation, a non-departmental public body funded by a grant-in-aid from the UK government.  Includes funding competitions – search for innovation competitions here and/or here.
West of England – Bath & North East Somerset, Bristol, North Somerset or South Gloucestershire Business Innovation Fund

 

The West of England Combined Authority’s Business Innovation Fund provides SMEs with tailored support to bring new products, services and processes to market.  Includes grants.

 

Closed – “second application window opening very shortly. You can register your details with the West of England Growth Hub today and we will alert you when the next window is open.

Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Marine-i Last week Marine-i announced “RD&I support for businesses that are newcomers to marine sector” and this, “the most comprehensive support programmes for innovation available anywhere in the world” would appear to include “sometimes grant support”.

 

Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Aerospace Cornwall Aerospace Cornwall is a research, development and innovation (R&D) fund, that enables businesses to take their Big Idea and turn it into a viable product ready to market in the space and aerospace sector. Includes grant funding.
Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Agri-tech Cornwall Agri-tech Cornwall supports businesses new to Research Development & Innovation (RDI), as well as businesses that have already invested in research. Projects can be large or small.  Includes innovation grants.
Cornwall and Isles of Scilly ATI2  Acceleration Through Innovation 2 (ATI2) ATI2 supports business innovation across Cornwall and Isles of Scilly.; working with businesses who are looking to adopt innovative processes or commercially exploit new ideas and technology as an opportunity for the development of their business. Includes Innovation grants.
EU Member States and countries associated to Horizon Europe EIC Accelerator The EIC Accelerator supports individual small and medium enterprises (SMEs), in particular start-ups and spinout companies to develop and scaleup game-changing innovations. Includes grant and investments (direct equity investments) [Note: as of 2 weeks ago this fund was “overwhelmed by high demand”]

I will be looking to get confirmation on the grants and other support available for the Cornwall & Isles of Scilly focused funds once this blog has been posted. I will update for any revisions (as I am aware that some EU-funded schemes may be fully committed re grant monies, for example).

PKF Francis Clark

Whilst researching this blog, I came across two references to innovation hubs/innovation centres opening in the last week – one in Dorset Innovation Park (specialising in agri-tech) and one in Bristol and Bath Science Park.

I know the innovation tax team are doing a lot of work re EIS and SEIS clearances for fast-growing, innovative businesses looking to raise equity and a lot of R&D Tax Credit work for businesses that have invested in R&D. On both aspects I highly recommend speaking to one of the specialists here at an early stage (and especially if considering going for grant funding).

The money tree(s)?

Whilst maybe not relevant to a lot of our clients, I did find myself smiling when I came across the Tree Production Innovation Fund (TPIF) – as it just conjured up to me phrases such as – “money does not grow on trees” and/or the “money tree”. But if you are innovating in the “development and adoption of new technologies and ways of working that will enhance the quantity, quality and diversity of planting stock available for tree planting in England” – then details at link.

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