Innovation loans: July-September 2019 open competition
Innovate UK is offering 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 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 and gains in productivity.
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
Loans of between £100,000 and £1 million are available to fund your project’s eligible costs.
Projects should last up to 5 years and are expected to start by March 2020.
To take on an innovation loan for a project you must:
- be a UK based micro, small or medium-sized enterprise (SMEs)
- carry out your project in the UK
- intend to exploit the results from or in the UK
- give evidence that your business is suitable to take on a loan
Individuals, research organisations and large companies are not eligible for innovation loans.
The aim of this competition is to help businesses overcome barriers to the best cutting edge, game changing innovations becoming a successful commercial reality. This includes making a considerable economic impact and/or resulting in significant, sustainable business growth.
Your proposal must demonstrate:
- a clear game-changing and/or disruptive innovative idea
- that your idea can lead to innovative products, processes or services that are significantly ahead of others in the field or that it includes prototyping, demonstrating, piloting, testing and validation in environments that represent real life operating conditions
- a strong and deliverable business plan that addresses (and documents) market potential and needs
- a team, business arrangement or working structure with the necessary skills and experience to run and complete the project successfully and on time
- awareness of all the main risks the project will face, with realistic management, mitigation and impact minimisation plans for each
- sound, practical financial plans and timelines that represent good value for money
- 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