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Industrial biotechnology funding round-up

Posted on 13/05/2019

Find out about the latest funding calls of relevance to industrial biotechnology. Updated 10th June 2019.

It isn’t always easy to find the most appropriate funding programmes to support your innovation, so to make things a little bit easier KTN’s Industrial Biotechnology (IB) team have compiled a list of some of the latest funding calls of relevance to IB.

The team will be happy to help if you wish to find out more about these or other funding opportunities, need help finding collaborative partners, or are seeking advice on how to apply for funding. Please do not hesitate to get in touch.

RSC Emerging Technologies Competition

Competition closes: 05.07.19.

The Emerging Technologies Competition is the Royal Society of Chemistry’s annual initiative for early stage companies and academic entrepreneurs who want to commercialise their technologies to make a global impact.

The competition welcomes applicants from UK and Europe whose tech have a strong component of chemistry and falls in one of the following categories: HealthEnergy & environmentFood & drink; and Enabling technologies.

Click here to find out more.

Knowledge Transfer Partnerships

The KTP programme 2019 to 2020 is run continuously throughout the year.

Registration opens: 30.05.19. Closing date: 24.07.19.
Registration opens: 25.07.19. Closing date: 02.10.19.
Registration opens: 03.10.19. Closing date: 11.12.19.
Registration opens: 12.12.19. Closing date: 05.02.20.
Registration opens: 06.02.20. Closing date: 01.04.20.

Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP)  links your organisation with one of the UK’s world-class knowledge bases (a university or research organisation) to power strategic innovation projects, embed expertise and drive commercial growth. needed to develop it, a Knowledge Transfer Partnership may be the answer. It creates a dynamic three-way collaboration – between a business or not for profit organisation, a UK university or research organisation, and a suitably qualified graduate – to help realise a strategic innovation project, bring about transformative change and embed new capability.

Click here to find out more.

Innovate UK Smart Grants: February 2019

Competition closes: 24.07.19 at 12:00pm.

Smart is the new name for Innovate UK’s ‘Open grant funding’ programme. Innovate UK, as part of UK Research and Innovation, will invest up to £25 million in the best game-changing 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.

Click here to find out more.

Bacterial Plant Diseases

Application deadline: 25.07.19 at 16:00.

BBSRC, on behalf also of the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) and the Scottish Government, has announced a call for research to address threats to UK plant health and biosecurity from bacterial diseases. Proposals are invited for multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary studies of bacterial plant pathogens and their interactions with host plants, invertebrate vectors and the wider environment.

Click here to find out more.

KET4CleanProduction Micro Grants

Cut off dates for evaluations: 31.07.19, 31.10.19, 31.01.20, 30.04.20

European project KET4CleanProduction is offering micro grants for projects in Key Enabling Technologies (KET) including micro- and nano-electronics, nanotechnology, industrial biotechnology, advanced materials, photonics, and advanced manufacturing technologies. You will need to team up with at least two KET technology centres to work on your project. Projects can get up to 50,000 euros in funding. The grant should cover 70% of the total project costs while you cover the remaining 30%.

Click here to find out more.

Bio-Based Industries Joint Undertaking

Call closes: 04.09.19 at 17:00 CET.

The Bio-Based Industries Joint Undertaking (BBI JU) is a €3.7 billion Public-Private Partnership between the EU and the Bio-based Industries Consortium. Operating under Horizon 2020, this EU body is driven by the Vision and Strategic Innovation and Research Agenda (SIRA) developed by the industry. This funding call includes 21 topics.

The scientific priorities for 2019 are the following:

  1. Foster the supply of sustainable biomass feedstock to feed both existing and new value chains;
  2. Optimise efficient processing for integrated biorefineries through research, development and innovation;
  3. Develop innovative bio-based products for identified market applications;
  4. Create and accelerate the market-uptake of bio-based products and applications.

Click here to find out more.

Hello Tomorrow Global Challenge

Applications close: 13.09.19.

The Hello Tomorrow Global Challenge is a worldwide renowned science & technology startup competition designed specifically to address the needs of deep tech entrepreneurs across several different industries and technologies. The 14 categories include: Aeronautics; Advanced Computing & AI; Cybersecurity & Communication; Digital Health & Medical Devices; Drug Discovery; Energy; Environment; Food & Agriculture; Industrial Biotech; Industry 4.0; Medical Biotech;  Mobility; New Space; and Smart City.

Click here to find out more.

Energy Catalyst Round 7

Competitions opens: 17.06.19. Competition closes: 18.09.19 at 12:00.

Up to £22m is to be invested in innovation projects that will help countries in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia access secure, low-cost and low-carbon energy.  The aim of the competition is to support highly innovative, market-focused energy solutions in any technology or sector or international market.  Focusing on the needs of poor households, businesses and services in Sub-Saharan Africa or South Asia, projects must be targeted at people who are unable to afford or access existing solutions, or who lack the time or expertise to successfully use those solutions. Energy Catalyst Round 7 is looking for projects that address all three elements of the energy ‘trilemma’: cost; emissions; security of supply and energy access.

There are three options to apply into this competition:

early stage for feasibility studies
mid-stage for industrial research
late stage for experimental development

Most Innovative European Biotech SME Awards

Closing date: 19.09.19.

EuropaBio invites biotech start-ups and SMEs across Europe to apply for the 10th edition of the Most Innovative European Biotech SME Award – a unique annual initiative recognising biotech innovation and its contribution to society. SMEs can apply in three categories: healthcare, agricultural or industrial biotechnology. Two companies will be shortlisted in each category by a Jury of biotech and SME experts, with the winners celebrated during a landmark event held in Brussels on the 6th November. Each winner will also receive €10,000 prize money and two years free EuropaBio membership (runners-up also receive the latter), in addition to European-level exposure and visibility as well as press coverage.

Click here to find out more.

MRC/AstraZeneca Centre for Lead Discovery

Opens: 01.08.19. Closing date: 02.10.19 at 16:00 GMT+1.

Aiming to support academic researchers in discovering potential starting points for small molecule therapeutic approaches with a clear line-of-sight to therapeutic use. Academic researchers will benefit from unprecedented access to over two million molecules in AstraZeneca’s compound library, as well as its state-of-the-art high throughput screening (HTS) facilities. Following completion of the HTS campaign, sufficient ‘hit’ data should be available to enable applicants to seek follow-on funding internally through confidence in concept or through the MRC’s Development Pathway Funding Scheme (DPFS).

Click here to find out more.

Follow-on Fund Synthetic Biology Highlight

Call opens: 10.07.19. Application deadline: 09.10.19 at 16:00.

BBSRC’s Follow-on Funding (FoF) supports the translation of research into practical application, including commercialisation. Projects must draw substantially on previous research funding by BBSRC, this includes projects funded by BBSRC through responsive mode, the IB Catalyst, Newton Fund programmes co-funded by BBSRC such as SuBB, European programmes co-funded by BBSRC such as ERASynBio, ERA CoBioTech, ERA-IB, ERA Bioenergy and ERA-Net Plus BESTF and EPSRC research programmes co-funded by BBSRC such as Synthetic Biology for Protective Materials and Supergen.

Click here to find out more.

Follow-on Fund

Call opens: 10.07.19. Application deadline: 09.10.19 at 16:00.

BBSRC’s Follow-on Funding (FoF) supports the translation of research into practical application, including commercialisation. The FoF is a proof-of-concept programme to support bioscience innovation and provide funding where further work on an idea will take it through to a stage at which the route to application is clear, which may include a spin-out, licensing opportunity or the creation of a social enterprise. The programme enables researchers to conduct activities essential to preparing a robust business plan and to secure, where appropriate, further funding and support to progress the project. Standard BBSRC eligibility criteria apply, and the Principal Investigator (PI) must currently or previously have held BBSRC funding with demonstrable relevance to the application. Follow-On Fund projects must draw substantially on previous research funding by BBSRC and fall within their portfolio.

Click here to find out more.

UK Research and Innovation Strength in Places Fund: Wave 2 EoI

Competition opens: 03.06.19. Competition closes: 09.10.19 at 12:00pm.

Consortia of UK businesses and research organisations can apply for ‘seed corn’ funding of up to £50,000 to develop full applications for wave 2 of the UKRI Strength in Places Fund. Projects must focus on any one technological area, sector or discipline. At full stage your proposal can draw on a mix of capital and revenue funding appropriate to the activities proposed. Your project proposal should take a place-based approach to research and innovation funding.

Click here to find out more.

STFC Bridging for Innovators (B4I) programme

The Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) is a multidisciplinary research organisation that funds and operates a number of large science facilities offering research and development access to commercial users. Through these facilities, and their expert staff, they can provide access to advanced experimental and computational tools to address challenges in all aspects of the industrial biotechnology supply chain. Their £8 million Bridging for Innovators (B4I) programme is specifically designed to help companies overcome difficult product, manufacturing or process performance issues by providing access to advanced analytical technologies, supporting expertise and capabilities through STFC’s large scale science facilities located around the UK.

Click here to find out more.

Circular Economy Fund (WRAP Cymru)

This £6.5m fund will offer grants to businesses of any size seeking capital investment funding to increase their use of recycled materials in manufactured products, components or packaging. WRAP Cymru will administer the fund on behalf of the Welsh Government.

Click here to find out more.

UK Innovation & Science Seed Fund (UKI2S)

The UK Innovation & Science Seed Fund (formerly known as The Rainbow Seed Fund) is a £27.1m early-stage venture capital fund building and growing technology companies stemming from the UK’s research base. UKI2S works closely with its partners – led by STFC, BBSRC and NERC, which are all part of UK Research & Innovation (UKRI) and Dstl — and is aligned with the Catapults and Innovate UK to create the best environment for innovation to flourish and in turn, boost the UK’s competitiveness and productivity by commercialising key technological advances in industrial biotech, ag tech, healthcare, medicine, clean energy, materials, artificial intelligence, software and space.

Click here to find out more.

HSBC SME Loan Fund

HSBC UK has announced a £12 billion lending fund to support the UK’s small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The Fund includes a ring-fenced £1 billion to help UK companies grow their business overseas, as well as a broader package of support. The initiative is available to UK businesses with a turnover of up to £350 million. Applicants do not need to be an HSBC customer to apply.

Click here to find out more.

Horizon 2020 Calls

Horizon 2020 is the EU’s multi-billion research and innovation funding scheme running from 2014 to 2020. The UK government has issued some documents to clarify the UK’s eligibility to participate in Horizon 2020 if there is no Brexit deal.

KTN has a range of training videos for UK companies in how to write a successful project proposal for European funding.

UK businesses benefitting from Horizon 2020 research funding are urged to register their details with the government so they can continue to receive funding if the UK leaves the EU with no deal.

Currently open calls include:

Fast Track to Innovation – aims to accelerate the market uptake of ground-breaking innovations by providing funding through an open, accessible scheme that nurtures ideas from consortia of innovators of all types and sizes from across Europe. Various deadlines throughout 2019. Click here to find out more.

Horizon 2020: SME Instrument – Phase 1 – The SME Instrument supports high-risk, high-potential small and medium-sized enterprises to develop and bring to market new products, services and business models that could drive economic growth. Closes: 04.11.20. Click here to find out more.

Horizon 2020: SME Instrument – Phase 2 – The SME Instrument supports high-risk, high-potential small and medium-sized enterprises to develop and bring to market new products, services and business models that could drive economic growth. Closes: 07.10.20. Click here to find out more.

EIC Horizon Prize for ‘Fuel from the Sun: Artificial Photosynthesis’  – The challenge is to build a fully functional, bench-scale prototype of an artificial photosynthesis based system. Deadline: 03.02.21. Click here to find out more.