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Innovate UK R&D loans for UK SMEs


Innovate UK is offering between £100,000 and £2m in loans to micro, small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) for highly innovative late stage research and development (R&D) projects with the best potential for the future.

Projects can include prototyping, demonstrating, piloting, testing and validation, and should focus on one or more of the following themes:

  • Technology families (including advanced materials and manufacturing)
  • Net Zero
  • Health and Wellbeing
  • Next generation digital technologies

Innovate UK said successful projects should demonstrate a clear route to commercialisation and economic impact.

Projects should also lead to new products, processes or services that are significantly ahead of others currently available or propose an innovative use of existing products, processes or services. They can also involve a new or innovative business model.

Projects can last up to five years, including both the R&D and commercialisation phases. They are expected to start by July 2022.

Businesses can only submit one application per round of this competition.

There are four competitions in total and the second round opens on 12 April, followed by subsequent rounds on 12 May and 9 June.