The aim of the Manufacturing and Materials Innovation Competition is to stimulate and widen innovation in UK manufacturing and materials. A range of projects that address technical or commercial challenges can be supported. These aim to increase business productivity, competitiveness and growth, particularly for SMEs. A project may focus on technical feasibility, industrial research or experimental development. The type of innovation project will depend on the nature of the challenge the applicant business is facing.
According to Innovate UK, innovation is necessary in order to increase manufacturing productivity, material efficiency and competitiveness in the long term.
In this manufacturing and materials competition, Innovate UK is particularly seeking applications that:
- take an innovative step in addressing the manufacturing readiness of growing sectors;
- develop flexible or efficient processes;
- seek greater customisation of products to fit diverging consumer needs;
- diversify product and service lines to serve new markets;
- develop novel services that open up new sources of revenue from manufacturing.
Innovate UK has up to £15 million available for innovation projects lasting up to one year; £5 million for projects lasting up to two years; and £5 million for projects up to three years. IUK expects projects to range in size from total costs of £50,000 to £2 million and to last from six months to three years.
Projects may focus on technical feasibility, industrial research or experimental development. This will depend on the identified challenge.
For technical feasibility studies and industrial research, the applicant could receive up to:
- 70% of eligible project costs for a small business.
- 60% if for a medium-sized businesses.
- 50% for a large business.
For experimental development projects, which are nearer to market, the applicant could receive up to:
- 45% of eligible project costs for a small business.
- 35% for a medium-sized business.
- 25% for a large business.
All projects must be led by a UK-based business and must involve at least one SME. The business may also work with other businesses or research organisations.
For this competition specifically IUK would like to encourage applications featuring the novel application of a digital technology or approach to manufacturing or materials development (such as automation, modelling and simulation, data analysis) or the design for manufacture, use and end-of-life.
Round 2 is now open. The deadline for registrations is 18 January 2017. Full applications must be submitted by 25 January 2017.
For more information please contact Chris Gibbs: Chris.firstname.lastname@example.org