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Analysis for Innovators (A4I) Round 9 – Stage 1 UK businesses can apply for a share of up to £3 million to resolve productivity and competitiveness issues by working with top scientists and research facilities. Eligibility This competition is open to single applicants only. To lead a project your organisation must be a UK registered business of any size.

Programme: Innovate Uk

Award:

Opens: 7 November 2022

Closes: 4 January 2023

Description

Innovate UK part of UK Research and Innovation will invest up to £3 million in small collaborative innovation projects working with our analysis for innovators (A4I) partners:

  • the National Physical Laboratory (NPL)
  • the National Measurement Laboratory (NML) at Laboratory of the Government Chemist Group (LGC)
  • the National Engineering Laboratory (NEL)
  • the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC)
  • National Institute for Biological Standards and Control (NIBSC)
  • National Gear Metrology Lab (GEARS)
  • Newton Gateway to Mathematics
  • Advanced Sustainable Manufacturing Technologies (ASTUTE 2020+)
  • Henry Royce Institute (HRI)

The aim of this competition is to match the best UK scientists and cutting-edge facilities with businesses that have complex analysis or measurement problems.

Your proposal must describe a measurement or analysis problem where you are seeking a solution to improve your businesses productivity or competitiveness. You must provide an estimate of the value to your business of solving it.

This is stage 1 of a 2 stage competition. No funding is awarded at this stage.

If you are successful at this stage, you will be invited to brokerage consultations with relevant analysis for innovators (A4I) partners. These will focus on potential approaches to solving your problem. You will work together to propose joint projects to develop solutions and apply for the stage 2 competition to request funding.

Following assessment, successful stage 2 applications will be grant funded, to work with the relevant A4I partner organisations.

In applying to this competition, you are entering into a competitive process. This competition closes at 11am UK time on the deadline stated.

Funding type

Grant

Project size

If successful at stage 1, your stage 2 project’s total costs must be between £15,000 and £120,000.

Who can apply

Your application

Your application must:

  • meet the A4I problem scope requirements
  • relate to work being undertaken in the UK
  • intend to exploit the results from or in the UK
  • involve at least one of the A4I partner organisations
  • indicate a stage 2 project duration of between 3 and 9 months
  • indicate a stage 2 project start date of between 1 July 2023 and 1 October 2023

Confirmation of your stage 2 project duration and start date will be agreed with your A4I partner during brokerage following a successful stage 1 application.

Under current restrictions, this competition will not fund any procurement, commercial, business development or supply chain activity with any Russian and Belarusian entity as lead, partner or subcontractor. This includes any goods or services originating from a Russian and Belarusian source.

In stage 2, some or all of your funding from this competition may be subject to Minimal Financial Assistance limits. You will be made ineligible if you exceed this limit. You must submit a complete declaration as part of your application in stage 2.

Lead organisation

To apply to this stage your organisation must be a UK registered business of any size.

More information on the different types of organisation can be found in our Funding rules.


Number of applications

A business may make only one application to this competition.

Previous applications

You cannot use a previously submitted application to apply for this competition.

We will not award you funding in stage 2 if you have:

Minimal Financial Assistance (and De minimis where applicable)

The funded stage 2 of this competition will be in two strands:

  • grant funding in strand 1 will be awarded as Minimal Financial assistance (MFA)
  • grant funding in strand 2 will be match-funded but contributions made by A4I partners will count towards your company’s MFA limit

MFA allows public bodies to award up to £315,000 to an enterprise in a 3-year rolling financial period.

In your stage 2 application, you will be asked to declare previous funding received by you. This will form part of the financial checks ahead of Innovate UK making a formal grant offer.

To establish your eligibility, we need to check that our support added to the amount you have previously received does not exceed the limit of £315,000 in the ‘applicable period’.

The applicable period is made up of:

(a) the elapsed part of the current financial year, and

(b) the two financial years immediately preceding the current financial year.

You must include any funding which you have received during the applicable period under:

You do not need to include aid or subsidies which have been granted on a different basis, for example, an aid award granted under the General Block Exemption Regulation.

Further information about the UK subsidy control requirements can be found in:

EU Commission rules now only apply in limited circumstances. Please see our general guidance to check if these rules apply to your organisation.

Further information

If you are unsure about your obligations under the UK’s International Obligations to Subsidy Control or the De minimis rules, you should take independent legal advice. We cannot advise on individual eligibility or your legal obligations.

If there are any changes to the above requirements that mean we need to change the terms of this competition, we will tell you as soon as possible.

Funding

We have allocated up to £3 million to fund projects across both strands in stage 2 of this competition.

For more information on company sizes, please refer to the Company accounts guidance. This is a change from the EU definition unless you are applying under European Commission De minimis.

If you are applying for an award funded under European Commission Regulations, the definitions are set out in the European Commission Recommendation of 6 May 2003.

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