SMEs Transforming food production: Series A Investor Partnership round 2 UK registered SMEs transforming food production towards net zero can apply for a share of up to £5 million in grant support. This must align with a series A investment. The grant funding is from the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund. Eligibility This competition is open to single applicants only. To apply your organisation must: be a UK registered micro, small or medium-sized enterprise (SME) carry out its project work in the UK be seeking equity financing of at least twice the amount of the grant requested Opening soon Opens: 18 October 2021 Closes: 17 November 2021
Programme: Innovate Uk
Innovate UK, as part of UK Research and Innovation, will invest up to £5 million to fund innovation projects in this competition. The grant funding is from the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF) Transforming Food Production challenge.
We will be working with a selected pool of investor partners, who have demonstrated that they have the credibility, capability, capacity, and appetite to invest in innovative, technology-led businesses to align with our objectives in this challenge.
This aim of this competition is to support UK registered micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to transform food production through experimental development projects that are closer to market.
To be offered grant funding your project must:
You can view the areas of expertise and investment preferences for the investors.
You can apply for this competition before you speak to an investor.
In addition to investment, the lead investors in the pool can provide you with commercial acumen in, for example:
Successful UK registered SME’s will receive:
In applying you are entering into a competitive process. This competition closes at 11am UK time on the deadline stated.
Your project’s total eligible costs must be between £1 million and £3 million.
Text update 6 October 2021: the project end date has been changed to allow for an 18 month project duration.
Innovate UK are seeking SMEs with high growth potential that aspire to transform food production towards net zero emissions by 2040. To secure grant funding you must also secure investment of at least twice the amount of grant through one of the lead investors associated with this programme.
Your project must:
If your project’s total eligible costs or duration falls outside of our eligibility criteria, you must provide justification by email to email@example.com at least 10 working days before the competition closes. We will decide whether to approve your request. If you have not requested approval or your request has not been approved by us, you will be made ineligible, and your application will not be sent for assessment.
To lead a project your organisation must:
Subcontractors are allowed in this competition.
Subcontractors can be from anywhere in the UK and you must select them through your usual procurement process.
You can use subcontractors from overseas but must make the case in your application as to why you could not use suppliers from the UK.
You must also provide a detailed rationale, evidence of the potential UK contractors you approached and the reasons why they were unable to work with you.
We expect all subcontractor costs to be justified and appropriate to the total eligible project costs. We will not accept a cheaper cost as a sufficient reason to use an overseas subcontractor.
Number of applications
A business can only lead on one application to this competition.
You can use a previously submitted application to apply for this competition.
We will not award you funding if you have:
This competition provides funding in line with the UK's obligations and commitments to Subsidy Control. Further information about the UK Subsidy Control requirements can be found within the EU-UK Trade and Cooperation agreement and the subsequent guidance from the department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS).
Innovate UK is unable to award organisations that are considered to be in financial difficulty. We will conduct financial viability and eligibility tests to confirm this is not the case following the application stage.
EU State aid rules now only apply in limited circumstances. Please see our general guidance to check if these rules apply to your organisation.
If you are unsure about your obligations under the UK Subsidy Control regime or the State aid rules, you should take independent legal advice. We are unable to advise on individual eligibility or legal obligations.
You must make sure at all times that the funding awarded to you is compliant with all current Subsidy Control legislation applicable in the United Kingdom.
This aims to regulate any advantage granted by a public sector body which threatens to or actually distorts competition in the United Kingdom or any other country or countries.
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.
Your proposal must be assessed by Innovate UK as eligible for grant funding. Projects that meet the quality threshold will be invited to attend the investor showcase event which enables you to meet the investors from our pool.
The aligned private investment must be at least twice the amount of the grant funding.
Innovate UK have allocated up to £5 million to fund innovation projects in this competition.
If your organisation’s work on the project is mostly commercial or economic, your funding request must not exceed the limits below. These limits apply even if your organisation normally acts non-economically.
For experimental development projects which are nearer to market, you could get grant funding for your eligible project costs of:
If you are applying for an award funded under State aid Regulations, the definitions are set out in the European Commission Recommendation of 6 May 2003.
Aligned private investment
You must agree the private investment through a lead investor and reach heads of terms by 29 March 2022.
The aligned private investment: