Innovate UK loan and grant funding

Applications are currently being accepted by Innovate UK for loan and grant schemes.

Innovation loans

  • Competition opens: Monday 2 July 2018
  • Registration closes: Wednesday 29 August 2018, 12pm
  • Loan size: Loans of between £100,000 and £1 million are available to cover up to 100% of your eligible project costs.


Up to £10 million has been allocated to provide loans to micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). Loans are for highly innovative late-stage projects with the best game-changing and/or disruptive ideas or concepts. There should be a clear route to commercialisation and economic impact. Proposals can come from any technology (including arts, design, media or creative industries) and any part of the economy.

Project requirements

  • They should aim to develop new products, processes or services (or innovative use of existing ones) believed to be significantly ahead of anything similar in the field.
  • Projects must focus on commercialisation, growth or scale up. Priority is given to proposals likely to lead to growth, gains in productivity and/or access to new overseas markets through export.
  • They should last up to 5 years, of which up to 3 years can focus on late-stage research and development (R&D), and up to 2 more years on establishing a clear route to commercial success. Loan repayments will be required over a further period of up to 5 years.
  • Projects are expected to start by December 2018.


To take on an innovation loan you must be a UK based SME and carry out your project in the UK. Individuals, research organisations and large companies are not eligible. In addition, only single businesses can receive loans, so collaboration with other organisations cannot be funded in this competition.

Businesses must be able to show that they can cover interest payments, will be able to repay the loan on time and need public funding.

Apply for the Innovation loan


Open grant funding competition

  • Competition opens: Thursday 12 July 2018
  • Competition closes: Wednesday 12 September 2018, 12pm


Innovate UK, as part of UK Research and Innovation, will invest up to £20 million in the best cutting-edge or disruptive ideas or concepts with a view to commercialisation.

All proposals must be business focused (rather than pure research). Applications can come from any area of technology, science or engineering, including arts, design, media or creative industries, and be applied to any part of the economy. All projects must start by 1 March 2019.

Project size

Total eligible project costs must be within the following ranges:

  • Project duration between 6 and 18 months: total cost between £25,000 and £500,000.
  • Project duration between 19 and 36 months: total cost between £25,000 and £2 million.
Apply for the Innovation grant


For further advice or support on business funding please get in touch on 01903 234094.