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Innovate UK Infrastructure Systems Loan Competition

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UK Small or medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) working on late-stage infrastructure systems projects can apply for a share of £10 million in a pilot loans competition – the first opportunity to access Innovate UK’s new alternative financial support scheme. 

This loan competition aims to help businesses overcome barriers to scaling up innovation in infrastructure systems. It will do this by enabling them to demonstrate their ideas work as expected in real-world applications with users, and take their solutions to market.

The scheme focuses on smarter, better infrastructure for the growing, ageing population, increased urbanisation and on an urgent need to reduce carbon emissions calls for new and novel infrastructure solutions.

Start-ups and SME’s could get an innovation loan of up to £1 million for a first of a kind deployment of infrastructure technologies. Demonstrator projects must be in one of Innovate UK’s priority areas. These are:

  • Smart infrastructure, adding intelligence to improve physical infrastructure or the design process.
  • Urban living, addressing the challenges people face in urban areas in order to improve user experience and lower costs. This could be:
  • Hard’ systems, such as energy, transport, waste, water, and communication.
  • Soft’ systems, such as security, law, and justice (for example, public order and safety), health, wellbeing, social care, and education.
  • Environmental systems such as green spaces and waterways.
  • Energy supply and systems, specifically improving the value proposition, affordability, emissions, and security of energy.
  • Connected transport, looking at solutions that move people and goods more efficiently and sustainably, and make transport more secure, user-centric and accessible.

Innovations need different types of funding support depending on how close they are to market. Getting the right funding at the right time can scale up businesses’ productivity and growth. Innovate UK believe that a patient, flexible loan scheme will be useful for innovations that are near to market, where there is less risk involved.

More about the infrastructure systems loan competition:

  • The loans competition is open, and the deadline for registration is 10 January 2018
  • You could get between £100,000 to £1 million to cover up to 100% of eligible project costs
  • This opportunity is for UK-based SMEs
  • Applications can only be made by single SMEs
  • Loans are for late-stage experimental development only
  • They are available for up to 10 years

For more info on how to apply visit: Innovate UK.


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