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Support every tech entrepreneur should know about

Many transformative and innovative creations began as just a singular thought that grew into an incredible real-life product. So, you have your great idea and a rough plan but what’s next? How do you bring your vision to life? It can be difficult to know what to do from scratch and gather the necessary resources. Thankfully nowadays there is a vast amount of support available that can pivot you in the right direction to bring your ideas to life. Funding is an essential part of business growth and can sometimes be incredibly difficult to obtain which is why we wanted to highlight grants that can be accessed today and can assist small businesses, tech startups, and entrepreneurs in taking their visions one step further.

Grants are a great way to get financial support to help cover the costs of training, research, development, and more. Being aware of what options are out there is the first step to taking advantage of the many funding programmes that promote innovation in the UK.

Below we have highlighted some valuable support you should know about.

Help to Grow: Digital

Help to Grow: Digital is a UK-wide government-backed scheme that aims to help you choose, buy and adopt digital technologies that will help you grow your business. Their website can also provide you with free, impartial advice, guidance, and tools, to explore the huge potential digital technology has to help your business to grow. 

The scheme offers your business: 

  • Free, impartial advice and guidance about what digital technology is best suited to your business and how it can boost your business’ performance 

  • Targeted financial support, if your business is eligible, worth up to £5,000 to be spent towards the costs of buying approved digital technologies

This scheme will help you identify the digital technology needs of your business, make informed decisions about which software products best meet those needs, and  successfully incorporate these products into your business. 

Opening date: 1 January 2022, 12:01am

Closing date: 31 December 2022, 11:59pm

How to apply:

  1. Click Start new application

  2. Find your software

  3. Choose the software you would like

  4. Fill in the application form and submit

Apply Now

Innovate UK: Smart Grants programme

Innovate UK Smart Grants offer UK registered businesses an opportunity to apply for grants of up to £25 million for innovative and game-changing R&D projects with strong commercial potential to significantly improve the UK economy. Ideas must be genuinely new and novel, not just disruptive within the sector.

Applications can come from any area of technology and be applied to any part of the economy, such as, but not exclusively, net zero, the arts, design, and media.

In applying to this competition, you are entering into a highly competitive process where your chance of success in securing funding will depend on the number and quality of applications submitted.

Opening date: 27 October 2022 9:30am

Closing date: 18 January 2023 11:00am

How to apply:

  1. Click Start new application

  2. Create an account (if you already have an account, Sign in)

  3. Fill in the application form and submit

Apply Now

The Prince’s Trust Enterprise Programme

The Prince’s Trust Enterprise programme has helped over 90,000 people to kickstart their own businesses – and you could be next.

The Prince’s Trust works with the Start Up Loans Company specifically to offer low-interest personal loans for business purposes between £500 to £25,000 at a rate of 6.2% APR. The Start Up Loan is a personal loan you borrow over 1-5 years at a fixed rate for business purposes. To qualify for this loan applicants must be 18 years or older at the time of application. Individuals can receive one loan per business, however, more than one partner in a business can apply for a Start Up Loan. Please note that a credit check will be carried out as part of your application.

How to apply:

  1. Get in touch here

  2. Fill in the application form and submit

Apply Now

R&D tax credits:

These cash payments are from the government and they are to support small or medium sized enterprises (less than 500 staff) to carry out research and development projects. R&D projects must relate to science or technology, however, HMRC’s definition is broad and includes investment into technology, IT systems, data, and cloud computing. If you’re building a startup or developing processes and products to meet demand in an evolving market, it’s likely that you’ll qualify for research & development (R&D) tax credits.

To claim the relief you need to show how your project meets the government's definition of R&D and companies can qualify for Advance Assurance if they are making their very first R&D claim. You can make a claim for R&D relief up to 2 years after the end of the accounting period it relates to.

How to claim:

  1. The claim must be made in the company tax return or amendment to the return

  2. You must send:

  1. use the online service to send HMRC details to support your R&D tax relief claim.

  2. Use the online service, you need a Government Gateway user ID and password. If you do not have a user ID, you can create one when you first use the service.

Apply Now

Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs)

There are 38 Local Enterprise Partnerships across England. They play a central role in determining local economic priorities and undertaking activities to drive economic growth and job creation, improve infrastructure and raise workforce skills within the local area. These are voluntary partnerships between local authorities and businesses that provide business funding, support, and guidance.

The LEPs site is a guide to appropriate financial support that you can apply for today. When you choose your location it will direct you to people who are willing to help. What are you waiting for?

How to apply:

  1. Find your local LEP Growth Hub here

  2. Click on your location

  3. Fill in the necessary application forms on the website and submit

Apply Now

We hope this blog has been useful for you and your team and made you aware that there are plenty of opportunities to research and fund your idea. If you need help or advice with your grant application or if you’d like to know how to improve your investability we can offer you our Stakeholder Engagement Pack which features the necessary tools to validate your product design and reduce technical risks to streamline your development process. You’ll be left with the confidence to clearly communicate your product vision to multiple stakeholders and build investor confidence.

Is your idea about a wearable product? When you’re ready to progress your vision we can assist you across all areas of wearable technology development, from research, innovation, and concept generation, to prototyping physical and digital systems, designing Machine Learning and AI approaches, and production management.

Get in touch with us here if your goal is to help change the world for the better through evolving incredible ideas into successful products in the health and wellness space.

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