Liverpool City Region (LCR) Metro Mayor announced this morning the launch of a new Future Innovation Fund to support SMEs in the Liverpool City Region.
It is a £3m fund and funding will be released in tranches of £1m. The first £1m is being released now with applications to be submitted by July 6th 2020. They expect applications to be turned around within 14 days.
Eligible project areas
Eligible projects must demonstrate alignment to the following priority areas for the LCR:
- Delivering a sustainable industrial future: businesses seeking to take advantage of new opportunities in materials, manufacturing and engineering.
- Open health innovation: business initiatives to enhance health & wellbeing, during and following the pandemic.
- Global cultural capital: activities to support the resilience of LCR’s cultural vibrancy during and following the pandemic.
- Zero carbon economy: businesses pioneering sustainable approaches to living, travel and doing business in a post-pandemic world, for example linking to the circular economy, mitigating single-use plastic and non-reusable PPE.
- Tech for good: businesses that use technology and data to drive growth and improve society, including but not limited to “smart city” applications, high performance computing, data science and AI.
- Digitalisation: initiatives in any other sector that will yield a clear improvement in business productivity, adaptability and/or diversification.
They will be looking to fund projects that will deliver a significant economic or social value within 6 months, therefore it is not to fund early stage research projects.
They will also be giving priority to projects that bring in match-funding. This match-funding can be in a variety of forms including debt funding, equity investment or in-kind funding from the applicant.
Who should apply
Any SME based, or with significant operations, in the Liverpool City Region, who can demonstrate a viable project plan, capability to deliver, value for money and a clear need for grant funding.
Provision of grant funding
Funding can cover all eligible costs associated with the project including staff costs. Payments of the grant funding will be made in up to 3 stages depending on the amount of funding sought and will be provided on the basis of defrayed costs (ie you will need to show evidence of cost incurred).
For more information please go to https://growthplatform.org/future-innovation-fund/ and also refer to the FAQ document https://growthplatform.org/future-innovation-fund/faq/.