Innovation loans: April 2021 open competition

Fund Name: Innovation loans: April 2021 open competition
Project Length: Up to 4 years
Project Value: Loans between £250k-£1.6m
Deadline: 02/06/2021


The aim of this competition is to help businesses overcome barriers to their innovations becoming a successful, commercial reality. The loans are intended to support significant, sustainable business growth which results in considerable economic impact.

Fund details

Your idea must lead to innovative products, processes or services that are significantly ahead of others in the field.

Your proposal must demonstrate:

  • a clear game-changing and disruptive innovative idea
  • a robust and deliverable business plan that addresses (and documents) market potential and needs
  • a team, business arrangement or working structure with the necessary skills and experience to run and complete the project successfully and on time
  • awareness of all the main risks the project and business will face, with realistic plans to manage, mitigate and minimise the impact of each of these
  • sound, practical financial plans and timelines that represent good value for money
  • a clear, evidence-based plan to deliver significant economic impact, return on investment (ROI) and growth through commercialisation, as soon as possible after project completion.

Your project can include:

  • prototyping
  • demonstrating
  • piloting
  • testing
  • validation

in environments that represent real life operating conditions.


Loans of between £250,000 and £1.6 million are available to fund your project’s eligible costs.

Projects can last up to 4 years, including both the R&D and commercialisation phases. Projects are expected to start by September 2021.

To take on an innovation loan for a project you must:

  • be a UK registered SME
  • intend to exploit the results from or in the UK
  • give evidence that your business is suitable to take on a loan

Innovate UK will not provide funds to match the grant funding of any projects.

Innovate UK are not funding projects that are:

  • dependent on export performance
  • dependent on domestic inputs usage
Get in touch

If you think that you might be eligible for this fund, please Get in touch by filling out the contact form.

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