16.11.23 Funding Preparation

Innovate UK Investor Partnership programme

Innovate UK’s Investor Partnership programme – what you need to know

Round 5 of the Innovate UK Investor Partnerships competition has opened – and there are a few differences in what this round can support (and what it can’t).

Focus areas

The four key focus areas remain the same and Innovate UK doesn’t anticipate any changes for rounds 6 and 7:

    1. Health and Wellbeing
    2. Equality, diversity and inclusivity (No Limits)
  1. Net Zero
  2. Advanced Technologies

The fund offers grant funding alongside private investment from 50+ selected investor partners.

What’s changed?

Several Net Zero sub-themes have temporarily run out of funding and there isn’t yet a plan from Innovate UK to replenish.

Net Zero themes can still be in scope if they match and are submitted under the Equality, Diversity and Inclusivity (No Limits) theme.

Deadlines and funding

Round 5 deadline: 8th January 2024

Funding is available for projects of all stages/technology readiness levels from feasibility studies to experimental development, providing up to 70% of funding for project sizes of £50k-£2m.

Future rounds:

  • Round 6 will open on the 9th January 2024 and close on the 27th February 2024
  • Round 7 will open on the 28th of February 2024 and close on the 23rd of April 2024

Competition stats

Investor partnerships between 2017 and 2025:

  • £85.5m budgets to date + £80m future commitment
  • £75m grants committed
  • £34m grants deployed
  • 221 SMEs supported
  • £203m aligned investment (>2.5x)
  • 42 lead investor partners
  • £799m in follow-on funding (>8x)

How to apply

  1. Contact prospective investors on Innovate UK’s list
    The investor partner must have the intent to invest before you commence the grant application – Granted can help you identify which investor to approach
  2. Work with the investor to complete an Expression of Interest
    The investor submits the EOI and will typically get a response within two weeks
  3. Once Innovate UK confirms eligibility to the investor, the investor gives the go-ahead to complete the application via the Innovate UK IFS portal

Remember, Grants are typically led and completed by you or your supporting specialist (not the investor). Find out more about our grant writing service and how we can support you here.

Are you investor-ready? Investors are looking for:

Key investment materials:

  • A short concise pitch deck (aim for 10 slides), longer form materials can come later
  • Integrated financial model
  • Fully diluted cap table (a document that details who has ownership in a company)

Financial model:

  • Integrated P&L, Balance Sheet and Cashflow
  • Clear assumptions underpinning growth
  • 3-5 years forecast, detailed growth assumptions for years 1-2

The grant application: what to expect

The 10 application questions will cover the following so be sure to consider each section to better prepare for the application process:

  • Need & challenge
  • Technical approach
  • Team
  • Costs
  • Market
  • Route to market
  • Wider impact
  • Project plan
  • Risks
  • Value for money

Get ‘Granted’

If you’re innovating in sectors that are not currently eligible for Investor Partnership support, e.g. Net Zero, there are still plenty of grant funding alternatives to this competition so please get in touch to discuss opportunities.

In an ever-changing landscape, lean on our consultancy expertise and let us guide and advise on the best course of action for your business.

Our services include grant writing, funding strategy and consultancy, grant training, and grant project management for successful grant applications.


Stay in the loop

Subscribe to our regular emails and be the first to receive the latest and greatest in grant funding opportunities, news, insights and resources.