Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) are encouraged to participate across the whole Horizon 2020 programme. Not only can they engage in collaborative projects as part of a consortium but they are supported through a new dedicated SME instrument designed specifically for highly innovative smaller companies. The integrated approach and simplification efforts should lead to a minimum of 20%, or about € 8.65 billion, of the total combined budgets of the specific objective 'Leadership in enabling and industrial technologies' (LEITs) and the ‘Societal Challenges’ going to SMEs. The SME instrument will be crucial in achieving this target. Over the course of Horizon 2020, at least € 3 billion will be allocated to the SME instrument
The new instrument aims to fill gaps in funding for early-stage, high-risk research and innovation by SMEs as well as stimulating breakthrough innovation. It provides easy access with simple rules and procedures. It will be used across all societal challenges and the enabling and industrial technologies specific objective. It will encourage SMEs to put forward their most innovative ideas with an EU dimension. It targets highly innovative SMEs showing a strong ambition to develop, grow and internationalise, regardless of whether they are high-tech and research-driven or non-research conducting, social or service companies.
Only SMEs will be able to apply for funding. Even single company support will be possible to ensure market relevance and to increase commercialisation of project results. SMEs can decide how best to organise the project and with whom to collaborate, including subcontracting tasks if they lack in-house capabilities.
Unusually for EC funding, this is a single applicant (ie: no consortium is required) scheme, and up to €3 million Euros can be applied for. Contact us today for more information on this exciting opportunity.
SME Instrument factsheet
News: An opportunity for SMEs seeking grant funding