01 December 2012
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Minister unveils £1.1 million Innovation boost for SMEs

Start-up firms and small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) are set to get a £1.1 million innovation boost to help them develop new ideas, improve processes and target new markets.

A second wave of Innovation Vouchers is being made available through the Technology Strategy Board. The extra funding is for Innovation Vouchers for businesses who want to use public Open Data to commercialise their ideas and develop products and prototypes.

The Innovation Vouchers scheme was launched in September providing £5,000 to businesses who wanted to develop ideas. Universities and Science Minister David Willetts (pictured) explained:

"This new wave of Innovation Vouchers will give SMEs a great opportunity to bid for funding that can make a real difference to the growth of their business ideas. They will be able to develop exciting proposals that can make use of open data, which have the potential to unlock great value and boost economic growth."

The Technology Strategy Board's Chief Executive Iain Gray commented: "Innovation Vouchers offer a low risk way for small businesses to explore new ideas with a wider network of specialists – ideas that can make a real difference and help them grow."

In September, the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) committed £1 million a year for the next three years for Innovation Vouchers. That will be matched by the Technology Strategy Board, meaning there will be £2 million each year for areas including Agri-food, Built Environment, Energy, Water and Waste. People will be able to apply for the vouchers directly through the Technology Strategy Board website.

Author
Paul Gay

Related Websites

http://www.innovateuk.org.

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