A total of 257 small and medium-sized companies form 31 countries have been selected for funding under the latest round of the SME Instrument. This is the first round of SMEs selected under the recently launched European Innovation Council (EIC) pilot in the so-called Phase 1 of the programme. The companies will receive a total amount of €12.65 million to share between their projects to get their innovations faster on the market.
Examples of the projects selected include solar street lights, a software that uses augmented reality to help industrial plants monitor their production chain, a diagnosis tool for sleep apnoea, an innovative mobile payment technology, a custom-made paint vending machine and a wrapping machine for sustainable packaging.
In this phase of the SME Instrument (the so-called Phase 1), each project, 253 in total, will receive €50.000 to draft a business plan. Several companies can team up to propose one project. The companies will also get 3 days of free coaching and business acceleration services.
Most companies selected for funding are in the field of health, engineering and information and communication technology (ICT). Most companies are based in Spain (45), Italy (28) and Israel (23).
The European Commission received 2009 proposals for this first Phase 1 cut-off of the SME Instrument this year. The next application deadline for SME Instrument Phase 1 is on 3 May 2018.
Companies can apply for two distinct phases under the SME Instrument, depending on the maturity of their innovation. Under Phase 1 of SME Instrument each project will receive a lump-sum of €50.000 to carry out a feasibility study. Under Phase 2, each project will receive from €0.5 to €2.5 million to finance innovation activities such as demonstration, testing, piloting and scaling up. Applicants can request higher amounts if duly justified in their application. In addition, companies under both phases can benefit from free coaching and business acceleration services.
See all the companies selected for funding in our datahub.