A total of 57 small and medium-sized companies form 17 countries have been selected for funding under the latest round of the SME Instrument. This is the first round of small businesses selected under the recently launched European Innovation Council (EIC) pilot. The companies, selected following face-to-face interviews with a jury of innovators, entrepreneurs and venture capitalists, will receive a total amount of €94.25 million to share between their projects to scale-up and internationalise.
Examples of the projects selected include a 3D printer for food; an innovative treatment for breast cancer; a virtual reality and augmented reality headset capable of human eye resolution; a multi-active cardboard packaging that extends the shelf life of vegetables by 40% and a new type of biodegradable bioplastic.
Carlos Moedas, European Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation, said: “With the European Innovation Council pilot, we set out to support high-flying entrepreneurs with breakthrough ideas and a clear ability to create new markets. This very first group of innovators certainly has that potential.”
In this phase of the SME Instrument (the so-called Phase 2), each project will receive up to €2.5 million to finance innovation activities such as demonstration, testing, piloting and scaling up. In addition, the companies will also benefit from 12 days of free business coaching and business acceleration services.
Most companies selected for funding are in the field of health, engineering and information and communication technology (ICT), and are based in Spain (13), the Netherlands (6), followed by France and Finland (both 5). The European Commission received 1154 eligible proposals for this first cut-off of the SME Instrument.
Under the European Innovation Counicl pilot the selection procedures for the SME Instrment have changed. After a first evaluation on paper , the companies are selected following face-to-face interviews with a jury of innovators, entrepreneurs and venture capitalists.
Watch our video of the SME Instrument Jury members on what they think about the SME Instrument and the Jury meetings:
See all the companies selected for funding in our datahub.
The next application deadline for SME Instrument Phase 2 is on 14 March 2018.