Eight innovative Irish SMEs to receive European Innovation Council funding
The European Innovation Council (EIC) was set up by the European Commission to turn science into new business and accelerate the scale-up of innovative companies. Currently in its pilot phase, the European Innovation Council will become a full-fledged reality from 2021 under the next EU research and innovation programme Horizon Europe with a proposed € 10 billion budget.
The European Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation, Carlos Moedas commented while attending a conference of the European Science Advisors Forum (ESAF) and International Network for Government Science Advice (INGSA) at Trinity College Dublin, commented that: “The European Innovation Council is about supporting the best innovators to put Europe at the forefront of the next wave of innovations. I would like to congratulate those Irish companies that were selected in tough competition for the latest round of European Innovation Council funding. I am also happy to be in Ireland to announce the new Advisory Board that will guide the European Innovation Council, to be chaired by Mark Ferguson, Director General of Science Foundation Ireland.”
Seven of the Irish SMEs will receive EIC Accelerator funding (€1.5 to €2.5 million) while one will receive EIC Pathfinder Pilot funding.
EIC Accelerator funding
The seven Irish SMEs who are to receive EIC (European Innovation Council) Accelerator pilot grants (previously known as the SME Instrument Phase 2) are:
- Coroflo Limited (Dublin) which is developing a revolutionary product to support breastfeeding with 21st century technology;
- CroiValve (Dublin) which is developing a non-surgical treatment to restore heart valve function
- Bluedrop Medical (Galway) for its project to use AI (Artificial Intelligence) to manage patients at risk of diabetic foot ulcer - a remote monitoring system that uses computer vision and machine learning to predict and prevent diabetic foot ulcers (DFUs).
- Perfuze Limited (Galway) which is developing a simple, repeatable way to completely remove a clot from the brain in one pass
- Vetex Medical (Galway) for an early stage medical device that will enable the drug-free removal of clots
- Votechnik (Limerick) which is developing a fully automated LCD recycling technology for the global market.
- Beats Medical or Beats Therapeutics (Sandyford) which is developing tailored digital therapeutics for neurological and brain disorders
EIC Accelerator funding is awarded to SMEs and startups that are developing potentially game changing innovations, such as: next generation of safe and environmentally-friendly light aircrafts; anti-bacterial textile for hospitals; 3D audio software; motion planning technology for autonomous driving; and a superbot for audio calls.
In total, the Commission today announced €149 million funding in EIC Accelerator Pilot grants (previously known as the SME Instrument Phase 2) for 83 SMEs and startups around Europe. The full list of the companies from 17 countries across the EU and from countries associated to Horizon 2020 is available here.
EIC Pathfinder Pilot
One Irish SME is to receive funding under the EIC Pathfinder Pilot (previously Fet OPEN): Helixworks Technologies (Cork), which is a partner in the UK-led OLIGOARCHIVE project which is developing an intelligent DNA storage system.
The EIC Pathfinder Pilot offers grants of up to €4 million for bottom-up high-risk, high-impact research ideas (previously known as FET Open). Projects include; metal-free MRI contrast agents; treatment to replace antibiotics in lung infection diseases; custom-crafted graphene nanostructures; precise measuring and monitoring of highly penetrating particles in deep space; artificial proteins for biological light-emitting diodes; and many other ideas. In total, the Commission today announced €164m to 53 new EIC Pathfinder pilot grants around Europe. The full list can be found here.
Appointment of Mark Ferguson to the post of Chair of the EIC Advisory Board
Also announced today was the appointment of Professor Mark Ferguson, Director General of Science Foundation Ireland, to the post of Chair of the new European Innovation Council Advisory Board.
Other Irish appointments to the board include: Dermot Diamond, Principal Investigator: INSIGHT Centre for Data Analytics, Dublin City University and Valeria Nicolosi, Chair of Nanomaterials and Advanced Microscopy, TCD.
EIC Programme Managers
The Commission also published today a vacancy notice to recruit the first EIC programme managers. Inspired by the renowned US agency DARPA, the EIC programme managers will be experts in their fields, able to work closely with fast moving technology projects and open doors to the wider ecosystem. Applications can be sent until the 31 July 2019 at 12.00 CET.
Press release: launch of the pilot phase of the European Innovation Council
Press release: pilot phase of the European Innovation Council
Press release: provisional agreement on Horizon Europe
Statement by Commissioner Moedas on the European Parliament’s vote on Horizon Europe
Factsheet on Horizon Europe