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150M€ Horizon2020 Funding for ICT Solutions – Briefing Event, 5th November 2015

Briefing Event for 150M€ of Horizon 2020 Funding for ICT

Shell Springboard 2016 – Supporting Low-Carbon Innovation in the UK

Shell Springboard provides funding to UK entrepreneurs at the cutting-edge of the low-carbon economy. In 2016 funding awards of up to £150,000 are available for small enterprises with innovative, commercially viable business ideas that reduce carbon emissions.

Social Enterprise should make a profit

There is a lot of talk out there about Social Enterprises and the part they can play in helping the country go forward. The first myth I would like to explode is based around the name some politicians, and sadly some people working in the sector, give to these organisations and that is “Not for Profit.” That is something they most definitely should not be, they need to make a profit, or surplus if you prefer to call it that, otherwise there is nothing to pay for the future. The important thing is what they do with the profits and for a true Social Enterprise what I would expect to see is that they are largely re-invested into the community.

Filling the gap?

Ever since the demise of the Grant for Business Investment (which technically still exists but only for large exceptional projects and offshore wind equipment manufacturers), there has been a gaping hole in the provision of grant funding for “ordinary” businesses. By “ordinary businesses” I mean commercial businesses that don’t do technology R&D. However, a few new schemes have just appeared that go some way towards filling this gap.

Is the Grant for R&D being mis-managed?

On 16th November the Telegraph ran an article[1] stating that “Small businesses applying for a flagship innovation funding programme have seen their chances of success collapse following a decision to “front load” the distribution of grants”. The SME Innovation Alliance is quoted as saying that “this inconsistency and bar raising is unfair, unreasonable and is at odds with the UK’s need for innovation from its small companies”, while the TSB is reported to have explained that the front loading was done “to get the programme off to a strong start and avoid unused funds being returned to the Treasury.”