Worcestershire  County Council Proof of Concept grant funding programme can support SMEs to investigate, advance, commercialise and protect early stage innovative business ideas, through a partnership with the Central Technology Belt (CTB).

The Proof of Concept fund will provide grants of up to 50% of the total cost of a project (to a maximum contribution of £30,000) for businesses to prove that their innovations have significant economic potential.

Benefits to the companies

The grant can fund:

  • New machinery – Hardware and Equipment
  • Market Research and Assessment
  • IPR Protection
  • Accreditations
  • Prototyping
  • Marketing/Events/Demonstrations
  • Building works

Please note only external expenditure can be funded; internal costs such as staff salaries cannot be funded. The business would receive support from CTB Business Manager to get draft applications appraisal ready. Purpose: The grant encourages businesses to bring new products to market and introduce new products to the business, which will result in increased economic benefit and job creation in Worcestershire.

To qualify, your business must:

  • Be situated in and trading from Worcestershire, and
  • Employ fewer than 250 employees, and
  • Have a turnover of less than the equivalent of 50 million Euros per annum or an balance sheet of less than 43 million Euros
  • Applicants must demonstrate that they can match fund the remaining 50% of the project costs.

Please note some industries such as primary agriculture and retail are not eligible. Other activities excluded are social welfare and education facilities, banking and insurance.

For more information and details of how apply please contact the team on 01905 677 888 or email info@business-central.co.uk. 

How is this project funded?
European Regional Development Fund as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020. The Department for Communities and Local Government (and in London the intermediate body Greater London Authority) is the Managing Authority for European Regional Development Fund. Established by the European Union, the European Regional Development Fund helps local areas stimulate their economic development by investing in projects which will support innovation, businesses, create jobs and local community regenerations. For more information visit https://www.gov.uk/european-growth- funding

Read about how Proof of Concept has supported Worcestershire businesses here.