The Inward Investment Catalyst Fund has been developed by Interface and the Scottish Government to attract and support businesses, not yet located in Scotland but with an interest in developing a presence, to collaborate with academic institutions on their research and development activity.
As well as funding the project, it provides an opportunity for the company to establish relationships and give insight into other aspects of the Scottish landscape, such as further investment opportunities, supply chains and the skills base to strengthen the case for investing in Scotland.
Companies will need to demonstrate their aspiration and intent to use the fund, the outcomes from the project and relationships with academia to potentially develop a pathway towards setting up a presence in Scotland i.e. R&D or manufacturing operations.
Funding awards of up to £10,000 can be applied for to pay for input from Scottish academic institutions into projects with businesses. The Fund can support the costs of an initial collaboration such as but not limited to: feasibility study (e.g. for a joint R&D centre); roadmap to leverage investment for joint R&D; early-stage proof of concept for R&D; supporting talent and skills for R&D.
Projects should align with at least one of the nine key opportunity areas where Scotland’s strengths match global investment flows:
- Energy Transition
- Decarbonisation of Transport
- Software and IT
- Digital Financial Services
- Digital Business Services
- Transformation of Chemical Industries
- Food & Drink Innovation
Scotland’s Inward Investment Plan sets out Scotland’s ambition to be a leading destination for inward investment, inviting and supporting new investment which aligns with Scotland’s values and goals as a technologically enabled, carbon neutral and inclusive economy. The Scottish Inward Investment agenda is values led and applicants should make themselves aware of this linked document and consider how their project aligns in their response.
Submission deadline is 5pm on Friday 17th November 2023.
The Scottish Inward Investment Catalyst Fund is open to businesses of any size currently engaged or looking to engage with a Scottish University, College, or Research Institute but without an existing base of operations in Scotland.
The Scottish Inward Investment Catalyst Fund will work on the same principles as the Scottish Funding Council’s Innovation Voucher programme with some additional allowances:
- Companies who have previously collaborated with academia or have an existing relationship will still be eligible for consideration.
- Multi partner applications will be considered if there is a defined lead business and lead academic partner.
- An independent panel of experts will assess and approve applications.
- Previously unsuccessful applicants are eligible to apply again.
For any questions on eligibility or any other queries please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
If you are a company who has not already identified a Scottish University, College, or Research Institute, Interface are here to help. Get in contact via email@example.com to arrange a call with one of our business engagement team who will work with you directly to identify relevant expertise.
Funding awards up to £10,000 in value, which will cover the Scottish University, College or Research Institute’s project costs (e.g. time, facilities and consumables) in order to carry out the project and disseminate the project findings to the company and wider industry (if appropriate). Companies will need to contribute an equal value in kind i.e. staff time, materials, equipment and data supplied or collated. The award will be paid directly to the University, Research Institute or College.
Terms and Conditions
Download the full Terms and Conditions by clicking here: Terms & Conditions
Past recipients of the Scottish Inward Investment Catalyst Fund have reaped significant benefits from this opportunity. Discover our case studies to explore the success stories of previous winners, including Smartify, Evolve Hydrogen and Ecomar Propulsion.
Interface also work with a number of other organisations that offer funding to stimulate innovation. These include:
- Knowledge Transfer Partnership – accelerate business innovation by supporting knowledge exchange with academic institutions. For more information visit https://www.gov.uk/guidance/knowledge-transfer-partnerships-what-they-are-and-how-to-apply
- SMART: SCOTLAND available pan Scotland – provides grants to Small / Medium Enterprises (SMEs) based in Scotland. The grant helps you undertake technical feasibility studies and research and development (R&D) projects that have a commercial endpoint: http://www.scottish-enterprise.com/services/develop-new-products-and-services/smart-scotland/overview
- Innovate UK Innovation grants for business – businesses and research organisations can apply to funding competitions to help them develop their innovations. For more information visit https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/innovation-grants-for-business-apply-for-funding
- Intellectual asset protection – free, impartial advice to help your business identify, manage and exploit intellectual property assets – protecting your brand and ideas in overseas markets. (Any enquiries on IP for the South of Scotland should be directed to South of Scotland Enterprise.) For more information visit https://www.scottish-enterprise.com/support-for-businesses/develop-products-and-services/innovation-support
- Zero Waste Scotland Circular Economy Investment Fund
- Research and development (R&D) tax relief for SME’s – Corporation Tax relief for costs on research and development (R&D) if you’re a small or medium-sized enterprise. Learn More: Research and Development tax relief for small and medium-sized enterprises – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
- R&D Grants: Discover further grant opportunities for research and development via Find Business Support: Find business support in Scotland – Find Business Support
Please note Interface do not administer any of the above funding streams. If you have specific enquires about them please visit the associated websites and contact them directly.