European SME Instrument Funding

The scheme is competitive, business-oriented and focused on creating impact, bringing high-potential innovations closer to the market.

Key Features

  • Only SME companies can apply
  • Single company applications
  • Subcontractor involvement
  • Company can apply into any phase
  • Funding between €50k and €2.5million
  • Projects between 6 – 24 months
  • Development must be at TRL (Technology Readiness Level) 6 – System/subsystem model or prototype demonstration in a relevant environment
  • Any IP generated resides within the SME
  • 70% funded projects
  • Opened March 2014
  • Application deadlines every 3 months

The scheme operates 3 phases:

Phase 1

  • Funding up to €50,000
  • Project duration up to 6 months
  • Typically 70% funded
  • Typical project activities; feasibility of concept, risk assessment, IP regime, partner search, design study

Phase 2

  • Funding up to ~€2.5m
  • Project duration between 12-24 months
  • Up to 70% funded
  • Typical project activities; development, prototyping, testing, piloting, miniaturisation, research

Phase 3

The final stage is commercialisation and while no direct funding is offered, the EU can provide mentoring.