Could your research lead to a new spin-out or licensing opportunity?
Do you want to be part of the next university spin-out success story? If you think the outcome of your research could lead to a commercial opportunity our pre-incorporation funding can help you make that a reality.
Funding is available in two forms – feasibility awards and proof of concept awards.
We’ve already funded 32 opportunities this year, investing over £1.24m to progress the commercial potential of promising research.
We’re currently evaluating applications from our fourth funding call and will be opening another call at the end of January. In the meantime you can contact your technology transfer representative to begin discussing an application. Please note that all project activity for pre-incorporation funding must be able to complete by 31 December 2020.
“Through this funding we will be able to develop and optimise the scaling-up process from bench to larger scale. Our ultimate plan is commercialising our technology to spin out an aerogel company with Newcastle University”
Frequently asked questions
Please see the relevant application guidance on how to apply.
A specific point to note is that applications will only be accepted by the Northern Accelerator project team if received from a technology transfer representative. This is our way of ensuring that the development of applications has been supported by your technology transfer contact and they have reviewed the final submission.
Once you’ve read the application guidance you can download an application form here.
Costs should be developed with the support of your technology transfer team. The precise process is likely to vary at different partner universities but may involve your pre-awards team and the use of a standard system e.g. pFACT. Your technology transfer contact will be able to advise. You should note the guidance on overheads/Full Economic Costing in preparing your costs for submission.
Northern Accelerator funding comes from Research England’s Connecting Capability Fund and this is fairly flexible in terms of allowable costs. The overriding principle is that the funding should be used for the purpose it is awarded i.e. to advance the commercialisation of university research.
You should make sure that it is clear in your application how the costs submitted relate to the commercialisation objective. The Guidance for Applicants provides a little more detail and your technology transfer contact should be able to advise.
You can download an application form here.
Once a call has closed the applications will be checked for compliance and distributed to a review panel, comprising external experts with knowledge of innovation and technology transfer and representatives from partner universities, to score in accordance with the guidance. A meeting of the review panel will then be held for moderation of the scoring and this will be followed by a funding decision panel at which those projects that will receive funding will be confirmed.
There are two possible outcomes for each application. These are: award approved or award not approved. If your application is not approved this time it can be resubmitted to one of the future rounds.
You can see the how applications will be scored here.
A decision letter will be issued by the project team. This will be sent to you, your technology transfer contact, and your university Northern Accelerator lead. In the event that an award is being made the letter will also be copied to relevant contacts in your research office and department.
Please see the application guidance for information on timescales.
It may be necessary for the project team to receive a formal acceptance of the offer of award. This will be made clear in the letter you receive. Northern Accelerator funding will be made available in line with your university’s standard processes. Likewise any procurement or recruitment that arises from this funding award should follow your university’s standard processes.
Funding must only be used for the purposes outlined in your application (which will be replicated in the award letter). The transfer of funding will be against invoices raised following actual spend within the terms of the award (again via your university’s standard processes) and approved by the project team.
You should discuss your alternative options with your technology transfer contact.