COVID-19: Wider business support and related funding calls

Innovate UK

For an update on the support available to businesses from Innovate UK due to COVID-19 and advice for award holders, please click here.

Innovate UK also opened a new Funding Call on 3 April: Business-led innovation in response to global disruption (de minimis) Closing date: 17 April.

Funding will support projects designed to tackle emerging or increasing needs of society and industries during and following the Covid-19 pandemic. Solutions are sought across a variety of technologies, markets and applications including food manufacture and processing. Projects which are both in scope and aligned to the Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF) challenges will also be considered.

Out of scope however are proposals focussed on aquaculture and fisheries, or the production of agricultural products (due to de minimis restrictions) and those that directly duplicate other UK Government activities already underway regarding the current Covid-19 healthcare situation, such as, ventilators and vaccines.

CIEL Members have been alerted to this opportunity and we are able to support the development and submission of proposals. Contact us.


UKRI have also opened a new wave of funding for research and innovation ideas to address COVID-19. Proposals are invited for short-term projects addressing and mitigating the health, social, economic and environmental impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak. There is no closing date – proposals can be submitted at any time. Click here to apply.

Existing UKRI grant holders can apply to repurpose their existing UKRI standard grant to address COVID-19 research priorities. NB no subsequent extension to the grant or additional costs will be allowed in order to meet the original objectives where these were altered to permit new COVID-19 research. Click here for full details.

A full range of business support measures have been made available to UK businesses and employees. Click here to remain up to date.

UPDATE 20 APRIL 2020: New billion pound support package for innovative firms hit by coronavirus

  • Chancellor announces new £1.25bn coronavirus package to protect firms driving innovation in UK
  • • Package includes a £500 million investment fund for high-growth companies impacted by the crisis, made up of funding from government and the private sector
  • • SMEs focusing on research and development will also benefit from £750 million of grants and loans

UPDATE 27 APRIL 2020: New 100% government backed loan scheme for small business

  • New Bounce Back Loans scheme will allow businesses to borrow between £2,000 and £50,000 and access the cash within days.
  • Loans will be interest free for the first 12 months.
  • Businesses can apply online from Monday 4 May through a short and simple form.