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Tech funding opportunities in Bristol and the South West
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- A rising cost of living, energy, and inflation is making it harder for startups to find funding as investors become more risk averse
- Although businesses gaining the most traction with investors are fintech (financial technology), health tech, and energy tech, there are also numerous funding opportunities for the creative sector
- Despite Brexit, there are still EU-funded projects that UK companies and startups are eligible for, e.g. The European Space Agency and Horizon Europe
- Tech funding opportunities, in Bristol and the South West specifically, include the Bristol Impact Fund and the Create Growth Program
- Collaborations and partnerships generally have a higher success rate for securing partnerships – contact us if you’d like some help!
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Technology is the industry of choice for many of today’s aspiring entrepreneurs and business leaders: it’s a broad, fast-paced, constantly-changing and genuinely exciting industry with something on offer for everyone regardless of their tech expertise. However, a rising cost of living, soaring energy rates, and high inflation make it harder for British startups to find funding – especially as investors become more risk-averse. In this post, we’ll look at some of the top tech funding opportunities in Bristol and the South West to help make financing for your next product idea or project easier.
Financing challenges aside, the UK continues to be a world leader in supporting new technology development. British businesses gaining the most traction with investors are fintech (financial technology), health tech, and energy tech. If you’re engaged in any of these sectors or interested in health tech solutions or green tech innovation as part of your business development strategy, this bodes well. Contact us, and we can help!
Accelerate Your Health Tech Startup with Ignitec
Green-tech startups in Bristol taking global challenges head-on
5 tips to secure Innovate UK funding
Health Tech and ESG innovation grants for UK startups
Women in Innovation: Innovate UK
Rolling entry (no hard deadline, applications are reviewed upon submission).
Funding is available for up to 50 women entrepreneurs who can demonstrate their ability to significantly contribute to pressing environmental, societal, and economic governance (ESG) challenges through innovation.
Includes a cash injection of £50,000 and a year of mentoring and networking.
Various Projects: The European Space Agency (ESA)
Closing dates vary from August 2023 – December 2027
Despite working in space, the ESA has its feet planted firmly on the ground when it comes to funding business opportunities that are commercially viable and technically possible. In particular: Space for a wasteless food supply chain, sustainable growth technologies, and digital transformation for green energy utilities.
The ESA offers zero-equity funding (from €60k to €3M per activity), personalised support, technical guidance, access to their network of partners, and the credibility of the ESA brand.
Tech for Better Care: The Health Foundation
The care system in the UK is under immense pressure, and funding programs are available for technology that enables care at home and in the community, e.g. remote monitoring systems, imaging and monitoring solutions, and diagnostic collaboration networks.
There are various tech funding opportunities for Bristol-based initiatives as well as countrywide.
The Bristol Impact Fund: bristol.gov.uk
Application: July 2023 – December 2023
Small grants between £2,500 and £10,000 per year
The goal is the grow the power of local communities that experience the most inequality and encourage new ideas and involvement. This could include developing technologies for older people, improving access for people with disabilities, or reducing social isolation.
Tech funding opportunities in Bristol for creatives
Those developing technologies in – or for – the creative industries also have a range of options for startup funding or to help kickstart new projects.
Open funding calls: MyWorld Innovation
Funding creative technology product and prototype development opportunities in a low-risk environment:
- Collaborative Research & Development: Applications open on the 9 October 2023, and awards between £100,000 – £200,000
- Challenge Call 2: Applications open in February 2024 and awards grant funding of £50,000 for companies in the creative industries based in the West of England Region
- Sandbox 2: Applications open in autumn 2023 as part of their IDEAS programme to support small companies with high-risk ideas to experiment with new technologies and create meaningful experiences for audiences. £45,000 grants will be awarded to six teams
Smart Grants: Innovate UK
Application deadline: September 2023
UK registered organisations can apply for a share of up to £25 million for game-changing and commercially viable R&D innovations that are designed for swift and successful commercialisation to impact the UK economy significantly. Ideas need to be genuinely new and not just disruptive within their sector.
Developing Creative Practices: Arts Council England
Application open: 16 November 2023 and close 14 December 2023
Grants of up to £12,000 are available
This fund from Arts Council England supports individual cultural and creative practitioners seeking to take their practice to the next stage through research, time to create new work, travel, training, developing ideas, networking or mentoring.
Create Growth Programme: Watershed and West of England Combined Authority
Applications open: May 2024
£2,500 grants to support creative businesses in the West of England to scale and become investment ready by exploring new growth opportunities such as reaching new customers, developing new products for the market, and expanding into international territories.
The Elephant Trust
Applications close: 15 October 2023
Grants of up to £5,000 are available for artists and institutions to undertake and complete creative projects
UK Research & Innovation: Horizon Europe
Despite the UK leaving the EU, funding opportunities are still available for cultural heritage and creative industries, with over €144.5m available. UK scientists, researchers and businesses can access funding under the programme on equivalent terms as organisations in EU countries, and applications remain open until 2027.
A final word on UK funding for tech development
We hope this list helps you find the tech funding opportunities in Bristol that you’re looking for! Read our tips on securing funding, and check out our templates section to help you put your financial documentation in order.
Are you looking for an established partner to collaborate on projects with? Our broad range of services can help you innovate faster, cost-efficiently, and with less risk, so get in touch!