GrantTree’s Grant Watch – April 2021 Edition

Welcome to Grant Watch, a monthly look at some of the most exciting grant funding opportunities available to UK innovators.

For April 2021, our grants consultants have picked out four fascinating competitions from Innovate UK, focusing on electric road systems, net-zero supply chains, clean maritime projects and decarbonisation.

Don’t worry if these competitions aren’t right for your business. They’re just a fraction of the grant-funding opportunities available through Innovate UK, and its parent organisation, UKRI. 

For a full list of open competitions, check out UKRI’s Funding Finder tool or Innovate UK’s more succinct Innovation Funding Service tool

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Zero-emission road freight strand 1: electric road systems

Project size: Total eligible costs between £500,000 and £2 million

The Department of Transport (DfT) and Innovate UK are investing up to £10 million to fund advanced feasibility studies for projects which enable zero emission road freight.

The competition is looking to support early-stage, pre-deployment work for a possible electric road system demonstration.

There are three stands to the competition: electric road system demonstration (this strand), hydrogen fuel cell vehicle demonstration (here) and supply chain technology feasibility studies (here).

All three strands open and close on the same date.

Opened: 23 March 2021
Closes: 5 May 2021

Innovate UK Link

Clean Maritime Demonstration Competition – Strand 1

Project size: Total eligible costs between £25,000 and £1,000,000


This £20 million competition, funded by the DfT and Innovate UK, will award up to £700,000 in grant funding for clean maritime and smart shipping projects. 


This two-strand competition will support the design and development of technologies for the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions by the UK’s maritime sector, per the government’s Clean maritime plan.


Opened: 22 March 2021
Closes: 2 June 2021


Innovate UK Link 

IETF Energy Efficiency and Decarbonisation Studies

Project size: total eligible project costs must be at least £30,000 for a feasibility study and £50,000 for an engineering study


The IEFT competition is providing up to £40 million in grant funding for feasibility and engineering studies that can accelerate an ‘investment decision’ on energy efficiency and deep decarbonisation solutions. In other words, the competition is looking to fund studies which help the government decide which technologies to finance further.


To lead a project or work alone you must be the end beneficiary of the study, and operate a site in England, Wales or Northern Ireland which is registered as a manufacturing site or data centre (with the corresponding SIC Code).


The two strands are feasibility and engineering studies (this strand) and deployment projects, which you can read more about here


Opened: 8 March 2021 
Closes: 14 July 2021


Innovate UK Link

Driving the Electric Revolution: Supply Chains for Net Zero

Project size: Total eligible costs between between £500,000 and £5 million

The Industrial Challenge Funding and Innovate UK have established this £22 million competition to fund projects which facilitate the UK’s supply chain and manufacturing capability in power electronics, machines and drives (PEMD). This competition aligns with the government’s green industrial revolution plan for transport, energy and industry.

Proposals must help the UK to achieve the objectives of the Driving the Electric Revolution challenge and have a significant impact on the PEMD supply chain.

Opened: 8 March 2021
Closes: 30 June 2021

Innovate UK Link

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