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North East SME Innovation Programme

SME Innovation Support Programme

The SME Innovation Programme is designed to help SME’s realise their innovation potential. It offers project funding and advice for eligible SMEs with an innovative project that will help their business to adapt and/or grow. Today, we need innovation more than ever. Every business is feeling the pressures of globalisation, technological changes and of course the impact of Covid19.

The SME Innovation Programme offers:

What is business innovation?

For us, innovation is the process of using new ideas and technology to improve a business. It doesn’t have to be a ground-breaking idea, just something new to the business to help it to survive and adjust to new market conditions. The ultimate goal of innovation is to reinvigorate a business, creating new value and boosting growth and productivity.

What types of project are supported?

Speak to one of our advisers...

Who is eligible?

The Innovation Team are very happy to answer your questions. In the meantime, check out the FAQs and scroll down to find out about some of the great innovation projects that we have supported.


We’re able to offer 40% of the value of your project, and the maximum project value is £50,000, therefore a £20,000 grant. Project values must range between £5,000 and £50,000.

An SME a is small or medium sized enterprise. As defined by the EU funders, ERDF, it is also a business with fewer than 250 employees, and a turnover of less than €50 million, or a balance sheet total of less than €43 million.

Innovative projects – your business must be able to demonstrate that you have an innovative idea, that is new to your business or to the market. It can be used for the development of products, processes and services within most sectors. New technology is often the core of the project, however, existing technology may be utilised in an inventive and pioneering way.

Not sure if you're eligible?

Innovation Case Studies

HP1 Technologies


Meet the Innovation team

Gillian Middleton
Innovation Manager


Debbie Simpson
Innovation Adviser

Speak to one of our advisers...

The North East Business and Innovation Centre (BIC) has received £1,307,145 of funding from the England European Regional Development Fund for the North East SME Innovation Programme 2 as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020.