A total of 246 small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) from 24 countries have been selected for the EU’s Horizon 2020 funding

Between them, the companies will receive a total amount of €12.2 million from the EU’s research and innovation programme, Horizon 2020, to get their innovations faster on the market.

The projects selected include a water-injection system to reduce nitrogen oxide emissions from commercial vehicles, a decision-making tool for fully exploiting big bio-data, a digital platform for hands-on cybersecurity training, a novel cancer therapy targeting cancer networks and a technology that dissolves wood waste to extract raw materials.

The companies will be supported in the so-called Phase 1 of the SME Instrument, which means that each project (244 in total) will receive €50.000 to draft a business plan. Several companies can team up to propose one project. The companies will also receive free coaching and business acceleration services.

The majority of the companies selected for funding are in the field of information and communication technology (ICT), health and engineering. Most are based in Spain (33), Italy (28) and Switzerland (23).

The European Commission received 2111 proposals for the 5 September cut-off. The next application deadline for SME Instrument Phase 1 is on 13 February 2019.

The SME Instrument is part of the European Innovation Council (EIC) pilot that provides top-class innovators, entrepreneurs, small companies and scientists with funding opportunities and acceleration services. Companies can apply for two distinct phases under the SME Instrument, depending on the maturity of their innovation. Under Phase 1 of SME Instrument, each project will receive a lump-sum of €50 000 to carry out a feasibility study. Under Phase 2, each project will receive from €0.5 to €2.5 million to finance innovation activities such as demonstration, testing, piloting and scaling up. In addition, companies under both phases can benefit from free coaching and business acceleration services.

Click here for further information and source of this article.



Ireland still a net contribution to EU funds

Ireland received €1.8 billion in EU funds in 2017, and contributed just over €2 billion, as the country continues to be a net contributor, according to the latest annual report of the EU’s budgetary watchdog.

Ireland first became a net contributor in 2014. Click here for further details about this article by Tony Connelly, Europe Editor, RTE.

Additive Ireland – research in additive/3D printing


The first Additive Ireland showcase, organized by Enterprise Ireland took place on 2nd October 2018 in Brussels. The Additive Ireland group comprises members of Irish Manufacturing Research (IMR) – the EI/IDA funded Technology Centre – and SFI research centres; Amber, I-Form and Confirm. Additive Ireland is a new initiative that will be hosted in IMR and will bring together all key actors in Additive/3D printing in Ireland. Irish companies participating in the event – Henkel, Depuy Synthes Johnson & Johnson and Trend Technologies – highlighted the need for further R&D collaborations with Higher Education Institutes in Ireland to better understand manufacturing processing and standards and materials properties/behaviours used in these new technologies. The showcase also included presentations from the European Commission (DG Research and CONNECT), relevant European Industry Associations (AM-Platform, European Factories of the Future Research Association) and other EU centres (TNO and Fraunhofer). The clustering into Additive Ireland creates the needed critical mass around 3D printing technologies and makes Ireland very well positioned to attract further funding from the H2020 Advanced Manufacturing programme.

For more information please contact Sergio Fernandez-Ceballos sergio.ceballos@enterprise-ireland.com

Six Irish researchers to be awarded European Research Council’s Starting grants in 2018

This year, Irish research institutions have won 6 European Research Council grants representing a total of €8.7 m in funding.

Six Irish researchers from Trinity College Dublin, NUI Galway and University of Limerick will be awarded Starting grants for their projects. This represents a big improvement on last year when Ireland won 2 grants.

In addition, a further 3 scientists with Irish nationality hosted at universities outside Ireland won grants.

Read more here:


EIC Fast Track to Innovation to invest €34 million in 14 innovative projects to help them enter the market faster

The European Commission will support 14 top-class projects to bring their innovations faster onto the market under the European Innovation Council (EIC) pilot. Each project will receive around €2 million from the Fast Track to Innovation strand of the EIC pilot. The 14 projects involve 59 partners, including small and medium-sized companies, industrial partners, universities and non-profit organisations, from 18 countries. With this funding and extra business acceleration support, the projects will be able to finance their close-to-market innovation activities.

Projects selected for funding include a recycling technology to introduce rubber from ‘end-of-life’ tyres into production lines as virgin rubbers substitute, a system to treat persistent atrial fibrillation, an artificial intelligence tool that improves video quality and limits internet traffic tied to video streaming, and a stirling heat pump for industrial use in high temperatures.

Read more here

The Fast Track to Innovation scheme is a central part of the EIC pilot, targeting radically new, breakthrough products, services, processes or business models that open up new markets. It offers up to €3 million to consortia composed of 3 to 5 partners including small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), industrial participants research centers, universities, cluster organisations, industry associations, incubators, investors, and the public sector. The scheme is for relatively mature groundbreaking technologies, concepts and business models that are close to market. The participating SMEs also have access to free business coaching and acceleration services.

By the cut-off date of 31 May 2018, the European Commission received 2016 proposals. The next cut-off date for Fast Track to Innovation is on 23 October 2018.

Have a look at the selected companies in our datahub


The European Commission released the following Press Release today, 7th June 2018:

For the next long-term EU budget 2021-2027, the Commission is proposing €100 billion for research and innovation.

A new programme – Horizon Europe – will build on the achievements and success of the previous research and innovation programme (Horizon 2020) and keep the EU at the forefront of global research and innovation. Horizon Europe is the most ambitious research and innovation programme ever.

Commission Vice-President Jyrki Katainen, responsible for Jobs, Growth, Investment and Competitiveness, said “Investing in research and innovation is investing in Europe’s future. EU funding has allowed teams across countries and scientific disciplines to work together and make unthinkable discoveries, making Europe a world-class leader in research and innovation. With Horizon Europe, we want to build on this success and continue to make a real difference in the lives of citizens and society as a whole.”
Press Release: http://www.europa.eu/rapid/press-release_IP-18-4041_en.htm?locale=en

Competitive Start Fund (CSF) for Female Entrepreneurs

Enterprise Ireland’s €1 million Competitive Start Fund (CSF) for Female Entrepreneurs will open for applications on Tuesday, May 1. Up to €50,000 in equity funding is available to a maximum of 20 successful female applicants with early stage start-up companies. Last year, 46 per cent of all companies who received CSF investment from Enterprise Ireland were female-led.

In addition to securing vital funding, 15 of the successful applicants will be offered a place on the INNOVATE accelerator programme, delivered by Dublin BIC. Taking place over a 12-week period in the Guinness Enterprise Centre, the interactive INNOVATE programme will increase the capabilities of the participants and move them to investor-ready within a short period.

The purpose of a CSF for female entrepreneurs is to accelerate the growth of female-led start-up companies that have the potential to employ more than 10 people and achieve €1 million in export sales within three years.

Introduced in 2012 as part of Enterprise Ireland’s female entrepreneurship strategy, the dedicated fund is designed to enable companies reach key commercial and technical milestones which will ensure delivery of their product or service to an international audience. Enterprise Ireland’s Competitive Start Fund is funded by the Government of Ireland through the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation.

Heather Humphreys TD, Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation, said: “There is no doubt that tailored and targeted initiatives have had a positive impact on the numbers of female-led, scalable start-ups seeking support from the Government through our State Agency, Enterprise Ireland. I am delighted that last year, almost half of start-ups that received Competitive Start Fund investments were companies led by women. We want to build on this and ensure that more female entrepreneurs from all different industry sectors are encouraged to apply this year.”

Working with ambitious start-ups led by women is a key focus for Enterprise Ireland and the purpose of the CSF is to accelerate the growth of start-up companies that have the capability to become High Potential Start-Up (HPSU) companies.

Rachael James, Female Entrepreneurship Manager, Enterprise Ireland added: “We made a commitment in 2012 to female entrepreneurs in this country to increase supports dedicated to them, and we did this in direct response to the low number of female-led start-ups receiving investments and supports. Six years later the breakdown is encouraging. More than one in three start-ups supported by Enterprise Ireland last year through the High Potential Start-Up programme and CSFs were led by women, compared to just one in ten start-ups in 2012. However, we need to keep this momentum so that we see more women confidently starting new businesses and successfully scaling existing ones.”

Conor Carmody, Dublin BIC Investor Ready Programme Manager said: “Dublin BIC supports entrepreneurs to start and scale though a number of channels and programmes including delivery of the Innovate Programme, the Enterprise Ireland accelerator designed to meet the needs of female-led start-ups with the ambition to scale internationally and to become ‘investor ready’, a crucial step in becoming a High Potential Start-Up company.”

Full details on the Competitive Start Fund for Female Entrepreneurs, including the application form and eligibility criteria, can be accessed on the Enterprise Ireland website.

The Competitive Start Fund for Female Entrepreneurs will close for submissions at 3 p.m on Tuesday May 15.

Weblink: https://irishtechnews.ie/enterprise-ireland-launches-e1-million-competitive-start-fund-for-female-entrepreneurs/


Horizon 2020 in full swing three years on – Key Facts and Figures 2014-2016

Horizon 2020 success rates increase

The recent interim evaluation of Horizon 2020 confirmed that the programme is highly successful and well on track to achieve its objectives: stimulating excellent science, building industrial leadership, and providing solutions to the challenges that our society faces. In doing this, Horizon 2020 is an important contributor to the Juncker Commission priorities.

This brochure provides a snapshot of the programme’s main achievements after three full years of implementation (2014- 2016). For the first time, some early trends can be glimpsed from the year-on-year evolution of key monitoring data such as success rates, SME participation, and project evaluation. We take heart from the clear indications of its attractiveness and accessibility. Some 55% of applicants are newcomers, and the share of funding awarded to SMEs surpassed the 20% target.

Continuing efforts to simplify the programme are paying off, with a shorter average time now taken to sign grants than ever before.

The quality of applications is also striking – a very high proportion of proposals are assessed as high-quality by independent evaluators. Horizon 2020 would have required an extra EUR 66.3 billion in order to fund all the high-quality proposals received so far.

Three years on, a closer look at the results and project examples illustrated in this brochure clearly show the enormous potential in Europe for excellent research and innovation, and how in turn this can have a real impact on our economy and society. We will work hard to ensure that Horizon 2020 can be even more successful during the second half of its lifetime, paving the way for the successor programme due to start in 2021.

You can download the attachment or follow the link below:


Launch of Large Scale Support for Horizon 2020 Initiatives

We are launching our large-scale support for Horizon 2020 activity today. We would appreciate if you could bring it to the attention or your research groups and centres.

You can find the link to the application form here: https://www.horizon2020.ie/document-library/

We will give a webinar on it to clarify any issues next Thursday 14th December at 10h00 at this link: https://join-emea.broadcast.skype.com/enterprise-ireland.com/21caddf398e04a21b8f9497cde4655a7

Please distribute this information to your PIs, research centres and technology centres.


Head Office

Enterprise Ireland
East Point Business Park, Dublin 3
Tel: +353 1 727 2000 | Fax: +353 1 727 2020

  • The Department for Agriculture Food and the Marine
  • The Environmental Protection Agency Ireland
  • Health Research Board
  • Higher Education Authority
  • Irish Research Council
  •  Irish Universities Association
  • The Marine Institute
  • Science Foundation Ireland (SFI
  • The Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland

Horizon 2020 national support network led by Enterprise Ireland