Funding opportunities for businesses

Funding opportunities

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We'll help you unlock funding to boost your business

Let us guide you through funding that's available. From innovation vouchers to Knowledge Transfer Partnerships, incentives and discounts are available to help you get our fresh thinking into your business operations.

Tell us about the business issues you're facing, and we'll guide you through the funding options we have available to help you drive innovation and improvement.

Innovate UK funding

Start a Knowledge Transfer Partnership with us

We're number 1 in the UK for the number of Innovate UK funded KTPs

Knowledge Transfer Partnerships are part-government-funded collaborations between universities and businesses.

Come to us with an issue and we'll identify one of our academic teams to work with you and recruit a high-calibre graduate who will be based in your company as an associate to manage the project.

KTPs can last up to three years and you could access around £150,000 through this program.

We have more KTPs than any other university in the UK, helping more businesses across the country gain a competitive advantage and ultimately improve their profitability.


Innovate UK Smart Grants

Innovate UK Smart Grants, are funding for game-changing and disruptive ideas no matter what sector for UK based companies.

To apply your business needs either:

  • an idea for a completely new product, service or process
  • a brand-new use or an unprecedented use for an existing product, service or process that take it above and beyond what’s currently available

If you think your business fits the bill, contact our Business Engagement team for more details. 

Innovate UK Accelerated Knowledge Transfer (AKT)


After a successful pilot scheme in 2022, this new programme from Innovate UK has been designed to create short-term collaborations between a business and a UK Knowledge Base, such as the University of Essex, to rapidly inject innovation capacity.


Inspired by the highly successful Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) model, the aim of Accelerated Knowledge Transfer (AKT) is to deliver a rapid and targeted collaboration to accelerate the evaluation or development of an innovation project or concept, which has the potential for significant impact for the Business Partner.


The programme offers grand funding of up to £35,000 per project for collaborations lasting two to four months.


Find out more about AKTs with Essex here.

Other Innovate UK funding

Keep an eye out for new thematic funding opportunities here.

University of Essex Business Engagement team
Talk to our team

Get the best value for money when investing in new services. Let us help you make informed, evidence-based decisions, and reduce the risks of change and innovation in your organisation.