The EIC Accelerator Programme
The programme offers Europe’s brightest and boldest entrepreneurs the chance to request funding for breakthrough ideas with the potential to create entirely new markets or revolutionise existing ones.
Ranges of funding available
Grants for innovation development & demonstration purposes
Ranging between EUR 500,000 and 2,5 million (covering 70% of total cost of the project)
Equity of up to €15 million per company
€100 million total budget in 2019-2020
Types of activities funded
Prototyping, miniaturisation, scaling-up, design, performance verification, testing, demonstration, development of pilot lines, validation for market replication, including other activities aimed at bringing innovation to investment readiness and maturity for market take-up.
The evaluation process
The evaluation of proposals happens 4 times a year, and the results are sent 3 to 4 weeks after each deadline. The process of evaluation can have three outcomes: ‘Go’ decision, ‘No Go’ decision or ‘change into blended finance’ decision.
Applications are evaluated in two steps:
Step 1: remote evaluation and, only for proposals that pass all quality thresholds
Step 2: face-to-face interview.
The ideal candidate
Companies could be either pre-revenue, or with revenues but non-profitable, or with a commercial activity but unable to raise the investment needed to full deployment of their potential.
A risk component is essential as the Accelerator only supports proposals that are too risky. Various typologies of risks are covered during the evaluation, including technology, regulatory and implementation risks.
Building on the previous flagship initiative — namely the SME Instrument Phase II — the EIC Accelerator Pilot was launched in June this year as part of the Enhanced European Innovation Council pilot .
This program is intended for SMEs with a groundbreaking product \ service \ process \ business model, who are conducting close-to-market R&D.
The EIC Accelerator Pilot supports close-to-market activities, with the aim of giving a strong boost to breakthrough innovation with a market-creating potential. Hence, highly innovative SMEs with a clear commercial ambition and a potential for high growth and internationalisation are the prime target.
There is a continuous open call until the end of 2020 for bottom-up proposals with five cut-off dates: 9 October 2019, 8 January 2020, 18 March 2020, 19 May 2020 and 7 October 2020.
Applications must be submitted through the Funding & Tenders Portal. A single template for funding under the Accelerator is available in the EIC website for the two different options (grant-only and blended finance). The structure is articulated around two main parts, respectively called Part A and Part B.
Applications are evaluated in two steps: Step 1 (remote evaluation) and, only for proposals that pass all quality thresholds, Step 2 (face-to-face interview).
The process of evaluation can have three outcomes: ‘Go’ decision, ‘No Go’ decision or ‘change into blended finance’ decision.