The Defence and Security Accelerator (DASA) supported by Innovate UK Loans Ltd (Innovate UK) are working together to offer a new Defence funding competition: the Defence Innovation Loan, which currently has a total of £10M available to fund Innovative Defence solutions.
This service provides an opportunity for single small and medium enterprises (SMEs) with solutions to Defence themed problems to apply for a Defence Innovation Loan of between £250,000 and £1.6 million with a below market interest rate of 7.4% per annum.
This loan can be used to cover up to 100% of eligible project costs to aid the commercialisation of the solution. Innovate UK provide further information on innovation loans (not Defence specific) here. The funding available for this competition comprises £5M from the Defence Innovation Fund and £5M from Army.
To take on a Defence Innovation Loan for a project you must:
- be a UK registered SME
- intend either to exploit the results in the UK or exploit the results overseas to make a significant and positive impact on the UK economy and/or productivity
- give evidence that your business is suitable to take on a loan.
Defence Innovation Loans will be open for proposal submission all year round. As part of a DASA pilot running until 16 March 2022, proposals will be assessed shortly after they are submitted rather than having to wait until the cycle closes. Initial outcomes will be communicated within 7 weeks from the point at which it is confirmed both the DASA and the Innovate UK proposals are submitted, not including public holidays and weekends.
This pilot will be under review and we may change the format of the Defence Innovation Loans when the pilot ends, e.g. returning to cycle based assessment periods. Until then, we will accept proposals to the pilot until 12:00 (GMT) on 16 March 2022.
Find out more information here.