Skip to content

Funding your Business Innovation

There are a number of different funding sources available for working with our academics and students. Our staff have valuable experience in submitting successful bids to these funding sources and would be happy to discuss which options are the most suitable for the type of work you would like us to support.

Knowledge Transfer Partnerships, funded by Innovate UK, are one of the largest graduate recruitment programmes across Britain. They are a great way for organisations to gain up to 50% of the cost of a strategic research project with a University.  The University have supported in excess of 80 KTPs and has over a decade of experience in this area. 

Innovate UK also offer additional funding options for both large and small organisations, including sector-focussed funding and the Open Programme.

If what you are looking for is to pay outright for an academic to carry out a research project on your behalf or apply for a research grant with a University as a partner then you may be eligible to apply for tax relief on bills incurred as a result of working with us using R&D Tax Relief.  Or the Horizon 2020, European Union innovation programme which funds academic research with commercial partners, may be worth considering.

lightbulb with one dollar sign feeding into it with three dollar signs generated

Innovate UK

Innovate UK run funding competitions for UK-based business to enable the research and development of processes, products or services and supports the testing of innovation ideas and allows business to become more competitive. As an SME along with partners you can compete for government backed funding between £25,000 and £10 million.

Knowledge Transfer Partnerships

All businesses are facing concerns over the economy, the environment, fast-paced digital enhancement, and increasing demand from customers.  KTP is funded by Innovate UK and is the most successful knowledge transfer programme in Europe.  It has been running for more than 40 years, has a £22m grant funding pot.  A KTP project can help you improve your productivity and performance to stay competitive by forming a partnership with us and accessing our skills and expertise.  On average, each project delivers an increase of £600k inpre-tax profit a few years after the project, 2 new jobs and 20 staff trained for the host company.  The UK-wide programme delivers over 700 partnerships per year.

More information Knowledge Transfer Partnerships

Access Innovation

There are regional funding streams which can be accessed for business innovation such as the Access Innovation fund available to SME's in the Leeds City Region. This ERDF funded programme can cover up to 50% of the costs of eligible innovation projects of between £10,000 and £100,000. It is also available for purchasing essential project equipment as well as providing SME’s with one-to-one business support.

Find out more about Access Innovation.


The Ad:Venture Programme helps young businesses grow.

The programme provides fully funded business support to people planning to start a business or existing businesses in their first 3 years of trading within the Leeds City Region.

Offering a mix of practical advice, coaching, events, academic support, incubation workspace and finance brokerage, Ad:Venture supports businesses with growth ambitions and is generally aimed at businesses who supply to other businesses (B2B).

For more information about the Ad:Venture project at the University of Bradford, contact Suzanne Emmett on 01274 235676 or email To find out more about the regional programme, visit the Ad:Venture website.

R & D Tax Relief

R&D reliefs support companies that work on innovative projects in science and technology. It can be claimed by a range of companies that seek to research or develop an advance in their field. It can even be claimed on unsuccessful projects.  You may be able to claim Corporation Tax relief if your project meets our definition of R&D. The work that qualifies for R&D relief must be part of a specific project to make an advance in science or technology.

More information R&D Tax Relief (external link)

Grow MedTech

Grow MedTech is a major UK programme providing specialist support for innovation in medical technologies. It is a collaboration between the Universities of Bradford, Huddersfield, Leeds Beckett, Sheffield Hallam and York, led by the University of Leeds and funded through the Research England Connecting Capability Fund.

The grants scheme provides funding for key points in the technology development process, to help academics take their ideas forward. It supports companies looking to progress their technologies, by providing expertise, creating partnerships and access to funding. The aim is to ensure the technologies developed are better aligned to patient needs, by involving them at every stage of the journey.

You can get involved by either contacting Grow MedTech directly or make an enquiry with the University's Business Partnerships team below.

Grow MedTech Website