The European Commission has launched an ambitious €20 million action to support the Ukrainian innovation community. This action is made possible through a targeted amendment of the 2022 European Innovation Council (EIC) work programme. The new initiative will support at least 200 Ukrainian deep tech start-ups with up to €60,000. In addition, the EIC will offer non-financial support, such as business advisory services and matchmaking. This action will enhance the capacity of Ukrainian innovators to interact with the European innovation ecosystem, enter new markets and benefit from the European financing instruments.
To ensure greater impact, the €20 million support will be disbursed through a competitive call for proposals for a pan-European network of start-up associations, collaborating with at least one Ukrainian innovation stakeholder and seeking synergies with relevant EU initiatives, such as the Enterprise Europe Network (EEN). With this call, opening on 23 June, the European Innovation Council (EIC) aspires to ensure the business continuity of the Ukrainian tech companies and foster their growth. The action can help to prepare Ukrainian start-ups in successfully competing in EIC funding opportunities. The EIC can fund start-ups up to €17.5 million in a combination of grants and equity investment and can crowd-in further private investments up to three times the amount invested by public funds.
Background: In February 2022, the Commission adopted the annual work programme of the EIC, opening funding opportunities worth over €1.7 billion in 2022. Launched in March 2021 as a major novelty under the Horizon Europe programme, the EIC has an overall budget of over €10 billion between 2021 and 2027. To mobilise all possible resources and provide support that can help Ukraine in these difficult times, the EIC work programme has been amended to launch an additional call for proposals targeting Ukraine’s deep-tech community, which has a strong potential for creating breakthrough innovations. In the past years, the Ukrainian start-up scene has been growing steadily and increasing its contribution to the Ukrainian economic growth. This action should strengthen the Ukrainian tech ecosystems and supporting innovative solutions for rebuilding the Ukrainian economy and infrastructure after the war.
The call proposals itself will open on 23 June with submission deadline on 7 September.
An info day is planned on 24 June.
It is expected to finance one consortium representing a pan-European network of start-up associations (made of eg European organisations, national, regional and/or local authorities, innovation agencies, cluster organisations, accelerators, innovation hubs, incubators, technology parks, and/or any other representatives that lead initiatives/networks supporting the development of innovative startups and deployment of innovation), collaborating with at least one Ukrainian innovation stakeholder and seeking synergies with relevant EU initiatives, such as the Enterprise Europe Network (EEN).
At least 60% of the project budget should be distributed as financial support to third parties (FSTP). The funding rate of this CSA is 100%.
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