Increase in funding for green innovating SMEs and woman-led companies
A substantial increase to the European Innovation Council Pilot budget is estimated to be taken on by the European Commission in March 2020, to support disruptive and market-creating innovation and high-tech SMEs to scale-up, preparing the foundation of a well focused programme in Horizon Europe.
An one-off EIC Accelerator call for Green Deal start-ups and SMEs is also foreseeable, for which SMEs applicants submitting for the 19th May 2020 cut-off will need to demonstrate how their innovation contributes to the goals of the European Green Deal and its elements, while the 7th October 2020 cut-off for the EIC Accelerator Pilot will remain open to all kind of innovations.
Further opportunities for companies with women CEOs are also expected, to ensure that 25% of all selected applicants in the EIC Accelerator Pilot are women-led companies. In addition, should the first round evaluation show that a minimum of 25% of companies selected for the final-stage interviews are not led by women, additional interviews will be planned.
The EC is expected to publish the amended version of the EIC Work Programme by the end of February, while the final version should come to light by the end of March, replacing the organisation for 2020 of the existing EIC Pilot Work Programme 2018 – 2020.