SMEs To Benefit From R&D Funding Workshops

HMRC Says Innovation Lies At The Heart Of Britain's Culture

10.03.2014

Fergal Dowling, Partner | +44 (0)121 214 5476

The government is launching a series of workshops aimed at raising awareness of funding options that are open to small and medium enterprises (SMEs).

Run by HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) and the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, the sessions will take place in Cambridge, Leicester, Reading, Plymouth, Oxford, Sheffield, Portsmouth and Scotland over the next few months.

With the economy starting to recover, the government is keen to see more small organisations launching research and development (R&D) projects in the hope that innovative new technology and solutions will be brought to market.

There is a general lack of awareness among SMEs about the vast array of funding and support that they are eligible to apply for.

The workshops will cover issues such as R&D tax credits, Patent Box tax incentives, grants, knowledge transfer and intellectual property.

EU-based initiatives such as Horizon 2020 - which is a multi-billion euro funding programme aimed at stimulating innovation and product development - will also be discussed during the sessions.

HMRC's assistant director of business tax Carol Lunney explained why these workshops are needed.

"Innovation lies at the heart of our culture. British ideas and inventions have helped shape our world, from the telephone to the World Wide Web," she commented.

"The UK has the largest creative sector per head in the world. These workshops are designed to ensure our high-tech SMEs get the help they need to help them invest in research and development and innovation."

In a recent speech in Hong Kong, Britain's chancellor of the exchequer George Osborne hinted that manufacturers and inventors would benefit from his next Budget announcement, which will be delivered next month.

Mr Osborne underlined the importance of increasing Britain's exports in the coming years and he also stated that the Budget will ensure that wherever you go in the world, people will see the "Made in Britain" tag.

Expert Opinion
We fully support this initiative and welcome the support that it brings to the UK’s smaller firms.

“SMEs are at the heart of the UK economy and it is important that these entrepreneurial firms are given all the support that they need to ensure they can grow and meet their full potential.

“In order for our most innovative SMEs to compete globally, they need all the support that they can get. In addition to R&D, smaller firms need first class legal support from advisers who understand their sector and can assist in helping to navigate them through the range of issues that a growing business faces.”
Fergal Dowling, Partner