All companies and startups that have a solution for the coronavirus will obtain financial support from the European Union thanks to the EIC Accelerator.
What is the EIC Accelerator?
What in former time was known as the “SME Instrument” was renamed EIC Accelerator on 6 June 2019. It is a programme dedicated to the financing of small and medium-sized enterprises, which is under the Horizon 2020 framework programme. From the outset, the SME Facility programme has supported risky projects, all with high potential, so that they can offer the market a range of new and innovative products, services and business models that generate widespread economic growth.
What we know today as EIC Accelerator fulfils another function that the previous program did not have, and that is to offer optional capital investment in addition to subsidies. There are a number of differences from the old SME Facility and the new EIC Accelerator. With the latter, companies have two clear options when applying for funding. The first is the possibility of applying for a grant, followed by the possibility of applying for a mixed financing structure consisting of: a combination of grant and equity financing of up to 17.5 million in total.
The old SME Facility programme allowed only one option: subsidy. In addition, the former SME Facility was divided into two separate financing schemes: SME Facility Phase 1 and SME Facility Phase 2. These two phases do not exist under the new EIC Accelerator, which is a single financing scheme (the former SME Facility Phase 2.)
Given the situation that we are currently experiencing, the European Commission, through the EIC Accelerator program, takes this opportunity to call on all those startups and technological SMEs that have a possible innovative solution, through which they can help in the processing, analysis and monitoring of everything related to the issue that is currently on everyone’s lips, the coronavirus (COVID-19.)
As any program does, the EIC Accelerator has a number of measures to be followed, once companies apply. The first of these, and one of the most important, the startups and SMEs that apply will be evaluated in the same way as the rest of the companies that have decided to apply for this call.
Another measure is the financial support that a startup or SME may be eligible for under this programme. That said, companies that choose to apply can count on a grant of €17.5 million, a figure that is not bad at all, if they are provided with this financial support in the form of grants and investment (equity), structured in the following way. In terms of funding, they will be provided with an amount that ranges from 0.5 M to 2.5 million euros in grants. The other requirement is to be open to the possibility of receiving a maximum of €15 million in investment (equity).
The third requirement that we must mention when participating in the EIC Accelerator is which companies can carry out their participation in this program. Both SMEs and startups, which are established within the European Union or those that are part of the countries included in the Horizon 2020 strategy, may apply: Iceland, Norway, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, North Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, Turkey, Israel, Moldova, Switzerland, Faroe Islands, Ukraine, Tunisia, Georgia, Armenia.
It should be noted that the European Commission’s EIC Accelerator programme does have in mind the acceleration of the granting of subsidies and funding (combination of subsidies + capital investment) for all relevant innovations related to the coronavirus (COVID-19).
So far, the EIC Accelerator already supports different startups and SMEs, which have certain innovations in relation to the coronavirus (COVID-19) and have received support in previous calls. For example, one of the projects presented that has already received their support is EpiShuttle, a project with a specialization in a series of isolation units. Another of the projects carried out and supported by this programme is m-TAP, which deals with a technological solution for filtering this well-known virus. Finally, the company MBENT, whose function is to rasterize individuals in periods of epidemics, is supported by the EIC Accelerator.
Having said all this and explained the functioning of this program (EIC Accelerator), if you have any idea or any solution do not hesitate to introduce yourself and present your project, it can be helpful to many people. Everyone who carries out this program has a lot of experience in helping and analyzing the projects presented and carried out. As of today, they have 34 projects they have advised and helped, both startups and SMEs, so that they have been able to obtain capital in different lines of the European Commission (SME Horizon 2020 Instrument and EIC Accelerator.)
They have supported different startups and SMEs in initial phases to apply for Phase I of the SME Facility with an economic support of €50,000 as well as Phase II of the SME Facility with an economic support of up to €2.5 million. Both phases are now known as the above mentioned program the EIC Accelerator. It is worth noting that they have worked with a wide variety of companies and startups both in terms of products and services as well as software (Saas, Apps, systems), innovation ecosystems, etc. This places them as a serious program with which you can help and make yourself known.
So, if you have a project in mind that can help to avoid the spread and end of this pandemic that is limiting all of us, do not hesitate to give us information about yourself. Your project may be the solution to what we are all looking for today, the end of this virus.