UK, Singapore companies encouraged to apply for share of funding in £1m competition

Up to £350,000 are available for each project.
By Leontina Postelnicu
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UK companies can now apply for funding to work on R&D projects with businesses in Singapore in a £1m competition supported by Innovate UK and the intergovernmental EUREKA network.

The contest is open to all sectors, but Innovate UK is encouraging SMEs to focus on medical technology, as well as smart mobility, logistics and advanced manufacturing, with up to £350,000 available for each project.

HOW IT WORKS

Those selected will need to present a “game-changing, disrupting and innovative idea”, a “strong” business plan and a “clear” route to market within up to three years of the project being completed, as outlined in information released by the UK's innovation agency.

The projects, estimated to take around three years, will also be expected to start in March next year, and an online briefing is being organised on 1 July to give prospective applicants more information about the process.

The competition opened on Monday, 17 June, and companies have until 19 September to apply.

WHY IT MATTERS

Medtech has been identified as a “key sector” for development by the Singapore government, according to A*STAR, the Agency for Science, Technology and Research.

In 2018, Singapore was reported to be the home of around 60 multinational medtech companies and local startups, and the country’s Economic Development Board estimated that the market in Asia would surpass the EU to become the second largest globally by 2020.

In May, MobiHealthNews also reported that Australian tech accelerator BlueChilli and Enterprise Singapore, an agency of the Singapore Ministry of Trade and Industry, unveiled the launch of an accelerator that will support startups addressing challenges facing healthcare in Southeast Asia.

In the UK, 2018 statistics from the Office for Life Sciences indicated that the medtech sector, including digital health, employed over 127,000 people, with a turnover of £24bn. More than 97,000 of those were in the core medtech sector, which looks specifically at medical devices, and had a turnover of £18.7bn last year.