Business Innovation Programme

The Business Innovation Programme is a component of the £33m Business Growth Programme, which is a comprehensive business support package part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). As lead partner, Birmingham City Council and 3 Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs) are working together to deliver this important initiative, which covers the Greater Birmingham and Solihull, Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire and The Marches LEP areas.

The Business Innovation Programme is aimed at existing B2B Small to Medium sized Enterprises (SMEs) investing in innovative ”close-to-market” products and services.

Capital and revenue grants are available of £10,000 - £30,000

Type of Eligible Expenditure:

  • capital equipment
  • improvement of production processes and systems
  • new product development (concept development, prototyping, product testing and product launch)
  • market development
  • business innovation mentoring and coaching

Eligibility Criteria

To find out if your business is eligible to apply, you must register your interest by contacting the Growth Hub in your partnership area for FREE advice.


You must NOT be a Franchise, Charity, Not-for-Profit, Community Business or in the Retail Sector.

The programme limits awards to one grant per SME from any one of the four components of the Business Growth Programme (i.e., you cannot apply for a grant from each component).

The Business Innovation Programme operates under de minimis regulations and offers assistance of up to a maximum of 50% eligible costs (60% in transition areas).


If you have benefitted previously from a Business Innovation Programme (BIP) grant, then unless you have fully achieved ALL of your previous project outputs (including ALL jobs creations) you will NOT be considered as eligible for BGP funding. Please check with your Project Officer to ensure you have satisfied all of your project outputs before submitting a BGP application

BIP applications from SMEs that have not met their contractual obligations related to previous projects funded by this programme will NOT be considered for funding.

If you have partially met your project outputs from previous BIP grant supported projects, then you are ineligible for consideration in this funding round and we recommend that you delay applying for BGP support until your previous project outputs have been fulfilled.

BIP project costs

The grant is part funded by ERDF.

Your project costs must be for a minimum of £20,000 to qualify for a grant payment of £10,000.

The maximum grant payable on BIP projects is £30,000.

The level of grant awarded will be between 50% to 60% of eligible costs.

VAT is not claimable on grants.

Funding Rounds

Applications must be submitted within the current funding round. See the attached Funding Round Schedule for latest funding round dates.

We strongly recommend that you submit your application early and do not wait for the funding round closure deadline. If substantial volumes of applications are received, in order to manage application capacity, we reserve the right to close funding rounds early and carry over applications into the next Funding Round. Applicants will be advised if this action is necessary.

Note: The use of consultants or third parties in completing the application form is discouraged and is an ineligible cost. To progress your application, please contact the Growth Hub for free.

Application Process

Please check that you have included all the necessary documentation and supporting information in your application.
You will need to complete the HS2SCP & GBSCP Grant Application Form and provide all the related Financial Information. The following documents will enable you to complete your submission:

Date last updated: 22/09/2016