KTN recently ran a series of events at locations across the UK to promote the Analysis for Innovators (A4I) programme. This culminated in running the competition briefing event as Round 4 opened for applications. These are some of the comments from those at the event.
Delegates at the launch event, some already funded by A4I during previous rounds and some new to the competition, had the following comments:
Our work with NPL feels more like a peer-to-peer collaboration, rather than a customer-service provider relationship. They’re as invested in this project as we are.
The brokerage stage was interesting.
We’re working with LGC and it’s amazing to get access to these scientists and to state-of-the-art technology.
The event showed what’s available, what’s good and what’s out there.
We were successful in Round one and are being funded by Innovate UK. To succeed in our funding bid has given us confidence in what we’re doing.
The funding gave us a sense of credibility to find out how our process does what it does.
First impressions [of A4I] are that the process is nice and simple for the first round.
We now employ 28 people from where we started with eight staff.
The team at NPL understands what our future users need.
NPLknows what’s relevant and irrelevant as we move forward. They also give us extra bandwidth and a level of industry horizon scanning.
The gated process of the application was really helpful. It meant that our potential partners could help us with our application.
To get funding and to work with world-renowned technologies? That’s given us a huge confidence boost.
It’s given us the confidence to bid for contracts and projects – we’re now working with a large water company : the funding has given us access to high value markets.
We’re literally at a roadblock and we’re now developing a method to show that what we’re doing is safe to use with our partner at LGC.
The funding has given us credibility and shown that what we’re doing is worth investing in.
A4I is a programme that gives UK businesses of any size access to cutting-edge R&D expertise and facilities to help solve problems that they have been unable to tackle using standard technologies and techniques. It might be around product reliability, cost or product lifetime.
A4I is an investment from Innovate UK, as part of UK Research and Innovation, alongside funding partners the National Physical Laboratory (NPL), the National Measurement Laboratory at LGC (formerly known as the Laboratory of the Government Chemist), the National Engineering Laboratory (NEL) and the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC).
Together the A4I funding partners run some of the most advanced facilities, techniques and technologies available in the world. A4I matches the best UK scientists and facilities with companies that have existing, possibly long-running issues, a different approach from other Innovate UK funding competitions.