The SME Instrument for Horizon Europe

You are ready for the EIC Accelerator (SME Instrument Phase 2) when you know that your project is feasible and what your target market looks like. In addition, you already have a working prototype / demonstrator that requires only minor further development. In the next two years, your focus will be on optimization, the development of a commercialization strategy and the start of the market launch.

What is eligible for funding?

On the one hand, necessary work steps towards a product that is ready to conquer the market funded:

  • Construction of demonstrators and testing with customers
  • Clinical studies, work on obtaining approvals
  • Up-scaling, miniaturization, revision of design and construction
  • Adaptation to different market requirements in different EU countries

On the other hand, activities are also supported to develop a commercialisation and financing strategy with regard to market introduction:

  • Development of sales structures and a sales team, establishment of sales partners
  • Development of a price model
  • Development of a marketing and communication strategy and associated measures
  • Detailing the Business Plan
  • Evaluation of the financing requirements and approach of potential investors

How is funding provided?

  • Funding: The funding amounts to 0.5 to 2.5 million €. At the beginning of the project you will receive pre-financing of up to 55% of the funding amount, a further 30% after your interim report and the remaining amount after your final report.
  • Blended Finance Option: In addition to funding of up to 2.5 million €, companies can apply for a further 15 million € equity capital. Equity capital is to cover work packages that are no longer funded (further than TRL 8). For this, the EU will acquire a maximum of 25% of the shares in the company through a silent participation and will not intervene in any decisions. There will be a simplified due diligence for companies in the blended finance option.

  • In addition, you will receive coaching and mentoring measures of up to 12 days.
  • Admission to the Business Acceleration Services is also part of the sponsorship.

The EU covers 70% of your total project costs.

These are structured as follows:

   Personnel costs (person months x gross salary)
+ Travel expenses (to customers, trade fairs, partners, ...)
+ Materials (e.g. for production, tests, marketing, certifications, training, ...)
+ Equipment (depreciation during the project)
= direct project costs

+ Overhead rate (surcharge of 25% of the direct project costs)
+ External services (costs for external service providers)
= Total project costs

Funding: 70% of the total project costs

How does the proposal look like?

Mandatory elements:

  • In the main proposal, EU's questions are answered on a maximum of 30 pages
  • The annex must contain the curricula vitae of the core team
  • The pitch deck for the interview round in Brussels must be submitted directly - subsequent changes are now no longer possible.
  • An extensive financial planning of the company, consisting of...
    1. A financial overview including income statement, cash flow and balance sheet
    2. Current financial data (debt, cash burn rate)
    3. The financing history (equity, loans, etc.)
    4. The ownership and share structure (founders, management team, investors, business angels, etc.)
    5. Current financial requirements (equity requirements, proposed post-money valuation, etc.)

 Optional elements:

  • Optional content can be included unlimited in the annex
  • However, the experts are not obliged to look at these contents
  • It is therefore important to include only meaningful content such as reference letters, market studies, infrastructure, etc.

When are the next deadlines?


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