Challenge North East Expression of Interest application form

Deadline for applications – 12 noon, Friday 15 January 2021

Are you and your team ready to play your part in solving these pressing and complex challenges? Please download and complete the following Expression of Interest form for the opportunity to become a Challenge North East solution provider.

Please email this completed form to [email protected] by Noon on 15th January to be considered for the prototype development funding of up to £5,000. Further details are available via the website or you can request a brief 1-to-1 call to clarify any question about your application by emailing [email protected].

You can view the criteria against which we will be assessing submitted solutions here


Criteria Weighting
A - Clear and compelling solution outline that offers an innovative solution(s) that is new to the market 20%
B - Measurable outcomes in scope with challenge 20%
C - Credible team specialisms / experience 25%
D - Valid prototyping & testing plan 15%
E - ROI v funding applied for 10%
F - Risk management 10%

The Solution Development Co-design programme runs from January to March 2021. Through the co-design workshop process you will work with organisations with large teams, customer bases and audiences with whom you can test your solution so that you can prove that your solution works and demonstrate its impact.

You will receive 50% of your development funding up-front (January 2021)and the remaining 50%, on condition that your team successfully develops a prototype of your solution and presents it at a pitch event in March 2021.

Following this pitch, you will be able to apply for an Impact Grant of up to £40k to scale your solution. The award will be based on the strength of your pitch, the demonstrated impact of your solution following user testing and completion of a grant application.

Intellectual Property will reside with the organisation or the consortium developing the solution; consortia should confirm their Intellectual Property stance between the partner organisations before applying.

Any business or organisation that meets the eligibility criteria of being a small or medium enterprise of less than 250 employees whose principal place of business, operations, people or trading within the North East Local Enterprise Partnership region; and can demonstrate that they are not a research organisation, nor undertaking in difficulty.

We welcome expressions of interest from individual business entities, or from consortia (which must be represented by one lead contracting organisation in the bid). All organisations must fit within the State Aid provisions and be able to demonstrate, if required, participation in this programme will mean that they do not exceed the de minimis funding threshold of €200,000 over the past three years. The Challenge Team can advise during the EOI process.

As this is an Open Innovation programme, we are keen to involve a wide range of organisations and our region’s best minds in developing effective solutions. If your organisation does not meet these criteria, please get in touch and we can discuss how you can be involved. You may be able to submit a solution to develop via the challenge process but you may not be eligible for development funding.

Email [email protected] for further information.

ERDF ISN North East Sunderland Software City Digital Catapult

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