KTN's online platform helps you to make the connections you need


The Knowledge Transfer Network (KTN) has refreshed its online platform to intelligently connect you to relevant events, funding, thought pieces and specialist staff to help your business innovate and grow.

You can discover content using your area of interest, from Materials to transport; from space to health – all major UK economic sectors are covered. Once you have selected your interests, using our intelligent tagging system, we will then display rich and relevant content related to your area, often from surprising sources.

An example might be new satellite technology from the space sector that is applicable in the agri-food sector. KTN-UK.co.uk will help you form these unusual and valuable connections.

All content on the platform has been carefully curated by our team of innovation specialists – not by an automated algorithm – so you can be confident that KTN is connecting you to the most relevant cutting-edge information.


The move also marks a closer alignment with our main funder, Innovate UK , with the website branding making a clear visual link. Knowledge Transfer Network is Innovate UK's innovation network partner, and also works with other funders to provide innovation networking services and fulfil our mission to drive UK growth.

We link new ideas and opportunities with expertise, markets and finance through our network of businesses, universities, funders and investors. From agri-food to autonomous systems and from energy to design, KTN combines expertise in all sectors with the ability to cross boundaries. Connecting with KTN can lead to potential partners, horizon-expanding events and innovation insights relevant to your needs.

Visit our people pages to connect directly with expertise in your sector.

Visit the KTN refreshed online platfom here

Innovate UK funding

KTN has produced a general guide to Innovate UK funding competitions, please check the rules for each competition as some details differ.

Innovate UK will support UK businesses to responsibly deliver market-leading technology solutions, channelled through high-value applications, that help to solve society's greatest challenges.


Open competitions for materials and nanotechnology

Surface engineering and coating technologies for high-value manufacturing Investment of up to £2m in technical feasibility studies to stimulate innovative new concepts and applications in surface engineering and coatings. Registration closes 9 March.

Synthetic biology for novel materials This CDE themed competition seeks ambitious concepts to exploit the power of biological systems to make complex materials and the fundamental tools of molecular biology to manipulate such systems. Deadline 14 April.

Energy game changer Investment of up to £2 million in technical feasibility studies to encourage new entrants to the energy sector and stimulate the adoption of disruptive technologies. Registration closes 4 May.

Smart (Grants for R&D) Single company grants for small to medium-sized companies for: proof of market, proof of concept  and development of prototype. This competition is always open with new assessment dates announced periodically. 

Innovation Vouchers  - £5000 for each company in Innovate UK themed areas for small businesses to work with an external expert for the first time - No fixed deadline. Also local voucher opportunities typically £2000 to £10,000 through universities and networks.

A-Z of Innovate UK funding and support tools

Full list of open and forthcoming competitions


General funding
Horizon 2020 - Horizon 2020 is the biggest EU Research and Innovation programme ever with nearly €80 billion of funding available over 7 years (2014 to 2020).

IPO Fast Forward competition - The Fast Forward competition encourages universities and Public Sector Research Establishments to work collaboratively with businesses and local communities to maximise the benefits of innovation and Intellectual Property.

Regional Growth Fund - The £3.2 billion Regional Growth Fund (RGF) supports eligible projects and programmes that are also raising private sector investment to create economic growth and sustainable employment. 

Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851 - Industrial Fellowships - Open to outstanding first degree graduates in engineering, science or medicine either nominated directly through a sponsoring company or enrolled on a UK University EngD/Industrial Doctorate programme. Candidates from SMEs particularly encouraged.

Business Link (finance finder) - Find government-backed support and finance for business.

Centre for Defence Enterprise - CDE funds research into novel high-risk, high-potential-benefit innovations sourced from the broadest possible range of science and technology providers, including academia and small companies, to enable development of cost-effective capability advantage for UK Armed Forces.

British Private Equity and Venture Capital Association - The industry body and public policy advocate for the private equity and venture capital industry in the UK. 

Knowledge Transfer Partnerships - industry based, part-funded graduates with academic supervision.

EPSRC - Find out about funding opportunities and routes available to support world leading research and training.

Enterprise Finance Guarantee - The Enterprise Finance Guarantee (EFG) facilitates additional bank lending to viable small & medium-sized enterprises (SMEs)which lack collateral to secure a normal commercial loan.

Enterprise Capital Funds - Enterprise Capital Funds (ECFs) address a market weakness in the provision of equity finance to SMEs by using Government funding alongside private sector investment to establish funds that operate within the ‘equity gap'.

Manufacturing Advisory Service - Matched funding for manufacturing company growth. 

StartUp Loan Scheme -  Provides advice and start-up finance (around £2500) for 18-30 year olds looking to start and grow their own businesses.  

Business Finance Partnership (BFP) -  The government has invited the first round of proposals to help businesses access non-bank finance through the BFP, and has allocated £100 million of the BFP to invest through non-traditional lending channels that can reach smaller businesses, which could include peer-to-peer platforms and supply chain financing. 

Enterprise Finance Guarantee Scheme - The Enterprise Finance Guarantee (EFG) is a loan guarantee scheme to encourage additional lending to viable small and medium-sized enterprises. Further details can be found at: 

The Angel CoFund -  The Angel CoFund is a £100m investment fund with objectives to back promising UK businesses and help develop the important business angel investment market. 

UK export finance -  Provides trade credit insurance to exporters and guarantees to banks to support UK exports. 

GrowthAccelerator -  A partnership between leading private sector business growth experts, Grant Thornton, Pera, Oxford Innovation and Winning Pitch and backed by the UK government.

New Enterprise Allowance -  Help for unemployed people who want to start a business, with an emphasis on sustainability and growth potential.  It is available to people aged 18 and over who have been claiming Jobseeker's Allowance (JSA) for three months or more.


If you are aware of other relevant funding opportunities or find any errors and out-of-date information here, please contact Rob Mills.



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