The EIC Accelerator supports top-class innovative entrepreneurs, specifically SMEs. It is one of the instruments of the European Innovation Council (EIC) Work Programme, part of Horizon Europe.
EIC Accelerator Programme 2023 Requirements
This highly competitive programme helps you to develop your business concept further into a market-ready product, service or process aligned with your company’s growth strategy. Activities could, for example, include trials, prototyping, validation, demonstration and testing in real-world conditions, and market replication. If the activity concerns a primarily technological innovation, a Technology Readiness Level (TRL) of 5/6 or above is envisaged. The EIC Accelerator is focused on innovations that build on scientific discoveries or breakthrough technologies. Through the funding it will support innovators to attract the full investment amounts needed for scale up in a shorter timeframe. Work essential to your project may be subcontracted.
EIC Accelerator Open Call
- Grant: max. €2.5M
- Investment component: Between €0,5M and €15M
- Applicants can choose to apply for a blend of grant and equity, grant only, grant first or equity only.
Total Budget available: €630.9M
Deadline: 3 stage application process
- Short proposal: apply anytime
- Full proposal: 11 Jan (Open only), 22 March, 7 June, 4 October 2023
- Interview rounds: They will be held approximately 8-9 weeks after the cut-off dates
Consortium: single SMEs and start-up (and individuals intending to establish a start-up/SME) established in EU Member State Countries.
EIC Accelerator Challenges
The Open Call, is open to any type of technology and research area. Next to that, 7 EIC Accelerator Challenges are implemented in 2023. Both the Open Call and Challenge Calls share the same eligibility criteria and conditions. The deadlines for the Challenges are: 22 March, 7 June, 4 October 2023. Total Budget available: €523.5M.
Titles of the 7 EIC Accelerator Challenges:
- Novel biomarker-based assays to guide personalised cancer treatment
- Aerosol and surface decontamination for pandemic management
- Energy storage
- New European Bauhaus and Architecture, Engineering and Construction digitalisation for decarbonisation
- Emerging semiconductor or quantum technology components
- Novel technologies for resilient agriculture
- Customer-driven, innovative space technologies and services
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EIC Accelerator Grant FAQs
When is the EIC Accelerator deadline?
There are four deadlines in 2023. The first is 11 January, then 22 March, 7 June, and 4 October 2023. Short applications are welcome any time to the EIC Accelerator programme.
What is the budget for EIC Accelerator?
EIC Accelerator has a total budget of €1,135.7 million in 2023, divided over the Open call (€611.7M) and 7 Challenges (€523.5M) calls.
How to write a winning grant for EIC Accelerator?
Applying to EIC Accelerator is a strategic decision that should not be taken lightly. In a nutshell, you need a breakthrough innovation with the potential to create entirely new markets or revolutionise existing ones, a clear ambition to grow at international level, a demonstrated knowledge of your target market, and a convincing, detailed business and financing plan. It is crucial that you are ready to convince on each one of these aspects.
Download our comprehensive EIC Accelerator 2023 guide to read more of our advice for applying to EIC Accelerator.
What is the subsidy for EIC Accelerator?
The maximum subsidy amount for winning EIC Accelerator proposals is €2.5M, for both Open and Challenge calls. In addition, applicants can receive between €0,5M and €15M in equity investment.
Who can apply for EIC Accelerator?
Applicants must be small- or medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) – especially start-ups, spin-outs and scale-ups, individuals intending to launch a start-up or SME, and in exceptional cases, small mid-caps (fewer than 500 employees) established in an EU Member State or a Horizon Europe-associated country.
About European innovation council (EIC) and Accelerator
The EIC Accelerator supports high-risk, high-potential SMEs and innovators. The aim is to help them to develop and bring to market new innovative products, services and business models, which could go on to drive economic growth.
Selected companies receive funding and optional equity and are offered business coaching and mentoring to scale up their innovation idea. In addition, they get extra acceleration services to connect with investors, corporates and likeminded entrepreneurs.
As an EIC Accelerator client, you will gain visibility and boost your chances of success in European and international markets.
The application process starts with submitting a full proposal. Then, the highest ranked proposals will be invited to a pitch presentation and Q&A session in Brussels before a jury.
Visit the EIC website for more information
Download our free EIC Accelerator guide
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