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Freight Innovation Fund

Updated: Jan 25, 2023

The Department for Transport (DfT) has launched a new fund to help small to medium-sized businesses to develop greener and more efficient solutions for freight.

The Freight Innovation Fund will support SMEs with solutions to current challenges in the United Kingdom’s freight sector, as well as developing a future pipeline of solutions to meet the sector’s emerging needs. The programme will take a cross-modal view of the end-to-end freight journey, deploying solutions in real-world environments.

The programme will identify and trial new products and services coming to market in the freight sector. It will convene and support innovating organisations across the sector and ultimately support the whole market to grow to match the ambitions of both the DfT and the whole UK economy.

DfT has dedicated £7 million to the programme to support SMEs through the Accelerator Programme and Freight Innovation Cluster until 2024.

Freight Innovation Fund Accelerator

The accelerator programme will select up to 36 SMEs over three open calls until 2024. Successful SMEs will join a six-month programme, where they will each have the opportunity to access up to £150,000 of grant funding to trial their solutions with industry partners.

Applications to the Accelerator will close on Sunday 5 February 2023.

Freight Innovation Cluster

The Freight Innovation Cluster complements the Accelerator and will be the go-to community for innovating organisations in the freight industry.

Through sector-specific engagement activities, cross-pollination opportunities, ad hoc business support, and community-building exercises, the cluster aims to become a vibrant ecosystem, where new ideas and collaboration can flourish.

The Freight Innovation Cluster is open to anyone in the freight industry, including innovative SMEs, industry partners and academia. Technology-agnostic, this initiative will focus on developing innovation across the sector and will last for the whole duration of the programme.

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