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Strategic Grant Planning – A Eurostars coordinator tells of his experience

21st June 2019 at 1:57 pm

Are you part of an SME that is looking to fund the development of an innovative product or technology but don’t have the right funding scheme in mind? One year ago we launched Strategic Grant Planning to help researchers, academics and companies answer that question. Now, one year on we caught up with clients we’ve been able to help using the tools developed for the Strategic Grant Planning service.

We asked Konstantin Lutze, CTO of HSE AG (henceforth HSE) and coordinator of the project MiniLib, for some answers on how accelopment helped him and his project to be funded. The MiniLib project, which aims at developing a system that will allow laboratories to save time, costs and precious sample material in the process of library preparation. EUREKA Eurostars, which is funding MiniLib, and the Horizon 2020 SME Instrument are two key funding instruments for innovative SMEs at the European level. Whilst Konstantin Lutze had first set his eyes on the SME Instrument he later came to the conclusion, with advice from accelopment, that the EUREKA Eurostars would be the better-suited programme. Read on to find out how that came to be.

Questions and answers with Konstantin Lutze (CTO of HSE AG)

Q: How did you hear about the SME Instrument and why did you want to apply for funding under this scheme?

A: We learned about the SME Instrument when we were looking for funding options on the internet.

Q: What made you change your mind and apply for the Eurostars programme instead?

A: Though our planned technology is highly innovative it is not disruptive in a stricter sense which is an advantage in the SME instrument programme as we learned from Jeanette. Also, we realised that the SME Instrument proposal would require substantially more effort to prepare and success rates are low. At the same time, the criteria of the Eurostars programme appeared to be more suitable to our specific needs.

Q: What made you trust in accelopment’s advice?

A: We had enquired for several quotations from different providers. The offer from accelopment contained clear evidence on the above-mentioned restrictions and opportunities. It was well researched and suggested quite some experience in these questions.

Q: Would you make the same programme decision again?

A: So far we have no indication that this was not the right decision. So, yes!

Q: What would you recommend other SMEs when looking for EU funding opportunities?

A: This is not an undertaking that you should do on your own. We advise you to seek for experienced support. It will save your time and will significantly increase your success probability.

About Strategic Grant Planning

To identify EU funding possibilities and to support you in your quest for funding, we are eager to help you with the Strategic Grant Planning (SGP). Based on your field of activity and key words, we will create a list of relevant funding opportunities at the European level, covering proposal submissions for the next two years. This list will include some call details such as deadlines, success rates, proposal page numbers, funding estimation, usual consortium size, etc. We will then organise a meeting to identify the most suitable opportunities and set up time plans to ensure an efficient use of resources for the application process.

About HSE and the MiniLib project

HSE aims to develop a novel miniaturised and easy-to-use automated liquid handling solution and had heard about the SME Instrument. The company`s President Hans Noser called Jeanette, our CEO, to discuss in person. At the meeting with HSE`s CTO (Konstantin Lutze) and one of HSE`s Principal Scientists (Dr Kai Hassler), it became evident that the SME Instrument might not have been the best suitable funding instrument and the Eurostars be a better fit.