The SME instrument has been designed specifically for single or groups of highly innovative SMEs with international ambitions, determined to turn strong, innovative business ideas into winners on the market. The instrument provides full-cycle business innovation support from the stage of business idea conception and planning (phase I) over business plan execution and demonstration (phase II) to commercialisation. Participants will be able to call on business innovation coaching for the duration of their project.

Phase I Concept & feasibility study: The European Union will provide €50 000 in funding

Phase II Demonstration, market replication, R&D and product development: The EU may contribute 70% of total project cost, between €0.5 and €2.5 million

Business support for market launch. Participants at both phases will receive world-class coaching benefit from networking opportunities with top level investors and potential partners and get support to launch their product on European and international markets.

The SME Instrument can be used to target any of the 7 Societal Challenges from Secure, clean and efficient energy to health and also sections of the Industrial Pillar such as ICT and advanced manufacturing.

Under the SME Instrument grant proposals are evaluated by 4 independent experts, on the basis of three award criteria:

  • Excellence
  • Impact
  • Implementation


The Source: Participant Portal H2020 Online Manual