Energy Catalyst round 6: Transforming energy access- Funding competition
The Department for International Development (DFID) and the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) will invest up to £10 million in innovation projects. These must encourage technology that will help countries in Sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia access secure, low cost and low carbon energy.
The aim of this competition is to support highly innovative, market-focused energy solutions in any technology or sector or international market. To be in scope for this round your project must meet the needs of people, businesses and services in Sub-Saharan Africa or South Asia.
Proposals must also address all 3 elements of the energy ‘trilemma’:
  • cost
  • emissions
  • security of supply and energy access
There are 3 options to apply into this competition. These are referred to as strands and will be run in parallel. The strands are dependent on the stage your project is at:
  • early stage for feasibility studies
  • mid-stage for industrial research
  • late stage for experimental development
£3 million of the funding is set aside for bioenergy projects.
If your project falls outside of our scope for cost, length or applicable country, please email at least 10 days before the competition closes.
Grant Size
Early stage projects can have total costs of £50,000 to £300,000 and last 6 to 12 months. Mid-stage: £50,000 to £1.5 million, 12 to 24 months. Late stage: £50,000 to £3 million, 12 to 30 months. Projects must start by 1 April 2019 and end by 30 Sept 2021.
To be eligible for funding for any strand you must:
  • be a business, academic organization, charity, public sector organization or research and technology organization (RTO)
  • apply as part of a collaboration with a UK organization if you are based in Sub-Saharan Africa or South Asia
  • intend to exploit the results to help deliver clean energy access in Sub-Saharan Africa or South Asia
  • involve at least one micro, small or medium-sized enterprise (SME)
We will fund organizations from anywhere in the world.
Find out if your business fits the EU definition of an SME.

Any UK business claiming funding must be eligible to receive state aid. If you are unsure please take legal advice. For further information please see our general guidance.

Early stage
To lead you must be a UK SME or RTO.
If you are a UK SME you can apply on your own.
Larger businesses and other organizations must work in collaboration with others (businesses, research base or third sector)
Mid and late stage
To lead you must be a UK business.
You must work in collaboration with others (businesses, research base or third sector).
Your project must involve some research and development, testing or demonstration work in Sub-Saharan Africa or South Asia. This can be done by either the UK or international partner.
International partners
International partners (business or other) are strongly encouraged, where relevant to the project. They will be funded, through the UK lead partner, on the same grant percentage terms as UK organizations.
The lead organization must claim to fund through this competition. If the project is collaborative, at least one other organization in the consortium must also claim to fund.
Please note that a ‘research organization’ is any organization receiving 100% funding or 80% full economic costing (FEC) funding.
Wednesday 14 November 2018 12:00 pm
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Erk Makigi

Business and Investment

Following the success of the inaugural Congress,
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