Funding competition Eureka Eurostars 2, round 9

Innovative SMEs can apply for a share of £2.5 million to collaborate in research with partners across Europe and associated countries.

This competition is now closed.

Register and apply online

Competition sections


Small businesses working on high-quality research and development (R&D) projects across national borders often find it difficult to attract public-sector funding. EUREKA Eurostars was set up to overcome this barrier to innovation. With its market-led approach, it stimulates international collaborative research and innovation projects that will be rapidly commercialised.

Eurostars supports SMEs in leading international collaborative research and innovation projects by helping them get access to guidance and funding.

A Eurostars project must have a civilian purpose and be aimed at the development of a new product, process or service.

Projects must be led by a research-performing SME.

Funding type


Project size

Up to €360,000 funding for each UK project partner or 60% of eligible project costs will be awarded, whichever is the least. Projects can last up to 36 months.

Find out if you are eligible to apply

In the UK, only SMEs are eligible for funding. The project must be led by a research-performing SME, one that:

  • invests 10% or more of its turnover into research, or
  • has 10% of its full-time equivalent staff working on research activities, or
  • has 5 or more full-time staff working on research activities, if the SME has 100 or fewer employees, or
  • has 10 or more full-time staff working on research activities, if the SME has more than 100 employees

The following criteria must be met at the closing date for the application and are applicable throughout the project’s duration.

  1. UK SMEs can only take part in one Eurostars project at a time.
  2. If you have an existing project, your final project report on it must have been accepted by the Eurostars secretariat before the application deadline for this competition. You can apply for other Innovate UK funding without this restriction.
  3. Partners must be separate, non-linked legal entities.
  4. Partners must be registered at Companies House and have been trading for 12 months at the application deadline.
  5. All work must be carried out in the UK and your project costs must be incurred in the UK.
  6. Your labour costs must be on a pay as you earn (PAYE) basis.
  7. UK subcontracting is capped at 20% of the UK partner eligible costs.
  8. UK-led projects must be managed by an SME. Project management cannot be subcontracted.
Your project must meet the Eurostars eligibility criteria in the Eurostars guidelines.

Each participating country has its own eligibility criteria. You must make sure your partners follow the criteria of their countries’ national funding bodies.

Projects that we won’t fund

In the UK, Eurostars will not fund:

  • academics, including universities
  • research and technology organisations (RTOs)
  • large companies

These organisations can participate but must self-fund or use funds from other sources.

Competition scope

Eurostars is a European funding programme dedicated to supporting R&D performing SMEs in innovative R&D projects. Its market-driven approach, which gives companies full control over project content, supports collaborative research and innovation projects that can go to market 2 years after the project finishes.

You can apply for Eurostars funding for any sector and any industry. It can address any technological area but must be aimed at the development of a new product, process or service.

A Eurostars project must have a civilian purpose. It cannot have a military purpose.
20 December 2017
Competition opens
1 March 2018 7:00pm
Competition closes
1 March 2018 7:00pm
Registration closes
12 July 2018
Applicants notified

Before you start

In order to apply for a Eurostars project and submit your application, you must create a Eurostars account.
Eurostars will send you an email with your sign in information. This will allow you to access the restricted website and the application form. Using your email and password, you can access your own personal workspace on the website.
Using the tool bars, navigate your way through the various sections of the application form and complete them as required. Edit, save and retrieve drafts, or download the content as a PDF so that you can email it to your partners. For help refer to the:
Applications can only be submitted using the Eurostars online tool. Application forms and other documents submitted by any other means will be automatically rejected.

Background and further information

For further information about Eurostars, please see the Eurostars process.

Each participating country has a National Project Co-ordinator (NPC). To find yours, please choose your country from the list of 36 Eurostars participating states and partner countries.

If you need more information, contact the competition helpline on 0300 321 4357 or email us at

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