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New business support programme joins the big family of RTC

Are you a North East-based SME looking for support to take your innovation to market? Look no further, our brand-new Pathways 2 Innovation (P2I) programme is here!

P2I is designed to help SMEs protect and commercialise new technologies, products, services and processes and access new markets.

Supporting the NE LEP's strategic economic plan, the programme is particularly aimed at businesses in the sectors of Healthcare & Life Sciences; Advanced Manufacturing, Offshore & Energy Technologies; IT, Software, Creative & Digital.

P2I is funded through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and is delivered by RTC North in partnership with the Business & Intellectual Property Centre Newcastle in the NE LEP area.

Companies can access four levels of invaluable support through the programme, including:


Level 1: One to one support (a minimum of two days support from RTC innovation advisors). This stage can include:

• Idea health checks’ and IP audits (infringement, freedom to operate)

• Product, publication and patent searching (novelty)

• Commercialisation assistance and legal advice (partnering, business     model, licencing etc)

• Facilitation of company introductions and identification of collaboration partners

• Business development support (strategy)

• Specialist market research (bespoke support using commercial data sources)

• Copyright advice for training materials


Level 2: Support through masterclasses and workshops 

(half or full day sessions delivered on a range of topics throughout the year)

• Innovation training

• Monetizing IP

• Business model development 

• Understanding customer needs

• Accessing market intelligence


Level 3: Funded Support for Innovation 

Up to 35 % Grant Funding for work with external specialist’s for projects between £3,000 and £6,000 total value

Through P2I, RTC North can provide support with the development and commercialisation of innovative ideas. Eligible companies can access subsidised services for projects which lead to the development of new technologies, products, processes and services. From strategic planning, market strategy and helping companies to access proof of concept and other forms of funding and procurement advice.


Level 4: The Business & Intellectual Property Centre can provide free support to enable eligible SMEs to identify and utilise their intellectual property (IP) to protect new innovations and grow their business. Free support available includes:

• One-to-one IP advice sessions delivered by the BIPC team and the Intellectual Property Office

• One-to-one support session from IP barristers and solicitors

• Patent and Trademark searches

• Exclusive invitation to events and masterclasses, supported by a range of BIPC partners, focusing on harnessing IP for growth and exploring new market opportunities 

• Access to quality business information services including online sources of information, such as British Standards and Mintel, often out of the reach of most SMEs


Through the programme, we will also celebrate success and creativity of our clients through a bright ideas awards programme based on the NE LEP's smart specialisation sectors.

Interested in being part of this fantastic new programme and benefiting from the invaluable guidance of our experienced advisors? Get in touch and we’ll take it from there, email us at [email protected] or give us a call on 0191 516 4400. 

May 17, 2018

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