A £9.3million programme to unlock access to EU funding, University expertise and graduate talent is now available for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) across the East and South East of England
The KEEP+ programme is open to businesses across four Local Enterprise Partnership (LEPs) Areas, enabling those businesses to develop and launch new products and services. Funding has been provided by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).
KEEP+ is a partnership that unites eight delivery partners including Anglia Ruskin University as lead organisation, EELGA (East of England Local Government Association); University of Brighton; University of Suffolk; University of Essex; University of Greenwich; and University of Hertfordshire
The programme, which commenced on 1st January 2017, is running for three years and will be open to SMEs registered and actively trading in the four LEP areas that cover: Peterborough, Rutland and Cambridgeshire (Greater Cambridge/Greater Peterborough (LEP), Hertfordshire (Hertfordshire LEP), Suffolk and Norfolk (New Anglia LEP) and Essex, Kent and East Sussex (South East LEP).
Benefits available to local companies include being able to access expert advice, funding and support from graduates and researchers across the whole of the UK research base and to accelerate innovation projects and reduce the risks involved in new product development.
Projects supported will typically last between three and 12 months and will also create long- term collaborations between companies and universities and achieve lasting impacts such as new jobs and market growth for local companies.
KEEP+ follows on from the successful Low Carbon KEEP programme (also funded by ERDF) which created 85 new jobs and helped over 200 SMEs in the East of England increase their competitiveness, productivity and profits.
KEEP+ is one of the EU structural and investment fund projects which Chancellor of the Exchequer Phillip Hammond has guaranteed will be fully funded, even when these projects continue beyond the UK’s departure from the European Union.
SMEs that are interested in taking part in KEEP+ can contact Anglia Ruskin University’s Knowledge Exchange Manager Simon Daly on 01245 683 173.
Further details can also be found on the ARU KEEP+ web pages.