SME Instrument: European Commission to invest €90 million in European SMEs, Italy second country
Italy is the second country in terms of grants received from the European Commission in the latest round of selection of Phase 2 of the Sme Instrument: the instrument to support the innovative activities of Small and Medium-sized Enterprises under the Horizon 2020 EU Programme for Research and Innovation. Of the €90 million invested by the Commission in this round of selection, 8.8 million will go to 7 Italian companies involved in the fields of space research, energy, ICT and transports.
The European Commision has published the results of the latest round of Phase 2 selection of the Sme Instrument: the instrument to support innovative Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs), under the Horizon 2020 European Programme for Research and Innovation. In this “round”, the total budget available is worth €90 million, with 65 beneficiaries in 18 countries. The 56 projects selected will receive up to €2.5 million each – 5 million for health projects – to finance innovative activities. Thanks to the funding from Phase 2, the selected SMEs that will receive the grants can finance activities like demonstration, testing, piloting, scaling up and miniaturisation, in addition to developing a mature business plan for their products.
In this selection round, Italy ranks second in terms of amount of grants received. After Spain, with 19 beneficiaries and a total of 20.6 million, Italy will receive €8.8 million overall, with 7 beneficiaries, followed by Germany, that will receive €7.7 million, granted to 6 companies. Overall, the areas which received more grants are Information and Communication Technology (ICT), with 20 proposals funded, followed by Transports, with 9 projects, and Low-Carbon Energy Efficiency Systems, with 7 proposals selected.
These are the main fields of application of the selected proposals also for Italy, along with space research with the ARGO project – carried out by EICAS Automazione S.p.A and Tyvak International Srl, both from Turin – for the production of a highly accurate, flexible, robust and scalable multicamera system for spacecraft autonomous attitude determination through low cost cameras. In the field of business innovation research for Transport and Smart Cities Mobility, the Italian proposals selected are two: Greenrail – a project for the railway sector for the production of innovative and sustainable railway sleepers submitted by Greenrail Srl, a company from Rome – and NICENAV, for the production of a system for the navigation of manned and unmanned air vehicles, based on fibre optic gyroscope technology, developed by the Civitanavi Systems Srl company from Civitanova (Macerata). Within the funding scheme Open Disruptive Innovation, aimed at funding breakthrough innovations, the selected project was LYO-CHECK, for the automatic inspection of lyophilized preparations through innovative ICT control system, submitted by Antares Vision Srl, with premises near Brescia. Last but not least, in the sector of low-carbon energy efficient systems, the selected project was Socialsmartgrid – submitted by Fractalgarden SRL from Sesto San Giovanni (Milan) and Ascoel Srl from Pandino (Cremona ) – to boost energy efficiency through a “smart” and “social” grid network.