IUK Launches Building Regional Centres of Excellence Competition

The UK’s innovation agency, Innovate UK (IUK), has launched a competition under the Government’s Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF) to fund a single project that will establish two to four regional centres around the UK for the development and scale up of power electronics, machines and drives (PEMD) technologies. The centres will build on existing capabilities and expertise where it already exists to support the industrialisation of PEMD technologies in order to help accelerate the growth of the UK’s supply chains for PEMD.

The centres must focus on all seven of the industry sectors identified by the Driving the Electric Revolution challenge, including all levels of their supply chains from Tier N suppliers to original equipment manufacturers (OEMs). These are:



Energy (generation and distribution).

Industrial (such as production equipment, robots or lighting).


Off highway (such as construction or agricultural equipment).


The centres will be open access facilities that support the development, prototyping and scaling of PEMD technologies and manufacturing processes. They will provide a location, equipment and staff expertise to undertake projects, but will not perform fundamental research as this is already funded through existing centres.

Lead organisations must be a UK registered business of any size, a research organisation or a research and technology organisation (RTO) with demonstrable expertise in power electronics, machines and drives. Collaborating partners must be a UK registered business, research organisation, academic institution, charity, public sector organisation or RTO.

Any one business, RTO or research organisation can lead or collaborate on any number of applications. Any eligible collaborators can collaborate on any number of applications.

IUK has allocated up to £30 million to fund a single project in this competition. IUK will fund:

The investment in capital equipment needed to create the centres.

Operational costs to enable the centres to become established up to the end of 31 March 2024.

Successful applicants must provide the remaining operational investment necessary over the centres’ lifetimes, which is expected to be at least 10 years, through their own investment and leveraging industry funding.

Interested applicants should register online via the call webpage by the 27 November 2019 (12:00). The deadline for applications is 4 December 2019 (12:00).

More information about this funding opportunity and the application process is available on the GRANTfinder funding information platform. GRANTfinder provides up-to-the minute content, insight and analysis on funding news and policy. To find out more about how GRANTfinder can keep you in the know, and subscription fees, contact us today.