Latest News

15 Feb

Global Business Innovation visit to the Netherlands focus on artificial intelligence and robotics

Innovate UK’s Global Business Innovation Programme (GBIP), delivered by Enterprise Europe Network (EEN), is organising a visit to the Netherlands for innovative businesses that are active in the artificial intelligence (AI) and robotics sectors.

14 Feb

Mansfield i-Centre - The place to grow your business

Mansfield i-Centre currently have a range of offices avaialbe.

14 Feb

Leading accountancy firm pledges further three years as headline Business Awards sponsor

Leading accountancy firm Mazars has committed to a further three years as headline sponsor of the East Midlands Chamber annual business awards.

Innovation and New Products

Innovation is the successful development and introduction of new ideas. Investing in innovation, research and development is important for economic growth. Businesses that do so often emerge stronger and more competitive than they were before. If a company creates something unique it has intellectual property (IP) that it can protect and exploit.

Innovation Advice and Support

Investing in Innovation

The Investing in Innovation programme will help you to find the inspiration to innovate and break through your barriers to achieve growth and leap ahead of the competition. The programme offers one to one advice to help explore your innovation idea, assistance in sourcing grant funding and other finance opportunities to support you, and helps you to identify partners from the academic community.


The programme is open to small to medium sized businesses who are located in Derby, Derbyshire, Nottingham and Nottinghamshire and is suited to those who have either invested in small scale R&D and are now looking to expand their activity, or are looking to develop a new service, product or business model. To register your interest please email the Growth Hub team. 


Innovate UK


innovate uk

Innovate UK provides funding and support to innovative companies to accelerate sustainable economic growth as well as access to experts through Knowledge Transfer Partnerships and specialist innovation networks.
Companies in the local area interested in accessing funding from Innovate UK can access further information on specific schemes as well as initial support and guidance regarding applying to the schemes through the Enterprise Europe Network Midlands (EEN).
For more details call 0115 9578746 or email


Innovate 2 Succeed Programme

The Innovate 2 Succeed programme is designed to help innovation focussed SMEs identify business issues standing in the way of successful innovation and develop their own strategies to address them. Midlands based innovation/technology led, high-growth potential SMEs will receive tailored coaching support from a specialist innovation adviser.

Watch Innovate UK’s essential tips on pitching for investment for start-ups and small businesses

Growth through Innovation

If it creates something unique, a company has Intellectual Property (IP) that it can protect and exploit. There are many funding opportunities for companies who want to develop and exploit their IP. There are also schemes and initiatives in which companies can collaborate with research partners, such as universities, to develop new ideas.
Contact Great Business new ideas.

Local Support and Innovation Centres

Enabling Innovation



Enabling Innovation aims to stimulate research and innovation within SMEs in Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire. The programme, run by the University of Derby, Nottingham Trent University and The University of Nottingham, offers free access to university expertise and technology.
SMEs across a wide range of sectors including manufacturing, materials engineering, computing and data, aerospace, food and drink, chemistry and satellite navigation may benefit from:



•In-depth support from academic experts.
•Workshop programmes designed to help businesses to innovate, explore new ideas and unlock their growth potential.
•Leadership and management development, including mentoring.
•Support for businesses to take on graduates via placement opportunities, allowing them to explore the benefits of employing graduates.
The project has been funded via the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP), using funds secured by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).



Nottingham Trent University (NTU) can fund 20% of a graduate salary (up to 12 months) where the Graduate Talent will support the SME with innovation.
Businesses can access support from local universities to take on graduates.

The Knowledge Exchange for Innovation(KEI) fund is designed to encourage collaboration between the University of Derby and SMEs to enable them to become more innovative and realise their growth ambitions by using the knowledge, technology and skills of the University.
Applications for KEI projects are welcomed from SMEs across a wide range of industries and sectors.


Energy for Business

Energy for Business provides support to develop low carbon products and services. Delivered by the University of Nottingham, up to 12 hours funded consultancy is available to work on energy efficiency related developments along with grant funding and access to fully funded post-graduate support for up to 200 hours.  More details here



Enscite offers a package of business support activities aimed at local SMEs in the Transport Equipment Manufacturing (TEM) supply chains in order to facilitate growth, improve competitiveness and create jobs. Four growth programmes will focus on Leadership and Management, Sustainable Supply Chains, Logistics and Operations Management and Excellence Through Quality.
For more details and to book look at the Enscite website

Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses UK Programme

Small businesses play a vital role in creating jobs and economic growth in the UK. Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses UK programme addresses the support gap for growth-orientated small businesses, helping them to unlock their economic and job creation potential. Designed by business education experts and run in partnership with leading UK universities and business schools, the programme is fully funded for all participants.

The 10KSB UK Programme is a partnership between Goldman Sachs, the Goldman Sachs Foundation and leading UK universities.

For more information visit the website 


Catalysing Growth Through Research for Transport Equipment Manufacturing

Catalysing Growth provides local SMEs in transport equipment manufacturing and associated supply chains who wish to improve existing products or develop new products, processes and services with access to:
• Fully-funded expertise and co-operation with university research centres and institutes
• Grant funding towards external capital and revenue costs of innovation projects.
The programme will operate until June 2019.
This project is a partnership between the University of Derby’s College of Engineering and Technology and The iNet @ Loughborough University - a Collaborative R&D programme led by D2N2-based SMEs and involving UK-based universities or research institutes is open for proposals until 15 January 2018.

Eligible projects will be SME led and from any technology, engineering or industrial area within Transport Equipment Manufacturing.

Project case studies

Accrofab Ltd

ASAP Water Crafts Ltd

Composites Evolution Ltd

Resonant Systems Ltd

Nottingham Trent University


Nottingham Trent University can work with businesses through consultancy, research and bespoke courses. To make an enquiry use the contact deatils here.

The Future Factory Research and Consultancy Centre is to designed to support organisations through working with the University on collaborative projects around smart design, manufacturing and innovative technologies.


Ingenuity Gateway at the University of Nottingham


The Ingenuity gateway offer space to grow at the University of Nottingham Innovation Park (UNIP).

The Ingenuity business network, provides an ideal way for you to meet staff at the University who can provide you with the services you need for business development, when you need them.

Ingenuity plus provides links to Innovation Vouchers, Knowledge Transfer Partnerships, Knowledge Transfer Partnerships, Knowledge Dissemination and Enterprise Creation.

Innovation Vouchers are an easy way of accessing university knowledge and equipment. Primarily aimed at small- and medium-sized companies in the East Midlands, they provide for a programme of work to be undertaken by the University for a business at a subsidised rate.


Sheffield Innovation Programme

Sheffield Innovation Programme (SIP) is an initiative which aims to stimulate business growth and promote the development of long-term relationships with SMEs by providing access to academic expertise and university facilities. The support is in the form of bespoke research and innovation based consultancy, workshops and other events.   Eligible businesses in the D2N2 area will be based in Bassetlaw, Bolsover, Chesterfield, Derbyshire Dales and North East Derbyshire local authority areas.

Innovation Centres

Designed to assist small to medium sized businesses to successfully innovate and grow, some innovation centres are sector focused, some offer accommodation plus a varied range of services.