How to apply
Applicants can apply to the fund via one of two routes:
Route 1: Outline Proposal and Development Phase
Applicants following this route will submit an Outline Proposal that provides a succinct overview of their idea. The GIF Sub-Board will then select those proposals which are the closest fit to the Growth and Innovation Fund’s investment priorities. Successful proposals will then move into a Development Phase which gives us the opportunity to work with selected organisations to help them develop their full proposals. Further information on the GIF Development Phase can be found below
Route 2: Straight to Full Proposal
Where an applicant has a well developed proposal and does not require the time or support offered by the development phase a Full Proposal can be submitted for consideration without the need to complete an Outline Proposal.
Regardless of which application route is chosen all applicants will need to :
- Complete the online Eligibility Checker
- Submit either an Outline or Full Proposal using the correct application form provided (the form is available once you complete the eligibility checker)
Reference copies of the GIF full proposal application form (PDF, 75 Kb) , GIF outline proposal application form (PDF, 56 Kb) and costing schedule (PDF, 77 Kb) are available for you to view and a Word version will be provided to shortlisted applicants.
Please note an organisation may submit one Outline Proposal and one Full Proposal for consideration at each Board or Sub-Board meeting. In addition, an organisation may submit one further application where it is acting as the lead for a collaborative proposal.
GIF development phase
During the development phase, shortlisted applicants will develop their Outline Proposals into full applications and take the first steps in getting their solutions off the ground. Each applicant will be assigned an account manager from either the UK Commission or Skills Funding Agency to provide light-touch support and guidance through the development phase. We envisage that the development phase will last a maximum of 12 weeks (the duration will be agreed on a proposal-by-proposal basis).
Limited GIF funding is available to support applicants in developing their full proposals and applicants should set out any requirements for this in their application. Applicants will be expected to provide a 50% matching cash contribution to any development funding requested from GIF. At the conclusion of the development phase the GIF Board will decide which proposals it wishes to invest fully in. Supporting a proposal into the development phase is not a guarantee of any further investment from GIF.
When to apply
GIF is open for business all year round. Applicants are free to submit their applications to GIF at any time and proposals are assessed on a regular basis during the year. In order for a proposal to be considered when the next round of assessment takes place proposals must be received by:
- Outline Proposals - 10am Monday 17 September 2012
- Full Proposals - 10am Monday 15 October 2012
Any applications received after these dates and times will be held on file and included when the next round of assessment takes place early next year. Further dates beyond 2012 will be provided at a later date and be subject to funds being available.
The GIF Board is chaired by Charlie Mayfield and comprises six UK Commissioners, the Chief Executive of Skills Funding Agency, the Chief Executive of the UK Commission and a senior official from the Department for Business Innovation and Skills.
In 2012 the GIF Board will meet on the following dates:
• 14 August 2012
• 29 November 2012
GIF Board meeting dates beyond 2012 will be provided at a later date and will be subject to funds being available.
The GIF Board has recently established a Sub-Board with specific responsibility for identifying which Outline Proposals should enter the GIF Development Phase. The GIF Sub-Board is chaired by a member of the GIF Board and will meet on the following dates:
• 9th November 2012
• 2013 dates – to be confirmed
Decision Making Process
The GIF Board, or its Sub Board where appropriate, supported by officials from the UK Commission and Skills Funding Agency, will review the Outline Proposal applications and select those that most closely fit with its published investment criteria to move forward into the development phase. In the event of over-subscription, and between comparably good bids in terms of the criteria, final decisions will be taken in the context of ensuring a balanced portfolio of investments across solution themes, sectors and geography.
To assist with the short listing process some applicants may be offered the opportunity to present their proposals to the Board. This will depend on the value, complexity and risk associated with each proposal. Please note that those applicants invited to present to the GIF Board will be notified a minimum of three weeks before the Board date. These dates are set and cannot be changed so it is advisable to note them in diaries now.
Decisions, appeals, feedback and resubmission
We will write to all applicants within five working days of the GIF Board (or Sub-Board) meeting to notify them of the outcome. All decisions are final; there will be no right of appeal though unsuccessful proposals may be re-submitted for consideration by the GIF Board on one further occasion. (We recommend that any areas of weakness will have been adequately addressed).
Summary details of successful outline and full proposals will be published on the GIF website.
Applicants wishing to receive more detailed feedback on a decision should request this via GIF.firstname.lastname@example.org. Unfortunately we are only able to provide written feedback due to the volume of applications the Fund receives.
Investment Agreements and Monitoring
Successful applicants will sign up to a GIF Investment Agreement. This will be a phased agreement with clear break points to allow progress to be reviewed at the end of each phase before investment is released and further investment stages are agreed.
The Investment Agreement will be with either the UK Commission or Skills Funding Agency depending on which is most appropriate to the solution being developed.
Successful applicants will be required to participate in, and provide data to assist, with the programme level evaluation of GIF. The programme level evaluation will draw on the evaluation of individual projects carried out by successful applicants.