Zeetta Networks announced today that it has been awarded a ground breaking £1.8 million Innovate UK contract to deliver a large-scale demonstration of the capability and commercial potential of its innovative NetOS® technology to manage a complex network infrastructure in a flexible, dynamic and cost-effective manner. The University of Bristol spin-out will be working with Ashton Gate Stadium, to deploy NetOS® throughout, as a ‘first-of-a-kind’ deployment of an open networking technology managing the communications network of a modern stadium.
The SBRI contract was awarded following a winning proposal delivered by Alan Gould of Lightholm Consulting. Alan is now working with the Zeetta Networks team to deliver this exciting project.
For more details on the project see the full press release.
To find out more about how I can help improve your chances of winning funding and maximise the business impact of the resulting project please get in touch.
Looking for a grant, but can't find the matched funding? Want to attract the attention of leading investors?
Innovate UK has announced a new format for R&D support combining grants with venture capital investment.
Here's the proposal:
Up to 70% of the project funds are awarded as grant in the normal way, but the matching funds are provided by nominated equity investors.
The pilot covers a broad scope within two of Innovate UK's core sectors: "Infrastructure Systems" and "Health and Life Sciences".
Proposals will need to pass the Innovate UK threshold, and successful applicants will then negotiate the financing deal with the nominated investment partner.
The pilot programme opens on the 8th May. Closing date 5th July.
A recent article in the New Statesman magazine's supplement on technology quoted Eben Upton, inventor of the Raspberry Pi. Applying for government support to develop his idea in 2009 he received the following reply:
Thank you for your application. … Given the widespread availability of "proper" computers, the rationale for a device that reverts to the early days of computing is not persuasive.
Three years later demand for the Pi was running at 700 units a second.
The need to be scrupulously fair when awarding grants together with high levels of scrutiny and accountability drive processes which attempt to quantify selection criteria and generate comparative measures. These will inevitably introduce implicit biases which work against those ideas that are the most innovative and disruptive.
Lightholm is proud to be supporting the Bristol SETsquared Centre.
On February 7th 2017 Alan Gould will be hosting a workshop at the EngineShed on UK and EU Grants and how they work for SME's.
This workshop will include:
Reports are emerging that the Brexit vote is having an unexpected and immediate impact on access to Horizon2020 funding by UK-based organisations.
Succeeding in grant competitions is time consuming and hard, so accessing support and expert guidance is essential. It would be a travesty if UK organisations are prevented from benefiting from the UK’s contribution to the EU during the months and years it may take to confirm our new status.
The Icelandic Football Team and the Leave Campaign have a lot in common: Both are winners; Both teams did unexpectedly well, exceeding expectations and the solemn pronouncements of experts;
However, the aftermaths of their respective successes are strikingly different.
How success is delivered is really important. The legacy of a project and the reputation of the project manager are defined by the way in which it is delivered as much as the functionality of the outputs.
After almost a year since formation I’d like to say a huge Thank You! to all those who have helped, encouraged and supported me in getting Lightholm off the ground.
Of course I’d particularly like to send my appreciation to the 7 clients I’ve had the privilege of working with to date. It is an honour to be able to contribute to your amazing businesses and to be trusted with your exciting bids and projects.
I can help with a range of bid and project challenges:
providing resource and support to specific initiatives; overcoming delivery challenges; and driving business performance through governance, maturity assessments and process optimisation.
Remember - Flexibility is a given: a combination of on-site, off-site and number of days are determined to meet your specific needs.
Contact me at any time for a no-obligation discussion.
I look forward to hearing from you!
I have written, reviewed or assessed hundreds of Business Cases, Tenders and Funding Applications.
One of the most common problems I come across is the use of qualifiers. This is where authors undermine their own argument by using descriptors that weaken their proposition.
The effect on the reader is to explicitly or subliminally suggest that the claim is open to question, even in the mind of the person making it.
Between them the European Commission and the UK Government provide several hundred million pounds of direct funding to support SME’s. However, accessing this support is not straightforward – dealing with government rarely is.
Innovate UK is undergoing reorganisation, and is still in the process of developing its 2016-20 Strategic Plan - however we are promised enhanced support for SME’s, so now is a good time to consider if grant support make sense for your business.
Even knowing where to start can be a challenge given the dozen or so different schemes in operation, and the constantly changing budgets and priorities.
So how do you know what’s out there, and is it worth investing time and effort? Here is quick checklist of the common features of pretty much all the grant schemes.
Whilst central government reiterates laudable intentions to focus on support on “new and growing enterprises”, recently announced changes have made things worse – at least in the short term.
Following the Chancellor’s autumn statement there will be a restructuring of the government’s funding agencies, and there is considerable uncertainty about how small business support will operate as we move towards the 2016/17 financial year.
Grant support can provide significant financial advantage, risk mitigation and solid business impact. However, understanding and commitment are required to make them work: the offers are highly competitive, and need patience, detailed strategic business planning, knowledge of the latest proposal and delivery processes and a tolerance of bureaucratic control and reporting procedures.
Contracts are not the end of a negotiation, they just define the boundaries for the ongoing negotiations that constitute a project.
Contracts are the nuclear weapons of project management. Pre-agreed definitions of remedies such as liquidated damages for delays or delivery failures sound reassuring, but only protect your project when they remain a threat. Once invoked the project is doomed.
Research and Development projects for new or modified products have a number of features for which Agile, or Agile-based approaches would appear to be appropriate. However, a project manager is rarely in a position to choose a methodology and must operate under a prevailing corporate framework and the associated sponsor model.
Agile is rarely deployed outside a software development context.