Funded Projects

Project FREED

Project Acronym FREED
Project Title Funding Resources for innovation in Energy Enterprise Development
Project Website


FREED will develop a new service, by the means of which SME’s in the region can access innovation in energy technologies otherwise not be available within the NPA region. FREED will also facilitate the transfer of technology innovations to SME’s across the area, so that the outputs of the project will widely benefit the region. It will achieve this because it provides a unique access private investment, which is the key determinant of success in stimulating innovation. This partnership offers something that will not be available to any other project offered to the NPA by virtue of its access to private investment, and is also unique in being integrated with existing innovation programmes. FREED enhances these without in any way duplicating existing programmes, and this capacity is acknowledged in letters of support. Thus FREED offers NPA the unique capability of attracting innovation to the region, as a result of the practical commitment to funding evidenced through the partnership. There is already clear connection with innovations developed by Sustainable Ventures in London, covering energy storage, electric vehicle hire, and provision of journey data, some or all of which could be made available to SME’s in the NPA region in the right circumstances; all of which will be of benefit to NPA communities; and which will be of benefit to enterprise and job creation. Other innovations in energy are already on the radar with the partnership making this application – but are not available to SME’s in the NPA region currently, and will not naturally be drawn there unless a project such as FREED is implemented. In this way, FREED can enhance existing innovation programmes within the NPA region, which lack this power to attract innovation from outside the region and, as such, is a precise fit for the objectives of Priority 1.


To identify and introduce R&D innovations to SME’s in the region that are appropriate and viable for the region, and that would not be available other than through FREED.

To attract entrepreneurs generating R&D and introduce them to SME’s in the region, who would not have access to them other than through FREED.

To simulate and attract investment in SME’s developing R&D innovations in the region which would not be accessible to the region other than through FREED.

To ensure the SME’s commercialising the technology innovations in the NPA region have enough early stage investment capital and other grant funding to survive the growth period when costs outweigh revenues, and capital costs involved in start-up cannot be covered by income for a fixed number of months or years.

To monitor and help to manage, or incubate, the start-up and early stage businesses through their launch period, establishing a market in the NPA region, and beyond.



Business development:

The project assisted SMEs and start-ups in the NPA to further develop, test, and promote their pioneering solutions that change the way energy is used, stored, produced and transferred. These companies have also received business development support and support for finding funding.


Building institutional capacity:

Partners developed an SME support service which helps companies to speed up the process that takes the innovations from the blueprints to the store shelves, to find and apply for funding and to raise their business maturity.

Lead Partner


Project Info

Innovation, R&TD
1 Innovation
1.1 Increased innovation and transfer of R&D
Project duration
31-12-15 to 30-12-18
Total budget
1 996 085 EUR
NPA co-financing
1 223 235 EUR
Target groups
enterprise, including SME
business support organisation
higher education and research
Joint Secretariat Desk Officer
Kirsti Mijnhijmer