• Status: Closed

  • Key features: Competition for development contracts Innovate UK is investing up to £4 million in the long term care revolution national challenge.

  • Programme: SBRI

  • Award: Up to £4 million 

  • Opens: 07 Apr 2015, 00:00

  • Registration closes: 26 Aug 2015, 12:00

  • Closes: 02 Sep 2015, 12:00

  • Support phone number: 0300 321 4357

The long-term care revolution national challenge


This SBRI competition aims to stimulate the development of innovative new products, services and systems that disrupt the institutional long-term care model, ensuring that UK businesses are well placed to take advantage of this growing market opportunity. 

The competition is open to organisations (large enterprises, SMEs, micro businesses, entrepreneurs, third sector, public and private sector) working together as a consortium through a single contracted project lead, to develop and deliver commercially viable products, services and systems. 

Successful applications will attract a 100% funded development contract over a period of up to 24 months. 

The competition opens on 7 April 2015. The deadline for registration is at noon on 26 August 2015. The deadline for applications is at noon on 2 September 2015. Projects are expected to commence in January 2016

There will be a briefing event for potential applicants on 14 April 2015.


Key dates

Competition opens 7 April 2015
Briefing event  14 April 2015
Registration deadline  26 August 2015
Deadline for applications 
September 2015
Contracts awarded 25 November 2015
Projects commence 1 January 2016 


Other Similar Competitions

SBRI Healthcare, an NHS England funded initiative has also launched a competition where up to 12 small business could each benefit from £100,000 Phase 1 product development funding. The competition is open to single companies or organisations from the private, public and third sectors, including charities.  
The competition will look to award a total of £1 million for ideas from companies focused on addressing challenges in older people with multiple-morbidities and specifically in the problem areas of: Falls, Incontinence and Decline in Functional Ability.  For more information about the competition scope, application process, key dates please visit: Older People with Multiple Morbidities.


Demographic change means the UK (and the rest of the world) is facing an unprecedented level of need for longterm care. 
 The Government Actuary's Department (GAD) projects that the number of people aged 65 years and over in the UK will grow from 9.3 million in 2000 to 16.8 million in 2051 – an increase of 81%. The number of people aged 85 years and over is projected to 
grow from 1.1 million to 4 million – an increase of 225%. 
By 2030 it estimates that there will be 2 million adults over the age of 65 in the UK without adult children to look after them; 230,000 will need more than 20 hours' care a week and have no informal support to call on. 
Public long-term care costs are also expected to double or even triple by 2050 in Europe, United States and Japan (source: Frost and Sullivan Report). 
To keep pace with demand, over the next 50 years residential and nursing home places will need to increase by around 150% and 
the number of hours of home care by around 140%. 
The vision of this ambitious competition is to replace the current institutional model of provision with alternatives that have potential for real commercial value in the UK between now and 2020, and which will catalyse sustained innovation through to 2050. Its intention is to stimulate business-led innovation to redefine a centuries-old tradition of institutional long-term care provision. By overturning conventional thinking, UK businesses have a chance to position themselves as leaders in a growing global long-term care market. 
We are seeking agile, innovative, ambitious and creative large enterprises, SMEs, microbusinesses, entrepreneurs, third sector, public and private sector organisations and academics; who will respond to this challenge with innovative products, services and systems that will make a significant change to the existing market, be sustainable, scalable and fit for the 21st century. 


We are looking to fund projects resulting in products, services and systems that disrupt the current long-term care model, with a clear and viable route to market and the potential to be commercialised at scale. They should demonstrate one or more of the
  • technological innovation 
  • innovative new business models
  • social innovation 
They should also: 
  • demonstrate innovative approaches to transferring and applying new and existing technologies from a wide range of sectors. These may include: robotics and autonomous systems, photonics, lighting and sensors, advanced materials, energy, retail, design, creative industries, space, aviation, engineering, architecture, building and transport 
  • translate research from a broad academic base, for example, engineering and physical sciences, social sciences, arts and humanities, space, academic communities and biosciences
We are specifically encouraging applications from consortia that include companies outside the long-term care sector who can apply fresh and innovative ideas to the challenges of this competition. 
 In this competition the following are considered out of scope and will not be funded: 
  • projects specifically focused on developing and commercialising teleheath, telecare, mobile apps and equipment only applications 
  • projects that are a single step change from current models of provision 

What is SBRI?

The SBRI programme enables public sector bodies to connect with innovative ideas and technology businesses to provide innovative solutions to specific public sector challenges and needs. 
The public sector is able to find innovative solutions by reaching out to organisations from different sectors, including small and emerging businesses. New technical solutions are created through accelerated technology development, whilst risk is reduced through a phased development programme. SBRI also provides applicants with a transparent, competitive and reliable source of early stage funding. 
SBRI competitions are open to all organisations that can demonstrate a route to market for their solution. The SBRI scheme is particularly suited to small and medium-sized businesses, as the contracts are of relatively small value and operate on short
Developments are 100% funded and focus on specific identified needs, increasing the chance of exploitation. Suppliers for each project will be selected by an open competition process and retain the intellectual property generated from the project, with certain rights of use retained by the contracting authority. This is an excellent opportunity to establish an early customer for a new technology and to fund its development. 

Funding allocation

In this competition, we are reaching out to large enterprises, SMEs, microbusinesses, third sector, public and private sector organisations with the aim of stimulating innovation to revolutionise the institutional long-term care model in the UK. 
 We will invest up to £4 million to meet the challenge outlined in the scope. We anticipate investing in between 1 and 8 projects in this competition and will support only high-quality, innovative projects with real potential to disrupt, commercialise and impact at scale. Projects should last up to 24 months

Application process

This competition opens for applicants on 7 April 2015
The deadline for registration is noon on 26 August 2015, and the deadline for applications is at noon on 2 September 2015Contracts will be issued by 27 November 2015
A briefing for applicants will be held in London on 14 April 2015 to highlight the main features of the competition and explain the application process. Applicants are strongly recommended to attend this event. You can register through https://connect.innovateuk.org/events 
Note: All deadlines are at noon. 

More Information

For more information and all the documents you need to read before you apply, including the Guidance for Applicants, go to the web page for this competition at https://interact.innovateuk.org/ 
To apply you must first register with us through the competition page on the website. Registration opens when the competition opens and closes a week before the deadline for applications. 
Get help to understand the future market for your innovation before you apply at http://horizons.innovateuk.org
Competition helpline 0300 321 4357Email support@innovateuk.gov.uk.

Help for SMEs to grow faster

Small businesses that combine the funding they receive from us with additional business support are more likely to grow faster. If you are an SME and receive funding through this competition, you will automatically gain access to a growth workshop, an online diagnostic and a growth expert to help you develop a growth plan. This may include coaching, mentoring and entrepreneurial skills training. 


As part of the application process all applicants are asked to submit a public description of the project. This should adequately describe the project but not disclose any information that may impact on intellectual property, is confidential or commercially 
sensitive. The titles of successful projects, names of organisations, amounts awarded and the public description will be published once the decision to offer an award has been communicated to applicants by email. Information about unsuccessful project 
applications will remain confidential and will not be made public. E-mail pressoffice@innovateuk.gov.uk with any queries