Innovate UK put innovative women 'infocus'

Innovate UK put innovative women 'infocus'

Women with the potential to be successful entrepreneurs and leaders in innovation are being offered a specialist package of support from Innovate UK.

Up to £200,000 and a package of tailored support is up for grabs, for businesswomen who have exciting ideas and the potential to become leaders in innovation and deliver significant economic growth.

This is the first women only Innovate UK competition and is part of a new ‘infocus’ initiative to encourage diversity in innovation.

Each of the 12 finalists in the competition will receive a package of support tailored to their needs, and the four winners will each receive £50,000 to support their innovation project or activities.

Harnessing the talent of women entrepreneurs could significantly enhance UK economic growth.

Recent reports show men are three times more likely to own a business with employees (Women entrepreneurs in the OECD 2013) and that women are half as likely to start a business (RBS Inspiring women in enterprise).

Several well-known business leaders have agreed to act as ambassadors and mentors including:

  • Facebook vice-president for Europe, the Middle East and Africa Nicola Mendelsohn
  • Money&Co chief executive Nicola Horlick
  • president of the Royal Academy of Engineering and deputy vice-chancellor of the University of Cambridge Ann Dowling
  • WS Atkins chairman and Department for Business, Innovation and Skills board member Allan Cook
  • Cambridge Wireless former founder CEO Soraya Jones
  • Genius Gluten Free founder Lucinda Bruce-Gardyne.
    • Awards will be spread across the four sector areas supported by Innovate UK: