Innovation loans - Innovate UK


How we assess your application

Once the deadline for the loan competition has passed your application will be sent for assessment in Innovate UK’s competitive assessment process.

Assessing the quality of your project

If in scope, your Innovation Funding Service application will be sent to up to five assessors who are experts in innovation in the field of your project.

The assessors will review your application against scoring matrices. Only projects that meet the quality threshold will go through to the next stage to be considered for detailed credit evaluation.

Assessing the suitability of your business to receive a loan

If in scope, the project proposal in your application on the Innovation Funding Service, the business information and the financial submission, together with an analysis of your responses to the business information questions by Early Metrics will be sent to Innovate UK Loans Ltd’s credit team for consideration.

The credit team will consider if your application is:

  • affordable to your business
  • appropriate for debt finance
  • supported by a management team with sufficient technical, financial and commercial expertise
  • in need of financial support from the public sector.

Progress to detailed credit analysis

If your application is deemed to have a suitably innovative project proposal and your business is considered likely to be suitable for a loan, it will progress to detailed credit analysis.

In some cases, you may be contacted during this time if further information is required, including any additional information required to complete a full credit assessment and specific consents for credit reference checks. Full instructions will be provided.

The credit committee of Innovate UK Loans Ltd will determine whether to offer an innovation loan after detailed credit analysis. The final terms of any loan offer will be decided by the credit committee. These may not be the same as the terms proposed in your application.

Applications are assessed on individual merit, however, to ensure a spread of projects we may choose to apply a portfolio approach to the assessment.

All applications that meet the innovation quality threshold and credit evaluation will be considered to build a portfolio that:

  • has high-quality projects
  • spans a range of businesses that are of suitable credit quality
  • spans a range of strategic themes, as described in the scope of the loan competition
  • represents a potential return on investment both for the business and the UK.

Presentation to the credit committee

If your application is deemed suitable and we are considering making a loan offer, you may be invited to present to Innovate UK Loans Ltd’s credit committee as one of the conditions of the loan offer.

You will be contacted at the email address provided in your application to confirm a date, location and who should attend. We expect that this presentation will take place at your business location if this is practical.

How you are notified

Applicants will be contacted by the date stated in the loan competition brief and informed of the initial outcome of their application. We will email you on the address provided in the application form. This notification will either indicate that your application has been unsuccessful or may indicate that your application will progress to further detailed credit analysis.

If your application progresses to further detailed credit analysis, you will be notified after the credit committee of Innovate UK Loans Ltd has made a decision whether or not to offer you a loan.

Assessor feedback on your project proposal will be available to you on the Innovation Funding Service after notification of the initial outcome of your application. If your application is unsuccessful, we will give feedback on our credit decision approximately four weeks after you have been notified of the decision.

Last updated: 17 August 2021

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