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“The session explains the R&D grant funding process to innovators, highlights the pros and cons of using R&D funding and details the scale of current and future R&D funding opportunities.”

Omar Saeed is the director of Grant Starter, helping innovative businesses access UK government funding for research and development (R&D). Omar feels that too many great businesses miss out on valuable R&D funding because they are unfamiliar with the application process and what grant assessors are looking for. Grant Starter assists innovators with their grant applications. This is so that they don’t miss out on the opportunity to access game-changing funding. Grants can help businesses grow, giving them the best possible chance of success.

We spoke down to Omar about his event ‘Accessing R&D Grant Funding – Clear as Mud?’ how he got into tech and what he’s most looking forward to about virtual Tech Week.

How did you get into the tech world?

I started co-authoring R&D grant applications about seven or eight years ago as part of roles in the low carbon energy research sector. I built my skillset in that area over time and ended up reviewing some grant applications for tech businesses that previous colleagues and friends are involved with. They advised me that a lot of innovators out there would benefit from similar assistance in securing R&D funding. It took me a while to convince myself to do it. But eventually, I incorporated Grant Starter as the vehicle to take this forward.

Tell us a bit about ‘Accessing R&D Grant Funding – Clear as Mud?’

Current evidence indicates that the West Midlands has struck an imbalance – business is investing in R&D activity, but the region is below the UK average in terms of the public R&D funding it is awarded. Crudely, this implies an active R&D landscape not getting enough state support. It’s easy to apportion blame to regional or national Government but is it as simple as that? During the session, we explore the uneven spread of R&D funding across the UK and ask why our region isn’t pulling in the public R&D funding that others are. The session explains the R&D grant funding process to innovators, highlights the pros and cons of using R&D funding and details the scale of current and future R&D funding opportunities. We will highlight areas where innovators fall down with their R&D funding applications and provide expert opinion on how to secure future funding.

What are you most looking forward to about your event?

The fact that if nobody is laughing at my poor jokes during my presentation, I won’t even know.

What excites you about Birmingham Tech Week?

This is a tough year to connect with startups and businesses in the region. Even though Birmingham Tech Week is running remotely, the prospect of meeting (even if only virtually) other regional stakeholders in the tech world is really exciting.

‘Accessing R&D Grant Funding – Clear as Mud?’ is taking place on Monday 12th October at 10:15am. Click here to sign up (it’s totally free!)

You can also contact Omar directly here.

Birmingham Tech Week aims to celebrate the growth, diversity and innovation that drives Birmingham. This year, Tech Week is a virtual event, and you can see our full list of events here.

 

 

 

 

Holly Botterill

Holly Botterill

Holly is contributing to Birmingham Tech Week's content for the second time. She enjoys running, reading and spending time with family and friends.

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