Businesses in Kent and Medway are being given the opportunity to access academic expertise and resources to help them grow and develop.

Funding is being made available to local SMEs to encourage industry-academia partnerships to drive innovation, develop new products, services or processes. These partnerships will give businesses the chance to harness the University’s cutting-edge expertise, research, and access its new £65m state-of-the-art STEM facility, the Verena Holmes Building.

The funding will also facilitate knowledge transfer, problem-solving, engaging in feasibility studies, exploring new business initiatives, and tailored support and advice.

Abbie Kempe, Head of Enterprise & Engagement at Christ Church, explained the importance of the new initiative. Our Catapult Innovation Vouchers are designed to promote industry-university collaborations as part of our ongoing commitment to support the regional economy prosper and grow,” she said.

“Aimed at SMEs, they offer a great way for businesses to tap into funding and access academic expertise, university facilities and equipment across a range of disciplines and industry specialisms to help achieve their desired business goals.”

Universities play a vital role in the economy and wider society, shaping and influencing the local and regional landscape through research, expertise and thought leadership. As a significant provider of graduate skills, the University sits on the boards of major employers such as the NHS, clinical commissioning groups, academy trusts, and key economic development agencies. Staff are also active on many school governing bodies in Kent and Medway, as well as helping to influence hundreds of research and teaching networks nationally and globally.

There are many ways businesses can benefit from working with the University from advancing research and working with new technologies, to the establishment of new business relationships and being part of influential networks to bring about positive and lasting change for the economy and communities.

For more information and to apply for the Catapult Innovation Vouchers, please contact Charlotte Goode at

A voucher can provide up to 50% of the total value of a project (maximum £5000, excl. VAT), with the business funding the remaining 50% (minimum).