The City of Oslo is supporting the business region financially. There are four main funding opportunities: for initial research and innovation projects, internal business education, tests for smart solutions for city development and Regional Innovation Program. Take a look:
1. Regional research fund
One project can get funding between 200 000 - 350 000 NOK that equals 70% support degree. This means that 30% of the project you need to finance with equity. The first fund round is 15-16 MNOK. Second round after summer is 20 MNOK. The project length is between 2-6 months.
The money can be used to cover costs on clarifying if the innovation project in the main phase includes research challenges or if it is mainly development work. The project must define research challenges or development needs, also establish collaboration with a competence network and other collaboration partners who can help into the project.
Small and medium companies and the public sector with research based innovation combined with solving some of the regional and/or societal challenges. The company needs to apply in their municipality. You need to look at the categories for the announcement, which include: Climate, environment, energy, health, care, education, technology and city/region development.
How to make a great application
- Clearly show the societal value,
- How is your company creating value in public and private sector,
- Great quality of the project and precise explanation,
- Show the high potential for further development of the project .
2. Support for test and development projects
The application amounts can vary between NOK 50 000 - 1 000 000. The support degree is 50% meaning that 50% needs to be funded by equity.
Businesses that have solutions for the municipality needs regarding city development, mobility, construction buildings, energy systems and welfare. The municipality can apply for development of new solutions, products and services together with business or research or knowledge communities. It needs to be a solution that is needed from the municipality. The goal is to bring innovation while providing more jobs and growth companies.
3. Internal business education (Bedriftsintern opplæring)
Maximum NOK 400 000 for training and additional employees salary cost during the training. For example, covers course costs and also the salary for employees going through the training/education. This is to avoid employees to get laid off in a change process. The funds cannot be used on normal or obligatory courses/certificates. The course can be funded up to 26 weeks. Degree of project financing is 90%, meaning 10% must be covered by own equity.
All companies that are not owned or financially supported by the municipality can apply if they have a high need of training employees. This is for companies that go through huge change processes and needs to educate employees during the change. It can be several businesses going together or clusters.
How to make a great application:
- Explain the explicit need for training/course because of changed situations,
- Describe how this the course can prevent layoffs,
4. Regional innovation program
The Regional Innovation Program is a tool for innovation and business development in the Oslo Region, which is normally jointly managed by the City of Oslo and Viken County Council.
Funding can be applied for projects that help to solve business policy challenges for Oslo, given in the Regional plan for innovation in Oslo and Akershus until 2025.
The focus areas are: cluster and network development, entrepreneurship and growth companies, supplier development and service innovation, early-stage financing and commercialization of research results.
The criteria are:
- The project has clear regional relevance and social impact.
- The project has a clear foundation in the applicant and partners.
- The project must have a budget, activities timeline and financing plan, with at least 50% other funding (deductible or deductible).
- Project appears to be feasible within the specified project period.
- The project has a clear transfer value, and it is made visible how experiences from the project can be shared with others.
- When purchasing services and obtaining consultancy assistance, the Public Procurement Act applies.
Clusters and networks, Innovation Environments and Business Organizations. The program emphasizes collaboration between two or more of these groups. In principle, the applicant must have a place of residence in Oslo, but cooperation with external players is possible. Larger companies can be included in the projects.
This is how you apply
This is funding that based on one yearly call, normally in autumn. During covid there has been an extraordinary call closed 25 May. Next call will be autumn 2020 and you will find it at regionalforvaltning.
Didn’t find the right opportunity for you? This might be for you: The City of Oslo has a number of more industry specific support schemes for city development, volunteering, culture and sustainability. If these areas are of interest to your business, you should check out this overview https://www.oslo.kommune.no/tilskudd-legater-og-stipend/. You can also check out ongoing calls in several regions at Regionalforvaltning.no.