- Level of innovation: The innovation has a high degree of novelty compared to currently available solutions and has disruption potential.
- Scalability: The innovation project exhibits the potential for a scalable product or service. The goal is to achieve rapid and effective implementation of the project results and scalability.
- Maturity: The innovation is already close to market launch or application, i.e. it is based on a technology that has been sufficiently validated in a relevant environment in order to assess the potential and evaluate the risk.
- Intellectual property: The company owns the necessary intellectual property rights and freedom to operate (FTO).
- Value creation in Switzerland: There is potential for effective implementation of the project results and, in turn, increased value creation for the Swiss economy or society.
- Project planning: There is a clear and realistic implementation plan with defined milestones, work packages, deliverables and resources.
- Team: The team has the capacity and skills to implement and bring the innovation to market, or has or will have access to all critical skills.
- Sustainability: The innovation project promotes sustainability or it provides for appropriate measures to counteract any harmful effects.
- Financial capacity: At the time of submission, the company has the financial capacity to make the planned contribution (at least 30% of the total eligible costs).
- Cost-benefit ratio: This is a high-risk, high-benefit project. Without the funding contribution from Swiss Accelerator, there is a risk that the company will miss the ideal moment.
Your SME or start-up is already established on the market and has a highly competitive R&D project in order to develop, commercialise and scale breakthrough innovations. You can apply for direct financial support for your innovation project from the Swiss Accelerator programme.
Applications to the Swiss Accelerator are made via a three-stage process:
- Submit your short application through the Innosuisse online application platform: from 28 August 2023 until the submission deadline of 09 October 2023 at 12:00 CEST (at noon).
- You will be invited to submit a full application based on Innosuisse’s evaluation of your short application.
- Based on the evaluation of your full application, you will be invited to present your application to Innosuisse. The Innovation Council then makes the final funding decision.
Your company submits an application for an individual project. Projects by consortia or university research groups are not supported. Your SME or start-up must satisfy the following requirements.
Your SME or start-up:
- must be based in Switzerland (i.e. the company’s headquarters is in Switzerland) and registered in the Swiss registry of commerce;
- is already established on the market (i.e. already producing and selling a product or service according to the respective specifications);
- has less than 250 full-time equivalents at the time the application is submitted
(for companies that are part of a group, the number of full-time equivalents across the entire group of companies is decisive);
- aims to commercialise the project results quickly and effectively and to scale accordingly;
- is not on SECO’s sanctions list;
- must respect the code of scientific integrity. Projects or activities that are contrary to scientific integrity or good scientific practice are not encouraged.
In the assessment, the text of the funding ordinance and the corresponding implementing provisions are always determining.
IMPORTANT: Start-ups that have not yet entered the market are not allowed to submit applications for Swiss Accelerator projects. They are welcome to apply for the start-up innovation projects funding offer.
> You can find more information in the answers to the frequently asked questions on market entry and other topics (PDF, 273 kB, 08.09.2023).
Non-commercially active associations and foundations as well as public organisations are not considered SMEs or start-ups for the purposes of the Swiss Accelerator.
What should your short application include?
Your short application summarises all the key aspects of your innovation project that make it promising. In the application you are asked to:
- describe your innovation and explain how it differs from previous and existing solutions;
- present the development status of your innovation and the associated business;
- provide a rough outline of the project applied for (in particular relating to duration, costs, team, activities, risks, etc.);
- describe the target market and the competitors for your innovation;
- summarise the business model;
- outline the strategy for marketing and scaling the innovation;
- demonstrate the impact on the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals;
- describe the added value that your innovation generates for the Swiss economy and/or society;
- explain the intellectual property requirements in relation to your innovation;
- provide a rough breakdown of your company’s financial situation.
You can submit your application in English or in a national language.
What does the Swiss Accelerator fund?
Innosuisse supports projects with above-average innovation and disruption potential from SMEs and start-ups with the aim of quickly and effectively implementing the project results.
The funding is intended to make a substantial contribution to projects that require high-risk capital to take important development steps. The Swiss Accelerator is aimed only at SMEs and start-ups that are already established on the market.
The funding from Innosuisse is a maximum of 70 percent of the eligible project costs. The company bears 30 percent of the costs itself. Innosuisse funding amounts to a maximum of 2.5 million Swiss francs per application.
For detailed information (e.g. regarding eligible costs), please consult the legal basis:
- Legal basis for the funding of Swiss Accelerator innovation projects: Innosuisse Funding Ordinance
- Implementing provisions (PDF, 319 kB, 28.12.2022)
> You can find more information in the answers to the frequently asked questions on project costs and other topics (PDF, 273 kB, 08.09.2023).
Evaluation criteria: This is how your application will be evaluated
Your short application will be evaluated by three experts based on the following criteria. These evaluation criteria are closely related to the EIC Accelerator Grant Funding and take the Innosuisse criteria for project funding into account. These criteria also apply to your full application in the second phase of the evaluation process.
In the assessment, the text of the Funding Ordinance and the corresponding implementing provisions are always determining.
Submit short application
Submit your short application online through the Innosuisse application platform: from 28 August 2023 until the submission deadline of 09 October 2023 at 12:00 CEST (at noon).
Decision regarding the short application
First, the Innosuisse Secretariat formally evaluates your application. If your application meets the requirements, three independent experts will assess the content of your short application according to the criteria. Innosuisse invites applicants to submit a full application or rejects their short application based on these expert evaluations.
Innosuisse will inform you in writing:
- If your short application has been positively evaluated by the experts and the Innovation Council, you will be invited to submit a full application.
- If your short application does not meet the eligibility criteria or is rated less favourably by the experts compared to other applications, the Innovation Council will ultimately reject your short application. Innosuisse will inform you in writing about the rejection. The reasons for rejection will be explained in the decision. An appeal against the decision from Innosuisse can be lodged with the Federal Administrative Court within 30 days.
Can my start-up or SME receive support in preparing the project application for the Swiss Accelerator programme?
If concrete support in the preparation of the application is required, you can contact Euresearch.
Last modification 05.09.2023