Global Business Innovation Programme in the USA - Engineering Biology & Industrial Biotechnology

Innovate UK seeks companies with expertise in Engineering Biology & Translational Industrial Biotechnology to join our programme in San Jose, California.

Opportunity Details


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Innovate UK will fund and organise flights, accommodation, in-market travel, and conference fees for successful applicants. Innovate UK will also pay for any reasonable adjustments throughout the initiative. One representative from each company will be funded.


Innovate UK

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Note: This opportunity is fully funded support and not monetary funding.

Please note this has a hard application deadline: 9am on 13th March 2024. No applications after 9am will be accepted.

Innovate UK’s Global Business Innovation Programme (GBIP) aims to help ambitious innovative UK businesses to grow and scale on a global stage through building R&D and innovation collaborations and partnerships.

The 9-12 month programme consists of a Get Ready preparation phase, a five-day tailored innovation visit to the USA to connect with key stakeholders and potential partners, and an Exploit the Opportunity phase to help you maximise the benefits of the programme and to grow and scale your business.

Through the whole programme you will have the support of an Innovate UK innovation and growth specialist.

Innovate UK is committed to equality, diversity, and inclusion and encourages people from all backgrounds to apply.

Find out how our GBIP in the USA can help your business grow.

  • A GBIP has three stages:

    Prepare for the market

    Preparing for the market includes the cohort being briefed by sector and market experts on, for example, cultural aspects of conducting business in that country. Delegates receive help to find business partners and arrange meetings and are advised on best practice including the management and protection of their intellectual property.

    Visiting the market

    Visiting the market provides opportunities to attend pre-arranged meetings and activities in order to better understand and maximise the opportunities that the visit presents.

    Exploiting the opportunity

    Exploiting the opportunity is arguably the most important aspect of the programme. To maximise the opportunity, participating companies are given bespoke one-to-one support from an Innovate UK EDGE innovation and growth specialist to help develop and implement an action plan.

    The Global Business Innovation Programme operates on a competitive basis and businesses selected are required to participate in all three stages (some or all of which may be online).

  • To apply for this initiative, you must:

    • Be a business focused on developing innovation in Engineering Biology & Industrial Biotechnology
    • Be a UK-based innovation-led company with ambitions to grow and internationalise
    • Be a company with fewer than 500 employees
    • Be able to attend and complete all activities
  • The US government has invested in various initiatives and programmes to support the development and application of biotechnology and engineering biology. Biological applications are estimated to unlock $2 to $4 trillion in annual direct global economic value by 2030, with the health sector being the largest contributor. The UK has a strong life sciences base and a window of opportunity to establish technological leadership and capture economic and societal value from engineering biology. The programme will include a visit to SynBioBeta – The Global Synthetic Biology Conference. Together with meeting local and leading biotechnology organisations.

  • We are looking for businesses that focus on delivering Engineering Biology & translational Industrial Biotechnology solutions including:

    • Discovery and application of new bio-engineering principles
    • Use of bio-engineering principles to the design, analysis, construction, automation and manipulation of biological systems
    • Synthetic biology, engineering biology, or other innovative and sustainable approaches by ‘design’
    • Bio-manufacturing of renewable, recyclable, biodegradable, and/or environmentally benign materials
    • Green’ chemical production and processing
    • Sustainable bio-based manufacturing at scale
    • Bio-material processing
    • Alternate protein sources (plant, algae, cultivated meats & dairy, etc.)
    • Circular economy, e.g. turning waste into new products
  • Innovate UK will fund and organise flights, accommodation, and any conference fees for successful applicants. Innovate UK will also pay for any reasonable adjustments throughout the initiative.

    Only one representative from each company will be funded. On acceptance, a commitment fee of £1000 will be obtained from each delegate, which will be refunded on completion of the full activities and agreed action plan.

    Non-completion after formal acceptance may result in forfeiting some or all the commitment fees.

  • Applications close: 13th March 2024
    Pre visit workshop: 16th and 17th April 2024
    Innovation Visit: 5th – 11th May 2024
    Exploitation workshop: 17th July


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