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For high-growth companies ready to become
the tech giants of tomorrow.

Be part of an high-profile University backed network

Exclusive events

Support to develop collaborative R&D bids


Support to raise investment

About the Programme

High-growth, innovative companies are the engines of our economy.

Having navigated the challenges of the start-up phase, you now have an established team, developed products and emerging revenue streams. However, there are still many challenges faced by scale-up companies in order to continue growing, innovating and staying ahead of the competition.

Our Scale-Up Programme is designed to provide you with support around the key challenges of R&D, raising investment and accessing new talent.

As well as being part of a high-profile network, backed by SETsquared the global no 1 university business incubator, you’ll have a direct link to the research talent and expertise of the six scale-up partner universities (Bath, Bristol, Cardiff, Exeter, Southampton and Surrey).

Companies that leverage both public and private investment create valuable intellectual property and attract higher valuations. As part of our Scale-Up Programme, you’ll be first to find out about opportunities for investment in innovation from public and private funders. We have a range of opportunities to access bid support funds which will help you build compelling collaborative R&D bids alongside our scale-up partner universities.

The Scale-Up Programme is a partnership between:

Funding Opportunities

Next Generation Transportation

We invite companies and researchers working on next generation transportation challenges to apply for support & funding to develop R&D proposals.

Applications now open

Find out more and apply

Membership benefits

  Become part of our scale-up member network

Our network is growing and will bring together 280 of the most innovative, ambitious scale-up companies in the UK.

  Exclusive events

You will receive exclusive invitations to our members events featuring industry speakers, insightful debates, inspiring panel discussions and effective networking. We run regular one-day Innovation Workshops which explore opportunities for innovation within your business model.

  Peer-to-peer support

The value of being part of a community of peers growing and facing challenges together, across multiple sectors and the opportunity for peer-to-peer support cannot be underestimated.

Scale-Up members can unlock further enhanced services for a membership fee, including:

  Collaborative R&D support for your business

Collaboration with a leading UK university (Bath, Bristol, Cardiff, Exeter, Southampton & Surrey) will help give your company a competitive advantage. As well as rigorous academic insight, it opens up new avenues for public grant funding and private investment.

  Opportunities to access proposal development funding

Understanding the R&D grant funding landscape can be time consuming and knowing how to write a successful bid is a skillset of its own. As well as identifying appropriate calls and research partners, we can also assign a bid writer, help you build your consortia, develop your proposal and deliver a strong application for funding. Find out about current bid development funds available

  Access talent through our University introduction service

The breadth of the SETsquared scale-up partner universities across the six institutions provides direct access to some of the top talent in the UK. Your sector specialist will advise on the potential for Knowledge Transfer Partnerships to bring expertise into your business.

  Investment raising support

Our Scale-Up Programme can offer unrivalled access to a wide network of investors, an in-depth investor readiness review process, periodic investment showcase events plus an online Investment Platform to showcase your investment campaign to active technology investors and corporate venturing teams.

Who should apply?

The programme is open to companies with strong growth ambitions  from the following sectors:

• Digital Innovation
• Health & Wellbeing
• Environmental, Sustainability, Marine & Maritime
• Advanced Engineering & Manufacturing

You must have a desire to utilise the knowledge base of the six Scale-Up Partner Universities of Bath, Bristol, Cardiff, Exeter, Southampton and Surrey.

“The SETsquared Scale-Up Programme is a fantastic thing for SMEs. Too often, SMEs are focussed on their core business of delivering to their customers, and don’t have the resources to grow their businesses at the same time. The Scale-Up Programme is ideally placed to facilitate the conversations and partnerships that SMEs so desperately need to achieve their growth goals.”

Professor Rick Hillum, Executive Chairman, Claritum

Fill in the form below to apply for the
Scale-up Programme.

We will allocate places based on the strength of the business case put forward in your application and we will be in touch if you’ve been successful with your application.


If you have any questions about the programme, please visit our Frequently Asked Questions or contact us

Associate membership of the Scale Up programme is open to any company who meets the criteria and is free of charge. Full Membership will be offered to companies who access the CR&D proposal development support or investment raising support services. Full membership is subject to payment by the member company of a one-off fee and Membership is valid for one year. For the year 2019/20 the Membership Fee is £1,600 ex VAT. Any eligible company can waive the fee under the De Minimis State aid regulation (Commission Regulation (EU) NO 1470/2013) (DMR) providing they have not received in excess of 200,000EUR of aid within a 3 year period . This requires eligible companies to complete a Statement of Previous Aid declaration

SETsquared is a partnership between

  • University of Bath
  • University of Bristol
  • University of Exeter
  • University of Southampton
  • University of Surrey