University of York project secures £1M funding for small businesses in Yorkshire

£1M grant funding is now available for Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) businesses in Yorkshire to boost innovation in our region, thanks to a new project launched this month.

PAPI (Product and Process Innovation) is being delivered by the University of York and will help start-up and existing small businesses across the region grow by providing grants of up to £20,000 for the purchase of equipment which will lead to the creation of new products, services and jobs.

PAPI has been launched in Leeds City Region following the success of the project in North and East Yorkshire regions, where it is on track to create over 130 new jobs and 100 new products since its launch in 2016.

Programme Manager Vicky Wren is excited to see the PAPI project rolling out across the region:

We are thrilled to be able to extend this support to businesses in the Leeds City Region area. We’ve had great feedback from businesses we’ve already worked with, and the growth impact the grant has made to small businesses has been fantastic. We’re looking forward to helping more businesses in the Leeds City Region, and I encourage businesses to get in touch with their project ideas.”

One business who has already benefitted from the scheme is York-based digital screen solutions provider 10Squared Ltd, who have been able to purchase a CNC laser cutting machine following a £20,000 grant from PAPI. Gary Steele, General Manager said:

“The funding we received from PAPI has been invaluable to our business. The new CNC laser has allowed us to take on new contracts with more complex designs and expand our product range. As a result of the investment our lead-times have reduced, meaning we can offer a greater service to customers, which in turn has had a significant effect on turnover. The whole grant process was extremely straightforward with fantastic support from the PAPI team.”

PAPI can support SMEs located in the Leeds City Region, which covers much of North, West and South Yorkshire. The project is now open for applications and businesses can quickly check their eligibility on the website at or by calling the PAPI team on 01904 32 8076.

The PAPI project is part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020.