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The county of Kent prides itself on offering a plethora of grants to help small and medium businesses. Yet, if you are to qualify for research and development business grants in Kent, you must go through the proper procedure, as outlined by the Selective Finance for Investment in England (SFIE) program. First, what you propose to do must pass their appraisal criteria.

The grant process requires that whatever it is you are looking to do must have a wider application than just improving you business. Next, there is the issue of intellectual property and patents. You must own the ideas you propose to develop. Then there is the issue of management. Coming up with a great idea is one thing, but having the skills to implement it and carry it forward are quite another. So, for you to get a grant, you must be able to demonstrate that you have the project team abilities to make use of your development. Next is the viability of your idea. For a grant to be made, your idea must make economic sense. The greatest ideas in the world, if they can not make money, are not going to be likely to get business grants in Kent, or anywhere else for that matter. Going along with that are the commercial potential, and the marketability of your idea. Here again, it goes back to the question of just what you are trying to come up with. A great idea that has no market is not really all that great an idea. You could come up with a sensational formula for broccoli flavored chewing gum but who in the world is going to want to buy it? So, do your homework well. Do your market research on your product and your target audience. If you have a strong business plan which offers a realistic appraisal of the business- prospects, you are far more likely to secure business grants in Kent.

In any business venture, there is always risk. So, another factor considered in business grants in Kent is the technical risks associated with your project and the research and development challenges to be overcome. If you are looking at stem cell research to treat Parkinson’s disease, there is huge potential, but also great challenges.

Then there is the application process for business grants in Kent. First of all, you will need to submit a summary of what sort of research project you are proposing to do. This is called a pre-application submittal. By doing this you can establish whether or not you meet the criteria for a grant. After that, you make a full application. A variety of websites have the application form. You fill that out along with the financial appendices; yet another form you download off a website. Then you have to submit full technical specifications on the research you want to carry out, and how you plan to develop the results. As these grants are for businesses, you also need to create a business plan to outline the economic viability of your project. Then there is the question of how well your company is doing financially. You will also have to submit a listing of your financial accounts for the previous two years, and then what sort of funding you currently have in place for the research and what funding you propose to line up for it.

All of this may seem like a lot, but once you meet all of the criteria, getting one of the business grants in Kent for your research is entirely possible. So, if you have a great idea, and feel it has the potential to give your company a real boost, see about applying for a grant.

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