News story

Digital ideas for retail: apply for business funding

Businesses can win up to £35,000 and work with market leaders on innovative digital projects that could transform the future of shopping.

future retail

Innovate UK’s IC tomorrow programme is seeking innovative digital ideas that meet 5 challenges faced by retail businesses.

Up to 5 businesses could each win £35,000 to develop solutions in the fields of food waste reduction, virtual fitting, seamless shopping, and enhancing shopping experiences in physical stores and in street and covered markets.

Businesses will have the opportunity to work alongside partners including Tesco, WRAP, London College of Fashion, Unilever, Barclays and the Greater London Authority. The contest is also supported by the Economic and Social Research Council.

Challenges

We are looking for innovative solutions in:

  • pioneering new ways to tackle the 7 million tonnes of food and drink waste thrown away each year in the UK, in partnership with Tesco and WRAP
  • improving virtual fitting to reduce the high returns rate experienced by retailers from online sales, in partnership with the London College of Fashion
  • seamless shopping for consumer products that are regularly replaced, in partnership with Unilever
  • enhancing in-store experiences by bringing the best of the online world into physical banks and stores, in partnership with Barclays
  • digital enhancement of street and covered markets to help them to adapt and grow, in partnership with Greater London Authority

Competition information

  • this competition opens on 11 January 2016 and applications must be submitted by noon on 23 February 2016
  • the competition is open to businesses in the UK or EU
  • up to £35,000 is available to develop the successful project under each challenge
  • businesses can trial their ideas with industry partners while keeping their intellectual property
  • a briefing event will be held in London on 21 January 2016. It will be available as a webinar both live and after the event
Published 17 December 2015