Innovation support

Innovative businesses grow faster. If you're looking to develop or improve products or services, or exploring ways to increase productivity, why not ask our innovation experts for advice?

How we can help

Our innovation support is far-reaching and includes:

  • Business support to all sectors, at all stages of development
  • Funded expert help where required
  • Grants for development work
  • Advice on how to secure investment
  • Specialist advice on intellectual assets (IA) and intellectual property (IP)
  • Advice on digital solutions such as ecommerce
  • Introductions to project partners within industry and academia

Am I eligible?

Our innovation support service is available to companies based in Scotland. But to fully benefit from the service it's best that you:

  • Have a formed company, including a company registration number
  • Have a business plan and/or a project plan
  • Have conducted some market research
  • Are able to finance a significant part of your innovation project

If you haven't formed your company yet, Business Gateway can help you get started.

Tell us about your project

Once we know more about your innovation project our advisers can: 

  • Provide you with information to support your project
  • Take you through the support we can offer and highlight the support available from our partners
  • Invite you to meet with our specialist advisers

If you don't think you meet all the criteria right now, we might still be able to help.

Tell us more about your innovation project


Manage your intellectual property and assets

Intellectual property (IP) assets not only include patents, copyright, registered designs and trade marks but can also include trade secrets, expertise, sector knowledge and brand identity.

On average, IP assets form around 80% of a business value – so they require effective management to extract maximum profitability.

We offer free and impartial advice to help your business identify, manage and exploit IP assets.

Effective management of your IP, including expertise and market knowledge, can help increase your company's profits.

Talk to our IP specialists

We can help you:

  • Identify the IP you will need to manage to protect new innovations and developments 
  • Manage confidentiality, contracts and ownership between third parties and your business
  • Identify and value the unique assets that make your company attractive to investors and customers
  • Take your goods and services to market
  • Strengthen and protect your brand
  • Tailor your international IP strategy

Ask our intellectual assets specialists

Auchentoshan Distillery

Innovation in the food and drink sector

Make Innovation Happen is a single source of innovation support for businesses involved in the Scottish food and drink supply chain.

We're working in partnership with Scotland Food & Drink, Highlands & Islands Enterprise and across academia, the public sector and industry to deliver a comprehensive innovation support service, including:

  • Access to 'connectors', who can offer support, advice and mentoring

  • Ideas and insights on how to innovate through articles and events

  • Funding through the Collaborative Innovation fund

  • Help to access other innovation services provided by Scottish Government, Scottish Enterprise, Highlands & Islands Enterprise, Interface and others

Collaborative Innovation Fund

Funding for collaborations that embed innovation in the Scottish food and drink sector. 

Food and drink innovation, trends and insights

Read market insights and innovations in the Scottish food and drink sector.

Food and drink innovation connectors

Meet our Make Innovation Happen 'connectors' who'll help you tap in to an array of available support and guide you through your innovation journey.

Caroline MacLellan - As part of HIE’s innovation team, Caroline works to help food and drink businesses achieve their growth and innovation ambitions.

Paul Copland - With extensive knowledge of government innovation and R&D grant funding mechanisms, Paul focuses on innovation product development, helping identify and explore new opportunities.

Rachel Mirfattahi - As Sector Engagement Executive at Interface and member of the Institute of Food Science and Technology, Rachel works to upskill Scottish food and drink SMEs.

Make an enquiry through our innovation support service 


Enquire about innovation support

Our team are on hand to answer your questions and explain the support we can offer to help your business succeed.