NI small businesses set for new innovation funding

A number of small businesses in Northern Ireland could be set to benefit from new funding designed to promote innovation and growth.

The Innovation Vouchers Programme operated by Invest Northern Ireland will see financial support pledged towards firms hoping to take advantage of the expertise offered by scientific and technical researchers.

It will give small enterprises the chance to apply for funding that can be used to meet the costs of research from bodies like universities and colleges.

Arlene Foster, enterprise minister for the Northern Ireland Executive, commented that the £2.7million voucher scheme could help businesses develop their products and services.

She said: "Small enterprises are the cornerstone of our economy so it is essential that we help as many as possible to fully utilise innovation in order to capitalise on new business opportunities."

Meanwhile, the UK's Federation of Small Businesses has warned that postal strikes could impact on a number of small firms in the coming weeks.
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