32. When seeking support for innovation how to choose between the EIT and the European Innovation Council (EIC)?


The EIT and the EIC are complementary EU funding programmes and have already concluded a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to ensure close cooperation. Depending on your specific need for innovation support and the maturity level of your start-up / scale-up you may consider the EIT or the EIC. The EIC supports innovative start-ups / scale-ups through open calls to provide for acceleration services through with a combination of grant and equity funding. The EIC also has calls for earlier stage breakthrough innovation via its Pathfinder calls. The EIT powers entrepreneurs and innovators to turn their best ideas into products, services and jobs for Europe. As such, a cornerstone of the EIT’s activities is to support innovation in existing companies and the creation of new business opportunities. The vital ingredients in fostering entrepreneurial activities are ensuring access to finance, access to new customers and new markets as well as providing support for enhancing business skills. Through their business creation and acceleration programmes, all EIT Knowledge and Innovation Communities (EIT KICs) offer a wide range of business support services that help entrepreneurs and innovators translate their ideas into successful, thriving ventures. These services focus on areas such as support for technology, market assessment, access to human resources, access to new markets and customers, mentoring and, last but not least, access to seed and venture capital. The EIT Community's added value stems from supporting entrepreneurs through the network of EIT innovation hubs and contacts, and offering opportunities and activities tailored to each stage of an idea to be turned into a successful and impact innovation.