EU plans €331m funding to boost 42 deep-tech start-ups

7 Feb 2023

Image: © poylock19/

EIC investment agreements have already been signed by 13 deep-tech companies.

The European Innovation Council (EIC) has announced 42 new equity investment decisions into deep-tech companies worth €331m.

The funding will go to “pioneering start-ups” that have the potential to develop breakthrough products or shake up existing markets. These new investment decisions have been made since the EIC’s previous funding announcement last November.

The investment agreements have already been signed by 13 companies, which are creating products such as computer vision software and robotics for healthcare, improved food production, breast self-reconstruction from a patient’s own tissue and visual search technology.

The announcement follows a report last month that suggests deep-tech was one of Europe’s strongest sectors last year, despite the economic uncertainty affecting global markets.

The report claimed deep-tech was Europe’s second-best performing segment for the second half of 2022, though investment in the sector still lags behind compared to the US.

Last May, a joint report by the European Patent Office and the European Investment Bank said a lack of access to finance and skilled talent were key reasons the EU’s deep-tech businesses lag behind their US counterparts.

The EIC fund is the investment component of the EIC Accelerator, which offers equity investments between €500,000 and €15m per company, along with grant financing of €2.5m.

Last December, Almost 80 high-potential start-ups and SMEs were selected for a 2022 EIC Accelerator, with Cork cybersecurity start-up Vaultree being the only Irish company among the cohort.

Further EIC investments

The EIC was launched in March 2021 to support emerging tech in Europe and “make money out of science”. Through the EIC, more than €10bn will be invested in innovative research-based start-ups and SMEs up to 2027.

Since the appointment of an external fund manager last September, the European Commission said this EIC Fund has made 77 investment decisions for deep-tech companies, worth more than €521m.

Last December, The European Commission announced funding worth €1.6bn for the EIC to help scale up various breakthrough technologies in 2023.

10 things you need to know direct to your inbox every weekday. Sign up for the Daily Brief, Silicon Republic’s digest of essential sci-tech news.

Leigh Mc Gowran is a journalist with Silicon Republic