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£1.8 million up for grabs for SMEs able to improve freight industry

The Department for Transport and the Connected Places Catapult have launched the third Freight Innovation Fund Accelerator to support innovation across the sector, including to decarbonise freight and improve UK supply chains.

Up to 10 small and medium-sized enterprises can receive up to £1.8 million in government funding to support the freight sector to innovate and develop new technologies to improve how freight is moved across road, rail, maritime and air transport.

Logistics businesses involved in the Accelerator act as test beds, to facilitate the trial and development of new technology and data-driven solutions. The industry partners for the third Accelerator are DHL, Eddie Stobart, Freightliner, Maritime Transport, Port of Dover, Port of Tilbury, Welch Group, Wincanton and DP World UK.

Examples of ground-breaking ideas that have become reality thanks to support from the Freight Innovation Fund include trialling eCargo bikes to deliver parcels quickly in traffic-heavy city centres; a real-time automated electric vehicle and charger management platform for electric logistics fleets; a workforce scheduling platform designed specifically for ports; and mail delivered by drones across the islands in Orkney.

Ben Garratt, Deputy Director - Public Affairs at Logistics UK commented: “It’s great to see the Freight Innovation Fund Accelerator go from strength to strength, with a host of logistics businesses supported to partner with technology companies.

“Logistics businesses are significant implementors of innovation, with this playing a key role in delivering safety, efficiency, improved customer service, decarbonisation and interconnectedness between transport modes.

“However, there are constraints on the sector’s adoption of and support for innovation, particularly that it operates on small margins. As such, this is a crucial government-backed programme for the trialling of new solutions, as logistics businesses help to identify the challenges to address and act as test beds, rather than match funders.”

Previous funding winners have reported a collective £97 million in commercial investment from the £1.2 million government Year 1 fund, decarbonising supply chains and supporting jobs.

To find out more, visit: £1.8 million boost for innovation to decarbonise freight 

Published On: 07/05/2024 14:30:00


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“The Five Client Carbon Commitments” are:

1. Procure for low carbon construction and provide incentives in contracts.

2. Set phase out dates for fossil fuel use.

3. Eliminate the most carbon intensive concrete products.

4. Eliminate the most carbon intensive steel products.

5. Sign up to PAS 2080, allowing a common standard in carbon management and reporting.


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