The Department for Transport has announced the launch of a new scheme offering £7 million in funding over three years, aimed at helping small to medium-sized businesses to develop greener and more efficient freight solutions.
This comes after the announcement of a similar fund in December 2022, making nearly £2 million available to start-ups for the development of new transport technologies.
The Freight Innovation Fund (FIF) will be available to up to 36 small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), which would then ‘work with industry-leading companies to develop innovations to make freight more efficient, resilient, and greener’.
The Department for Transport is looking for solutions that address three key issues that it has identified within the freight sector: a lack of large-scale cross-industry data collection and sharing, difficulties in inter-modal transport, and inefficiency in freight distribution.
Roads Minister Richard Holden said: “Our freight industry is vital to underpinning the economy and keeps Britain moving, so it is crucial we invest in new innovations to make it greener and quicker.”
He explained: “This fund will accelerate new ideas and technologies, helping to develop a future pipeline of innovations that can be rolled out to create jobs and allow everyone to get their goods faster and easier.”
The FIF is part of the government’s long-term Future of Freight plan to overcome challenges, support innovation, and decarbonise the industry.