Over the last year, Innovate UK’s R&D grant schemes enabled 642 scaling companies to realise their growth trajectory, unlocking an additional £3bn in private capital on top of the £205m in grant funding provided. However, the spread of the UK’s spend on R&D is highly unequal in geographical terms. In the West Midlands, business investment in R&D is at or above the UK average, despite low levels of public support. This implies an active R&D landscape not getting enough state support. Increased public spending on R&D here could leverage the benefits of private spending still further. However, a key method of increasing public spending on R&D is to bring together an active community of innovators that are informed enough to use R&D grant funding to their advantage. This session will take an independent view on explaining the R&D grant funding process to innovators, highlighting the potential advantages and detailing the scale of current and future R&D funding opportunities. We will highlight areas where innovators fall down with their R&D funding applications and provide expert opinion on how to secure future funding.