£20m Welsh Government scheme uses design to support business growth

A panel of design consultancies has been appointed to help Welsh businesses innovate through design.

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The Welsh Government has appointed a panel of design consultancies to work with businesses in the country to help develop new products and services.

The £20 million SMART Innovation programme is funded by the Welsh Government – which has given and the European Regional Development Fund.

Businesses are able to apply for support through the SMART programme to create and develop new products, processes, services, technologies and business ideas.

The Welsh Government has now appointed a panel of consultancies to help provide design and manufacturing support to businesses on the SMART programme.

Swmas, Bic Innovation, Enterprise Consulting, Iterate Design + Innovation, and Cardiff Metropolitan University have been appointed to the panel and will work on design and manufacturing projects as part of the programme.

The three-year agreement is worth £1.4 million. The Welsh Government says that consultancies will be appointed to work on rotation.

The SMART programme was announced by Welsh Government Economy Minister Edwina Hart in March.

Hart said: “The SMART Innovation programme… [will] help Welsh business develop new ideas and products for commercial success.

“As well as providing advice and guidance to businesses looking to develop new ideas it will encourage collaboration between the academic and commercial worlds.”

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