Arise Innovation Hubs ABOVE grant

Arise Innovation Hubs are excited to boost innovation across Essex with their funding programme, ABOVE.

Essex Entrepreneurs have already started to benefit from this grant, up to the value of £5,000. It is aimed at encouraging new products or services in the HealthTech and MedTech sectors.

The grant has supported a range of SMEs from NHS Clinical Entrepreneurs to local founders and established businesses. Approved applications include training a cancer detecting AI and development of a digital health and wellbeing platform for students.

ABOVE Grants

Arise ABOVE Innovation Support Grants are designed to be flexible, with a straightforward application process to support the needs of innovative entrepreneurs. This enables the opportunity to simulate and support the HealthTech and MedTech ecosystem by increasing collaboration and facilitating convergence across sectors. It also helps to create new jobs, start new business-academic projects and create viable new start-up business in the Health, Performance and Wellbeing sectors.

Funding is limited with decisions made on a rolling basis. Interested applicants are encouraged to register their interest now.


As part of Anglia Ruskin University, Arise can provide a range of talent, skills, innovation and business support designed to unlock business potential. They have collaborated with Essex County council and Medilink Midlands to bring a range of support sessions and the ABOVE grant to Essex businesses.

The funding has been received from Essex County Council (ECC), in support of their 10-year strategy to grow the life science, DigiTech, advanced manufacturing and engineering sectors, leading to more opportunity, jobs and growth across Essex.

llr Tony Ball, Essex County Council’s Cabinet Member for Education Excellence, Lifelong Learning and Employability, added: “We are thrilled to support the new Arise ABOVE innovation support grants. Our commitment to Levelling Up healthy lifestyles, supporting carers and promoting independence relies on future-thinking innovation and digital solutions.  

 “We hope this exciting opportunity supports local businesses to scale up their projects and enhance care, medicine and science in Essex. We have identified Life Sciences as a key growth sector in the county, already employing more than 5,000 people. The demand for innovation in the sector is set to grow, and we know opportunities such as the ABOVE innovation support grants will help Essex-based experts to address new health challenges.”

Arise are working closely with partners Medilink Midlands (a specialist provider of support to the life science sector) to help SMEs overcome barriers to growth in the delivery of ABOVE. This will include specialist interest groups, one-to-one business support sessions and our innovation support grants, cumulating in the first Arise conference in 2024.

Melanie Davidson, Chief Executive at Medilink Midlands said: “Medilink Midlands is delighted to be working with Arise Innovation Hubs to provide MedTech and Life Sciences focused business support to aid innovators and entrepreneurs across Essex. We believe the life sciences industry is stronger together - collaborations like these are vital to help build opportunities in the Life Sciences and MedTech sector.”

Dr. Beverley Vaughan, Director at Arise Innovation Hubs added: “ABOVE has been essential in helping us to stimulate and support our Health and MedTech community in Essex. We are already seeing the convergence of digital platforms, AI, devices and wellbeing innovations in the grants awarded.  These businesses and ideas not only support today’s challenges but tomorrow’s trends, in an ever changing world“

Would your business benefit from this funding?

If you are working on new and innovative projects, and are a local entrepreneur within a start-up, social enterprise or not-for-profit organisation, there is funding available. Applications start with expressing your interest and a one-to-one chat with Teresa Smith, Medilink Midlands Innovation Adviser. Applicants will then be guided through the submission process with a funding decision made quickly on a rolling basis.

For answers to frequently asked questions, take a look at the ABOVE eligibility criteria or contact by email.