How can we help?

Please see below for a list of our most commonly asked questions. Not seeing something on the list? Contact us.

The challenge is open to all sectors with the exclusion of entities on the EU and IDB’s list of prohibited activities as well as oil and gas exploration and production. 

Private sector- local chambers and associations, entrepreneurs, corporate entities etc, SMEs, Government and public sector agencies collaborating with businesspersons, Universities, Research, and Innovation labs, think and tech hubs, innovators, accelerators, start-ups, etc. General members of the public are eligible to apply.

The first Call for Applications for financing under the Innovation Challenge Facility was issued on November 30 2021. At this time, the targeted group for this call, SMEs, were invited to submit applications to

In general, Calls will be open to:

(i)  innovators/entrepreneurs/small organizations;

(ii) medium-sized organizations with an established commercial track record; and

(iii) other organizations/clusters innovating the delivery of goods and services, including models for delivery of goods and services that the State may traditionally provide.

This financing will be awarded based on a competitive process. Applicants will receive support in the application process, and successful firms will receive support in implementing or expanding their innovation projects.

The executing agency will implement a two-stage process for applications. The first stage is designed to crowd in the largest number of viable ideas using broad-based outreach, with applicants being afforded the opportunity to participate in small workshops and online forums to support their preparation of a project pitch. Individual applicants and small organizations will be facilitated at this initial stage by enrolment in CARIRI’s Idea Advisory Service (IAS) Programme. The programme will provide support in developing the ideas through the provision of assistance in the areas of novelty and market validation and Intellectual Property Rights (IPR). 

Applicants shortlisted in the initial round to proceed to the second evaluation stage will develop a more detailed funding proposal using a business model canvas anchored by a strong value proposition. Innovation proposals that target export earnings, job creation, deliver social and environmental benefits, and those that specifically target and deliver benefits/solutions relevant to disadvantaged/excluded/vulnerable groups will be prioritized.

Applicants will be supported in this stage by a team of specialists, working one on one with them in boot camps and virtual settings to provide technical support and advice for their funding applications.

Larger organizations applying for funding via this second stage may be matched during the application stage and after award of financing, if successful, with local and regional accelerator programmes, angel and early-stage investors, as well as Venture Capital (VC) funds.

Applicants from the initial round of applications successfully screened (shortlisted) to move on to the second stage will be announced by mid March 2022 

Visit the Shaping the Future of Innovation website and CARIRI Social Media Pages for the latest updates and announcements.

You may contact us by email for any further information.