FAPESP is launching PIPE Invest, a new way of supporting startups and innovative small and medium-sized companies that have already started the development of innovative processes or products with great potential for success, within the scope of the Innovative Research in Small Companies Program (PIPE) , and that already has the interest of an investor. The objective is to improve technology and accelerate the insertion of innovation in the market.
The companies that were successful in phase 2 of PIPE and prove the adhesion of a private partner to the project - natural or legal person, without conflict of interest with the small target company of the investment -, with the contribution of resources above R $ 100 thousand, will receive, through PIPE Invest, supplementary funds, with a maximum value identical to that raised by private investment, limited to a ceiling of R $ 1 million for a period of up to 24 months. For more information, consult the program guidelines.
“In the analysis of the projects supported in phase 2 of PIPE, FAPESP already suggested that entrepreneurs seek investors for the innovations they are developing through the Program. PIPE Invest is an additional stimulus ”, evaluates Patricia Tedeschi, research manager for innovation at FAPESP.
“The funds must be invested in full in the development of research and do not cover expenses such as infrastructure. Scholarships for researchers in this new PIPE modality will also not be awarded ”, explains Tedeschi.
New PIPE standards
PIPE Invest is one of the novelties of PIPE-FAPESP. The rules of the program have been completely revised, with the organization of text sections, updating of document templates available for download, as well as scripts for preparing the research project and scientific reports.
Another novelty is the change in the form of submission of the indirect phase 2. Previously, the researcher could submit the support proposal for this phase together with a scientific progress report from phase 1. Now, it will be necessary to first submit a “Other” change request in the phase 1 process, attaching the required documentation as standards. After approval of this request, the researcher will be authorized to submit the complete proposal to SAGe.
"We have been identifying, in contact with the entrepreneurs who submit projects to PIPE, the need to update some of the program's rules in order to facilitate the processing of processes," says Tedeschi.
Changes were also made to issues relating to intellectual property. The previous models of agreements have been replaced by the new document “Term on Intellectual Property and Commitment to share results”.
Considering the clauses of the new term, the small company will own the intellectual property rights resulting from the project. FAPESP's participation in the economic results of the exploration of the innovation developed in the project will take place, as from the 1st analysis cycle of 2021, for the payment by the small company of up to 100% of the amount effectively disbursed by the Foundation, within a period of up to five years, if the project is successful.
As of the 1st analysis cycle of 2021, the responsible researcher supported by phase 2 and PIPE Invest must also submit business development reports, prepared according to instructions available in the standards.
The new PIPE standards are available at:fapesp.br/pipe/normas.
Proposals for the first cycle of 2021
PIPE's first 2021 call for proposals is now open. The 1st analysis cycle of the year receives requests for new projects until February 1, 2021.
Financing proposals must contain research projects that can be developed in two stages:
1) demonstration of the technological viability of the product or process, with a maximum duration of nine months and resources of up to R $ 200 thousand.
2) innovative product or process development, with a maximum duration of 24 months and resources of up to R $ 1 million.
When proposers have already carried out technological activities that demonstrate the feasibility of the project, they can submit proposals directly to phase 2.
Up to R $ 15 million is reserved to meet the selected proposals. The submission of projects must be done through FAPESP's SAGe system.
Researchers linked to small companies (with up to 250 employees) with a research and development unit in the State of São Paulo may submit proposals. Those who do not have a formalized company can also submit proposals. Formalization should take place after the project is approved and before PIPE assistance is signed.
FAPESP will disclose the result by sending the evaluators' technical opinions to each bidder. Opinions can be useful for improving the proposal, whether approved or not. In case of non-approval, the proponent will be able to improve the proposal, correcting the flaws pointed out, and submit a new request in the subsequent notice.
The call for the 1st cycle of 2021 is published at: www.fapesp.br/pipe/chamada-1-2021.
To assist those interested in participating in the call, FAPESP will hold, on December 16, 2020, the online event Dialogue on Support for Research for Innovation in Small Business.
The event is open to entrepreneurs or future entrepreneurs who have already presented or are interested in proposing a project to the PIPE Program.