UK innovation secures €1.57m in EU funding

Posted on 6 Sep 2017 by Jonny Williamson

Lontra, the company responsible for the revolutionary Blade Compressor®, has been awarded EU funding to fuel growth into new sectors in a global market now worth £25bn.

EU Funding Story - Steve Lindsey, founder, CEO and designer of the Blade Compressor, Lontra.
Steve Lindsey, founder, CEO and designer of the Blade Compressor – image courtesy of Lontra.

This is the second success for the Midlands-based company in securing Horizon 2020 funding, the biggest EU Research and Innovation programme designed to support small and medium-sized enterprises accelerate in new industries and markets.

With more than 31,000 applications received, Lontra beat strong competition from across Europe to win a total grant value of €1.57m over the next two years.

The new grant will allow the company to introduce its Blade Compressor ® to the pneumatic conveying market, potentially bringing huge energy savings to the manufacturing sector.

Lontra is partnering with leading food and pharmaceutical manufacturers – two of the UK’s largest manufacturing export sectors worth a combined £38bn – to replace outdated and inefficient pneumatic conveying (blower) systems.

As well as winning EU funding for the second time, Lontra’s founder Steve Lindsey was recently a finalist in the European Patent Office’s Inventor awards, one of just 15 chosen from around 600,000 active patents filed across Europe.

The company achieved recognition after its proven success in the wastewater treatment sector; demonstrating significant energy and cost savings of 21.2%, and better reliability during site trials with Severn Trent Water.

As a fast-growing British firm with a growing manufacturing capability licensing to and working with technical and commercial partners, Lontra’s ambition over the next couple of years is to address the current problems of high energy use and maintenance costs that sectros like food and pharmaceutical endure through use of traditional oil-free blowers by replacing them with its superior Blade Compressor® technology.

Lontra has been shortlisted in the Innovation & Design category for this year’s The Manufacturer MX Awards.

To view the full The Manufacturer MX Awards 2017 shortlist, please click here.

The winners of the black tie gala dinner will be announced on 16 November at the Exhibition Centre Liverpool at the biggest celebration in the UK manufacturing calendar.

Last year was a sell out, so book early to avoid disappointment! Book your tickets here.

Founder and CEO of Lontra, Steve Lindsey explained: “The exciting thing about compressors is they are behind nearly every part of modern life. What we’re doing is truly innovative and ground-breaking and requires the support of funding bodies such as Horizon 2020.

“As the government sets out the funding conditions for British SMEs and start-ups post-Brexit, it is important to note how successful the UK has been in securing European funding.

“The pneumatic conveying industry is hugely productive for British export trade, so it’s of utmost importance that our government negotiates a trade deal that reflects the voice of British businesses.”

The company’s first products reportedly offer significant advantages in efficiency and reliability for the low-pressure compressor market, a £25bn per annum sector.

As part of the grant funding, Lontra is due to receive world-class business innovation coaching and other business acceleration to help meet its ambition to introduce solutions to even larger sectors.