The GX project is part funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) as part of the European Structural and Investment Growth Programme 2014-20 for England.


GX project summary

The GX project led by NewcastleGateshead Initiative provides a range of opportunities to North-East SMEs and scaleups before, during and after the Great Exhibition of the North. Innovation is one of the key themes of the The Exhibition and we want local innovative businesses to benefit from the unique platform provided by The Exhibition during the summer and continue to capitalise on it through a programme of intensive business support running until September 2019.

GX Grants scheme

The GX Project builds on the fantastic platform created by the GEOTN to promote the region and boost innovation-led economic growth.

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Business events

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The GX project will deliver

  • A programme of workshops for SMEs to better understand and exploit information on emerging trends and sector developments
  • 5 challenges (in collaboration with Innovate NE) where local SMEs will work with corporates and innovation support partners to develop solutions to pre-defined challenges related to a range of topics such as urban revitalisation, independent ageing, mobility, and energy.
  • Business grants for specialist consultancy services to develop new products and services.
  • A set of collaborative partnerships between SMEs and research organisations to increase the Research & Development capability of local SMEs
  • A series of innovation residencies where SMEs will host creative innovators to help them grow

Throughout this programme of activities, GX will also contribute to building a strong NE innovation network and showcasing local SMEs through key events such as the Business Summit in July 2018 to create connections and enable access to new market opportunities.

SMEs will have to meet a range of criteria to participate in the programme

  • Be based in the North East LEP area, and
  • be linked to one of the smart specialisation areas identified by NELEP: Passenger vehicle manufacture; Subsea and Offshore Energy, Life Sciences and Health; Creative, Digital, Software and Technology based services.

The project can also support SMEs working in areas of opportunities such as health innovation, business information modelling and immersive technologies.

You can find out more about current events, workshops and other opportunities here.

Business opportunities

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The GX project is delivered in partnership with

and contracted suppliers