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Impacting Business by Design, Professional Product Design Support that Accelerates Innovation.

Professional Product Design Support and Funding Assistance

Accelerate Innovation success in partnership with designers, academics and industry

The Impacting Business by Design project enables SMEs to accelerate commercialisation and product development, using design-led innovation.

Growing design capabilities

Many SMEs and start-up businesses do not have access to product design, or are unable to harness its full potential, for a range of reasons such as cost, lack of skills, focus or time. Impacting Business by Design aims to address this, widening participation and the product design sector.

The project offers SMEs the opportunity to work with professional product designers based within De Montfort University, Brunel University London and Nottingham Trent University, along with wider academic and industry support, to develop product design projects that enable the business to bring new products to the market faster and more effectively.

Access to professional design expertise Design support is provided across the entire development cycle including:
• Product design brief development
• Customer and user-needs research to identify key requirements
• Generation and testing of product concepts
• Product design engineering 
• User experience and user interface design, 
• Prototyping 
• Design for Manufacture
• Where needed we can help with sourcing manufacturing contractors

Funding Support to derisk innovation investment:
The early-stages of innovation can be an unrewarding business, demanding money and resources when the product is not yet generating returns. Impacting Business by Design’s funding model de-risks this investment, offering a deferred advance scheme to cover design fees, with repayment only triggered when the product generates four times the fee in sales revenue.

Who should apply:

You are eligible for Impacting Business by Design if you:

  • Are a start-up or SME that has not previously worked with professional product designers
  • Have an innovation challenge requiring support to resolve a design or technical issue
  • Are keen to work collaboratively
  • Are committed to learning to use design more effectively
  • Want to get better at making better things

Get in touch

To find out more about how to make a start, or to discuss your innovation challenges and how design can solve them, contact Principal Project Manager 'Ian Ferris' -

Who is behind 'Impacting Business by Design' ?

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