Small Business Research Initiative

What is Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI)?

SBRI is a Pre-Commercial Procurement (PCP) programme which provides innovative solutions to current challenges faced by the public sector. SBRI leads to better public services and an opportunity for local enterprises to develop new products for the market.  SBRI is a phased competitive process with solution design and testing typically happening over a 2 or 3 phased programme.

How does SBRI work?

SBRI competitions are open to all organisations that can demonstrate a route to market for their solution and comprise two phases:

  • Phase 1 is intended to demonstrate the technical feasibility of the proposed concept.
  • Phase 2 contracts are intended to develop and evaluate prototypes or demonstration units from the more promising technologies in Phase 1.  Only those projects that have completed Phase 1 successfully will be eligible for Phase 2.

All competitions are advertised on eTendersNI -


What do suppliers think of SBRI?

“SBRI has been instrumental in getting us off the ground. As a young start-up, having a SBRI contract has been beneficial not only financially but also in getting a foot into Health Trusts who would otherwise not entertain small businesses who may have untested yet promising solutions” – SBRI Phase 1 Supplier


To date Business Services Organisation (BSO) has undertaken 5 SBRI/ PCP projects:

MAGIC (Mobile Assistance for Groups & Individuals within the Community – Post stroke rehabilitation)

MAGIC is a large PCP co-funded through the European Commission’s Horizon 2020 programme.  The MAGIC Consortium is led and co-ordinated by Business Services Organisation with partners from across the EU. MAGIC is focused upon creating innovative technology; transforming services for patients post stroke to improve physical function and personal independence:

  • Empower patients post-stroke
  • Optimise recovery
  • New cost effective solutions

For further information on MAGIC please view

Medicines Optimisation

‘Medicines Optimisation’, aimed to address the widespread challenge of poor adherence to medication. Six companies successfully applied to design prototype solutions in Phase 1 and two companies, AppAttic and Smartair progressed to Phase 2 for product development and testing. Phase 2 was successfully completed by the two suppliers on 31:03:17.


Home Medication Management for the Elderly to Support Domiciliary Care Services HOME aims to address the daily challenges associated with the management of medication in the domiciliary care setting. The competition sought technology solutions to benefit domiciliary care users and providers, help adherence, safer working practice, and management of demand in the system. Two suppliers are currently in Phase 2 which commenced on September 2017 and will last for 18-months.


‘FAST’ Automated Staff Deployment aims to address the challenge of matching the needs of patients with appropriately skilled pharmacy staff in real time in a busy hospital setting. The solutions being developed under this SBRI competition will help to ensure that the most appropriate members of the clinical pharmacy team can be deployed in a timely manner throughout the day, making best use of their skills and meeting the needs of the patients regarding their medicines.  Two suppliers commenced Phase 2 in October 2017 and will finish in September 2018.


Gestational, Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes Empowering Mothers through Mobile Technologies.   GEMS is the latest SBRI in health seeking technology solutions that improve the health of women with gestational diabetes, enable diabetic pregnant women to take better control of their health increase the effectiveness of interventions, reduce pressure on health care services, (maternity, neonatal and endocrinology services), support an on-going care programme and improve the lives, wellbeing and outcomes for maternal and infant health.


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