What is R&D?

The definition of R&D for tax purposes extends beyond the traditional understanding of R&D and is broader than many companies realise.

“Research and Development for tax purposes takes place when a project seeks to achieve an advance in science or technology. The work is undertaken on a systematic basis in order to resolve technical or scientific uncertainty and aims to advance the level of knowledge in a particular field of science beyond the level known before the research and development took place.”

Many companies are unaware that non-obvious activities occurring on the broader business areas, such as manufacturing operations and assembly processes, testing and trailing, quality assurance, regulatory certification and business services, can attract eligibility for relief.

Potentially eligible expenditures can include both direct (above) and Qualifying Indirect Activities (QIAs).

Examples of QIAs include:

  • Administration and secretarial support
  • Recruitment and training
  • IT
  • Finance, and
  • Security

Make R&D expenditure go further with a SPRK Quarterly Advance

Every £ spent on R&D has an immediate and long-term impact to an SME. By using a SPRK Advance that expenditure can stretch further, resulting in either 20% more generated in R&D spend and an increased refund of 10% or leave you requiring 18% less capital to achieve the same expenditure.

How it works

  • GET

    More R&D expenditure

  • AND

    Increased credit

  • OR

    Less capital required
    for the same R&D level

Am I eligible?

  • Are you a UK business doing R&D?

    Does your company conduct R&D to improve existing products and services? Maybe you’re a start-up with a focus on innovation, or R&D is your core business?

    Yes No
  • Do you meet the government’s criteria?

    You must be a company liable for Corporation tax, have a minimum annual R&D expenditure of £20,000 and conduct at least one activity under the government definition of R&D.

    Yes No
  • Great! Let’s start your application.

    Getting started with SPRK is easy, and can be done over the phone or right now, online. For more information on the application process please click here.

    Request a call Apply Online
  • It’s OK, we can help!

    You may not be eligible right now, but our team of experts may be able to help. Let’s arrange a time to chat.

    Request a call Contact Us

How much of your money could you access?

Don’t wait for your credit. Access it now and stretch every pound up to 20% further.

Calculate your R&D Advance by entering your annual R&D expenditure below


Tax Credit without SPRK £-
Tax Credit with SPRK
AFTER all financing costs
R&D expenditure increase £- -%
R&D tax credit increase £- -%
Expenditure period 1-Jul to 30-Sep 1-Oct to 31-Dec 1-Jan to 31-Mar 1-Apr to 30-Jun
Your R&D expenditure £100,000 £100,000 £100,000 £100,000
SPRK Advance £- £- £-

Talk to our experts

SPRK are specialists in R&D finance, and we're here to help you get the most from every pound spent on R&D.

Contact us
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