Businesses in Kettering and Corby will be able to bid for funds from a £79 million pot of European funding aimed at boosting jobs and growth.
The fund has been launched by the South East Midlands Local Enterprise Partnership (SEMLEP).
Firms and enterprises can bid for funding for a range of areas such as low carbon initiatives, competitiveness, innovation and rural economy sectors like food, drink and tourism.
The money is being delivered over the next six years.
Councillor Peter Marland, SEMLEP board director, said: “SEMLEP has worked hard to secure European funding on this scale and it should be a real boost for our local economy.
“We have worked closely with all the relevant agencies and partners to be one of the first to launch this programme of funding to help projects in our area benefit from investment at the earliest opportunity.”
SEMLEP say they have received an initial allocation of £19 million - £6 million for low carbon projects and £6million for proposals which look at ‘stimulating enterprise’ and ‘enhancing the competitiveness’ of small to medium sized businesses.
Projects which ‘strengthen and exploit innovation and knowledge assets’ will be competing for a share of £3.6 million while an additional £3.4 million has been earmarked for ‘buildings for growth’.
The scheme requires applicants to provide 50 per cent match funding, which can be from either the public or private sector.
Daniel Charles Mouawad, chief executive of SEMLEP, said: “The funding launched today will benefit a wide range of projects which will help create jobs and stimulate the economy as well as support community and social initiatives.
“It demonstrates continued confidence from central government in the potential future growth and we would encourage all eligible organisations to consider applying for part of this funding support as soon as possible.”