The Best Startup Grants in Australia in 2021

What is a Startup Grant?

Startup grants consist of money or support offered to startups and innovative businesses to help them excel in their niche. These grants generally fund projects with specific parameters and measurable outcomes. e.g., app development.

When searching for funding, keep in mind that you’ll generally need to meet certain criteria to be eligible, and that aside from financial assistance, many schemes can build your firms’ skills and knowledge. Now yes, the lengthy applications, process times, and chance of rejection are enough to put most off… but, there are numerous corporations available to manage the funding process so you can focus on your business; they will be linked below.

Here are the top startup grants in Australia 2021

The Research and Development (R&D) Tax Incentive

This tax incentive reduces company R&D costs by offering tax offsets for eligible R&D expenditure. Australian companies receive a refundable tax offset, allowing the benefit to be paid as a cash refund if they are in a tax loss position. The current value is 43.5 percent, meaning if you’re running at a loss and have spent $100,000 on eligible activities, you could potentially receive $43,500 in cash.

To be eligible for the R&D Tax Incentive you must:

  • Be a company that is liable to pay income tax in Australia.
  • Conduct at least one activity that meets the definition of a core R&D activity.
  • Have eligible R&D expenditure greater than $20,000.

The deadline for registering your eligible R&D is 10 months after the end of your income year, and your eligibility is self-assessed. You can find more info and register here.

Entrepreneurs Programme

Undeniably one of the top startup grants in Australia; Entrepreneurs’ Programme is a $400M government initiative to help businesses increase productivity and competitiveness with funding and access to a national network of private-sector advisers and facilitators.

It provides practical support for businesses including:

  • Access to experienced business facilitators and advisors.
  • Co-funded grants to commercialise new products, processes, and services.
  • Funding to take advantage of growth opportunities.
  • Network and collaboration opportunities.
  • Tailored learning events across the country.

Eligible businesses must have an annual yield (or operating expenditure) between $1.5 million and $100 million for one of the last three years. Click here to learn more. A full list of eligibility criteria can be found at https://www.business.gov.au/EP.

Accelerating Commercialisation (AC) Grant

In Australia, this startup grant provides up 50% of expenditure to a maximum of $1,000,000 funding to cover eligible commercialisation costs. It aims to help take novel products or processes into new markets. If secured, recipients and eligible partner entities also receive $250,000 funding for ‘commercialisation offices. Commercialisation guidance and a support network are included as part of the grant’s ‘portfolio services.

It’s aimed at Australian entrepreneurs, researchers, inventors, startups, Research Commercialisation Entities, and small and medium enterprises who have a novel product, process, or service they want to commercialise.

How to get approved:

  1. Ensure you have a board in place with a technical and commercial track record
  2. Have matching funding available in cash
  3. Expect up to 6 months of attainment processes

For more information, visit here.

Minimum Viable Product Grant NSW (Up to 25k)

The Minimum Viable Product (MVP) grant provides technology startup businesses with funding to help them conduct market research and test their business model with consumers. Grants of up to $25,000 are available to cover up to 50% of approved project costs.

These grants are especially useful for helping startups to engage with potential business customers and create solutions that address industry needs or market gaps.

The objective of startup grants in Australia is to support auspicious pre-revenue businesses to progress from ‘proof of concept’ to MVP stage of development. These grants are available across all industry sectors to startups who are primarily focused on the development of a scalable technology solution.

Click here to see if your business is eligible.

New Business Assistance with NEIS

New Business Assistance with NEIS (New Enterprise Incentive Scheme) is an initiative of jobactive. It assists eligible job seekers who are interested in starting and running a small business with startup training and mentoring assistance. 

The 13-week course training aids job seekers achieve a nationally recognised qualification for either:

  • Certificate III in Micro-Business Operations.
  • Certificate IV in Small Business Management.

During the training, job seekers will develop a NEIS Business Plan which will need to be approved by their NEIS provider. They will also receive an funded allowance equal to the Newstart Allowance.

To find out more and apply, you can reach out to one of these three support services: jobactive, ParentsNext, Disability Employment Services to discuss if NEIS is right for you. 

CSIRO Kick-start

This program offers eligible Australian businesses access to dollar-matched funding of $10,000 – $50,000 to undertake research activities with CSIRO.

These activities include:

  • Research into a new business idea with commercial potential.
  • Development of a novel or improved product or process.
  • Testing of a novel product developed by the company.

Eligible businesses are able to apply for a second Kick-Start project after completion of their first, providing the total funding received does not exceed $50,000. 

You can find out more about eligibility and application here.

Export Market Development Grant (EMDG)

The Export Market Development Grant is intended to assist enterprises in their market discovery phase in foreign markets. It reimburses startups 50% of their global market marketing operations (up to $150,000 per application) for their products, goods, or services. 

In the fiscal year 2022, the EMDG grant will undergo considerable modifications, the most notable of which is how the monies will be distributed. Instead of being paid out in instalments, the cash will now be distributed in a three-tiered manner.

You can visit this page to find out about eligibility and the application process.  

Industry-Specific Grants

Energy, health, mining, advanced manufacturing, and agriculture are among the five growth areas for which the Australian government gives industry-specific subsidies and assistance. Businesses in the energy sector, for example, can apply for funds from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA). The Grants and Programs Finder or GrantConnect can help you identify grants, financing, and assistance programs for a variety of industries.

Building Partnerships Grant

The Building Partnerships Grant is intended to assist revenue-generating startups and other SMEs in scaling their businesses by establishing new marketing channels or securing a new major customer.

Eligible businesses can recover up to 35% of project expenditures, up to $100,000 in total. Expenses connected with hiring or keeping talent might be included in the project cost, as well as costs incurred through product development, training, or testing.

Take a look at the application process and eligibility criteria here.

Victorian Government Grants

City of Melbourne Small Business Grants offers an exceptional funding option for Victorian startups located in the Melbourne CBD. Businesses can obtain up to $30,000 to either launch, export, expand their market-ready products and services. Small firms in any field can apply for this government subsidy twice a year.

Grants are available twice a year to forward-thinking small enterprises that are currently situated or want to relocate inside the City of Melbourne. Startups and established firms from any sector are encouraged to apply if they have a fantastic idea and a solid business plan that will move forward regardless of grant support.

You can find all the information here.

Ignite Ideas Fund

The Ignite Ideas Fund supports Queensland based small to medium businesses that have high-growth potential to undertake commercialisation projects. Viability and scalability beyond completion of the project must be a key long-term outcome. Two tiers are available, from $100,000 and up to $200,000.

You can find out more about the application process, timeframes and eligibility criteria here.

South Australian Government Grants & Programs

With financing from the South Australian government, the Research, Commercialisation and Startup Fund (RCSF) assists researchers, entrepreneurs, and enterprises in accelerating their progress.

Businesses in South Australia looking to grow into international markets can take advantage of the SA Export Accelerator.

Another great program the SA government offers is the Future Industries Accelerator, which can assist companies in exploring product development concepts and technical obstacles.

Appello Software is Australia’s leading app and web development company. Our services all classify as R&D, so reach out for an initial consultation of your situation.

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