Grants and assistance for entrepreneurs and innovative start-up businesses

Published: 
18 September 2015

The Entrepreneurs' Programme

The Entrepreneurs' Programme could be of assistance to you, and offers support to businesses through three elements:

  • Accelerating Commercialisation, helping entrepreneurs, researchers and businesses address key challenges in the commercialisation pathway of bringing new products, processes and service to the market by matching the companies’ investments dollar for dollar and providing experienced Commercialisation Advisers to guide them through the commercialisation process
  • Business Management, provides advice and facilitation services to improve business capabilities and networks
  • Innovation Connections, helping small and medium businesses to access knowledge, engage with researchers and foster innovation.

The Research and Development tax incentive (R&D)

The Research and Development (R&D) tax incentive provides a tax offset for eligible businesses on eligible R&D activities.

The incentive is a generous and easy to access entitlement program that helps businesses offset some of the costs of doing R&D.

The program aims to help more businesses do R&D and innovate. It’s open to companies of all sizes in all sectors who are conducting eligible R&D.

Under the incentive, you assess for yourself whether or not your company is eligible to register activities and claim R&D tax offsets in any given year.

To be eligible, you’ll need to have spent at least $20 000 for the income year and:

  • Be an eligible R&D entity, generally speaking this means you’re a incorporated company 
  • have engaged in eligible activities, this means they must satisfy the definition of core R&D activities. Other activities may be eligible as supporting R&D activities
  • can identify eligible deductions, for example an IT company could claim for goods and materials used during R&D activities such as hardware and development costs and the decline in value of assets used for conducting R&D activities.

If you’re eligible, you’ll be entitled to a refundable tax offset equal to 45% of your R&D deduction for expenses you’ve used on your idea, innovation or invention.

Export Market Development Grants

If you’re planning on exporting, you should check out the Export Market Development Grants (EMDG).

The grants are provided to:

  • encourage small and medium sized Australian businesses to develop export markets
  • reimburse up to 50% of eligible export promotion expenses above $5 000 provided that the total expenses are at least $15 000
  • up to eight (8) grants to each eligible applicant.

Tip: if you’ve registered IP rights, and plan to export, you have a cap of $50 000 per application and you may be eligible to claim for payments made to IP attorneys for IP costs and cost of insurance premiums outside of Australia and New Zealand.

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