The federal government has committed $10 million in grant funding for regtech companies creating innovative solutions to a set of key challenges.
Under the latest round of the Business Research and Innovation Initiative (BRII), Australian startups and SMEs can submit proposals for solutions addressing one of four issues.
Successful applicants will be eligible for grants of up to $100,000 to develop their ideas and test feasibility over three months.
If those tests have been successful after the three month timeframe ends, entities will be able to apply for an additional grant of up to $1 million, to develop a prototype or proof of concept over a maximum of 15 months.
There is a total of $2 million in grant funding available for the development and feasibility study phase, and a total of $8 million available for the proof-of-concept stage.
First launched as part of the National Innovation and Science Agenda back in 2016, the BRII sees the government nominate challenges and invite small businesses and startups to pitch solutions for grant funding.
The intention is to stimulate innovation in government agencies, improve Australian business capability, and improve confidence among SMEs when working for the government.
To date, 73 grants have been issued through the scheme, totalling more than $20 million.
This time around, the four challenges focus on regulatory technology. Specifically, the government is looking for proposals for technology that can:
- Identify and assess poor disclosure by listed companies;
- Remotely and automatically monitor the health and wellbeing of export livestock;
- Create a streamlined path to marine autonomous systems assurance; or
- Perform real-time and accurate asbestos testing.
In order to be eligible for the funding,businesses must have had an annual turnover of less than $20 million for the past three financial years.
In a statement, new Minister for Industry, Science and Technology Christian Porter said Australia’s strong regulatory environment is designed to keep workplaces safe and products high quality.
However, the downside to this is the “compliance burden” placed on businesses.
“We’re looking for innovative regulatory technologies to reduce that burden.”
Applications for the grant funding are open now, until June 3, 2021.