Government offers startups $6.5 million in grants to build regtech solutions


Energy Minister Angus Taylor. Image: AAP/Mick Tsikas.

Startups pitching innovative regtech solutions to the government that help streamline the use of trades licences can receive grants of up to $675,000. 

The federal government’s $6.5 million ‘digital disrupters’ grant offers startups and SMEs funding to build regtech solutions that make it easier for licensed tradespeople to work across different states.

Announcing the grant program on Tuesday, Minister for Industry, Energy and Emissions Reduction Angus Taylor said the funding would be delivered under the Business Research and Innovation Initiative (BRII).

“We are looking for digital disruptors to come up with regtech solutions to improve information sharing for occupational registrations and licences,” Taylor said.

Businesses that pitch a successful idea can receive grants from $50,000 to $70,000 to fund their initial feasibility study.

If a startup’s feasibility study is successful, they will be eligible for grants of up to $675,000 to develop their prototype.

To be eligible to apply for a grant, businesses must have an annual turnover of less than $20 million for each of the three years before lodging an application.

The initiative follows the federal government’s reforms to mutual recognition of occupational licences, which it announced as part of the May 2020 budget. 

Under the Morrison government’s $120 million deregulation package, the government allocated $11 million to simplify licencing requirements for tradespeople who work across different states.

Taylor said reforms to occupational licences will make it easier for up to 125,000 licensed workers to work across different jurisdictions.

“But we need to streamline how states and territories share information on licence registrations and conditions,” he said.

To apply for a grant, businesses must lodge an online application that will be assessed based on how well their proposed solution solves the challenge at hand.

Applications are currently open and will close on November 30, 2021.


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