Finance

The best state government grants for your small business

Kirsten Robb /

Yesterday we gave you a roundup of the best federal government grants for your small business – but there are also some great funding opportunities available a little closer to home.

There is funding designed for SMEs throughout Australia’s states and territories and it is well worth your while to find these grants out and apply for a helping hand.

SmartCompany does half the job for you as we take a look at the best state government grants currently open for application.

NSW

Innovate NSW

How much? Up to $15,000

How does it work? This grant, which was introduced last year, gives successful applicants 50% matched funding towards project costs to create an innovative business-to-business (B2B) solution.

Applicants must address a ‘compelling’ B2B need and demonstrate an idea, prove a concept, develop a prototype or customise a solution.

Designed specifically for SMEs, the funding is intended for businesses in the following industries: e-health, advanced manufacturing, energy technologies and services, online & interactive education, and transport, logistics & infrastructure.

Applications are currently open and more info can be found here.

Tech Vouchers

How much? Up to $15,000

How does it work? Like Innovate NSW, Tech Voucher grants are designed to assist SMEs solving a problem. The difference with the tech vouchers is rather than collaborating with another business, SMEs collaborate with a NSW research organisation to overcome a technical challenge or test a new technology.

SMEs can connect with an expert in their field and engage on a joint research project, or access high tech instruments and facilities for testing and feasibility studies.

Applications are currently open and more info can be found here.

Shopfront Improvement Grants

How much? Up to $6000

How does it work? These grants are for businesses within the City of Sydney that are in need of a little spruce up. They are designed to help owners or tenants of properties make improvements to the visual appeal of their shopfronts.

Funding is available for such projects as the removal of roller shutters, replacement of an approved security device or alarm system, laminating or double glazing, security lighting, anti-graffiti treatments and shopfront painting.

Property must be located on Oxford Street between College Street and South Dowling Street. 

Applications are currently open and more info can be found here.

VIC

Employment Start Up for Business

How much? Up to $4000

How does it work? Designed to encourage SMEs to employ young people (aged 15-25), eligible employers are able to apply for a grant of up to $4000 for each young worker employed on a full- time basis (at least 30 hours a week).

SMEs are eligible to apply for the grant as long as they can provide proof of their new staff member’s employment and training conditions. Each employer can apply for up to five grants within a 12 month period for five different employees.

However, employers must be willing to organise and pay for appropriate accredited training for the new young employee to the value of at least $800 (20% of the total funding).

Applications are currently open and more info can be found here.

Business Development Plan

How much? Up to $7500

How does it work? A grant for businesses that provide a service, the objective of this funding is to help businesses undertake a comprehensive strategic plan for future growth.

To be eligible businesses need to prove selection criteria including that they are financially viable, have a commitment to innovation or potential for export/import, have management strengths and be committed to strategic planning and growth.

Applications are currently open and more infocan be found here.

Trade Mission Assistance Program

How much? Up to $3000

How does it work? These grants are designed to help SMEs attend trade shows, events, conferences and industry meetings in key overseas markets, so you need to be able to prove your business is exportable to those markets to get the funding.

These markets include India, China, south-east Asia and the Middle East, with niche opportunities also in the Republic of Korea, the Americas and Japan.

Applicants are allowed to apply multiple times in a year but can only receive a maximum of $12,000.

Applications are currently open and more infocan be found here.

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Kirsten Robb

Kirsten Robb is a former journalist at SmartCompany. Previously, she worked at News Corp as a property reporter for Leader Newspapers and the Herald Sun, and holds a Masters of Journalism at Melbourne University.

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