As the new fiscal year commences, it’s not just a fresh collection of tax measures that have been initiated, but also a selection of small business grants set to bolster the country’s enterprising minds.
Even though the volume and universality of these grants may not parallel the ones issued during the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic, they still present valuable opportunities for small businesses and startups to accelerate their ventures through governmental backing.
Victoria’s “Made in Victoria – Industry R&D Infrastructure Fund”
The $15 million fund stands ready to offer matched funding ranging from $200,000 to $1 million to qualifying Victorian businesses that are poised to invest in novel research and development infrastructure.
As per the details of the program, the fund aims to support:
- Emerging energy technologies, such as wind, hydrogen, solar, and batteries
- Health technologies, including medtech, biotech, pharma, and consumer healthcare
- Food production and agriculture
- Defence, aerospace, and space sectors
- Digital and avant-garde technologies, incorporating advanced materials, robotics, AI, 3D-printing, and quantum technologies.
The official call for expressions of interest was launched on July 6, slightly deviating from the July 1 initiation! More information about the program can be found here.
Research & Development (R&D) Tax Incentive
While not a grant per se, the Research & Development (R&D) Tax Incentive, an instrumental government scheme designed to spur innovative startups to explore novel technologies, is currently open for applications for expenditures incurred during the fiscal year of 2022-2023.
For organizations with an annual turnover under $20 million, the federal government indicates that the R&D Tax Incentive operates as the “corporate tax rate with an added 18.5% premium.”
This provision potentially results in tax offsets of up to 48.5% for corporations subjected to the top company tax rate.
Screen Australia Grants
Small enterprises in the visual entertainment industry should take note of three grants made available by Screen Australia, effective from July 1 this year.
The Online Development fund is designed to back projects that will be hosted on major online platforms such as YouTube, Facebook, or TikTok. Virtual reality and extended reality ventures will also be under consideration.
A maximum funding of $30,000 is dedicated for early-stage and budding career practitioners.
“Funding can be applied towards development costs as well as costs related to creating proof of concept,” declares Screen Australia.
The Producer Equity Program, also rolled out by Screen Australia as of July 1, offers financial support corresponding to low-budget documentary producers.
It will contribute up to 20% of the approved budget for a project, according to Screen Australia.
Lastly, the Generate Fund and the Premium Fund will unlock funding possibilities for Australian screen creatives.
“The Generate Fund is directed towards lower budget long-form episodic television and feature film projects, emphasizing the support for emerging screen content creators,” the organization informs.
“The Premium Fund is tailored for higher budget long-form projects that demonstrate ambition and scale from proven screen content creators.”