3. Accelerating Commercialisation (commenced 1 November 2014)
The third and final element of the Entrepreneurs Infrastructure Programme (EIP), Accelerating Commercialisation (AC), aims to help SMEs and commercialisation offices to commercialise novel products, processes and/or services.
There are two main stages to the AC application process which tie to the two main components of the stream:
Stage 1 – Expression of Interest
Companies that pass this initial review are added to the ‘Accelerating Commercialisation Portfolio’. This database of businesses will be accessible to investors, industry experts, supply chains, ‘strategic corporations’ and Commercialisation Advisors who can provide feedback and guidance.
Stage 2 – Competitive Application for co-funding and further support/exposure
If an application is successful, companies can receive co-funding for eligible projects and expenditure. Up to $1 million over two years for companies and $250,000 for research organisations is available.
Businesses applying for grant funding are assessed against the following criteria:
i) Need for funding
ii) Market opportunity
iii) Value proposition
iv) Execution plan
v) Management capability
vi) National benefits
The ‘Need for Funding’ criteria arguably holds the most weight – businesses must demonstrate that they have exhausted all efforts to fully fund their project yet still have the ability to co-fund their project.
Access to the Expert Network is also provided to those that pass Stage 2. This network can potentially provide business connections, funding opportunities and promotional events.
Eligible projects must be shown to aim to achieve at least one of the following:
– Complete development of a novel product, process or service
– Prove commercial viability of a novel product, process or service
– Make the first sales of a novel product, process or service in Australia or overseas
– Drive the businesses towards commercialisation of its novel product, process or service
In other words you cannot seek funding if:
– You cannot demonstrate the commercial viability of your product, process or service
– You have already made sales and are looking to scale or conduct marketing activities
– You are looking to develop further versions of your product
– You are not looking to ultimately commercialise your product, process or service i.e. your project is for internal business use only
– Your project is still in a fundamental R&D stage with a low likelihood of the finished product being commercialised
i) The business must demonstrate that they are able to equally match the funding being sought through sources besides other government funding schemes
ii) A project can take place over a two year period but no longer
iii) Businesses applying for inclusion in the Portfolio but not for grant funding will only be assessed on points ii.-vi. above
iv) Although the AC stream is open to businesses in all industries, priority will be given for those operating in Advanced Manufacturing; Food and Agribusiness; Medical Technologies and Pharmaceuticals; Mining Equipment, Technology and Services; Oil, Gas and Energy Resources; or Enabling Technologies of these sectors.
To be eligible to access the services offered under the Accelerating Commercialisation stream, businesses must:
– Be a registered business/corporation
Note: applicants can be individuals, partnerships or trustees BUT must agree that at the time of submitting an application that they will form a non-tax exempt corporation before signing a funding agreement if granted
– Be registered for GST
– Not be tax-exempt
– Have not exceeded an annual group turnover of $20 million for each of the three years preceding the application
– Have a novel product, process or service they wish to commercialise and trade to customers external to the state or territory of the Applicant’s place of business
– Have ownership, access to, or the beneficial use of, any IP that is the subject of, or is necessary to carry out the eligible project