Launching a Startup mobile App in Australia? Guest Blogger Gary Twomey Outlines the Key Government Funding Programs for Start -ups

Gary & the team at IMC have sponsored the last two Startup Weekend Events and are a fantastic support to our many startups in BizSpark. Gary has kindly put together the below advice on the Funding support available to Startups in Australia.

Innovation Management Consultants Pty Ltd (IMC) is a professional services firm with extensive experience in providing high quality management consulting services. They assist their clients to grow by accessing government assistance programs to help them plan, research, develop and commercialise their technology. A summary of the key government assistance programs that they assist clients to access are listed below. Further information is available upon request.






Skills and Knowledge &

Experienced Executives

Commercialisation Australia

Grants up to access specialist advice and services. Also can engage an experienced CEO or other executives

Ø Up to $50,000 for the specialist advice and services.

Ø Up to $200,000 for experienced CEO or other executives

Proof of Concept Grants

Commercialisation Australia

Grants are to assist with testing the technical and/or commercial viability of the business model or idea for a product, process or service

Ø The program provides grants of up $250,000 for each project

Early Stage Commercialisation Grants

Commercialisation Australia

Grants to undertake activities focusing on enabling a new product, process or service to be developed to the stage where it can be taken to market

Ø The program provides grants of between $250,000 and $2 million for each project


R&D Tax Incentive

Commonwealth Government

1. AusIndustry &

2. Australian Taxation Office

R&D activities must meet certain criteria to be eligible and are categorised as either Core R&D activities or Supporting R&D activities.

Ø Core R&D Activities are experimental activities: whose outcome cannot be known or determined in advance on but can only be determined by applying a systematic progression of work

Ø Supporting R&D activities: An activity is eligible as a supporting R&D activity where it is directly related to a core R&D activity or for certain activities, it has been undertaken for the dominant purpose of supporting core R&D activities.

To be eligible the R&D expenditure must be greater than $20K.

After this threshold the R&D Tax Incentivehas two core components:

Ø Entities with an aggregate annual turnover of less than $20M- are eligible for a 45% refundable tax offset (equivalent to a 150% deduction), provided they are not controlled by income tax exempt entities.

Example :

o A company which is in profit will receive a reduction in tax of $150,000 for every $1M of eligible R&D;

o A company which is in tax loss will receive a cash payment of $450,000 for every $1M of eligible R&D.

Ø Entities with an aggregate annual turnover of greater than $20M- are eligible for a non-refundable 40% tax offset (equivalent to 133% deduction). Unused non-refundable offset amounts may be able to be carried forward to future income years.

Example :

  • A company which is in profit will receive a reduction in tax of $100,000 for every $1M of eligible R&D.


Export Market Development Grant (EMDG)

Commonwealth Government

To assist firms to undertake market development and promotion of products and services in overseas markets excluding NZ.

Ø Grant up to 50% of the expenses incurred up to a maximum of $150K p.a.

Ø reimburses promotion expenses above $10,000 provided that the total expenses are at least $20,000.

Ø Eligible applicants must have commenced export activities during the year with turnover less than $50M p.a.

Ø Can access this for 7 years.