Business Growth Fund Program

The Business Growth Fund (BGF) targets high-growth businesses who can accelerate growth, drive Queensland's economy and employ more Queenslanders.

Program key details – round 4
Eligible business size Small to medium-sized businesses
StatusThis grant round is now closed
Opening dateRound 4 is closed
Closing date Stage 1: 5pm, Thursday 30 June 2022

Stage 2: 5pm, Wednesday 21 September 2022
Application process
  • Stage 1: Expression of interest
  • Stage 2: Full application
  • Stage 3: Pitch
Key documents Round 4 documents:

Grant rounds

Each round of the Business Growth Fund grants program has specific information to help you prepare and apply for the grant, and if successful, manage your grant.

The Business Growth Fund (BGF) targets high-growth businesses who can accelerate growth, drive Queensland's economy and employ more Queenslanders. It provides funding for small and medium-sized high-growth businesses to buy specialised equipment, enabling them to unlock growth potential, increase production, expand their workforce, and maximise economic returns to move them to the next stage of growth.

Funded businesses are expected to:

  • increase confidence for growth, transitioning from small to medium-sized
  • increase productivity, turnover, profit and employment by 20%
  • improve confidence to automate, scale up, increase market share, diversify and/or exploit exporting opportunities.

The program is administered by the Department of Employment, Small Business and Training (DESBT).

Available funding

You may be eligible for a single up-front payment of up to $50,000 (excluding GST), and not less than $25,000 (excluding GST).

Successful applicants must co-contribute at least 25% of project costs.

We will not fund projects with:

  • a total cost of less than $33,333 (excluding GST)
  • or
  • payments made before the approval date (you must be approved before you pay for grant-funded project activities).

The table below show the breakdown of total project costs and the co-contribution amounts.

Minimum

Maximum

Total project costs (excluding GST)

$33,333

$75,000*

Your contribution (at least 25% of total project costs)

$8,333

$25,000*

Grant funding

$25,000

$50,000

*Your project can cost more than $75,000 but the maximum amount DESBT will contribute is $50,000.

Eligible and ineligible activities

The grant funding must be used to purchase specialised equipment to meet business growth. The equipment must have a direct link to increasing employment and maximising economic returns.

Specialised equipment is considered an independent or additional piece of complex machinery that will have a direct impact on the operations of the business to increase, automate or enhance productivity and presents a significant investment to the business. The impact of the equipment unique to the growth of the business and local economy will be taken into consideration.

Examples of eligible highly specialised equipment include (but are not limited to):

  • production equipment to meet otherwise unachievable growth demand
  • advanced manufacturing or digital equipment and systems
  • advanced logistics systems and equipment.

We will not fund:

  • activities bought using crypto-currencies, barter, or service in-kind
  • GST registration and fees
  • real estate/property, hire, lease, or rental fees
  • goods, services, or fees from related parties (includes companies with common shareholdings or directors, employees or immediate family)
  • travel
  • franchise fees
  • purchase of stock
  • general business operating costs (e.g. bookkeeping/accounting, tax returns, marketing/advertising activities)
  • services or standard digital technology not considered specialist to the extent required (as determined by assessment panel)
  • delivery fees, credit card surcharges and international transaction fees
  • memberships and joining fees
  • salaries
  • fleet vehicles.

Eligibility criteria

Check your eligibility to find out if your business can apply for the program.

You must be an established small to medium-sized Queensland business who is financially sound and have the potential for high-growth within the next 2 years.

High-growth is defined as a 20% increase in productivity, turnover, profit and/or employment in the last 12 months.

To be eligible for this grant, your business must:

  • have a trading history of a minimum 3 years at the time of applying for the grant
  • have a minimum turnover of $500,000 for the last financial year
  • have fewer than 50 employees at the time of applying for the grant
  • have an active Australian Business Number (ABN) and be registered for GST
  • not have been approved for funding under an earlier round of the Business Growth Fund
  • have Queensland headquarters
  • have competitive opportunities in domestic or international markets
  • be experiencing growth and have clearly defined high-growth and employment opportunities in Queensland
  • not be insolvent or have owners/directors that are an undischarged bankrupt.

Your business must also maintain this eligibility for the duration of the grant funded activity.

Application process

This grant is now closed.

Shortlisted Stage 2: Full applications will be invited to Stage 3: Pitch

This grant program is competitively assessed. Not all applications will be funded.

Detailed application process

In your Expression of interest (EOI) application, you will be asked to:

  • confirm the business meets the eligibility criteria of the grant program
  • provide a description of your business and a copy of your business's current business plan
  • provide a letter from a Certified Practising Accountant (CPA) or Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand (CA ANZ), or Institute of Public Accountants (IPA) declaring projected business figures, turnover and employee count for the 2021–22 financial year
  • provide a description of the proposed specialised equipment and clearly outline how the purchase and implementation of the equipment will assist the business to reach its high-growth and employment plans (Note: Supplier quotes are not required at this stage)
  • confirm the business's financial contribution
  • declare the project is not part of the everyday operations of the business.

EOIs are assessed competitively. You will be notified if you have been shortlisted to progress to Stage 2: Full application. If you have not been shortlisted, you will be provided with information on other available support.

If your Stage 1 EOI application is shortlisted, you will be invited to submit a full application.

In addition to the information provided in your EOI, the full application asks you to include the following documents:

  • certified business figures, including declaration of turnover and employee count (for the 2021–22 financial year)
  • a simple balance sheet – including the current asset, debt and equity structure of the business. Clearly and separately identify the value of the intellectual property held by the business, who holds the debt, and on what terms
  • a simple profit and loss statement for the previous financial year and current financial year-to-date
  • a quote(s) or proposals that provide comprehensive details of the specialised equipment that you will be purchasing as part of the project.

Full applications are competitively assessed. You will be notified if you have been shortlisted to progress to Stage 3: Pitch. If you have not been shortlisted, you will be provided with information on other available support.

If your full application is shortlisted, you will be invited to pitch to business experts and DESBT executives.

The pitch panel is a critical stage in the application process, providing an opportunity to draw out the merits of the project proposed to be part funded by the grant.

Shortlisted applicants will be required to present a succinct and compelling pitch of 5 to 10 minutes.

To assist you prepare for this stage, DESBT provides an optional practice pitch session to specifically provide feedback on the delivery, content and style of the pitch.

A competitive assessment process is conducted at each stage of the grant's application process.

We will advise all applicants of the outcome of their application following each stage of the application process. Successful Stage 3 applicants will receive an approval letter outlining the funding agreement.

Grant recipients enter into a funding agreement with us and receive a single upfront grant payment of up to $50,000 (excluding GST) and not less than $25,000 (excluding GST).

Recipients must complete their grant-funded activity within 12 months of receiving their approval letter.

You must keep all application evidence, supplier quotes, corresponding invoices and bank transactions for audit purposes.

Recipients must complete a final acquittal report on completion of their project.

The report is to include details on the assets/services received, project implementation, and the impact on the business including the results and outcomes received.

Refer to the application guidelines for a comprehensive overview of each stage of the application process.

How to apply

This grant round is now closed.

For more information about the program, read the key documents and information

More information

View the small business grants schedule or use our coronavirus (COVID-19) business assistance finder to learn what other support you may be eligible for.

You can access interpreter and translator services if required.

You can also subscribe to the Small Business Connect newsletter to keep up to date with the latest information for Queensland small businesses.

Contact us

For more information about the program, email grants@desbt.qld.gov.au or contact the Small Business Hotline on 1300 654 687.

Check your eligibility

To be eligible for this grant, your business must meet the eligibility criteria and other conditions of the program.