Business Growth Fund Program

The Business Growth Fund Program is a grant program which provides targeted assistance for small and medium businesses that demonstrate high-growth and employment aspirations.

The fund will enable successful applicants to purchase and implement specialised equipment or services to help them seize growth opportunities.

Available funding

Funding of up to $50,000 (excluding GST) may be provided for eligible businesses to purchase and implement highly specialised equipment or services, and enable them to move to the next stage of growth.

Successful applicants must provide a co-contribution of between 25% and 50% of the total project cost. The government contribution will be determined by an assessment panel.

Examples of eligible highly specialised equipment includes (but not limited to) the following:

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

Previously the Business Growth Fund considered specialised services in proposals. By exception, we will consider proposals where the business will:

  • engage business consultants or advisors to provide advice (e.g. on business structures and governance, systems improvement, export and commercial negotiations)
  • intellectual property (IP) advice
  • engage an advisory board.

If you wish to apply with a proposed component of specialised services, please seek prior approval by phoning 13 QGOV (13 74 68), or emailing grants@desbt.qld.gov.au.

Your proposal must have a direct link to increasing employment or contributing to your business' growth strategy. If your application is successful, a single up-front grant payment will be made directly to the business.

Eligibility criteria

To be eligible for this grant, the business must:

  • have a minimum trading history of 3 years at the time of application
  • 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 Australian Business Number (ABN) and be registered for GST
  • 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 have the potential for high-growth within the next 2 years. High-growth is generally considered to be a 20% increase in turnover or employment.

The applying business must have:

  • a business plan in place
  • the capacity to access finance to fund the growth of their business
  • clearly defined an opportunity and plan for growth
  • demonstrated how the funding will assist the business to achieve these goals.

Only 1 application will be accepted from an individual ABN or a financial beneficiary of a business for consideration at any one time.

Previously successful applicants cannot reapply for funding under this program.

Who should apply

Businesses applying for funding must use the grant to manage and finance their business expansion, including but not limited to:

  • increasing employment
  • improving management processes and systems to increase productivity and efficiency
  • introducing product processes or systems innovations
  • entering new markets
  • increasing turnover/sales.

Applying for the grant

Round 2 is now open.

To apply, complete the following steps:

  1. read the eligibility criteria
  2. read the application guidelines and terms and conditions
  3. complete an online application form using the SmartyGrants link:

Apply now

You will be advised if your application has been successful.

How you will be assessed

Applications will be evaluated by an assessment panel which includes representatives from the Department of Employment, Small Business and Training and independent business experts.

Applications will be assessed periodically until funding is exhausted.

Your application will need to meet both the eligibility criteria and demonstrate merit against the assessment criteria, including:

  • the extent to which the project will support the business to reach its high-growth goals
  • potential and likelihood the activity will create jobs growth
  • value for money.

Assessment process

  • All applications are checked for eligibility
  • Eligible applications are considered by the Stage 1 shortlisting panel
  • All applicants will be notified about their eligibility and Stage 1 shortlisting panel outcome
  • Successful applicants will be invited to pitch to the Stage 2 assessment panel (the next assessment panel is due to meet in September 2019)
  • Applications will remain open after this date but will be assessed by a subsequent panel.

Pitching to the panel

Pitching to the panel is a critical stage in the application process and provides an opportunity to draw out the merits of the proposal, and for panel members to ask relevant questions. If an invitation to pitch is made, applicants are strongly encouraged to provide a strategic overview of their business plan and any other material to support the application.

Where appropriate, teleconferencing or videoconferencing will be used if applicants (or representatives) are unable to attend in person.

Reporting requirements

Throughout the project, successful applicants will be required to complete several online forms to detail their progress, including:

  • progress reports
  • a final acquittal report on completion of the project.

The final acquittal report should detail the assets or services received, project implementation and the impact on the business, including the results and outcomes achieved.

Businesses will be surveyed 6 months after the completion of the project.

More information

For more information about the program and application process, read the application guidelines or phone 13 QGOV (13 74 68).

View the 2019–20 Small business grants schedule to help plan your applications for grant rounds.

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