Business Growth Fund

Overview

The Business Growth Fund (BGF) is a Queensland Government Grant for small to medium-sized businesses to meet their potential for accelerated growth by accessing specialised equipment. 

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. 

Funding Amount

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).

 

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

You must be an established small to medium-sized Queensland business that is financially sound and has 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 of 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 undischarged bankrupt.

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

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 (including companies with common shareholdings or directors, employees, or immediate family)
  • Travel
  • Franchise fees
  • Purchase of stock
  • General business operating costs (e.g., booking/accounting, tax returns, marketing/advertising activities)
  • Services or standard digital technology is not considered specialists to the extent required (as determined by the assessment panel)
  • Delivery fees, credit card surcharges, and international transaction fees
  • Membership and joining fees
  • Salaries
  • Fleet vehicles

The application process includes 3 stages:

  • Stage 1: Expression of interest
  • Stage 2: Full application
  • Stage 3: Pitch

Stage 1 opens for expressions of interest (EOI) at 9am, 31 May 2022. Stage 1 EOIs may close while you are mid-application. Before you submit, your application must be complete and every question validated.

Stage 1 will close for EOI applications at 5pm, 30 June 2022 or when we receive sufficient applications for a competitive assessment. Not all applications will be funded.

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 Practicing Accountant (CPA) or Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand (CA ANZ) 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 the 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 specialized 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 to prepare for this stage, DESBT provides an optional practice pitch session to specifically provide feedback on the delivery, content, and style of the pitch.

Funding agreement and payment

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 complete activities

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.

 

Acquittal

Recipients must complete a final acquittal report on the 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.