The grants to be provided for small to medium-size enterprises in Victoria by assisting them to adopt or develop new digital and innovative technology projects.
This $5 million Technology Adoption and Innovative Program is aimed to assist eligible Victorian small to medium-size enterprises (SMEs). This is to be done to develop new, innovative, and commercial technology by contributing the funding support for projects.

Details of the Program
This program consists of two streams of financial support:
SME technology and Digital Adoption
The provision of grants of up to $50,000 for SMEs in Victoria to adopt new technology or digital solutions to enhance their process and productivity. It also ensures assistance for their future growth.
Innovative, Commercial, technology development
The provision of grants of up to $50,000 for technology companies in Victoria to implement defined projects to develop digital products and commercial technology.

Some important dates for this scheme:
Applications opening date
31 March 2021
Applications closing date
19 April 2021
Program reporting
4 months, 8 months, 12 months
Program ending
30 June 2022
Under both of the streams, every successful SME will be required to contribute at least $20,000 for eligible project expenditure.

Who can apply for the grant?
This program is open to SMEs that are on a growth trajectory. Such eligible SMEs could be a company, a trust structure, or a partnership.
The following bodies are not eligible to apply:

  • Community-based organizations
  • Not-for-profit organizations
  • Industry associated or business chambers
  • Publicly funded research institutions
  • Commonwealth, state, and local government bodies or agencies

What is the eligibility criterion?
To be eligible, SMEs should meet the following criteria for assistance under this program:

  • Must be an eligible entity
  • Must be operating a business located within Victoria
  • Holding an ABN (Australian Business Number) and must have held such ABN on September 1, 2020
  • Must be registered for Goods and Services (GST) on September 1, 2020
  • Must employ at least 5 FTE (full-time equivalent staff) at September 1,2020
  • Must attest that they
  • Can contribute at least $20,000 towards eligible project expenditure and match the grant funding on a 1:1 fund basis
  • Met the industrial relations obligations as an employer in accordance with the National Employment Standards
  • Participate in a future program evaluation activity
  • Must demonstrate that the main business model applies to the provision of technology products or services if they apply for Stream 2 funding
  • Must only apply for funding either in Stream 1 or Stream 2, not both

The funds from other State or Commonwealth Government Programs cannot be part of co-contribution.

What these grants can be used for?
The objectives of this program are to:

  • Enable Victorian SMEs to invest in their business for the implementation of new digital and innovative technologies. This will enhance the productivity of the business. This also includes adopting new technologies and solutions like artificial intelligence, cybersecurity, data analytics, e-commerce, the Internet of Things, or robotics in business practices and operations. This way they will contribute to the economic recovery of Victoria.
  • Providing assistance to Victorian SMEs that are involved in technology development to develop innovative and commercial technology.

The applicants must meet the cost of additional and ineligible expenditure that are outside the scope of the Grant Project.
The Victorian companies who are applying must be investing in their business operations to help meet the above program objectives. Expenditure must not include the activities or projects that are already supported by government funding.
NOTE: Funds from other State or Commonwealth Government Programs cannot form part of the co-contribution.

Documents or evidence required
The applicants should provide the following:

  • A current project plan
  • A project budget
  • Any relevant quotes of services for a preferred service provider

The applicants should provide evidences that satisfy the department that the Applicant has availability of enough funds for the required co-contribution amount for the project. It can include the evidence of:

  • Written confirmation from the Board or business owner
  • an approved loan facility
  • sufficient cash in a bank
  • management accounts that shows the satisfactory cash flow or liquid assets.

Applicants will be required to submit a project plan as part of their application, which includes at a minimum:

  • the description about the project
  • preferred service provider
  • overview of the timeline of implementation
  • proof of sufficient internal resources for the allocation of the project
  • budget summary that details how grant funds and the Applicant’s contribution will be spent on eligible project expenditure.
  • quotations and, if relevant, Scopes of Services for any proposed third-party service providers and/or suppliers.

The projects are to initiate within one month of the execution of the grant agreement by the department and is expected to get completed with a year.

Assessment of your application
The eligible applications within both streams of funding will get assessed on how they meet the assessment criteria. The supplementary attachments and the data provided as a part of the application will be taken into consideration at the time of the assessment process.
The companies seeking support for technology development will have up to 12 months to deliver the project. The application will be assessed by the panel and the panel will:

  • review and score the applications individually against the assessment criteria
  • Rank all the projects against each other
  • Analyse the number of applications that will be recommended as per the funding being available
  • Recommendation of the applications for approval

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