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Grants support the innovative ideas of small and medium businesses

14 March 2017

I’m delighted that 20 small and medium businesses will share in more than $1.8 million in initial funding to develop innovative solutions to solve public sector challenges under the Business Research and Innovation Initiative (BRII).

The fact that we received 180 applications for feasibility study grants for the first round of the BRII demonstrates the innovative ecosystem of Australia’s SMEs is well placed  to develop bright ideas to drive the country’s economy and create jobs and growth in Australia.

The BRII provides opportunities for SMEs to develop innovative products and services with genuine commercial potential. The initiative allows government agencies to work with SMEs to develop innovative solutions and then have the option to purchase those solutions. This gives the SMEs a commercial income and the ability to grow with a global mindset.

The BRII is a National Innovation and Science Agenda initiative and shows government as an exemplar for opening up purchasing opportunities with SMEs.

This round of BRII is aimed at encouraging SMEs to create new products and services that meet five challenges identified by the government –biosecurity, child protection, water markets, information product tracking and policy design.

SMEs with the most promising ideas and products arising from these 20 initial grants may be eligible for a further grant of up to $1 million each. This would be to develop a prototype or proof of concept of their solution with government having the option of being the first customer.

BRII is based on overseas programs which have resulted in global success stories like security firm Symantec and telecommunications equipment and semiconductor maker Qualcomm.

A list of grant recipients can be found at: http://www.business.gov.au/assistance/business-research-and-innovation-initiative/grant-recipients

Media contacts: Minister's office 02 6277 7070