New Grants

The Boosting Female Founders Initiative – Round 3 provides specific programs through grants of up to $480k to female-owned and led start-ups to scale their ventures. This aims to help women entrepreneurs overcome hurdles accessing funding and support to grow.

The grant opportunity will be delivered through a two-stage competitive selection process due to the expected high demand for this program. You will first apply via an Expression of Interest (EOI). If successful, you will be invited to submit a Stage Two grant application.

Deadline and Timings

02 Jun 2022 05:00 PM AEST

The maximum project period is 24 months. This may be extended under exceptional circumstances. You must complete your project by 30 April 2025.

Overview and Grant Amount

Greater levels of entrepreneurship among women and better access to resources by women entrepreneurs can contribute to innovation, job creation, economic growth and social inclusion. The objectives of the program are to:

  • stimulate private sector investments into innovative start-ups led by women
  • help women entrepreneurs overcome barriers to accessing finance and support necessary to scale their start-ups
  • enable female founders to scale-up, expand into domestic and/or global markets, and become self-sufficient
  • boost the economy through increasing the diversity of start-up founders

The program also provides access to expert mentoring and advice to help women entrepreneurs. A select number of eligible applicants will have this opportunity for one-on-one advice from an expert mentor engaged by us, which will be made based on the outcome of the EOI merit-based assessment.

For this round, an estimated $11.6 million is available. The grant amount will be up to 50% of the total eligible project expenditure (grant percentage), and

  • the minimum grant is $100,000
  • the maximum grant is $400,000

Grants for priority groups will be up to 70% of the total eligible project expenditure, and

  • the minimum grant is $100,000
  • the maximum grant is $480,000

You cannot use funding from other Commonwealth government grants to fund the balance of your share of project expenditure not covered by the grant. You may use funding from other State, Territory and local government grants, to fund a maximum of 10% of the balance of your share of project expenditure.

Eligibility and Criteria

Eligibility is determined at the time of application to Stage One of the program. To be eligible, a business must:

  • be a startup that is scalable
  • be a female-founded start-up that is at least 51% owned and led by women
  • Ownership that is at least 75% Australian and is not more than 50% owned by another business
  • have an active Australian Business Number (ABN)
  • have a combined annual turnover of less than $20 million for each of the 3 financial years prior to the lodgement of the application
  • be an entity incorporated in Australia; a partnership; a sole trader; trust or trustees

Eligible Projects

To be considered a start-up that is scalable, at least 2 of the following indicators of innovation and high growth must apply to you:

  • You are applying to register, or have registered intellectual property rights
  • You have registered for, and are undertaking eligible research and development activities for the Research and Development Tax Incentive (RDTI) scheme
  • You are applying for, or have been granted, required regulatory approval for your product, process or service
  • You have attracted third-party investment
  • You have a minimum viable product that has been tested with customers, is ready for market, or for which you have had first sales
  • You have completed or are undertaking an accelerator or incubator program that provides time-limited support for entrepreneurs with a start-up
  • You have a written agreement to co-develop and commercialise an innovation with:
  • An institution or body listed in Schedule 1 to the Higher Education Funding Act 1988, or
  • An entity registered as a Research Service Provider under section 29A of the Industry Research and Development Act 1986.
  • You would meet the early-stage innovation company (ESIC) requirements under the Tax Incentives for Early Stage Investors scheme.
  • You have been incorporated or registered with the Australian Business Register within the last five years.

We cannot waive the eligibility criteria under any circumstances

Eligible Expenditures

To be eligible your project must support your female founded (majority owned and led by women) start-up to scale into domestic and/or global markets. Eligible activities can include, but are not limited to:

  • launching and scaling products and/or services
  • developing and marketing software and apps
  • development and marketing of products and/or services
  • purchase of equipment specific to project to support growth
  • expansion to other markets
  • access to independent management (for example C-suite, advisory board)
  • expanding management teams and/or establishing a board
  • access to relevant professional development

We may also approve other activities.

Additional Eligibility Requirements

Applications will only be accepted if you:

  • provide a signed declaration, on the template provided, that your start-up is female founded (majority owned and led by women)
  • certify that your start-up will remain majority owned and led by women for the duration of the grant (this will be a requirement of the grant agreement)
  • (Stage Two applications only) provide evidence to support your source of funding (e.g., letter from contributor/s confirming funding amount)
  • (Stage Two applications only) provide a pitch deck (a PDF PowerPoint presentation max 10 slides)
  • (Stage Two applications only) provide a link to a video pitch from your CEO/founder (no longer than 5 mins) supporting your response to the assessment criteria
  • include all mandatory attachments

Priority Groups

You must meet at least one of the following criteria to be eligible for additional funding available to priority groups:

  • your head office is located in a regional area
  • your business is Indigenous-owned
  • at least one of your founding team members (owners and leaders) is a person living with a disability
  • at least one of your founding team members (owners and leaders) has migrated to Australia as a refugee or humanitarian entrant

Applicants are encouraged to read through all the criteria that may be found in the Grant Opportunity Guidelines alongside a Sample Application Form and other key documents you might need. When you feel you are ready to submit your EOI, you may lodge your application via the online portal.

Expert Assistance

Treadstone experts can help you understand government grants and maximise the benefits for your business. We have been helping clients since 2008 and our clients can testify to our proven success record. Working with us means you get the maximum grant with minimum risk and effort. Our expertise includes R&D Tax Incentive registration and tax schedules, Export Grants, Capital Expenditure and Infrastructure Grants.

Get in touch with us and let’s discuss this more in detail.

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