What is the Market Validation Program?
The Market Validation Program is a pilot program that aims to promote innovation in business and government by supporting R&D for demonstration projects. Victorian public sector entities will identify needs requiring new technology solutions, and engage SMEs to explore the feasibility of technology solutions and conduct the R&D to proof-of-concept. The proposed ‘solution’ must be a new technology solution – for example, biotechnology, ICT, sensor, RFID, nanotechnology – to meet the specified requirements of the Victorian public sector entity.
Who is eligible for the Market Validation Program?
Eligible SMEs will:
- Be a non tax-exempt company incorporated in Australia under the Corporations Act 2001
- Have a combined turnover of less than $50m
- Have fewer than 200 employees
- Have access to any necessary IP
- Be willing to undertake not less than 80% of the R&D work in Victoria
- Have the Principal Investigator reside in Victoria for the duration of the project
How will the Market Validation Program work for SMEs?
The technical specifications developed by the public sector entities will be released to the SME market through a Call for Proposals. Proposals submitted by SMEs will then be assessed against the following criteria:
- Significant new technology
- Potential for commercialisation
Successful SMEs will then undertake a Feasibility Study and report on the outcomes of the study. The Feasibility Study report will then be assessed to progress to the Proof of Concept stage.
What benefits will the Market Validation Program deliver to SMEs?
The Market Validation Program is designed to substantially boost the ability of SMEs to interact with customers in a demanding client setting, to commercially develop and prove their products and provide a sustainable commercial base from which to secure expansion capital, export revenue and future customers.
Benefits to SMEs from the Market Validation Program will include:
- Access to a grant (not a loan) over four years
- Opportunity to develop innovative R&D capability
- Improved understanding of what’s required in developing solutions that respond specifically to identified needs
- Retention of IP
- Recognition, verification and visibility in the marketplace
- A leveraging tool to attract further investment capital or research funds
- An export platform
Call for Proposal
Technical Requirement Specifications (TRS) will be released to the SME market on 2 March 2009 and proposals will close 24 April 2009.
A Feasibility Study will be undertaken by successful SMEs – $100,000 over three months.This will be a preliminary study to determine and document the project’s viability. It will include a clear statement of how the response will meet the requirements detailed in the TRS as well as an explanation of the planned R&D process.The results of this study will be used to determine whether the project should proceed to funding for R&D to Proof of Concept.
Proof of Concept
SMEs submitting a successful Feasibility Study will be evaluated for funding to undertake the R&D to Proof of Concept.This stage will provide $1 to $1.5m funding over two years to develop the solution to a Proof of Concept stage.
Treadstone can assist with the preparation of the application (TRS) and the feasibility study. Contact us for more details.