Business Development Fund investment criteria and roles
The co-investor and business must meet certain investment criteria and commit to certain undertakings.
The Fund will focus investments towards businesses commercialising research, or an innovative idea, product or service. It is expected these businesses will create opportunities for new, high value and skilled employment in Queensland.
Key eligibility criteria for business and co-investors
An application must meet the following criteria to be eligible for Fund investment:
- The business must have the majority of assets and employees located in Queensland.
- A private sector co-investor’s investment in a business must at least match the investment sought from the Fund.
- The business must not be principally engaged in property development, land ownership, finance, or construction as their predominant activity, or have an intention to be engaged as such.
- The business must not be an investment fund.
The business requiring investment must:
- be commercialising research, an innovative idea or an innovative product or service
- require seed, early stage or follow-on investment
- create opportunities for new, high value and skilled employment
- have a realistic prospect of becoming commercially successful
- be or become a proprietary or public company prior to any investment
- be an Australian registered company, or an Australian registered subsidiary of a foreign registered company, prior to any investment.
A co-investor can be:
- an individual investor
- an angel investor
- an investment business including a venture capital fund
- a syndicate of investors.
A co-investor cannot be:
- the founder of the business
- an employee, contractor, or consultant to the business
- a government department, including a department from another state or the Australian Government
- the business in which the fund is investing.
Government grants will not be considered as part of a co-investment, but part of the business’s existing cash flow.
A co-investor must demonstrate the following attributes:
- demonstrated commitment to, and track record in making investments in seed and early stage businesses
- experience in providing support, management and mentorship to seed and early stage businesses
- strong and established reputation
- ability to manage Fund reporting.
As the Fund aims to expand venture capital activity in Queensland, it seeks to encourage new co-investors to enter the market. Therefore, if a co-investor does not possess all of the above attributes, it would need to demonstrate a capacity to fulfil the role of a co-investor in investing, mentoring and supporting the growth of the business.
It is the private sector co-investor who makes the application for Fund investment. It is expected that the co-investor will have undertaken appropriate levels of due diligence on the business prior to lodging the application.
The co-investor will need to take an active role in mentoring and supporting the development of the business. They are expected to provide access to markets and networks—this may include providing advice and support in establishing or further developing management systems, financial controls and reporting.
The co-investor will also be required to monitor and report on the performance of the business and the Fund’s investment on a quarterly basis. Reporting will be on standardised forms and will focus on key performance indicators.
Business Development Fund
The Fund will be a passive investor—that is, under normal circumstances the Fund will not appoint a director to the company’s board.
The investment panel consists of experienced independent investors who have a strong background in entrepreneurship, and early stage investment, particularly in innovative start-ups or growing technology businesses.
Panel members in a private role may invest alongside the Fund on the same terms as the Fund, but panel members’ investments do not have to include a buy-out option.