Ignite Ideas Fund Round 7 Guidelines

About the Fund

The Queensland Government’s Advance Queensland initiative focuses on economic recovery, growing the economy and creating jobs. This includes supporting the growth of Queensland businesses to deliver new products and services into domestic and global markets, and establish new industries that will provide the jobs of the future.

The Ignite Ideas Fund supports Queensland based small to medium businesses that have high-growth potential to undertake commercialisation projects that will:

  • strengthen key industries in Queensland
  • diversify the Queensland economy
  • compete in domestic and global markets
  • engage and/or benefit regional Queensland
  • create new jobs, now and in to the future.

The impact of COVID-19 on the Queensland economy has been significant so the government is focusing on supporting those businesses that can assist in Queensland’s economic recovery now and in to the future.  Market viability, job creation and scalability beyond completion of the project will be key considerations this funding round.

Funding

Funding is available under two Tiers:

Tier 1

Up to $100,000 (excluding GST) for projects of up to 12 months duration.

Tier 2

Greater than $100,000 and up to $200,000 (excluding GST) for projects of up to 24 months duration.

Eligibility Criteria

To be eligible to apply for Ignite Ideas funding the applicant organisation must:

  • be a business or start-up organisation headquartered in Queensland as at the application closing date
  • be registered for GST as at the application closing date
  • have no more than 50 full-time-equivalent employees
  • not be a subsidiary of a group of companies that has more than 50 full-time-equivalent employees in total
  • not have received funding for the proposed project activity from either the State, Federal or Local Government

If applying for Tier 1, the applicant organisation and/or related parties must:

  • not have received Ignite Ideas funding previously
  • make a cash contribution to the project that is at least equal to 20% of the value of grant funding sought.

If applying for Tier 2, the applicant organisation and/or related parties must:

  • not have received an Ignite Ideas Fund Tier 2 grant previously
  • have successfully completed any project funded under Tier 1 of the Ignite Ideas Fund (if relevant)
  • make a cash contribution to the project that is at least equal to the amount of grant funding sought
  • have been registered with the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) prior to 1 July 2018

Organisations and their related parties are limited to one application per funding round.

Using the Ignite Ideas Funding

Ignite Ideas Fund projects should focus on activities that commercialise a new and innovative product or service and fall within the following eligible cost categories:

  • salaries of project staff (including
    salary-related on-costs)
  • services provided by (unrelated) external parties
  • consumables and equipment
  • travel, accommodation and subsistence costs.

It is expected that all Ignite Ideas funding will be expended in Queensland, unless it can be demonstrated that expenditure outside Queensland is essential to ensure successful delivery of the project. Project costs must be deemed appropriate for the project and reasonable in nature by the Department. 

Costs not eligible for Ignite Ideas funding include:

  • FDA/TGA or other regulatory approval costs
  • capital works and/or physical infrastructure including any buildings, telecommunications and IT networks
  • capital expenditure exceeding 20% of the total grant
  • employee allowances, bonuses and fringe benefits
  • air travel other than economy class
  • conference fees
  • entertainment costs
  • ongoing compliance fees and licences
  • inventory and warehousing costs
  • costs associated with securing (grant writers) and/or managing the grant funding.

Ignite Ideas Fund projects should not include the following activities:

  • business as usual or general operational activities and associated expenses
  • development or technical testing of a prototype
  • clinical trials
  • distribution other than to send samples for market/ customer acceptance testing
  • distribution, purchase or import of existing products or technologies without significant adaptation.

Application contribution

Tier 2 applicants must provide at the time of full application evidence of their ability to meet the required matching funding contribution in the form of a declaration from a suitably qualified independent party who;

  • is a member of:
    • the Institute of Chartered Accountants, or
    • CPA Australia, or
    • the Institute of Public Accountants with a Professional Practice Certificate.

The cash contribution of the applicant organisation can cover any direct project costs.

Assessment Criteria

Read the Ignite Ideas Fund Frequently Asked Questions for guidance on addressing the assessment criteria.

1. Innovation

The application should demonstrate that:

  • the product or service is clearly innovative, unique and new
  • you have a sound understanding of potential competitors and what differentiates your product or service
  • the applicant organisation:
    • owns, or has been assigned irrevocable, perpetual rights to any intellectual property necessary to commercialise the product or service.
    • have appropriate measures in place to protect any intellectual property relating to the product or service.

2. Market potential

The application should demonstrate a significant understanding of potential markets and justify that:

  • significant market demand by identifiable customers/users exists for the product or service
  • the market demand for the product or service is scalable.

The letters of support from customers/potential customers will also be considered under this assessment criterion.

3. Technology/market readiness

The application should demonstrate that:

  • at the time of application the product or service is at, or beyond, minimum viable product stage (ie beyond initial proof of concept/ prototype and has been tested with potential users of the product or service).
  • by project completion the product or service will:
    • be ready to enter the market (Tier 1); or
    • have entered the market, or be in a new market (Tier 1/Tier2).

4. Project viability

The application should demonstrate:

  • that the project is well planned and achievable with key activities, outcomes, expenditure and timeframes identified
  • how, and to what extent, the project will increase sales revenue and/or profitability
  • that key project risks have been identified and risk mitigation strategies are in place.

The Milestone Activities and Outcomes will be considered under this assessment criterion.

The letter(s) confirming Tier 2 applicant’s ability to make the required matching cash contribution will also be considered under this assessment criterion.

5. Organisational capability

The application should demonstrate that:

  • the applicant organisation has/has access to:
  • technical and management skills and experience relevant to the project
  • the infrastructure and funding capacity required to successfully deliver the project

The resumes of key project staff will be considered under this assessment criterion.

6. Benefits to Queensland

The application should demonstrate how:

  • the project will provide benefit to Queensland industries and/or the broader community (outside of the benefit to the applicant organisation)
  • the project will create jobs, both during the project execution and in the longer-term, for both the applicant organisation and the associated supply chain
  • the project has the potential to positively contribute to/create a new Queensland industry
  • where possible, the project will benefit Queensland regions (outside of Brisbane).

Submitting an Application

The Ignite Ideas Fund has a two-stage application process.

Stage 1 – Expression of Interest round                                                    

Expressions of Interest should be submitted online via the Advance Queensland website.

The closing time and date for submitting applications can be found on the website.

Stage 2 – Full Application round

Following assessment of the Expression of Interest applications, a number of applicants will be invited to submit a Full Application.

Expressions of Interest not progressing to the Full Application stage will not be considered further for funding.

Application Assessment

All applications will be assessed against the eligibility requirements.  Only eligible submissions will be considered for funding support.

All eligible applications will be assessed against the assessment criteria in a competitive, merit based approach by a panel of independent assessors with relevant expertise.

Applicant organisations may be contacted at any stage of the assessment process to clarify any information provided in the application and/or to request further information to enable a due diligence and probity assessment.

There is no implicit guarantee of approval at any stage in the process, and applicants will be notified via email of the assessment outcomes.

The Queensland Government may give consideration to ensuring successful applications are equitably distributed across the state and to recognise Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander businesses.

The Queensland Government may, at its discretion, not accept an application or award funding in the case that a project involves (but not limited to) activities involving liquor, gambling, tobacco, adult services and illicit substances.

There is no appeals process for unsuccessful applicants.

Conditions of Funding

Successful applicants will be required to enter into a legally binding Financial Incentive Agreement (FIA) with the Queensland Government. You should ensure you have read and accept the terms and conditions of the FIA, prior to submitting an application, as they will not be negotiable at the time a funding offer is made.

Successful applicants will be required to execute a FIA within 15 business days of receiving it.

Successful applicants must commence projects within 90 days of execution of the FIA and eligible expenditure can only be incurred from the FIA execution date.

Payment of grants will be made in instalments based on project milestones. The first payment will be made upon execution of the FIA; subsequent payments will be made upon successful completion of project milestones activities and outcomes; and, the final milestone payment will be in arrears following successful completion of the project.

Grant payments will be made upon the provision of documentary evidence that all project requirements have been satisfied, including evidence that the relevant activities have been completed; adequate project expenditure has been incurred and matching cash has been contributed by all committed parties.

Funding recipients will be expected to actively promote their projects, and to provide information and attend media/promotion events if requested.

The Queensland Government funding should be acknowledged by recipients in all relevant published material, media releases and public statements.

Privacy

The Queensland Government collects and collates information from the application form to assess applications for the program. Only authorised departmental officers and approved grant assessors have access to this information.

Applicants should note that broad details of successful proposals, agreed outcomes, progress and the level of funding awarded may be published by the Queensland Government. Some information may be used to promote funded projects.

Your personal information will not be disclosed to any other third party without your consent, unless required by law or for the purposes of Information Privacy Act 2009.

For audit purposes, the Queensland Government is required to retain the applications and other supplied supporting material.

The provisions of the Right to Information Act 2009 apply to documents in the possession of the Queensland Government.

Further information

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